ARRA News Service
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News for social, fiscal & national security conservatives who believe in God, family & the USA. Upholding the rights granted by God & guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, traditional family values, "republican" principles / ideals, transparent & limited government, free markets, liberty & individual freedom. All content approval rests with the ARRA News Service Editor. Opinions are those of the authors. While varied positions are reported, beliefs & principles remain fixed. No revenue is generated for this site - no paid ads accepted - no payments for articles. Fair Use doctrine is posted & used.
Editor/Founder: Bill Smith, Ph.D. [aka: OzarkGuru] - editor@arranewsservice.com (Pub. Since July, 2006)
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One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato (429-347 BC)

Saturday, March 12, 2011

“We Are The Youth” Video: Defund Planned Parenthood

Project White Rose youth share a list of great facts and reasons to stop taxpayer dollars from going to the largest abortion chain in America…


In 2011, a collection of American Pro-life Youth have come together in the face of the abortion holocaust that has been plaguing our nation. We have seen the need to shine the light of truth and activate the youth of America to rise up and take a stand.

We have lost over fifty million of our brothers and sisters to the Abortion Holocaust; the time has come to put a stop to this. Planned Parenthood is the largest abortion chain in America and we are determined to defund and expose them for the evil abuses they commit and cover-up.

Planned Parenthood is not only the largest child killing organization in America; they have been exposed time and time again for their cover up of child rape and sex trafficking across the country. We must take action today. Planned Parenthood cannot be allowed to continue their murderous reign on our generation.

Join the White Rose Project and become a White Rose Activist today. This is your generation who is being targeted by Planned Parenthood; your generation must rise up to bring an end to the abortion holocaust and the organization that profits from the killing of the unborn.

Tags: White Rose, Live Action, Youth, Hip-Hop, Music Video, Planned Parenthood, PP, Racism, Pro-life, Pro Life, Pro Life Movement, Music, Abortion, Defund, Expose Planned Parenthood, Congress, We are the youth, Cover-up, Black and White, video To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Tough Week and Out of Red Bull - Masterson: I Picked the Wrong Week

Bill Smith, Editor: The following article by Laurie Lee Masterson sums up how a many Arkansas conservatives have felt this last week. At the end of her posts she leaves her phone number if you wish to learn how to be more involved. She can help you get involved in many different ways and she is an exceptional trainer. But I would be amiss not to add that I also am available to assist you. My email address is editor@arranewsservice.com.

Many people have said, "I can't do what you do and others do." Neither Laurie nor I are asking you to do what we do unless you wish to be doing this full time. But we will ask you to do at least "one thing" consistently and there are a lot of different ways that you can be active. Note, we are not soliciting money! [P.S., I'm not opposed to "tips" to help underwrite activism.]

There are lots of great groups you can associate with. Yes, none of them are perfect. But, as momma  would say, "If you join the perfect group, then it will no longer be perfect." We gotta love our moms.

Let's start with some simple stay at home ideas to get you warmed up doing something. Since you are reading this - thank you - then you can be an activist with little effort in seconds.
  1. Comment on the articles. Your comments help us with the search engines and getting our messages out. The comments encourage us to keep plugging on! You do not have to give us your email or anything. Just click the comment link at the end of each article and complete the comment form. It would be nice to know your name or you can use your nom de plume. Mine is "Ozark Guru" - please don't use it :) All our comments are moderated to protect readers from those who seem to rant in 4 letter words against what ever we publish. But we read all and post 85% of all comments.
  2. Subscribe to the blog and receive our posts by email. There is a link on the site. No ads and the no subscription -- it is free. Your email must be real and yours because you will be required to verify your subscription. Prevents hackers from signing up people. The process is automated. If you change your email address, just resubscribe. Also, if you use Google reader or follow site feeds, these are available.
  3. Share articles with your friends. Make you self a list of 10, 25, 100 friends and send them the articles. The easiest way is if you subscribe to the ARRA News Service. You will receive one email a day with all the prior days posts (yes they are a day old). Just send this email on to your special list mentioned previously. Does this help share information - yes indeed!. One example, the secretary for a major military bikers group send his daily subscription to the ARRA News Service to the entire national membership.
  4. Consider blogging: How would you like to try your hand at blogging without all the requirements of maintaining a site or blog. Well I have several blogs and depending on your interests, I would be willing to entertain you as contributor. You can even post initially in draft form so I can review and assist you with layout issues and add photos if needed. I can help fix anything, add photos and make it look even better. The point is you voice is getting out there. Also, if you have a blog and need help realigning it or assisting with the layout and tricks drop me a note. Note: I only assist with blogs that are inline with my beliefs and interests. No hobby or business blogs.
  5. Letters to Editors are a great way to share your voice. Try it! Also, if you agree with our general principles and direction this site or other sites that you know that I write for or edit, email me a copy of your "letter to the editor" if the addresses issues in your state or the nation. Also, may use local issue items when they have a broader appeal to an audience outside of your community. If you are submitting your letter it to a local newspaper, let us know and we will hold it until your letter runs in the paper -- or doesn't run. Be sure to include all your contact info so we can verify that this is your letter. We also accept "Open Letters." Open Letters address situations or even public officials via the Internet and are meant to be read by the public. Open letters require that you be identified.
There are many many more ways to get involved from "getting" informed to being involved in various groups. You can even use FaceBook and Twitter to share you comments, opinions, and articles with others. I received the following article via a FaceBook from Laurie with her request to share it with you. Her article is packed with wit, satire, disappointments, and encouragement for the week.

I Picked the Wrong Week...
By Laurie Lee Masterson: I felt like Lloyd Bridges in Airplane, "I picked the wrong week to stop drinking"... Red Bull...


My youngest daughter, Hannah, and I spent this past week pacing the halls of the state Capitol trying to keep a pulse on what is going on with all the tax increases, tax cuts and new government regulations.

It started very late Monday night when news spread fast about Governor Beebe hoping to make Arkansas the Flagship for socialized healthcare by being the first state to fully implement Obamacare. (Read more...)

Which, among other reasons, is why Rep Ed Garner chose to not run HB1002, Capital Gains Tax Cut on Wednesday (will run next Wednesday), to allow the focus to be on Sen. Missy Irvin's bill SB 709, a bill that would have required state agencies to document the expenses they incur to implement the federal health law. That committee meeting (IMHO) was an embarrassment to the system and to our state. (Read why...

Thursday brought the "Internet Tax" bill that flew threw the Senate 26-7, meaning many thought-to-be conservatives voted YES to this tax increase. (Read more...)

But Friday was the clincher. I was truly feeling the depths of Mr. Bridges' sentiments as I scoured the Capitol for the nearest Red Bull vendor.

Yesterday morning bright and early the "Shale Tax" bill was heard in the House Insurance and Commerce Committee. (scratching my head) One might think that it would be heard by the House Revenue and Tax Committee. Oh wait the House Revenue and Tax Committee is majority Republican....

This meeting was the Coup de grace'of back room politics.

(this is a true ;parenthetical& moment ...My brain just did a flash to Tony Soprano saying " I'm in the waste management business. Everybody immediately assumes you're mobbed up. It's a stereotype. And it's offensive... There is no Mafia.") I'm not sure why that scene just popped into my head, let's continue.

The "Shale Tax" meeting was packed. The media reported 250 but I can tell you if there was one, there were 400. The word was spreading fast that Speaker Moore was considering not running the bill because he felt he did not have the votes, even in this stacked committee, to get a do pass; plus the size of the turn out (and I am not speaking of the number of people).

But he ultimately did and it was quite the show. Don't take my word for it, watch it for your self here http://arkansas-house.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=2&clip_id=393

I was slinging the Red Bull back one after the other around the time the House convened at 10 am, anxiously awaiting the floor vote on HB1902, another bill Speaker Moore supports, the "Diesel Tax" bill, that would raise the price of diesel fuel on Arkansans an additional .05/gal over the rest of the nation. (Read more...)

In case you haven't heard the diesel tax passed through the Arkansas house 67-24. Once again legislators Arkansans thought they could trust to protect us from additional taxation and government regulations voted to increase the cost of diesel fuel on us by .05/gal.

Don't be fooled by any rhetoric you hear them justifying it about putting it to a vote of the people, Horse Feathers!, we sent them there with a CLEAR message in November, NO MORE TAXES.

Not only that but with that vote the said yes to spending millions of tax payer dollars to do it. See the powers that be recognize you can't let a good crisis go to waste, when thousands of Arkansans are dying everyday because of lack of good roads and safe bridges. We must implement this tax NOW by holding a SPECIAL ELECTION, which will cost more than 1million tax payer dollars (some estimates I have gotten over the last 24 hours say $2million) EACH time.

I say each time because unbeknownst, evidently, to several who voted for this tax increase, the language in the bill provides that the Governor can run "subsequent" elections if the proposition fails as many times as it takes to pass and as often as every six months (page 10 staring line 7 http://www.arkleg.state.ar.us/assembly/2011/2011R/Bills/HB1902.pdf)

We also know that there will be an "education" campaign from our illustrious protectors, to ensure that every Arkansan knows the urgency that is before us with regards to our roads.

Watch the House vote here~http://arkansas-house.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=2&clip_id=394

Friends, I know you are busy, tired and perhaps feel unable to make a difference. But that is simply not true. If not for the people who have engaged in the past two years all of this stuff would have already been implemented with not a single hiccup. We have been able to shine the light on what has been going on now for decades right under our noses, and we ARE MAKING a& difference.

Regardless of what you have been told the government is still run of, by and for the people. The people just need assert their power by the means afforded us in our system, IT WORKS! We just need to work it.

What you can do~
  1. Spread this information FAR AND WIDE, make sure those in your spheres of influence know what is going on, it affects their families too.
  2. Find out who your elected officials are and COMMUNICATE with them. Let them know you willing to do the work it takes to come alongside them so they CAN represent YOU according to your beliefs and values
  3. Read and investigate. What episode of Glee is more important than the future of your children and the families in our communities.
  4. Ask questions. Tons of questions
  5. GET INFORMED AND ENGAGED~
If you need help and want a little more direction, call me 501-258-6353, the more people we have seriously involved the faster we get our state on the right track and the more we secure the futures of the next generation.

Tags: Laurie Masterson, Arkansas, legislature, bills, politics, activism, Red Bull To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Friday, March 11, 2011

As Energy Prices Rise, Obama Admin Policies Prevent Exploration and Senate Dems Push For Tax Hikes

Today in Washington, D.C. - March 11, 2011:
Typical Friday when the Democrat Leader when want forcing a bill through the Senate - the Senate is in recess until 2 PM on Monday.  On Monday, the Senate will consider the nomination of James Boasberg to be a district judge for the District of Columbia and then cloture on the motion to proceed to S. 493, a bill dealing with small business investment.

Yesterday, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) applauded the House for voting (H.R. 830) to begin shutting down the TARP bailout program, saving taxpayers $8 billion in mandatory government spending, with more savings to come. Speaker Boehner said: "The American people understand we can’t continue spending money we don’t have, especially on things that don’t work. That’s why we’re focusing not just on discretionary spending, but mandatory spending as well. Unfortunately, the Democrats who run Washington believe in this time of fiscal challenges we should continue propping up government programs that overspend and underdelived."

However, senior White House officials said they would recommend that President Obama veto this legislation that begins the process of shutting down the TARP bailout program and saves taxpayers $8 billion – the latest example of the Democrats who run Washington fighting for an unacceptable status quo. In a “Statement of Administration Policy,” the White House defends its veto threat by arguing the TARP program Republicans aim to eliminate with H.R. 830 is “vital to the Nation’s sustained economic recovery.” How many people have used this “vital” program? Only 44.

Despite the program’s failure, more than $8 billion in TARP funds have been set aside by the Administration to keep it going. That’s why, as the Washington Post reports, H.R. 830 “would terminate” this TARP program “and put the unused funds toward paying down the deficit.” With a $1.6 trillion deficit and a struggling economy, Washington can’t afford to keep spending money we don’t have on programs that don’t work.

President Obama Has just finished his introductory "speech" before the White House News Conference in an arrogant fashion promoting his biased positions. He is focused more on stopping Republicans reducing the size of government than on compromise with the Democrats. He mentioned Republican House Speaker Sen. John Boehner more times than Democrat Senate Leader Harry Reid. He is definitely trying to backstop Democrat Senate Leader Harry Reid. So far he has a list of press he will allow questions and appears to know the questions before asked. He definitely showed no support to allow Americans to Drill for Oil in our own country. No surprises here.

The current continuing resolution funding the government expires on March 18th, so budget discussions will continue next week.  Yesterday, the Senate voted 96-0 to confirm Max Oliver Cogburn to be district judge for the Western District of North Carolina.

The Wall Street Journal reports today, “President Barack Obama will address rising energy prices at a news conference on Friday, but he is not expected to call for releasing oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve.” The New York Times adds, “The cost of gasoline has been rising steadily as the turmoil in Libya and other Middle East countries has caused worldwide concern about the availability of oil. As of this week, the average cost of a gallon of gasoline in the United States was $3.52 cents.”

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell spoke about energy issues in a floor speech yesterday, saying, “Americans looking at the price of gas at the pump these days are justifiably upset. What they may not realize is that some in the Administration are actively working to prevent us from increasing our own oil production here at home.”

Indeed, Leader McConnell explained, “The Administration started by canceling oil and gas leases for domestic exploration. Immediately after taking office, the Secretary of the Interior, Ken Salazar, canceled 77 oil and gas leases in the state of Utah. One year later, the Administration suspended 61 more leases, this time in Montana. . . . Then, immediately after the Gulf oil spill began last April, the Administration imposed a six-month moratorium on offshore drilling in the Gulf even as it canceled energy exploration that was set to take place thousands of miles away in the Arctic Ocean. Two federal courts on three separate occasions have declared the moratorium in the Gulf unjust. The Administration has ignored them. It’s kept the ban in place despite these rulings, forcing the drillers who’ve been affected by it to relocate their rigs — and the thousands of good-paying jobs they supported — to other parts of the world. So if you’re wondering where the jobs are, a good place to start is the Administration’s efforts to block American energy exploration.”

Meanwhile, Senate Democrats aren’t helping either. They’re pushing for a “minivan tax,” a $40 billion tax hike on energy producers that would without a doubt be passed on to consumers. Their timing could hardly be worse: gas and oil prices are increasing, unemployment remains high, and budgets are tight for many Americans.

As Senate GOP Leader McConnell said, “Rather than squeezing the public and killing jobs with artificially higher prices, we should be looking for ways to increase domestic production even as we promote alternative sources of energy for the future. An all-of-the-above approach to energy production — and the jobs that come with it — of the kind Republicans have been advocating for years would capitalize on the abundant resources we already have right here at home while at the same time looking for alternative sources of energy and new technologies that will free us from our dependence on fossil fuels down the road.”

Tags: Washington, D.C., US House, US Senate, Barack Obama, tax hikes, oil drilling, TARP, Rob Smith, political cartoon To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

The New Union Label

Matt Ross, Conservative Hideout:
Here is a special video from the Conservative Hideout. I tried to show the new “civil discourse” from the labor unions…

Tags: Matt Ross, Conservative Hideout, video, union thugs, To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Viewing Who Is "Crushing the Children"

by William Warren: This cartoon is about the Wisconsin Labor issue and how the Democrats keep using the old line about how the GOP’s policies are “Crushing the Children.” Well, we all know who is REALLY crushing the children…


Tags: Big Labor, Big Labor Spending Cuts, National Debt, Political Cartoons, William Warren To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Mandatory DNA Sampling Threatens Constitutional Liberties

Ken Marrero
By Ken Marrero, Op-Ed, Washington Examiner: In 2007 a Tennessee law was passed, as many bad laws are, in response to a horrific crime.

Johnia Berry was murdered in 2004. Her parents asked then state Sen. Ron Ramsey to consider working with a national DNA database to assist in a stalled investigation. He introduced a bill mandating collection of DNA samples from those arrested for violent felonies. In addition to Tennessee, 23 states have adopted similar legislation.

This year, Ramsey, now Tennessee's lieutenant governor, wants to expand mandatory collection to persons arrested for any felony via TN SB 257. Supporters contend this collection is no different from the photographing and fingerprinting to which felony arrestees are currently subject.

Detractors appeal to the Fourth and Fifth amendments to the U.S. Constitution and question requiring citizens to surrender a part of "their person" for a criminal case which might "[compel him] ... to be a witness against himself" as well as being deprived of his "property" without "due process."

If charges are dropped or the accused is not convicted, the sample is destroyed. Detractors see this as an acknowledgment of the bill's weakness. If the criteria for sample retention is a conviction, why not delay collection until then?

Additionally, there is significant distrust that samples are safe in the custody of government. Ramsey notes as many as 15 percent of the samples may be subject to destruction. Will these merely be stored until the donor's case is decided or might they be compared against other databases in the meantime for potential matches to other crimes?

Who collects, processes, stores and destroys them? Ramsey is confident the law's criminal penalties for mishandling samples are a sufficient safeguard against misuse. Others remain suspicious of government's record as a watchdog for individual rights.

Such suspicions may be downplayed until one learns of the development of a portable, high-speed DNA scanner and plans by the federal government to hand the technology over to the Transportation Security Administration. Controversies surrounding TSA's use of technology and clashes with the liberties of citizens are well publicized.

Handing over portable, high-speed DNA testing devices to TSA can only lead to an exponential increase in the potential for the disregard of individual liberties. As with backscatter scanners, implementing it in as public and high-profile an arena as our nation's airports will not improve air travel safety. It will, however, serve to further soften the resolve of citizens to resist such unwarranted infiltrations of the state into their daily lives.

Technical innovation is welcomed by the law abiding. But I cannot sanction violating one law while enforcing another. The pursuit of justice must not itself create injustices and securing the rights of the people must remain the highest priority of government.

In a rapidly changing technical environment and with the ability of multiple jurisdictions to pass laws concerning the collection and use of DNA, extreme vigilance must be maintained to ensure the rights and liberties of Americans are not trampled in the process.

A good start would be serious revisions to TN SB 257 and to halt the introduction of portable DNA scanners in our nation's airports until the ethical questions inherent in such technology have been fully asked and answered.
Ken Marrero has blogged at BlueCollarMuse.com since 2006 and is the founder of the Tennessee ConserVOLiance, a statewide blogger alliance in Tennessee.

Tags: DNA, DNA testing, DNA scanners,law enforcement, Constitution, liberties, Ken Marrero, Blue Collar Muse To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Governors’ Decisions Show That Elections Matter

The Wall Street Journal editorial today showcased the contrast between the decisions being made by GOP governors like Scott Walker of Wisconsin to rein in spending and hold the line on taxes and the choices of Democrat governors like Mark Dayton of Minnesota, Jerry Brown of California, and Dan Malloy of Connecticut to raise taxes.

An excerpt of the editorial is below:
Badgers vs. Gophers
A political lesson in the Upper Midwest

“Wisconsin and Minnesota are often lumped together as similar states, but this year they are showing how elections matter. In November the Badger State elected a GOP legislature and Republican Scott Walker, who is trying to cut spending and taxes, while Minnesota voters narrowly chose liberal Democrat Mark Dayton, who is doing the opposite.

… To close Minnesota's budget deficit, Mr. Dayton first proposed to raise the state's top income tax rate to 13.95% from 7.85%. That would have given Minnesota the distinction of having the highest state income tax in the nation, racing ahead of current leaders Oregon and Hawaii at 11%. The Dayton plan would even have topped New York City's combined state-city rate of 12.62%.

New Democratic Governor Dan Malloy is trying to raise income, sales, liquor, cigarette and other taxes in Connecticut. In California, Democrat Jerry Brown wants a $12 billion extension of income and sales tax hikes that were supposed to be "temporary." New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is trying to hold the line against a tax increase, despite pressure from fellow Democrats who dominate the state assembly, but he's a rare exception. We can't remember when the fiscal policy gulf between the two parties was as great as it is today.”
. . . Read More at WSJ

Tags: Wall Street journal, Governors, elections matter, politics, news To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Harry Reid: One Big Fat Moron - He's Not A Cowboy

Cartoon by Michael Ramirez:


For the "One-in-five (20%) have no opinion" of Harry Reid (D-NV), Wake-up, he is the "moron" wrecking our lives as Majority leader of the US Senate. No thanks to the Nevada voters! As of the a month ago, Rasmussen Reports had Harry Reid with an unfavorable rating of -32%, difference between those who are very favorable and very unfavorable.



"Moron" Reid's opinion is also summarized in a humorous tweet by Mary Katharine Ham, "John Boehner's America is a land in which cowboys would be forced into back-alley poetry recitations."

Tags: Harry Reid, Budget, Tax Policy, Government, Politics, Michael Ramirez, political cartoon, Investors.com, cowboy poetry, satire, tweet, twitter, Mary Katharine Ham To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Dems Defect From Their Own Budget Proposal, Which 'Backfired' And 'Undercut Their Leverage'

Cartoon Commentary by A.F. Branco
Today in Washington, D.C. - March 19, 2011:
At 2:15 PM, the Senate will begin their very short consideration of the nomination of Max Oliver Cogburn to be district judge for the Western District of North Carolina - they will vote at 3 PM.

Yesterday, 11 Democrats voted against their own budget proposal for the rest of the current fiscal year that cut only $4.7 billion. The Democrat plan (the Inouye substitute amendment) failed to get 60 votes, by a vote of 42-58. Prior to that, H.R. 1, the House-passed budget bill that cut $61 billion, also failed to get 60 votes, by a vote of 44-56.

Today the House leadership announced an "American Energy Initiative" as an ongoing effort by the new House majority to stop Washington policies that are driving up gas prices and expand American energy production to help lower costs and create jobs.

The Hill writes today, “Senate Democrats suffered a wave of defections Wednesday as their proposal to cut just over $6 billion [actually $4.7 billion, according to CBO] from federal spending this year went down to defeat. The Democratic bill attracted two fewer votes than the rival GOP measure that would cut spending by another $57 billion this year. The 11 defections will give Republican leaders ammunition in subsequent talks, as they were able to keep their caucus more unified. . . . [Senate Majority Leader Harry] Reid had hoped for a game-changer with votes that showed senators closer to the Democratic plan than the one backed by Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), but the plan backfired.” And Politico points out, “Democrats hoped a pair of Senate votes Wednesday on competing budget plans would strengthen their hand, yet the outcome appeared to undercut their leverage.”

In fact, Democrats’ own budget plan was criticized by a number of Democrat senators who voted against it. As Politico put it, “A Democratic budget alternative failed 58-42 after a mix of moderates and liberals walked away, calling the proposal an inadequate response to the debt problems facing the nation.” The Washington Post adds, “The Democratic defectors, virtually all of whom rejected the spending cuts as insufficient, included fiscal conservatives and senators facing potentially tough reelection campaigns in 2012.” According to The Hill, “[Sen. Joe] Manchin, [D-WV] who criticized a lack of leadership from President Obama earlier this week in the spending fight, said the Democratic plan ‘doesn’t go far enough’ and ‘ignores our fiscal realities.’” And Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) was blunter, saying, “Many people are in denial around here.”

But did Democrat leaders get the message? According to The Hill, Reid said on the floor today, “We accept the lessons of yesterday's vote. . . . We know we’ll have to make a sacrifice to reach consensus, and we are willing to do that.” Are Democrats really willing to do that and get serious about tackling our $1.5 trillion deficit and $14 trillion debt? So far, all Democrat leaders have shown a consensus on is making speeches listing programs they’re unwilling to cut.

Hopefully yesterday’s vote will help Democrats in the Senate and President Obama to understand that this country can no longer afford the status quo on government spending. As Leader McConnell put it last week, “The American people have made their position quite clear: reverse the reckless spending and out-of-control expansion of government Democrats have presided over the past two years. Stop growing government, so Americans can grow the economy — and the jobs that come with it.” It’s time for Democrats to work with Republicans to correct our unsustainable fiscal course.

Tags: Washington, D.C., US Senate, US House, Democrats, budget, federal spending, continuing resolution, B.F. Branco, political cartoon, Harry Reid, Cowboy Poets To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Washington Democrats - Stuck in the Past, Spending Our Future

NRSC Video highlights the divide between elected leaders throughout the country who are tackling deficit spending and Democrats in Washington who continue to spend at will on America’s future while offering no solutions.


Tags: budget, Washington, D.C., Democrats, federal spending, Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, taxes, deficits, US COngress, US House, US Senate, video To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Arkansas Governor's Office Responds To Inquires About Obamacare

Update 8:30 pm:  Governor's Office Email: "You have been the target of a misinformation campaign designed to create uncertainty and fear for political purposes.Governor Beebe’s effort to save the Arkansas Medicaid program from bankruptcy has no relationship whatsoever to the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act."
Glenn Gallas, Host of On The Road Radio Show pointed out the following: "According to the letter from Gov. Mike Beebe to Secretary Kathleen Sebelius (referenced in yesterday's post): 'We believe that a public-private collaborative planning process will produce an effective new framework for organizing health services in preparation for implementation of the Affordable Care Act.'"

The "Affordable Care Act" is the duplicitous title given to the Federal Heath Care Law - referenced by freedom loving people as "ObamaCare."   Maybe Governor Beebe should clue in Joyce Dees, his Special Assistant for Agency and Legislative Affairs.  Obviously, the Governor's own words evidence the truth in this conflicting situation.  Looks like some misinformation is coming from the Governor's office.

State Senator David Meeks (R-Conway) commented on this story: "Bill, to add to what you wrote, Governor Beebe had no consultations with the state legislature, at least on our side of the aisle, as far as I know. Also, as Glenn noted in the comments,  this is in the Governor's letter: 'We believe that a public-private collaborative planning process will produce an effective new framework for organizing health services in preparation for implementation of the Affordable Care Act.' As I have stated before and will stand behind, this is the first step in implementation of Obamacare. They will use this as a model."

Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe
Bill Smith, Editor: Yesterday, we reported on perceived efforts and allegations that Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe wanted to be the "first state" to implement Obamacare. Numerous concerned citizens want answers.

Two of those citizen, Mr. and Mrs. Bill Dondanville, took contact the Governor's Office via  the email form on the Arkansas State website. In an interview today, Mr. Dondanville identified that in his email he identified among other issues, two important questions:
  • Why was the Governor and his staff trying to go forward to implement Obamacare in Arkansas?
  • Where were the poor and retired people going to go for medical services as doctors in Arkansas opt out of taking medicare / medicaid patients?
While Mr. Dondanville would liked to have received a reply by the Governor, they received the opening line, "Because of long-standing policy guidelines, the Governor does not answer mail electronically . . ."  Obviously,  the Governor is busy except for large donors and selected friends,  responds through a staff member. It was nice to learn in the more populated state of Indiana, the Governor often answers his own emails.

The response came from Joyce Dees, Special Assistant for Agency and Legislative Affairs. today, in a phone call to Dees, she confirmed that she is Governor's liaison with the Arkansas Department of Human Services and the Arkansas Department of Health. While pleasant, she refused to answer any further questions concerning her email response on behalf of the Governor's office:
To: Bill & Pat Dondanville [Email address withheld]
From: Governor Reply [governor.reply@governor.arkansas.gov]
Sent: Wednesday, March 09, 2011 11:20 AM
Subject: Reply from the Office of the Governor for Mr and Mrs William Dondanville Mr(ref #:25393)

Dear Mr. and Mrs. Dondanville:

Thank you for contacting the Office of Governor Mike Beebe. Because of long-standing policy guidelines, the Governor does not answer mail electronically, but he has seen your message and appreciates your input. He has asked me to reply to your concerns.

You have been the target of a misinformation campaign designed to create uncertainty and fear for political purposes. Governor Beebe’s effort to save the Arkansas Medicaid program from bankruptcy has no relationship whatsoever to the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

By next July, the Arkansas Medicaid program will be $60-$80 million short of the money it needs to cover every eligible Arkansan. By July of 2013, the program will be $250 million short. This is a fact, and it will happen regardless of whether the federal act is implemented or overturned by the Supreme Court.

The failure of Arkansas’s Medicaid program will mean that nearly one million Arkansans will be without health care. That would cripple our economy.

Here’s the truth about what Governor Beebe has done:

He wrote a letter to Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary for Health and Human Services, asking her to give Arkansas additional flexibility in the rules that govern Medicaid so that we can try to save the Arkansas system from bankruptcy. The Governor has been speaking publicly for nearly three years about our need to change the way we pay for healthcare in order to cut costs and make the system more efficient.

Despite what you may have read in an e-mail, heard on the radio or been told over the telephone, the Governor’s letter has nothing to do with so-called “Obamacare.” It’s also not a secret. The Governor’s office released the letter to the news media yesterday in order to let the people of Arkansas know what he was seeking. In addition, state officials have been meeting with doctors, dentists, hospitals and other health care providers to seek their input on the possibilities of making these changes. The effort to convince you otherwise is being paid for by out-of-state interests who are attempting to spread confusion and fear.

Governor Beebe believes that the Medicaid system in Arkansas can become more efficient, provide better care and save taxpayer money if we act now to fix it. That’s the truth.

Please let us know if we can be of assistance in the future.

Sincerely,
Joyce Dees
Special Assistant for Agency and Legislative Affairs

JD:gt/aml

When asked "Do you believe your concerns were answered?", Mr. Dondanville said that the email response "didn't really answer our concerns" and "the response just told the story they wanted to get out."

Also, Joyce Dees statement that she could not answer my questions makes her email statement "Please let us know if we can be of assistance in the future" disingenuous.  If you wish to reach Joyce Dees at the Governor's office, try joyce.dees@governor.arkansas.gov or (501) 683-6428. Since we have no further comments by Governor Beebe or his liaison, let's summarize the response:
  • There is no move to implement ObamaCare by the Governor. [Concerned citizens are] "target of a misinformation campaign designed to create uncertainty and fear for political purposes." Odd, to date, there has been no comments by the Arkansas Republican Party and the Governor is safely in office until 2014 when he is term limited and cannot run again.
  • "Governor Beebe’s effort to save the Arkansas Medicaid program from bankruptcy has no relationship whatsoever to the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act." Really, then why did Gov. Beebe meet with the ObamaCare Queen: Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary for Health and Human Services?
  • "By next July, the Arkansas Medicaid program will be $60-$80 million short of the money it needs to cover every eligible Arkansan. By July of 2013, the program will be $250 million short. This is a fact, and it will happen regardless of whether the federal act is implemented or overturned by the Supreme Court." Facts noted.  Why is  Arkansas  not cutting state spending and covering the obligations of medicare? Why is the state not demanding the Federal government pay their cost share to the state: Oh, maybe the Feds are really broke?
  • "The failure of Arkansas’s Medicaid program will mean that nearly one million Arkansans will be without health care. That would cripple our economy?" Why are we funding family and individuals whom could afford to pay their own medical costs? Are we funding "illegals"? What has been done to seriously review "medicaid" recipients in Arkansas? Maybe we should divert Lottery receipts which are mostly paid by the poor back to "medicaid programs. Other options?  If the people on "medicaid" are low income or no employed income and thus low spenders, how would the economy of Arkansas be crippled?
  • "Here’s the truth about what Governor Beebe has done: He wrote a letter to Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary for Health and Human Services, asking her to give Arkansas additional flexibility in the rules that govern Medicaid so that we can try to save the Arkansas system from bankruptcy."  Did Gov. Beebe also meet with Kathleen Sebelius? What other agreements were made?
  • "The Governor has been speaking publicly for nearly three years about our need to change the way we pay for healthcare in order to cut costs and make the system more efficient." A "Google search" does not reveal evidence of this effort exists to any degree or that the effort was not made public.  Assuming the statement were correct, what actions has the Governor taken to "change 'the way' we pay for healthcare? Efficiency of operations is the Governor's responsibility. Why was he promoting the growth of things like new Trama Center through natural gas well fees verses funding the State's cost of medicare / medicaid with these funds?
  • "Governor Beebe believes that the Medicaid system in Arkansas can become more efficient, provide better care and save taxpayer money if we act now to fix it. That’s the truth." Well, it is about time the Chief Executive officer accomplishes something. But what does this have to do with Secretary for Health and Human Services?
Does anyone sense the Governor is attempting to backtrack or that there is an effort to hide the Governor's or his administration willingness to support the Obama Administration's progressive agenda?

The people of Arkansas reelected Mike Beebe. He cannot be re-elected as Governor.Why then do his comments, decisions, or actions by his administration often side with the Obama Administration verses with the people and the welfare of Arkansas? Why has he met with the Queen of Obamacare? Where are all the sources on on the conversations with the people of Arkansas on ways to reduce and control medicaid costs? Regardless of whether the email response from the Governor's office is correct or not correct, it evidences the significant need for Governor Beebe to stop playing politics and to hold open public conversations with ALL Arkansans on the issues and not just a few token comments to the biased media or negative defensive comments in email responses to the people of Arkansas.

Tags: Arkansas, Governor Beebe, medicaid, medicare, ObamaCare, email To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Democrat Leaders Refuse Serious Spending Cuts, Propose Tax Hikes Instead

By William Warren
Today in Washington, D.C. - March 9, 2011
At 10:40 AM Senators proceeded to the House of Representatives for a Joint Session of Congress where Prime Minister Julia Gillard of Australia addressed them.

At noon the Senate began consideration of H.R. 1, the House-passed bill funding the government for the rest of Fiscal Year 2011 and cutting spending by $61 billion. Up to three hours of debate are scheduled.  Around 3 PM, the Senate will vote on the Democrats’ plan, a substitute amendment from Sen. Daniel Inouye (D-HI), the chairman of the Appropriations Committee. The Inouye substitute would fund the government for the rest of the fiscal year but cut a paltry $4.7 billion.

Following that vote, the Senate will vote on passage of H.R. 1. Both the House bill and the Inouye amendment will require 60 votes to pass. Disappointingly I must add that yesterday, the Senate voted 95-5 to pass S. 23, the patent reform bill.

This afternoon, the Senate will be voting on competing budget plans for the rest of the current fiscal year, the House Republicans’ bill, which cuts $61 billion in spending, and the Senate Democrats’ plan, which cuts only $4.7 billion.

On the floor this morning, Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell said, “At a time when Washington is borrowing about $4 billion a day, Democrat leaders want to cut about four and a half billion in government spending for the rest of the fiscal year, and then call it a day. In other words, they want to take what amounts to a day and a half long holiday from their out-of-control spending and then return to the status quo for the rest of the year.”

Yet there are a few Democrat senators who seem to understand just how inadequate the proposal from their leaders is. The Hill reports, “Sen. Claire McCaskill said Wednesday that she'll vote against her party's deficit reduction plan when it comes up for a vote today.” And TPM reports, “‘More cuts, more cuts,’ Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) shouted to reporters when asked what she wanted to see from the President on the budget talks.” Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE) told The Wall Street Journal, “It was a little light on cuts.” And yesterday, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) blasted the Democrat bill, saying it “utterly ignores our fiscal reality.” Manchin added, “[W]e must turn our financial ship around, but the Senate proposal continues to sail forward as if there’s no storm on the horizon.”

But Democrat leaders seem to be suggesting the next step is not getting serious about spending cuts. Rather, they’re advocating for tax hikes in the middle of a recession. Politico writes today, “Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) stepped into the budget negotiations fray Wednesday daring Congress to hit the ‘reset button’ and consider tax hikes alongside spending cuts if they’re serious about reducing the deficit.” Democrat leaders have already proposed a “minivan tax” of $40 billion in new taxes on energy producers at a time when the average price of a gallon of gas has surged past $3.50.

As Sen. McConnell said, “At a time when increasing gas prices are already threatening our economic recovery, a minivan tax that some on the other side have proposed won’t solve our nation’s fiscal crisis. But I’ll tell you what it will do: it will destroy jobs and impose a real on burden families every time they fill up at the pump — at a time when people are looking for relief instead. Democrats’ steadfast refusal to cut another dime from the bloated Washington budget has left them no choice, it seems, but to propose raising taxes on American families and small businesses so that they can continue spending at unsustainable levels.”

Tags: Washington, D.C., US Senate, US House, federal spending, continuing resolution, patent bill, Economic Crisis, Middle East Crisis, Nero, Barack Obama, Political Cartoons, Rome is Burning, U.S. Economy, William Warren To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

American Oil Production - Where Are The Drilling Permits

Wonder where the oil drilling permits are? White House rumor sources have it that they are somewhere on the floor of BO's (the POTUS BO's Dog) kennel.
By Lisa Benson:

H/T eGOPNews

Tags: Lisa Benson, political cartoon, oil, drilling permits, POTUS, BO, President, BO the dog, White House To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Arkansas Gov. Beebe Seeks To Be First State To Implement ObamaCare

AFP Hands Off My Healthcare
Bus Tours in Arkansas
Merely the hint of Obamacare, Arkansas, Gov. Mike Beebe (D), and Secretary Kathleen Sebelius (D) stirs the concerns of Arkansans who overwhelmingly said loudly and clearly "No to Obamacare" prior to the 2010 elections. In fact, the backlash against incumbent Democrats Representatives and former Sen. Lincoln over government controlled healthcare resulted in Arkansas electing more Republicans to office than in the former 128 years.

Now the American public is just learning about the Obamacare's Secret Stash: $150 Billion in funding "buried" federal health law (aka Obamacare) and the hidden authority granted to the DHHS Secretary to spend money from the US Treasury almost at will.

Talk Business has been following Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe (D) efforts to be the first state to implement aspects of Obamacare. It includes a copy of letter from Governor Beebe letter to Secretary Kathleen Sebelius (D), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and former Gov. of Kansas.

State Senator David Meeks (R-Conway) responded on FaceBook today that this is "the start of the implementation of socialized medicine here in Arkansas. Make no mistake, that is what this does. It is an experiment on the people of Arkansas."

Some citizens today held an emergency meeting with a 30 year lobbyist and legislators in Little Rock. Several groups are calling for Arkansans to come to the State Capitol tomorrow to meet with the Senate Public Health, Welfare and Labor Committee, Room 272, around 9 am tomorrow (March 9, 2011). The committee meeting begins at 10 am.

The below article is shared in full for educational purposes:
Talk Business: Gov. Beebe's Medicare Reform Encounters Apprehension

Gov. Mike Beebe's efforts to reform the state Medicaid system, which we reported on last week, is encountering initial apprehension from legislators and the medical provider community.

A number of stakeholders in the state's health care system are privately expressing concern that they've not been consulted sooner and are unsure of how the Governor plans to proceed with the initiative.

Beebe was in Washington, D.C. last week to meet with Kathleen Sebelius, secretary for the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Beebe is seeking a waiver for the state's Medicaid program to create a trial program moving Arkansas from a "fee-based" payment system to a more holistic approach to managing health care.

He has warned for months that by mid-2012 Arkansas' Medicaid program will be about $87 million short in its funding.

On Monday, administration officials met with members of the medical and health care community to discuss Beebe's proposed changes. For some, who chose not to speak on the record, it was their first introduction to the Governor's more detailed plans.

Some legislators have also expressed concern that the state has advanced talks with the federal government in detail without their consultation or a briefing.

"This is a radical change, in my opinion, to the Medicaid system," said State Sen. Missy Irvin (R-Mountain View), whose husband is a family practice physician in north central Arkansas. "My biggest fear is that it will make doctors run away from accepting Medicaid patients and that's already happening right now because of low reimbursement rates."

Irvin said she wants Beebe to include legislators and other health care stakeholders in a task force or other appropriate working group to have input on the overhaul.

"We've got to make sure that private providers are at the table and I think that the legislature needs to be at the table," she said.

Matt DeCample, spokesman for Gov. Beebe, said legislators and health care groups will be brought into the process as it progresses, but he held off providing a timetable for the effort.

"We're going to include everybody in the process," DeCample said. "We know whatever we do is going to require federal involvement, so part of our timeline is going to be tied to how things progress with them."

The timeline is unlikely to be complete by the conclusion of the current legislative session. With a month or so to go, DeCample said that it would likely take much longer. However, state officials are expecting to have a waiver agreement with the feds by May 1, 2011.  And, the proposal shopped to HHS states that new pricing for some services could be published by May 1, 2012.

Beebe's office provided Talk Business with a copy of the initial outline given to HHS which was shared at Monday's stakeholder meeting. Dated February 11, 2011, it is titled "Transforming Arkansas Medicaid" and details the state's attempt to structure a partnership between Medicaid, Medicare and private health insurers.

"The plan is bold," the white paper asserts. "It is not based on small-scale projects because such projects cannot yield broad-based cost and quality improvements in the near future."

It continues, "In conjunction with Medicare, Arkansas BlueCross and BlueShield, and private insurance plans, Arkansas Medicaid will design and then implement the nation's first statewide payment-reform initiative. The initiative will pay partnerships of local providers to act as health homes."

Irvin expressed concerns regarding the terminology used in the letter such as "health homes" and other phrases. "I think these are some big concepts. 'Medical homes.' What is that? 'Evidence-based reimbursement.' What is that?" Irvin asked.

DeCample was unsure if changes to the system could be implemented by executive order, administrative rule or whether legislative action would be needed.

"I think its going to depend on what the final product looks like. We know at this stage we can proceed without getting any new legislation," he said. "Depending on what the final piece looks like, it may require some legislation. It's too early to tell, but that's definitely a possibility."

The waiver plan outlined to the feds would allow for Arkansas to create "medical-care partnerships" with at least one primary-care provider. Some medical practices and organizations might belong to more than one partnership.

A new statewide price system for Medicaid would be developed as early as May 1, 2012 for maternal and child health partnerships. Other medical-care partnerships would see pricing plans enacted in a staggered fashion starting in 2012 and being completed by 2014. Long-term care partnerships would have a new price system in place by the middle of 2013. Read the full document at this link.

Tags: Arkansas, Gov. Mike Beebe, DHHS, Kathleen Sebelius, Obamacare, AFP-ArkansasHands Off My Healthcare, Bus Tours To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Cut Federal Funding To Refurbish Mosques Overseas

by Gary Bauer: A recent report from a Georgia TV station has gone viral with the news that the Obama Administration is using our tax dollars to refurbish mosques overseas. The $770 million program is funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development, which is run by the State Department. And this Washington Post article notes that the U.S. military is also funding "mosque refurbishment projects" in Afghanistan.

This program has been going on for some time. A July 2009 audit by the Office of the Inspector General questioned the constitutionality of the program, which, according to the Washington Times, is prohibited from refurbishing structures used for "inherently religious activities."

So let's get this straight: The left doesn't hesitate to ban prayers in schools, at football games and graduation ceremonies, and prohibits the posting of the Ten Commandments or crosses on public grounds. But it has no problem using our tax dollars to fix up mosques? We are going to do everything we can to get Congress to stop this outrage!
Gary Bauer is a conservative family values advocate and serves as president of American Values and chairman of the Campaign for Working Families.
Tags: federal funding, overseas, Mosques, Gary Bauer, Campaign for Working Families, To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

CBO: Dem Plan Cuts Only $4.7 Billion - $150 Billion Hidden in Obamacare

Defund ObamaCare
Today in Washington, D.C. - March 8, 2011: 
Yesterday, as anticipated the Senate unanimously confirmed 3 district court nominees. Not much effort here to stop the Obama take over of the American court system. While these nominations may have been okay - many others have not been in the best interests of the American people.

Today the Senate will resume post-cloture consideration of S.23 the Death to Innovation < Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has said he would like to set up competing cloture votes on Fiscal 2011 appropriations plans. The House Republican plan, H.R. 1, would cut $61 billion from the budget, while the Senate Democrats’ plan, the Inouye substitute amendment, would cut only $4.7 billion. The votes could be this afternoon or sometime Wednesday.

Yesterday, Rep. Michelle Bachmann (R-MN) was on FoxNews yesterday identifying $105 BILLION in funding "buried" federal health law (aka Obamacare). She identified that "the money was included as "mandatory" spending over the next eight years, she said, meaning it's automatic and not subject to annual spending votes by Congress." She wants to use the fiscal 2011 budget process to eliminate his mandatory embedded (hidden) money in Obamacare. She is sharing this information in hopes of leveraging a must-pass budget bill to ensure Congress strips billions of dollars from the federal health care overhaul which she says was "unfairly baked into the law." The Congressional Research Service broke it all down in an eight-page table.

The Heritage Foundation is calling for defunding this "Obamacare's Secret Stash" and warns that:
"While Obamacare is rightly notorious as a fiscal nightmare, less well known is just how massively it transferred power from Congress to the executive branch. In fact, the full scope of Congress’s abdication is still unknown. What is now known, however, is that deeply buried within Obamacare was a $105 billion slush fund that assures its implementation into the future, no matter what future voters think or want.

This makes then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s comment to the Legislative Conference for National Association of Counties about Obamacare, “We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it,” made a year ago tomorrow, ironically prescient. Just this past month, the Congressional Research Service (CRS) updated an October 2010 report titled “Appropriations and Fund Transfers in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).” The new report found that, unbeknownst to almost every Member of Congress, Obamacare contains $105 billion in direct implementation spending that bypasses Congress’s normal appropriations process."

Ernest Istook explains the impact:
Making years’ worth of spending decisions in advance is an attempt to handcuff the current Congress and prevent it from determining current levels of spending. … The funds in Obamacare are not budget projections but actual appropriations of money. Obamacare goes far beyond any precedent for making appropriations for future years; it is an outrageous effort by the former Congress to bind the current and future Congresses in this way.

Last week, Senate Democrats unveiled their budget plan for the rest of this year, boasting that it met House Republicans “halfway” from the spending cuts in their bill. Since then, news organizations have repeatedly corrected Democrats that their bill cuts nowhere near that much. Indeed, the Washington Post’s Fact Checker blog awarded Democrats “two Pinocchios” for their absurd claim last week and today gives a third for President Obama repeating the claim over the weekend. “[T]he persistent claims of going ‘halfway’ when in fact Democrats have done little to engage Republicans on the issue will only hurt their credibility in the long run.”

Now, though, there is an official score from the Congressional Budget Office on the Democrat plan. According to the CBO, their bill cuts only $4.7 billion from a budget of over $1 trillion.

Today, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell expressed his frustration with Democrats’ lack of seriousness on getting spending under control, “We’re averaging about $4 billion a day in debt this year, and Democrats want to cut $4.7 billion and call it a day. That’s their idea of getting serious. Washington will add more to the debt this week than they want to cut for the entire year — and that’s the farthest their leaders say they’re willing to go. . . . Last month alone the federal government spent $223 billion more than it had, the highest monthly deficit ever and the 29th straight month Washington’s been in the red. And here’s the Democrats’ proposal: let’s cut $4.7 billion and call it a day. $4.7 billion dollars — even less than the President called for last week. And even that was ridiculed because of the preposterous claim that it met us halfway.”

Even some Democrat senators are saying they can’t go along with such irresponsible spending plans. As Politico reported, “Democratic leaders are having trouble just keeping moderates on board — Sens. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) and Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) have also expressed skepticism that Democrats are willing to cut enough spending to satisfy voters and make a dent in the deficit.” Under pressure from home and from blogs McCaskill said, “I feel strongly that the cuts are not large enough, but there are some cuts, so I don’t know whether I’ll be for it or against it. . . . But I know it doesn’t go as far as we need to go.”

And Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) on the Senate floor blasted the Democrat spending plan and President Obama’s failure to lead on spending. He said the Democrat bill “utterly ignores our fiscal reality — our nation is badly in debt and spending at absolutely unsustainable and out-of-control levels. . . . We must turn our financial ship around, but the Senate proposal continues to sail forward as if there’s no storm on the horizon.” And he wondered, “Why are we doing all this when the most powerful person in these negotiations — our president — has failed to lead this debate or offer a serious proposal for spending and cuts that he would be willing to fight for?”

As Leader McConnell y, “. . .  here’s the hard truth: even the biggest cuts under discussion this week are puny compared to the fiscal problems we face in the area of entitlements. I mean, it’s pitched battle around here over $4.7 billion when we’ve got a $14 trillion debt and more than $50 trillion in entitlement promises Washington can’t keep. If Democrats can’t bring themselves to cut $4.6 billion, how are we going to get a handle on the big stuff? “Democrats are going to have to do a lot better than this if we stand a chance of getting our nation’s fiscal house in order,” McConnell said. Frankly, it’s embarrassing. The American people deserve better than this.”

Over in the US House, the Republican leadership remains focused on reducing government spending.  A House source advised that the Republican leadership is preparing another "stop gap" continuing resolution to keep the government running beyond the March 18 deadline. Speaker Boehner remains committed to reducing federal spending and the new resolution will include spending cuts. The last two week continuing resolution created $4 billion in savings.

Closing with words from the Heritage Foundation, "Our nation cannot afford to fund the federal government by continuing resolutions, which perpetuate the status quo—a status quo where Obamacare’s implementation is already funded. In order to truly defund Obamacare, conservatives must go through all 2,700 pages of the bill and cut spending for every program one by one. That is the mandate this Congress was elected on. Members need to do their jobs."

Tags: Washington, D.C., US Senate, US House, Obamacare, secret stash, hidden appropriations, federal spending, continuing resolution, patent bill, Congressional Research Service To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Design Problem Resolved

Bill Smith, Editor: Many readers have noted that the ARRA News Service website was displaying in an odd fashion with the size of the text enlarging as you scrolled down the page. Without detailing the cause and correction, the solution to the design problem was resolved today. Thank you to those with suggestions and for everyone being patient as we worked through this issue. Fortunately those receiving our daily posts through subscription were not affected by this problem.

Tags: ARRA News Service, fixed, blog, blogger To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

ICYMI: Garfield on Gas & Oil Prices - Message for Washington

On May 4, 2008, over three years, we ran the following item which is again making the rounds on the Internet. With gasoline prices spiking again and POTUS Obama considering the release of oil from our strategic oil reserve, it is time to run this article again.

Washington progressive and "green" bureaucrats in the White House and various government departments and agencies have been stopping Americans from accessing our real oil reserves - our natural resources. The present planned released of oil from the strategic oil reserves by POTUS Obama is a less than a bandage on the current situation. In reality, tapping oil reserves needed for a crisis will make us more vulnerable because the administration has no plans or means to replace this oil in our reserves thus exacerbating our present and future conditions. The U.S. is continuously and apparently systematically being made more dependent on foreign oil in an effort to forcing us to proceed down "rabbit trails" like wind power. It is past time to let Americas have access to their own natural resources before we are destroyed, sold off, or taken over by others countries. DRILL HERE - DRILL NOW and all other options!

From Our Archives - May 5, 2008:
Garfield This in from one of our readers, Debbie:

A lot of folks can't understand how we came to have an oil shortage here in our country.
~~~
Well, there's a very simple answer.
Nobody bothered to check the oil.
We just didn't know we were getting low.
The reason for that is purely geographical.
~~~
Our OIL is located in : ALASKA, Utah, Coastal Florida, Wyoming, Coastal Louisiana, Kansas, Texas, Oklahoma and Pennsylvania
.


Our dipsticks are located in DC!

Any Questions? NO?. . . Didn't think so!


Tags: Garfield, gas prices, oil, oil prices, oil reserves, POTUS, Washington D.C., political humor, satire To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

Monday, March 07, 2011

Wisconsin Education Held Hostage by SEIU

A.F Branco, ComicallyIncorrect.com: Education held hostage in Wisconsin by teacher's Union.


Tags: A.F. Branco, political cartoon, Wisconson, SEIU, NEA, unions, education, hostage To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!

With Friends Like Barack Obama, Who Needs Enemies?

Photo via Astute Blogger
By Jeff Blanco, Louisiana Conservative: I’m not a birther. I question Barack Obama’s birthplace, but not because of overwhelming evidence, but rather the lack of it. Just as I’m not a birther, I am not a certificator. I would not put money down on a bet one way or the other. Put me in the group of doubters. It’s mostly because Barack Obama’s inability to provide the original birth certificate, add to that that the Governor of Hawaii can’t either. All I know is the the President spent his formative childhood years in Indonesia. Despite that, none of that matters now, as Barack Obama now lives in the White House.

If I were a Democrat, I would not have voted for Barack Obama. Hillary Clinton, yes. Joe Biden, yes. Dennis Kucinich? Well, he might have been too radical for my taste, but I don’t know, I’m not a Democrat. There is a reason why I say that I would not have voted for Barack Obama if I were a Democrat, and that reason is this, he simply had no track record. Now that he does, I strongly suspect that many Democrats are smart enough to support a challenger in the Democrat primary, or leave the Democratic party.

Two years into the Obama administration, it’s becoming self evident that Barack Obama doesn’t care what happens to the Democrat Party. His health care bill successfully purged many other Democrats from having any power, leaving just a few with complete control over the direction of the Democratic party. We might not yet know who Barack Obama is, but he’s certainly not on the side of peace and prosperity. It’s undeniable. For the Left wing nuts who still stand firm with Barack Obama, be careful, he might not betray you, but you’re going to fall from grace with your friends if you stick with him.

I don’t know what Barack Obama’s religion is. He says he’s a Christian so I suppose he is. What I don’t understand about Obama, being such a Christian, is why he would have Christian symbols covered up, or make fun of Christians clinging to their religion and guns, or why he never says Holy Bible but always says Holy Koran. I don’t understand why he’ll bow to the Saudi King, but gives our ally an IPOD loaded with his speeches. I don’t understand why he’ll send Netanyahu or the Dalai Lama out the back door by the trash, yet is more than happy to receive an America bashing book from Hugo Chavez or listen to an anti-American tirade from Daniel Ortega. I wish Barack Obama would give half the reverence to blacks and Latinos as he does to the Islamic community. I don’t know what his religion is, that is between God and Obama. I sincerely hope that we don’t pay the price for it.

It’s unfortunate that this supposed “Constitutional scholar” doesn’t understand the limits of his power as President. He believes that he can pass a law and require all Americans to buy a product as he and congress sees fit. First it’s health insurance, then who knows, sugar? Tobacco? His wife is pushing healthy eating, so perhaps they’ll next decide that we all should buy broccoli.

I am very disappointed that President Obama has single-handedly decided that it’s all or nothing on green energy, and has decided to not issue any new permits for drilling. It seems to me that this is no solution to ending our “dependence on foreign oil”. What would happen if we had a dependence on foreign food? Would President Obama then cut off our farm land with hopes of decreasing our dependence of foreign foods?

Say what you will that the President has raised our stature throughout the world, but I’m most certain that leaders of nations who hated Bush, as well as those who loved Bush, would be more than happy to have George W. Bush back in the White House. For President Obama, who campaigned for President under the guise that we unilaterally attacked Iraq, where does he think that the President of the United States has the power to tell another leader of a different nation that they have to leave office? And while Mubarek might not have been idealistic to the promotion of freedom, it leaves one scratching their head wondering why Obama has waited until the Libyan revolution reached the doorstep of Tripoli before Obama had anything to say? Or why he would not “interfere” with Iran. Or why he told Honduras they need to reinstate Manuel Zelaya.

Even more troublesome is that President Barack Obama publicly supported the permits for a Mosque at the site of 9-11, does nothing on the borders of Mexico while dangerous druglords easily cross our border, and wants to allow 80,000 Muslims into the United States. I haven’t even begun to touch on the many other things that should raise the eyebrows of everybody, even of the hard core leftist.

I don’t know where Obama’s core values are. President Obama prays several times a day which proves he’s a Christian, at least according to Gibbs. I do, however, see why the Muslim Brotherhood wants to act now, they could not ask for a more favorable treatment from a United States President, than the one they got now.

Whether overseas or here at home, one thing is certain. The world is a lot less peaceful with Barack Obama in the White House. Good luck to the next President.

Tags: Jeff Blanco, Who Needs Enemies, Barack Obama, POTUS To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!


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  • 7/27/14 - 8/3/14