Just a few thoughts as we watch the Wisconsin farce play out

Just a few thoughts as we watch the Wisconsin farce play out.  They called the Conservatives obstructionist and labeled the Republicans the party of “No.”  So given the Democrat party’s actions in Wisconsin and Indiana, I guess we should label them the party of “Go”.  Only cowards run.

I actually believe that if the power of the public school teacher’s unions can be restrained, we might be able to get something done about the deplorable shape of our public education system.  By the way, it’s not the teachers…it’s the unions!

MISPLACED SYMPATHY (3/1/11)

You’ve probably heard, “the end justifies the means”.

It is often used to justify immoral behavior if the desired outcome is achieved.

The teachers’ unions in Wisconsin are suggesting that collective bargaining is achieving a worthwhile end and therefore ought not be challenged.

Wisconsin teachers have negotiated the highest pay and benefit package of any teachers in the Midwest, more than twice the average pay of the taxpayers who are paying the bill…certainly a desired outcome…for the teachers.  Warranted?

Perhaps if these virtuous people were doing such a remarkable job teaching their students…but they are not.  Fully 2/3rds of Wisconsin’s 8th graders cannot read proficiently according to U.S. Dept of Education.  Perhaps worse, there has been no improvement in the last 10 years while all these wage and benefit concessions were being won at the collective bargaining table.

Perhaps it could be said these unions are twice guilty…they are defrauding the parents and robbing the taxpayers.  You decide, do those ends justify the means?

TYRANNY OF THE MINORITY (3/2/11)

When is the minority justified in violating the democratic process in order to insist on their way?

We’ve now seen a Democratic minority in the Wisconsin legislature attack the fundamental democratic process over their inability to win concessions from the majority on a major bill affecting the financial future of the state.

Tomorrow we will address the legitimacy of their position on the issues, but the question today is the legitimacy of their tactics.

President Obama in bullying his deficit spending and big government agenda through a legislature dominated by his own party told the conservatives, “Elections have consequences and at the end of the day, I won!”

Regrettable though his tactics were, coming directly from the Chicago mob, in our democratic republic, he’s right…and the grown up Republican minority stayed engaged, fought the good fight, cast their votes and took their losses.

In November, when Wisconsin conservatives won by promising to rein in spending, did the liberals graciously concede and behave like grown ups?  The answer is obvious.

THE TYRANNY OF COLLECTIVE BARGAINING (3/3/11)

Is collective bargaining by public employee unions in the best interest of the citizens these public employees purport to serve?

The major issue in the Wisconsin battle is whether or not the public employees should retain their right to collective bargaining…and does that right have any impact on the state’s budget deficits.  Those supporting the Governor insist union demands at the bargaining table have added to the state’s deficit problems and crippled state and local government’s ability to deal with structural issues driving the deficit crisis.

Union supporters insist bargaining rights are not a significant issue and point to their recent concessions to prove their point.

Just one example to support the Governor…the public employees union in one recent bargaining session demanded that the state add free Viagra to their health insurance coverage at a cost of over $800,000 over the period of the contract.

But, when challenged, they quickly remind us it’s all about the children…the Governor’s right, there’s a fox in the hen house.

REAL WORLD IMPACT OF COLLECTIVE BARGAINING (3/4/11)

Did you know that because of collective bargaining work rules, Providence, RI was required to send dismissal notices to all 1926 teachers in the city, effective at the end of the school year?

Why you asked?  The contract the union negotiated requires the city to give 6 months notice of impending dismissals.

Since the School Board doesn’t know the full extent of the measures needed to overcome a projected $40M deficit next year…and in order to have the flexibility they need to solve the problem, the pink slips are mandated by the union contract.

They surely will not lay off all 1926 teachers.  When they resolve the extent of the needed personnel cuts, the required teachers will be rehired…but by then the pink slip trauma caused by the union work rules will have significantly damaged the work environment.

These types of inflexible union rules are common across the country.  So, while the unions cry “foul”…public officials are simply complying with the union’s own work rules.

KNOW YOUR ENEMY (3/7/11)

What is the most important rule in war?

In Sun Tzu’s classic work “The Art of War”, he lists “Know your enemy” as critical to success.  As we engage the enemies of responsible, constitutional government knowing our enemy is critical to taking back our country.

Herman Cain, a successful businessman, entrepreneur and conservative politician has summarized our enemy’s tactics using the acronym S.I.N.

It is an easy way to understand the liberals and progressives…or whatever they want to call themselves today.

S…Shift the topic.  Since they cannot win the public debate on merit, they constantly want to shift the topic.

I…Ignore the facts.  Since facts tend to support the conservatives, they tend to impede the liberals…so ignore them.

N…Name calling.  You can be sure you’ve won the argument when they resort to name calling to discredit you rather than your position.

When engaging the enemies of our constitution, just remember S.I.N.

Did I mention Herman Cain is black???

Please visit our website www.inspireandignite.com.  There you’ll find all this and more.  Join our revolution and stay informed.  We try to bring common sense and a solid conservative, Biblical worldview to bear the issues of the day.

Turn your friends onto the site.  They can sign up to receive these emails as well.  The website also has a place where you can donate to the cause of keeping this effort funded…we need your help to stay engaged in the battle raging for the heart and soul of America.  Join the cause by contributing what you can to the battle.

Capt Jim Kinney USN (ret)

www.inspireandignite.com

The Judge’s View – Jerry Hogan 27 Feb. 2011

You may have heard discussions in the coffee shops or among your neighbors about the County moving some departments and people. These discussions are true.

When the Commissioners Court decided to fund and build the new Court

Jerry Hogan - Rockwall County Judge-Elect
Rockwall County Judge Jerry Hogan

House, they made the correct decision to construct the building for not only today’s needs, but also for future growth. As a result of this decision, the design of the building includes four floors, each with about 30,000 square foot of space, and for the expansion needs, one of these floors, the third, was left empty.

In January the question was asked about the length of time it would be before this space was projected to be used.  The answer was a little surprising. In five years, it is projected that the county will require a new Court-of-Law. When this happens, it will be necessary to build a new court room on the third floor for this function. The next use of this empty space will be a projected new District Court. This will not happen until 8-12 years from now. This will also require the need for a new court room on the third floor.

Each of these new court rooms and associated office space for the new judges and their staff will require about 7,000 square feet.

Thus, unless something was done now, all of the third floor would remain empty for five years, three fourths of it would remain empty for 8-12 years and the remaining half of the floor would be empty for over 12 years. At the same time that all of this space would be empty, several county functions would remain in older, cramped, inefficient buildings. The answer was simple; utilize the space in the new Court House now while at the same time keeping space available for expansion. As an added benefit, close the county leased facilities and close and dispose of several older facilities that would no longer be needed.

Such a plan has been developed.

The new Court House will be ready for occupancy by mid-October of this year. At that time, all of the functions now located in the Government Center on Ridge Road (the old Cameron Building) will be moved to the 1st, 2nd, and 4th floors of the new court house. This will include our two District Courts, our Court-of-Law, the District Attorney, the District Clerk, and the County Clerk. Replacing these functions in the Government Center will be the Tax Assessor, Indigent Health Care, Health Coordinator, Elections Office, Ag Extension office, and the Drivers License office now located near Brookshire’s.

These rearrangements will allow us to close and not renew on September 30, three leased facilities; the current location of the elections office, the current location of the Drivers License office, and the current location of the Ag extension office.

We also are moving our Technology Department (IT) into the first floor of the Library; a location that will allow them to service more quickly the more than fifty computers located in this building while also placing the department nearer to the new court house where, between the Library and the Court House, most of their work will be located. By doing this, we then will be able to close the Annex, a historic building just off the square on Fannin Street.

To complete this movement, we then are going to move our existing two Justice of the Peace (JP) offices and their two constables, to the third floor of the new Court House. Additionally, as a result of the new Census, we will be required to add two additional JP’s and two additional Constables in Rockwall County. These offices will be added after the General Election in November of 2012, but we are going to go ahead and outfit the third floor now for these new positions.

These movements will allow us to close another building, 108 Fannin Street, just across the street from the Annex.

These actions will reduce the county facilities from 12 buildings to 7 and will save us about $125,000 per year in operating costs for those facilities. It will also allow us to fill about 8,000 square feet of the empty 30,000 square feet on the third floor.

You might ask, “Why don’t you use more of the empty space on the 3rd floor and close more facilities?” Good question and the answer all comes down to money.

No monies were placed in the construction budget for the third floor of the new Court House. To outfit the floor with the needed construction, lights, heat and air conditioning, computer hook-up, etc, will cost about $85 per square foot. Thus to place the JP’s and their Constables on the floor will be about $900,000. The intent was to borrow the money for this fit out from our existing reserve fund, and then repay the “loan” to ourselves when we sold the buildings to be vacated. With the plan outlined above, we cannot afford to fill additional space on the 3rd floor. We are now investigating other options that might allow additional use of the space. I suggest you contact your Commissioner and let him/her know your thoughts on this.

Jerry Hogan is the Rockwall County Judge.

He can be reached at jhogan@rockwallcountytexas.com or jerry@jerryhhogan.com

His phone number is 972-204-6000 or 214-394-4033.

Wisconsin Teachers’ Strike – Class Warfare Fomented by Communists

Private sector union labor has declined continuously since the late 1940’s. Ever expanding federal laws and regulations, including minimum wage acts and OSHA rules, supplant the role of early labor unions.

Union wage and salary workers declined in 2010 to 11.9% from 12.3% in 2009. Why? American workers prefer freedom of thought, freedom of choice and they enjoy rewards commensurate with their productivity.

So, what is all the hullabaloo in Wisconsin? What madness drives public school teachers to strike and doctors to aid and abet them to violate their contracts?

While private sector workers prefer to be free to work for whomever they choose, public sector employs live very differently. Public sector (government) employment is growing by leaps and bounds. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, (BLS), “workers in education, training and library occupations had the highest unionization rate at 37.1%”.

The “middle class” is a euphemism for non-public sector wage and salary workers. “Public sector” euphemistically describes the elite class of American workers.

In fact, all union members share privileged status as modern-day elites of American society.

Public sector (union) employees demand preservation of their wages and benefits at the expense of lesser-paid private-sector workers, irrespective of current economic decline. These elites refuse to share the sacrifices necessary to sustain the economy.

If we yield to the public-sector unions now, we will never recover and America will be finished, kaput, done in, out of business.

Where in the spectrum of contemporary values does the communist party lie?

Suggested reading:

o   Communists approve of the President’s State of the Union Speech.

o   Communist Party awards AFL-CIO leader

Constitutional Convention – Pandora’s Box .

“I have also repeatedly given my opinion that there is no effective way to limit or muzzle the actions of a Constitutional Convention. The convention could make its own rules and set its own agenda. Congress might try to limit the convention to one amendment or to one issue, but there is no way to assure that the convention would obey. After a convention is convened, it will be too late to stop the convention if we don’t like its agenda.” — Chief Justice Warren Burger (ret.)

Contact your Texas State Representative and tell him/her you do not want a constitutional convention.

District 89 Jodie Laubenberg – http://www.house.state.tx.us/members/member-page/?district=89

District 2 Dan Flynn – http://www.house.state.tx.us/members/member-page/?district=2

District 3 Erwin Cain – http://www.house.state.tx.us/members/member-page/?district=3

District 7 David Simpson – http://www.house.state.tx.us/members/member-page/?district=7

District 62 Larry Phillips – http://www.house.state.tx.us/members/member-page/?district=62

District 101 Cindy Burkett – http://www.house.state.tx.us/members/member-page/?district=101

District 4 Lance Gooden – http://www.house.state.tx.us/members/member-page/?district=4

This has already passed the Texas Senate – Let’s stop it in the House. Your Texas State Rep needs to hear from you today.

Deuell files concussion legislation

 

Robert F. Deuell, m.d.

Texas Senate, District 2

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                                                                      Contact: Thomas Flanders

February 22, 2011                                                                                                                                                                                             (512) 463-0102

Deuell files concussion legislation

AUSTIN —  State Senator Bob Deuell, R – Greenville, today filed legislation aimed at reducing instances of multiple concussions and long-term brain damage suffered by high school athletes

Senate Bill 835 increases the amount of time student athletes are required to sit out after a concussion is suspected, and requires them to be evaluated and cleared by a special team of medical professionals before being allowed to resume playing.

“Concussion symptoms can sometimes take days or weeks to develop,” Deuell said. “If our students are cleared to play before being properly evaluated, the risk of permanent damage or even death increases.”

The NFL and the Texas State Athletics Trainers’ Association have become strong supporters of concussion prevention and management measures, and the TSATA assembled a concussion advisory team which included physicians, brain trauma research specialists and licensed athletic trainers, to review the bill and offer recommendations.

“With the help of the NFL and new research, we are finally seeing what the long-term effects of concussions are on teenagers,” Deuell said. “In Texas, sports are a way of life and these added precautions are long overdue.”

According to the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention, roughly 135,000 five to 18-year-olds are admitted to emergency rooms for sports-related concussions, and sports are second only to car accidents as the leading cause of traumatic brain injury among 15 to 24-year olds.

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Rep. Christian Receives Young Conservatives of Texas Torch of Freedom Award

For Immediate Release                                                                                                        Contact: Jonathon McClellan

February 22nd, 2011                                                                                                             (512) 463-0556

Rep. Christian Receives Young Conservatives of Texas Torch of Freedom Award

AUSTIN, TX- Representative Wayne Christian was honored to speak in Dallas at the Young Conservatives of Texas (YCT) annual state convention and received the 2011 YCT Torch of Freedom Award.

The Torch of Freedom Award is given to an individual whom has made a significant impact by standing firm with their conservative values and promoting conservative thought.  As a member of the Texas House of Representatives and President of the Texas Conservative Coalition, Rep. Christian has consistently advocated for conservative values and has remained loyal to his political views. Rep. Christian stated, “I am honored to be recognized with such a significant award. It has always been my top priority to be a strong and effective advocate of conservative values to shape public policy in Texas.”

Tony McDonald, the Senior Vice Chairman of YCT stated, “Representative Christian has been a fearless advocate for our conservative values in the Texas Legislature for many years and has remained a great friend to our organization. We are proud to bestow the Young Conservatives of Texas 2011 Torch of Freedom award to Rep. Wayne Christian.”

Rep. Christian joins the likes of Talmadge Heflin, Joe Barton, Rick Green and Dick Armey in receiving this prestigious award.

YCT and its members participate in the entire spectrum of Texas politics, attempting to shape the policies of the state of Texas through a number of means including educating students and the public, advocating conservative fiscal and social policies, campus activism, campaigning for political candidates, and rating the Texas legislature.

At the YCT convention, Representative Christian spoke on the Legislating Conservatively panel, regarding conservative issues in the Texas legislature. Throughout Rep. Christian’s years in the Texas legislature, he has consistently been a courageous promoter for conservative values and a strong and active supporter of YCT.

####

Jon McClellan

Chief of Staff

Office of Rep. Wayne Christian

512-463-0556

It Was Not Yours To Reject, Mr. Obama

Anti-British & Anti-American U.S. President

U.S. President, Barack Hussein Obama, driven by the dreams from his father, rejected a bust of Sir Winston Churchill, a state gift of the British people to the people of America. As Dinesh D’Souza points out, Obama is the dreamer and he received them from his Kenyan father. Well, not exactly.

In his book, Dreams from My Father, Obama decries colonialism to which his father attributed Kenyan poverty. As early as 1965, Obama’s Kenyan father, Barack Hussein Obama, Sr., advocated for socialism and described perceived obstacles to its implementation, as published in the “East Africa Journal”, July 1965 edition, article titled “Problems Facing Our Socialism”. Here, BHO, Sr. expresses his disdain for corporations and quotes Karl Marx: “Yet one who has read Marx cannot fail to see that corporations are not only what Marx referred to as the advanced stage of capitalism but Marx even called it finance capitalism by which a few would control the finances of so many and through this have not only economic power but political power as well.” What was Kenya before colonization?

A Short on Kenya

In short, pre-British colonial Kenya was a land exploited by native tribes, Arabs, later by the Portuguese. What do I mean by exploited? Definition 1 applies: make use of and derive benefit from (a resource). Thankfully, the British exploited North America, too. Thankfully? Yes, thankfully. How so? Judge for yourself: We Americans are the richest country in the world – sorry, I don’t recognize the EU as a country. America consumes more oil in total barrels per day than any other nation. Take a ride with me: we have the most paved roads of any country as well. In contrast, Kenya is way, way down the list in all cases. Do I say this to boast? No, by no means do I boast. I thank the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob for his blessings on my countrymen. So, what’s the point?

Getting to the Point

The point is simply this: if a nation can factually attribute British colonialism to its poverty, what happened to us, the United States of America? Why are we not the poorest of all? The point is simple: British colonialism did not impoverish Kenya.

On a Personal Note

I laud Winston Churchill, one of my favorite historical leaders. I have read several Churchill biographies, laughed at his humor, been enchanted by his sharp wit, moved by his compassion and motivated by his oratory that kept us from collectively sinking into “the abyss of a new Dark Age”.

Lady Astor: “Mr. Churchill, you’re drunk!”

Churchill: “Yes, and you, Madam, are ugly. But tomorrow, I shall be sober.”

His Dream – Our Nightmare

One man’s horror is another’s delight. Obama rejected a state gift from our ally Great Britain because his father disdained British colonialism in Kenya.

This is how things work: when a foreign country gives a gift to the President, it becomes property of “We the People”, not the President and the rules are very clear. Great Britain made a gift of a bronze bust of Sir Winston Churchill to the United States of America – not a personal gift to Barack Hussein Obama, private citizen.

To our British allies, our friends across the sea, I say thank you for the gift and please hold it in trust for such a time as we rid ourselves of this Muslim interloper of questionable birthright, Barack Hussein Obama.

Winnie expressed the gratitude of the British people to the wartime defenders of Britain – herewith I wish to convey the sentiments of millions of Americans who are likewise thankful for his service, and so I quote:

“Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.”

And so I add:

“or to the one”.