Monthly Archives: August 2011

Entrust CEO and Congressman Burgess Outline Cyber Defense Needs

Without clear protection and guidelines, small- to mid-sized enterprises need to defend assets against online attacks, cybersecurity expert says

ENTRUST LOGO / Entrust logo. (PRNewsFoto/Entrust, Inc.)DALLAS, Aug. 30, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Entrust, Inc., a global leader in securing online identities and information, today participated in a cybersecurity forum in Highland Village, Texas. Entrust President and CEO Bill Conner joined U.S. Congressman Michael C. Burgess (TX-26), M.D., as well as University of North Texas senior technology director Charlotte Russell, and Gold’s Gym Senior Vice President and CIO Bill Wade, to discuss how small- to mid-sized businesses can protect themselves against cyber attacks.

“Unfortunately, today’s small- and mid-sized businesses do not have the same protection as large corporations and individuals, so it is extremely important that smaller enterprises make cybersecurity a priority,” said Conner. “In this economy, security may fall by the wayside, but the cost to deploy it is dwarfed by the cost of what’s at stake. Businesses do not know where an attack will come from, so it is crucial that they have cyber defense measures in place, as they could be struck with a large financial loss or take a credibility hit with their customers.”

>> Read Now: Transcript of Bill Conner’s Speech from the Cyber Security Forum

The forum was hosted by the Flower Mound, Texas, and Lewisville, Texas, chambers of commerce, and the Highland Village Business Association. The event’s speakers and panel discussion focused on what measures small- to mid-sized businesses need to have in place to protect against cybersecurity attacks.

“Having a defense against cyber attacks is critical for organizations of all sizes,” said Conner. “Cyber criminals will search for any hole in a company’s security measures and take advantage of it, utilizing such channels as online banking. This is cyber warfare and it takes everyone — government, major organizations, small businesses and individuals — working together to win.”

Entrust enables organizations and government agencies to easily and effectively manage security across a range of users and applications. The company offers a range of authentication and credentialing capabilities that cover physical, logical and mobile access.

A trusted provider of identity-based security solutions, Entrust empowers enterprises, governments, financial institutions, citizens and websites in more than 4,000 organizations spanning 60 countries. Entrust’s customer-centric focus is the foundation to delivering organizations an unmatched level of security, trust and value. For strong authentication, credentialing, physical and logical access, mobile security, digital certificates, SSL and PKI, call 888-690-2424, email [email protected] or visitwww.entrust.com. Let’s talk.

Entrust is a registered trademark of Entrust, Inc. in the United States and certain other countries. InCanada, Entrust is a registered trademark of Entrust Limited. All Entrust product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of Entrust, Inc. or Entrust Limited. All other company and product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.

SOURCE Entrust, Inc.

CONTACT: Lindsey Jones of Entrust, Inc., Media Relations, +1-972-728-0374, [email protected]

ACA of Texas Offers Financial Literacy Tips for Parents

ACA INTERNATIONAL EDUCATION FOUNDATION LOGO / ACA INTERNATIONAL EDUCATION FOUNDATION. (PRNewsFoto/ACA INTERNATIONAL)AUSTIN, Texas, Aug. 30, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — With Texas students from kindergarten to college heading back to school, adding financial literacy to your child’s curriculum this fall can teach invaluable skills for today and in the future.

“It’s never too early or too late to talk with your kids about personal finances,” said ACA of TexasPresident Jack Fischer.

As outlined in USA Today’s special supplement on youth financial literacy, teaching children about saving, credit, debt, budgeting and discipline in managing their own finances is essential to growth and development.  “From the very basic to the complex, parental involvement in helping their children better understand how to value and manage money is essential to helping them make successful financial decisions as they grow older,” said Chris Wunder, chair of the ACA International Education Foundation Board of Directors.

Helpful tips for talking to your children about financial management:

  • Be a role model. Parents, siblings and grandparents are important role models for teaching financial management to children. Lead by example.
  • Be honest. Building and maintaining trust with your child is essential. Admit mistakes and share how you learned from them.
  • Be interactive.  Effective teaching is a two-way street. Talking and listening with real life examples is important.
  • Be patient. Some children may not immediately grasp the concepts you are teaching, but don’t give up on your teaching efforts.
  • Start with an allowance.  For children, an allowance provides hands-on lessons in saving, spending, credit and budgeting.

ACA International Education Foundation is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization serving as the philanthropic arm of ACA International, the association of credit and collection professionals. The Foundation exists to promote the goal of increasing financial literacy in the United States. Outreach efforts includewww.askdoctordebt.com , which offers free, reliable answers to consumer questions and provides helpful resources.

ACA of Texas is a State Unit of ACA International, the Association of Credit and Collection Professionals.  ACA is the comprehensive, knowledge-based resource for success in the credit and collection industry.  Founded in 1939, ACA brings together more than 5,000 members in the United States and abroad, and their more than 150,000 employees, including third-party collection agencies, asset buyers, attorneys, creditors and vendor affiliates.  ACA establishes a wide variety of products, services and publications.  For more information on ACA International, visit www.acainternational.org .

CONTACT: Mark Schiffman
Tel. (952) 259-2124 or [email protected]

SOURCE ACA International Education Foundation

 

Sixty-Nine Percent of Business Owners Do Not Plan on Hiring Within the Next Year

NEW YORK, Aug. 31, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Newtek Business Services, NASDAQ: NEWT, The Small Business Authority’s Authority Market Sentiment Survey, a monthly window into the concerns of independent business owners. Based on a poll of approximately 1,100 respondents, one of the key findings from the August survey was that 69 percent of small business owners do not plan on hiring.  Two other questions in our survey support the findings of business pessimism.  Most business owners, looking out on the horizon, are either pessimistic or neutral at best, regarding the overall business environment.  Several business owners during the last 12 months have raised their prices or maintained them to fight off the effects of inflationary pressures eroding their margins.  Business owners in an economy described as stagnant, need to improve their cash flows and bottom lines while continuing to look towards the only segment of their business where the market enables them to improve their cash flows.

National Suit Drive Helps Unemployed Americans Suit Up for Success

Men’s Wearhouse Fourth Annual National Suit Drive Collects over 80,000 Clothing Items for Job Seekers

MEN'S WEARHOUSE / Donate to Men's Wearhouse National Suit Drive - Aug. 1-31, 2011. (PRNewsFoto/Men's Wearhouse, Rob Bennett)HOUSTON, Aug. 30, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — For the fourth year, Men’s Wearhouse has held a successful National Suit Drive, the country’s largest collection of gently used professional attire. The company devoted the month of August to encouraging patrons to transform their unwanted businesswear into a second chance for millions of disadvantaged Americans facing joblessness.

To view the multimedia assets associated with this release, please click:http://www.multivu.com/mnr/51934-men-s-wearhouse-fourth-annual-national-suit-drive

Despite recent job increases in select industries, the unemployment rate is still hovering just above an alarming 9 percent. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, as of July 2011:

  • African-Americans are experiencing a 16.2 percent unemployment rate — almost 1.8 times the national average of 9.2 percent.
  • The U.S. Latino population is experiencing an 11.6 percent unemployment rate.
  • U.S. males are experiencing a 9.1 percent unemployment rate, while U.S. females are facing an 8.0 percent rate.

The power of a suit in the workplace is not to be underestimated, according to the nationwide Men’s Wearhouse Well-Dressed Men Survey conducted earlier this year by Kelton Research for Men’s Wearhouse. A full 75 percent of Americans polled believe well-dressed men are more successful in the workplace than their casual colleagues, and 22 percent of men actually believe they would earn more money if only they dressed better.

Men’s Wearhouse, a leader in men’s formal and professional attire, has long preached the value of a suit to a man’s confidence. Known for his “guarantee,” George Zimmer, Men’s Wearhouse founder and executive chairman, sees National Suit Drive as “a chance to share that guarantee of assurance with those less fortunate and in transition into the workforce. A suit can do wonders to boost confidence in interviews and networking.”

Despite talk of the recession’s end, Men’s Wearhouse’s efforts in its largest yearly philanthropic event are as ambitious as ever. With just days remaining to donate to the drive, 80,449 items have been collected at more than 900 Men’s Wearhouse locations around the country, including 9,027 suits. August 31 is the final day stores will be accepting donations to the drive — it’s not too late to make a difference in the lives of Americans with barriers to employment.

About Men’s Wearhouse

Since it was founded in 1973, Men’s Wearhouse has become one of the largest specialty retailers of men’s apparel in the country, with more than 900 stores carrying a full selection of designer and private-label suits, sport coats, casualwear, and accessories. Today, The Men’s Wearhouse, Inc. family of companies includes Men’s Wearhouse, MW Cleaners, K&G Fashion Superstore, TwinHill Corporate Apparel, and Moores Clothing for Men in Canada, making it one of North America’s leading providers of quality and value in both apparel and apparel care. Men’s Wearhouse also operates in a global corporate apparel and workwear group consisting of Dimensions and Alexandra in the United Kingdom. For additional information, please visit the company’s website at www.menswearhouse.com.

SOURCE Men’s Wearhouse

CONTACT: Caitlin Murphy, +1-336-774-9367, or Meghan Hakim, +1-336-774-9323

 

AT&T to Bring 5,000 Call Center Jobs Back to U.S. Following T-Mobile Merger Closing

DALLAS, Aug. 30, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) today committed that after closing its proposed merger with T-Mobile USA, it will bring back 5,000 wireless call center jobs to the United States that today are outsourced to other countries.

Today’s commitment results from AT&T developing detailed analysis focused specifically on identifying opportunities with the T-Mobile merger to bring good-paying wireless call center jobs back to the United States.

In addition to bringing jobs back, AT&T committed that the merger will not result in any job losses for U.S.-based wireless call center employees of T-Mobile USA or AT&T, who are on the payroll when the merger closes.

The 5,000 new wireless call center jobs at AT&T will offer among the nation’s most highly competitive wages and benefits. AT&T, which has not yet determined where in the U.S. the new jobs will be located, is the nation’s largest employer of full-time union employees and the only unionized major U.S. wireless carrier.

“At a time when many Americans are struggling and our economy faces significant challenges, we’re pleased that the T-Mobile merger allows us to bring 5,000 jobs back to the United States and significantly increase our investment here,” said Randall Stephenson, AT&T Chairman and CEO. “This merger and today’s commitment are good for our employees, our customers and our country.”

Today’s announcement represents the largest commitment by an individual American company to bring jobs back to the U.S. since the economic crisis began in 2008.

Also, AT&T has committed as part of the T-Mobile merger to increase its U.S. infrastructure investment by more than $8 billion.  According to an analysis by the Economic Policy Institute that was commissioned by the Communications Workers of America, AT&T’s increased investment is estimated to produce up to approximately 96,000 new U.S. jobs.

AT&T said today’s jobs commitment does not change its previous guidance on the expected overall merger synergies.

Beyond the jobs created, AT&T’s acquisition of T-Mobile USA provides a fast, efficient and certain solution to the impending exhaustion of wireless spectrum in many markets, which limits both companies’ ability to meet the ongoing explosive customer demand for mobile broadband. The uniquely complementary nature of AT&T and T-Mobile’s network assets will allow the combined company to add wireless network capacity – the functional equivalent of new spectrum – sooner than any other alternative.

This additional wireless network capacity will enable AT&T to offer better service — fewer dropped and blocked calls, and faster data speeds. Plus, the economic scale, additional spectrum and other benefits resulting from the merger will enable AT&T to deliver high-speed 4G LTE mobile broadband service to 97 percent of the U.S. population, or 55 million more Americans than it would without the merger. Reaching 97 percent of the population with LTE will create a much more extensive and robust mobile broadband platform that will fuel growth and investment throughout the country.

The benefits of the AT&T and T-Mobile merger have been recognized by numerous elected officials throughout the country, including 27 governors, more than 100 mayors, 11 state attorneys general, 79 Democratic Members of the U.S. House of Representatives and more than 150 chambers of commerce from 40 states, as well as a dozen labor unions and dozens of high-tech companies, such as Facebook, Microsoft, Yahoo! and Oracle.

Workplace Rights for Illegals? Be My Guest (worker)

Today, U.S. Labor Secretary Hilda Solis signed “partnership” agreements with representatives from Latin American countries in order to “protect the labor rights” of workers, both legal and illegal.  Says Solis, “No matter how you got here or how long you plan to stay, you have certain rights. You have the right to be safe and in a healthy workplace and the right to a legal wage.”   No need to rub your eyes, you read that correctly.  Just in case you don’t believe it, look at what California Labor commissioner Julie Su said earlier – “Nationwide, Latino workers suffer more minimum wage and overtime violations than any other ethnic group. My job is to make sure that the labor laws of this state are enforced, the right to minimum wage, to overtime for all hours worked and the right to protection against retaliation when workers stand up for their rights.”

Americans who are already terribly dismayed by a 9% unemployment rate and escalating violence at the borders find statements like this very disturbing, and rightfully so.  It certainly is disheartening to be searching (legally) for a job and come across business after business that has filled most of their labor with illegal immigrants.  Su is quick to remind us that companies nationwide are violating the “rights” of ILLEGAL aliens, denying them minimum wage, overtime, and general workplace protections.  She seems unable or unwilling to acknowledge the violations on the part of the ILLEGAL alien, who by definition is a criminal on our shores simply by being here.  They are not protected by our laws, our constitution and are not welcome to participate in the benefits of being American (though we know many do anyway).  Those privileges are not for people who break the law, they are for people who love America enough to put in the effort to actually become American – legally.

But hearing all this makes me think: perhaps we should be advocating for minimum wage and equal workplace rights for illegals.  Maybe we should be the ones front and center, protesting beside these non-English speaking, non-tax paying, non voting, non-citizens.  We should be advocating that employers be required to pay every illegal alien at least a minimum wage, health benefits, and overtime.  Employers who knowingly hire illegals to fill their positions should be required to provide the same workplace conditions as they would for real Americans.  They should be required to meet every OSHA standard and should be subject to special investigation by OSHA if they don’t.  I say special because illegal aliens are a disadvantaged sub-group in America.  Many don’t speak English (probably because they aren’t American) and are fearful of the authorities (probably because they aren’t American).  They are reluctant to report workplace violations, so OSHA should provide frequent and regular monitoring of businesses that choose to hire illegal aliens.  Furthermore, if an illegal alien decides to strike for better workplace conditions, their jobs should be protected, just like real Americans.  They should also have the right to unionize without threat of retaliation, as Su described.

Why not give our illegal alien guests the same workplace rights as the average unionized, American worker? I say go for it.  The reason American businesses turn to illegal labor in the first place is because arbitrary minimum wage laws, OSHA regulations, and union labor strangleholds have astronomically driven up the price of labor.  Illegal aliens are illegal (gasp!), and so obviously not concerned with fulfilling the law in their work.  So let them have their “American” workplace rights.  Conservatives worry that this is “backdoor” amnesty…and maybe it is.  However, why not engage in a little “backdoor” protection of our borders and drive out illegal aliens by making them just as costly as the average American citizen?  If a business has to pay the same amount for an educated American citizen as it does for an illegal alien who doesn’t even speak English, who do you think they would rather hire?  Of course, we would prefer that they could simply hire the American citizen a low but fair wage, but decades of Democrat “compassion” have made that nearly impossible.  Maybe the best route to go is to make the hiring of illegals equally as costly.

The Obama Administration has made it more than clear that they have no intention of defending Americans and American businesses from the current, debilitating onslaught of illegal, uneducated labor.  They have all but surrendered certain patches of sovereign American soil in some places along the border and prosecuted Arizona for their audacity in taking the issue into their own hands.  If our own government won’t protect us, the citizens, but will  protect illegal aliens, perhaps its time for a new strategy.  Maybe we need to cure the problem using their own medicine – stifling regulations and crushing burdens of compliance and oversight.  Let the illegals “enjoy” the privilege of being a regular American employee in the work place today.  Not only may it drive employers back to good, old-fashioned American labor, the Tea Party may find some partners in these newly  outraged (non)Americans.

Hey, at this point, it doesn’t sound so crazy.

Blood Letting

From Hippocrates to the 19th century, medicine was based on the theory of the four humors. It was believed that all diseases and ailments were caused by in-balances between yellow bile, black bile, blood and phlegm.  For thousands of years all treatments based on this theory did damage, the most well known treatment being blood letting. Despite obvious correlationsbetween treatment and increasing sickness, doctors, philosophers and scientists kept the same beliefs and practices. These quacks, instead of using reason and rationality, placed blame on anything available, including demons, and not because of their own failed policies and practices. This same behavior is evident with the American left and their own policies.

According to our President, our current economic problems are the fault of his predecessor, the tea party, congress, politics as usual, Japan, Europe, ATMs, Corporate Jets and so on and so forth. Never once has he thought that maybe, just maybe, his policies have failed because they simply do not work. It is true, correlation does not causation make, but when a policy produces the opposite intended effect, a reasonable person does not move the goalposts, but adjusts the policy, or finds a new policy. The quacks of our medical past moved the goalposts as well, saying that their patients would have died quicker if they had not let blood to balance the humors.

The general theories the left has pushed on us since Teddy Roosevelt’s Progressive ascendency through the Obama presidency are as wrong as the theory of the four humors. They have indoctrinated the zero-sum fallacy, fallacies of composition, Sequential Fallacies (post hoc ergo propter hoc,) Chess piece fallacies and open-ended fallacies through argumentum ad nauseam and verbosium. This leads to a mind projection fallacy where their theories must be right, regardless of complete failure. You can see this in statements such as, “rich people don’t spend money,” a statement heard often yet lacking any evidence.  This is as ridiculous as it is false.

Despite available empirical evidence, the left, including the President, Paul Krugman and many in the house and senate and the talking heads on MSNBC and CNN choose to hold onto their modus operandi. Europe, since we assisted in its rebuilding, has been spending, regulating and re-regulating and they are now near collapse because their only economically successful country can no longer bailout fellow EU member states. While the EU collapse is used as an excuse for our economy, the reasons for its collapse have been ignored. Although President G.W. Bush’s spending has been cited as an excuse for the economy; the spending of President Obama is not seen as a problem. This was like a recovery, which had nothing to do with the four humors, was touted as proof of its correctness, while in fact; a majority of those treated got worse and died.

This behavior is not new; rather, it is endemic for the left. The left’s programs have constantly failed and made problems worse, yet that has not stopped the left from trumpeting success. The left claims to be the supporter of the poor, downtrodden and minorities, yet economically the programs they boast of have caused significant damage to those they consider their wards. From 1890 to 1950 the African American population had slightly higher rates of workplace participation than whites. From 1940 to 1960 African Americans under the poverty line dropped from 87 to 47 percent, and African Americans in white collar or managerial jobs doubled. These trends slowed and reversed after the creation of Johnson’s “Great Society.” As stated previously, correlation does prove causation, but to consider these occurrences as successes is intellectually dishonest at best. Especially when considering African American unemployment is currently at 16.1 percent while President Obama’s predecessor had it down to 9.1 percent. Yet, the idea that these things might be negative will never cross the minds of the left, where their belief that they are saviors of a race or group may not work, despite the availability of factual information.

There are even more examples of obviously failed policies, “open space” laws, city planning, “smart growth” policy, ethanol, intervention in industries from automobile production to energy. There is no evidence that these policies were successful, yet they remain in the toolbox of the left. Conservative issues are deep and systematic, but the left continues to produce open-ended and undefined ideas that even taken as a whole would not dent their unsustainable course.

The reason is clear and undeniable. Like the quacks of the past , as a result of narcissism and a herd mentality, the left must keep their view of the world. Like the relationship of doctor to the patient, it is not the doctor who is dying. The movers and shakers on the left are insulated to their failures, as is our President, currently vacationing in Martha’s Vineyard; as are leftist fire brands like Paul Krugman or Al Gore, John Kerry, Nancy Pelosi and others too numerous to list. They do not acknowledge their failures and so choose to ignore them, much like the blood letting by quacks in the past.

Illegal Immigrants Now Have Rights

U.S. Labor Secretary Hilda Solis today (29 Aug 2011) signed “partnership” agreements with ambassadors from a group of Latin American nations aiming to protect what she described as the labor rights of both legal and illegal migrants working in the United States. The agreements are to educate migrant workers, regardless of how they got here, about their rights under U.S. law and to help prevent them from being abused in the workplace. [emphasis mine]   Solis said that all migrant workers have a “right to a legal wage,” even though the Labor Department itself states that under U.S. law, the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), “employers may hire only persons who may legally work in the United States.” Solis continued, “No matter how you got here or how long you plan to stay, you have certain rights.” “All we’re doing is enforcing the law…”

Mexican consulates in cities across the nation are holding events for “Labor Rights Week.” Julie Su, California’s labor commissioner, said, “Nationwide, Latino workers suffer more minimum wage and overtime violations than any other ethnic group. My job is to make sure that the labor laws of this state are enforced, the right to minimum wage, to overtime for all hours worked and the right to protection against retaliation when workers stand up for their rights.” Ken Atha, regional head of the Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), says that many Hispanic workers aren’t aware that the occupational safety and health rights act protects workers regardless of legal status. [emphasis mine]

From Rich Mitchell at CDN we learn, “The Mexican government is opening a satellite consular office on Catalina Island – a small resort off the California coast with a history of drug smuggling and human trafficking – to provide the island’s illegal Mexican immigrants with identification cards.”

Smalgov at CDN says, Since when do other countries have a say in our law making procedures or any other issue related to American citizens? They don’t.” He continues, “Eleven foreign nations are suing the state of Georgia because those countries don’t like our illegal alien laws. Leftist socialist groups like the ACLU and the SEIU are helping them to do it. What will most likely happen is these 11 countries and the two leftist socialist groups will tie this up in court – costing again taxpayers even more money.”

From Daniel at CDN, we learn, “In a recent Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, The Justice Departments Chief of The Executive Office for Immigration Review, (EOIR) Mr. Juan Osuna outlined the problems of the failures of the United States Department of Homeland Security to prevent the recent floods of illegal immigrants bombarding America today.” Are these illegal immigrant going to be extended rights?

So now “our” government is extending rights to illegal aliens. Is this outrageous, or what? And, as we see, unlawful actions (while the U.S. government looks the other way) are becoming more numerous. Who said “elections don’t count?” But that’s just my opinion.

For the People, By the People, Of the People









The devastation Irene caused can now be the center for job creation by the people running this country. As they continue to try to sell the idea that food stamps, welfare, and unemployment all stimulate the economy, hence so does Irene. With that type of logic we should applaud all natural disasters since they are job creators according to this administration. What is really needed to stimulate the economy and create jobs?The creation of a welfare state is certainly not the solution to our current economic problems, yet that is the direction we are heading. How well is that working out for Europe? The UK? Now this president explains things in such a way that some people may believe he has the answers to end these problems. Understandable, that teleprompter is a great device, along with those people who actually write the words that come out of the mouths of those in Washington, including our President. Mr. Obama finds anyone and everyone to blame for what is going on under his watch, and heck he may even believe that the problem lies with congress considering he continually asserts the house and senate cannot agree on issues like the debt. He like blame everyone for the downgrade and refuses to recognize that S & P; P warned if there was not a plan in place to cut spending the downgrade was inevitable. Instead the president got what he wanted, at any cost, which was increase the deficit by raising the ceiling, continue spending as always, and not produce the type of cuts in spending that were/are necessary. Let’s be honest: The downgrade occurred as a result of spending and the unwillingness of this president to lead in such a way that is critical for this country to survive economically.

Mr. Obama will soon present his new job creation plan, no doubt something similar to his other rhetoric. These stimulus packages and printing more money cannot solve the problems we, as a nation, are experiencing, yet that is always part of Mr. Obama’s solution. How many jobs and how will did those packages work the last time? Mr. Obama believes in government control and big government. But the reality is, for the American people to truly understand what is happening in Washington and truly realize the actual goals of this government; they would need to get a firm grasp on the issues at hand. How many of you can say you truly understand what is needed to create jobs and get this country moving along into economic prosperity? It really isn’t that difficult, what is difficult is having to decipher the constant rhetoric and untruths of corrupt politicians whose motivation is stimulated by their own greed and arrogance.

For corporations to return to the United States, thereby creating jobs for the American people it would require the government to lower current tax rates so they are competitive with other countries. Currently the United States has the highest tax rate on businesses than any other country in the world. The government would also have to restructure and minimize regulations on businesses. Right now most businesses cannot afford to stay in this country; the regulations continue to grow, and most business owners cannot survive. Take a look around you – In every nook and cranny of this country businesses are failing. How many abandoned sites do you see on a daily basis? Look, and keep looking.

As our Constitution is being dismantled on daily basis, and as the American people remain disengaged, the ideals of our forefathers along with everything they put into place in an effort to protect this country, is slowly disappearing. People like Pelosi and Reed, as well as others, forget that the government is: FOR the PEOPLE, BY the PEOPLE, and OF the PEOPLE – they need to be reminded of that.

MMFA: Charitable Chumps

This morning I spent a little quality time over at the Media Matters for America, otherwise known as “All Fox News, All the Time”.  You may also know it as the “Glenn Beck, Glenn Beck, Glenn Beck” site.  I don’t head over there too often.  If I want to know what Fox News is doing I’ll turn on the TV. myself.  If I want to see a Glenn Beck “evil-face” montage of pictures, I’ll Google it.  But every now and again I like to see what type of hate the Senior Fellows are using their 501(c)(3) status to spew.

Whenever I do stop through, I never fail to click on their “About” page and read their mission statement – because I love to laugh.  It is good medicine for the soul, after all.  At least that’s what people with souls say.  The folks over at Media Matters don’t seem to laugh much, so you do the math.  This is my favorite part:

 Launched in May 2004, Media Matters for America put in place, for the first time, the means to systematically monitor a cross section of print, broadcast, cable, radio, and Internet media outlets for conservative misinformation — news or commentary that is not accurate, reliable, or credible and that forwards the conservative agenda — every day, in real time.

 Isn’t that hilarious?  The best part is how they claim to “monitor a cross section” of conservative media outlets.  But click on their home page and look at the “cross section” of offerings they have produced.  As I write this the top three stories are “Fox News Ran With Completely Baseless Accusation that Immigrants Set AZ Fire”, Jay Varney on Fox News, and “Glenn Beck Embraces a Kahanist”.  That’s quite a diverse offering.

Question: How many Senior Fellows does it take to provide a cross section of conservative media outlets? Answer: Fox News.

There are so many things that are so horribly wrong about MMFA, starting with the fact that they are underwritten by George “Darth Vader” Soros, and including the fact that they are a 501(c)(3) and thus enjoy a very cushy tax-exempt status.  Yes, this “charity” gets a tax break from the government to discredit private sector businesses.  On top of that, Soros gets to enjoy a “charitable” tax deduction every time he gives Eric Boehlert money for lunch and massages.  It really is a testament to the tenacity ($) and resourcefulness ($) of Darth Soros that he was ever able to secure a tax-exempt status for MMFA in the first place.  I don’t begrudge his desire to squash the fledgling right wing media, but I do resent that the government helps him to do it.  Over at Big Government, Meredith Dake has made it her personal mission to expose MMFA’s lies and distortions and strip them of their 501(c)(3) status.  She has carefully (and brilliantly, I might add) laid out a plan of attack to accomplish this.  Dake provides the IRS’s own guidelines for what merits an investigation of a charitable organization.  Even just a quick perusal reveals that MMFA is clearly in violation in at least two instances – “Organization is involved in a political campaign” and “Organization is involved in excessive lobbying activities”.  I don’t need to view a cross section of MMFA’s site to know that they have really screwed the pooch on just those two things.  Dake goes on to explain the process for citizens filing complaints against Team Soros with the IRS and even provides the links to the necessary forms.  Some may feel this is excessive, but her point is well made: Media Matters for Soros has already declared war on Fox News and conservative outlets in general; in a day and age where government waste is about sink the entire country and liberals are calling for more taxes to cover their incompetence, it only makes sense that an organization that is so clearly NOT charitable be required to contribute financially to the coffers of America.

The right to free speech is the most valuable right provided to Americans under the Constitution, perhaps only trumped by the right to own property.  No conservative would ever deny the right of an organization or group of people to express opinions.  The fact that MMFA exists and is funded by Overlord Soros is not at issue here.  The fact that MMFA is narrow-minded to the point of being extremely dull is not at issue here.  The fact that that MMFA posts blatant lies and misinformation is not at issue here.  These are all things that are protected under our Constitution, and should remain that way.  MMFA has every right to exist, and should be free to suck for as long as they want.  What they shouldn’t be free to do is enjoy a charitable tax-exempt status.  It is clearly inappropriate, and at the very least it is journalistic malpractice.  I don’t really feel comfortable referring to MMFA and journalism in the same sentence, but I’m at a loss for a word to accurately describe what exactly it is they do.  Harassment? Whining? Storytelling? Regardless, the sinister connections between MMFA, George Soros and our federal government mean that conservatives will need to keep a watchful eye on this organization.  As the 2012 election season heats up, this propaganda machine will be in full swing, and they’ll be getting lucrative tax breaks to do so.

Lemonade Concessioneers to Unionize Due to ‘Big Mean Government’

Young lemonade stand owners across America have been the subject of government witch hunts for the last few months.

Local governments have been shutting down stands owned by children trying to make a little extra summer cash to pay for pet food, toys and trips to amusement parks. The government crack-down has all but dashed those hopes.

Now, the youthful concessioneers are fighting back. The Lemonade Makers And Operators (LMAO) union is being formed to protect the rights of the pre-pubescent entrepreneurs.

Watching the government attack Boeing and now guitar makers that are either not unionized or have decided to operate a factory in a right-to-work state, the young business owners have figured out that going union has advantages. Little Bobby McAdams said, “I just wanted to save up some money to go to Coaster World, now I have to join a union just to make a buck? Nine more years you mean democrats.. then I can vote!”

Susie Craven told CDNews that she had no choice but to join the union because “Big government is really, really big and stuff. I can’t even vote, but if my union dues being funneled to a few democrats will get them off my back so I can feed my hamster – fine, sign me up!”

this post is fiction, children aren’t really unionizing – it’s an exaggeration to prove a point .. or two.

Consumer Confidence Index Drops to Lowest Since April 2009

Indicative of a recession, the Conference Board’s consumer confidence index dropped to 44.5 vs. last months 59.2. That represents the lowest showing of consumer sentiment since spring of 2009.

The number was heavily weighed down by a very poor showing in the forward-looking Expectations Index portion of the total score. This represents

 Says Lynn Franco, Director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center: “Consumer confidence deteriorated sharply in August, as consumers grew significantly more pessimistic about the short-term outlook. The index is now at its lowest level in more than two years (April 2009, 40.8). A contributing factor may have been the debt ceiling discussions since the decline in confidence was well underway before the S&P downgrade. Consumers’ assessment of current conditions, on the other hand, posted only a modest decline as employment conditions continue to suppress confidence.”

In a scathing rebuke of the current administration’s view that things are getting better, the report also shows that only 11.8 of respondents think that business conditions are going to improve over the next six months.

Save Gibson – Vote Out a Democrat

Collection of Gibson Acoustic GuitarsThe news of the Obama Department of Justice’s witch hunt on Gibson is plastered across the internet. What’s not equally as noteworthy is any real admonition from Democrats. Where is the outcry from the imaginary protector of the arts and artists? As usual, caught between special interest groups.

Leftist politicians would have to choose between three groups of supporters. First, there are the environmentalists who decry the use of anything natural – or, for that fact, unnatural – in much of anything. At the other end of the debate are the performing artists – another typically left-leaning group. The third may be the biggest driver of these raids – the unions. You see, Gibson, is located in Tennessee – a right to work state.

Guitarists are worried that the government might come after their guitars, pianos or anything else with now-controlled materials. While the use might have been done in compliance with regulations – as it was in Gibson’s case –  the artists don’t have the official harvesting documentation. Their instruments are now contraband.

What scares me most about that article is that, as they claim, if your old Martin has an ebony bridge, you may need to have papers to prove it. This, if true, if just out of control. This is the pendulum swung WAY past the side of environmental protection, into police state territory. -fromthe Atlantic Wire

 

The music world is known for an ‘up yours’ style of anti-establishment rhetoric, but now that they are directly under attack – will they fight back? All that is necessary to end this political attack on an American manufacturer is to relieve the country of the current President.

While many are concerned for one of the greatest Guitar makers – an American guitar maker – the Obama administration is worried about a non-existent infringement of the laws of India. The frustration with the situation is easy to remedy and might just make for a great 2012 t-shirt – “Save Gibson, Vote Out a Democrat”.

A Price No Man Can Pay.

While at work today, I was facepainting a little boy.
He was about five years old.
His mom came over (his older brother had been watching over him) and said, “Oh, you should have gotten your brother’s name written on your arm.”

I learned, as she began to share, that her son was killed. Blunt force trauma to the head, by his dad, or his step-dad, I am not sure, as my clowny wig covers my ears and I miss words sometimes.

The adult man was drunk when it happened.

The hostess to the restaurant wrapped her arms around the mother, and I attempted to face paint this little boy without crying, thinking to myself, “The unthinkable can really happen. NON-reality can become reality in an instant. I am painting, I am holding the head of and touching the face of a little boy who lost his twin brother in a violent and horrific display of loss of temper….God help me bless this little boy. Help me give him a reason to smile please….” All of this while I smile, and paint his face, and he looks up at me with big wide eyes.

Thinking back, I disagree with the mom’s statement.
I know she was speaking out of pain, and I do not fault her for doing so. I do not judge her, and I do not condemn, but as an outside observer, looking “in the window” at this family’s suffering, I think it is probably not a good idea to compel this little twin who has already suffered more than I can fathom, to write little memorials to his brother on his own body.

If he had asked me on his own…. Of course I would have done it. With all my heart, and as beautifully as possible.♥.

People do it.

I almost did, a small tattoo of a flower on my ankle in honor of my cousin who died a sudden and tragic death from a car accident. But no one called me, and compelled me to, and I am an adult. This child will no doubt grow up and mourn the loss of his twin in a way he sees fit.

Maybe a permanent tattoo, or maybe a memorial garden in the corner of his yard with a statue of a little boy, and no doubt – daily – but it will be something he draws out from within his own soul, of his own accord, and it will be cathartic.

It would be so good for mom to provide as healthy a childhood as she can for this young one, perhaps without reminding him to honor the loss….

But she is suffering. How on earth can she see beyond that right now?

That is why I said I do not judge her in any way.
How could anyone? I wanted to hold her too, but people in the middle of restaurants typically shy away from long embraces with clowns. The hostess was hugging her. She was being nourished, and I was doing my best to fill her son’s cup.

I was in a meeting in a school once, where the guest speaker, a man who does not drink, a kind man and a leader in the community shared with us parents, a day when he lost his temper.

The children’s room was messy. He was on his knees picking things up, his boys in their beds. They’d just climbed in. He was getting angrier and more upset and he threw a shoe at the wall in his anger. His son had sat up in his bed, and the shoe almost hit him in the head. It missed his son – but it could have hit him, and the man told us how shaken he was by the event.

He had thrown it with such force…and it was only a matter of a few inches, he said, and his son would have been hit.

He humbled himself in front of all of us to teach us the lesson he learned at his own expense.

He paid a great price, with much pain and shame.

He shared it hoping to spare a child, and I knew that instantly.

That was a man of honor. That was a man I respect very much – moreso than I did before he spoke that day – and I already esteemed him highly.

Mommies, and Daddies….

Tempers.

They have no place in our children’s lives.

Temper destroys the soul. It breaks down the entity entrusted to you.

Who do you have access to?
How often do you display your temper?

Let us be careful….

Let us learn from the pain of others, and spare our own families unnecessary sorrow.

Before we exact a price that no man can pay with our lack of self-control.