The Way I See It
By cj pollick
Local Communities Must Cut Spending Or Increase Taxes/Fees - Let's get one thing straight, many city fees are nothing more than another form of taxes. Local elected officials are finding that in order to balance their tenuous city budgets they must either cut spending or increase taxes and city fees (or a balance of both.) Unfortunately, once city officials have agreed to increasing city payrolls and related benefit expenses, those taxpayer-funded expenses become sacred. "Can't cut city payroll," say city administrators who then propose tax increases.
Yes, and even though elected officials must approve those expense recommendations, many elected officials are wary of going against city unions and/or staff recommendations. Why? Those folks vote and contribute to campaign funds. Regular citizens, unfortunately, rarely vote in city elections and contribute little to campaign funds.
The result? Higher taxes.
However, citizens can take control of this financial dilemma. If current elected folks are avoiding cutting city expenses and supporting higher taxes, then perhaps they should be opposed by citizens who are not interested in long political careers. After all, we are still in a recession, there is high unemployment, real estate values are declining, our national debt is increasing and there is an oil spill off the Florida coast. A good time to increase taxes instead of cutting expenses? You tell me.
Charlie Crist And Photo Opportunities - Has there been a picture of the oil spill or televised photo-op in Louisiana when you did not see our smiling Governor? Nope, our governor will not miss an opportunity to obtain free press time while he is campaigning for the US senate seat. However, and even though polls show Crist has gained some ground due to the oil spill photo-op, one fact is clear: Crist has moved more to the left than any of his former supporters could have imagined. Crist desires that his next political job to be in Washington and not in Florida. His new high profile friends, such as Donald Trump, etc., plus his new wife's wealthy friends, are in places like New York, New Jersey and Washington (not in places like Clearwater, Largo, Belleair or Tallahassee, Florida.)
Many Florida voters believe we need a person of substance in Washington and not someone merely looking for his next job. Charlie looks great on television, but we have learned that he is a man who can turn on his supporters in a moment. Surely, neither Democrats nor Republicans could trust his decisions if elected.
Democrats know they have a true party supporter in Meek, same for Republicans in Rubio. Where is Crist? Middle of the road and non-committal on just about everything. What should a voter expect if a candidate, who is non-committal, wins and does something totally unexpected once in office? It's the snake story.
The snake story goes like this: A man walking down the road in winter sees a poisonous snake. The snake says, "If you pick me up and put me in your shirt to keep me warm I promise not to bite you." The man cautiously picks up the snake and puts him in his shirt. A moment later the snake bites the man in the neck. The dying man asks why he was bitten. The snake replies, "You knew what I was when you picked me up."
Are there any snakes in politics?
Van der Sloot A Madman? - Remember the coy Dutchman from Aruba who was charged and later released for the killing of an Alabama girl on an Aruban vacation with other high school graduates? If yes, then you may also remember how the Holloway family tried in vane to have this young man tried for the death of their daughter. Van der Sloot, according to many viewers, had the look of someone who was cunning and would change his story depending upon who he was talking. A dangerous young man.
Now he is charged in the killing of a young lady in Peru. Same cunning look on Van der Sloot, who has already changed his story to meet his needs. And then there is the latest story from his family that he did not take his medicine (for mental issues.)
Two young women dead-same Van der Sloot-same stories. One dangerous young man.
California Says We're In Trouble - People in California are saying the state is in such big financial trouble that few, if any, political candidates for top office are talking about how they would solve the state's financial crisis if elected. After all, some economists in California are wondering, how politicians might find $19 billion dollars to solve this year's financial debt plus next year's expected $37 billion state debt? California is in deep trouble and have few solutions to solve the state's massive accumulated debt.
Imagine the day when politicians in Washington, just to obtain more votes from California, agree to a financial bailout of $20 billion just for California!
Small Nebraska Town Will Get Sued - When a small town of 25,000 people in Nebraska decided that it would hold a citywide referendum to enforce illegal immigration, aka - Arizona model, Hispanic workers at the local meatpacking plant began to protest (as well as ACLU attorneys who said they would sue the town if such a local law was passed.) Thus, the issue became national news and local people in Nebraska are wondering how they would pay the legal bill if the law was passed.
One experienced lawyer said it probably would cost local taxpayers about $300,000 in legal fees to fight and defend their illegal immigration law. One citizen asked, "Why should local workers lose jobs to illegal workers…let them become legal and fine."
Will this small Nebraska town pass an illegal immigration law, like Arizona, to help stop illegal workers in their city? Time will tell, but over 60% of Americans support the illegal immigration law in Arizona.
All of this makes you wonder how many illegal workers are in Florida (and Pinellas County.) Thousands, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands? If, as reported, there is a large number of illegal workers, then why have Gov. Crist and Attorney Bill McCollum avoided the issue? Surely it can't be due to losing votes!
Underfunded Liabilities - Since 2000, Pew Research reports that state pension funds have been underfunded by $500 billion, and overall face a $587 billion long-term liability for promised health care benefits, but have only $32 billion on-hand to finance that obligation.
Spending Rising - According to the National Association of State Budget Officers, state spending grew from $945.3 billion in 2000 to more than $1.5 trillion in 2008, almost a 58.7 percent increase during the 2000's, where revenues were generally rising because of inflated property values.
World Cup Soccer, Still Number One - World Cup Soccer is still most popular of all world sports. Every nation in the world is fixed on watching soccer games held in the host nation of South Africa. And, the people and leaders of South Africa have done a wonderful job as the host nation of the world's number one sport-soccer.
The games in South Africa have not disappointed. Germany was upset by Serbia, Spain was upset, the Italian champions have tied, England and the US teams are in must win games and the French are fighting among themselves. FIFA referees, on the other hand, have made some terrible calls and New Zealand, one of the lowest rated soccer teams, may qualify with a next game win.
Final 16 playoff teams will soon be announced. The world is watching and cheering for their favorite team. Could it again be Brazil, coached by the great Maradona, in the finals?
World Cup Soccer. Catch the fever.
"It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt." -Abraham Lincoln
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