Stan's blog

Talking more about poor use of taxes in NC...The $25 BILLION Mortgage Settlement Fund

You might recall that Federal and state officials reached a $25 billion settlement with five big banks in February over abuses in their mortgage and foreclosure processes. A report from Enterprise Community Partners, a national affordable housing group, has found that many states are diverting the money to other purposes. The NY Times reported yesterday on how those monies are being spent. North Carolina received $60+ Million dollars...supposedly to be spent to provide mortgage relief to the affected homeowners. Well....guess what...along with a lot of other states this money isn't going where it would do the most good in NC. Some of it is being diverted into the General Fund to be pissed away..and a lot more (in NC) is going to be spent doing things that will likely accomplish nothing.

Let's talk about taxes...

I'm starting to go over to the dark side on taxes. Yes, I think taxes are the price we pay for a civilized society. Yes, I think a progressive tax structure is appropriate and the very wealthy should pay a bit more... But, I'm finally getting fed up. First, I'm fed up because our tax code is not equitable...and generally speaking it favors the wealthy with many loopholes and the lower rate on capital gains than the rates on sweat-earned wages. And, most of the many OTHER taxes also impact the poor and middle class more than the rich.

Bigotry played a trump card this morning in Wilmington

This morning our Sunday Newspaper carried a full page advertisement...a full page black and white profile picture of a sincere, dignified-looking, white-maned Billy Graham accompanied by the following text:

At 93, I never thought we would have to debate the definition of marriage. The Bible is clear--God's definition of marriage is between a man and a woman. I want to urge my fellow North Carolinians to vote FOR the marriage Amendment on Tuesday, May 8.

God Bless you as you vote,
BillY Graham
Montreat, N.C.
(Paid For by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association)

My thoughts are as follows:

OK...let's talk about fracking and inject some reality.

There's no doubt in my mind that irresponsible and uncontrolled oil and gas exploration has done and can do great damage to the environment. At the same time, our nation needs hydrocarbon energy to fuel it's needs...certainly for some years to come until renewable energy sources are more economically feasible and widely available.

Horizontal drilling into shale beds and the subsequent fracturing of these deposits to release the oil and gas is a relatively new development and has the potential to generate enough hydrocarbon energy forms to significantly alleviate the annual outflow of billions of dollars to the OPEC nations that use those dollars to buy stuff to kill us with and to buy influence and take over our industry and farm lands.

What do Zambia, Ecuador, India, Mexico and North Carolina have in common?

What we have in common is such a high level of poverty among children that Children International operates centers in all these countries to help alleviate the nutritional, educational and health care problems stemming from extreme poverty. (Actually, there are a few more places where Children International operates: Chile, Columbia, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Guatemala and the Philippines.)

I was motivated to write this after hearing NC GOP legislator George Cleveland's recent remark that there is no such thing as "extreme poverty" in North Carolina" as the GOP pushed to further reduce funding for early childhood programs in NC.

Conservative George Will smites income redistribution...the poor, elderly and, of course, lazy.

George Will’s editorial today in our Star-News about the evils of taxation and income redistribution almost had me. As Mr. Will said, government often gives our monies to those who neither need it or deserve it. He correctly states our monies often go to powerful interests but fails to identify those parties until the end of his editorial. Reading along, one thinks he’s talking about billions in tax subsidies to already highly profitable oil companies or capital gains tax breaks for the wealthy, bail-outs given to unethical banks and investment houses, and so on.

I probably ought to apologize, but it's personal.

Reflecting on my "evolution" comment of last night, I thought "That was over the top...I ought to apologize." I thought about it some more and decided, "No, I'm not going to do it. "This stuff about conservatives positioning themselves as the hardworking virtuous trying to save the country from the lazy and wasteful who want to redistribute wealth to their own advantage, and conservative's supposedly basing their decisions on logic as opposed to decisions made by liberal bleeding hearts...has come down to war. And, it's personal. And I'm going to fight...and don't really care if I insult some folks.

Up front, my wife and I are blessed. We don't have worries about how we're gonna pay the monthly bills and so on.

Rick Perry...despicable twit

Dumber than a barrel of hair Texas Governor Perry today compared

the GOP's quest to defeat President Barack Obama to one of the deadliest battles of the D-Day landings in Normandy in 1944. "This election is about stopping a president of the United States and his administration that is abusing the Constitution of this country, that is putting America on a track to bankruptcy," Perry told a hotel ballroom packed with more than 200 volunteers.

"It is a powerful moment in Americans' history, and you are on the front lines," he added. "This is Concord. This is Omaha Beach. This is going up the hill realizing that the battle is worth winning."


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