Tag Archives: Richard Merkt

Merry Christmas America!

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On Christmas, politics takes a backseat to the birth of Christ, the savior.

The political divisions created by differing opinions are put aside so that something more important can be celebrated…..life. A life of goodness, goodness of purpose and intention. The type of goodness Christ tried to bring our world. The type of goodness that has faith in mankind and that wishes comfort and joy to all.

Liberal or conservative, republican or democrat, pious believer or devout atheist, today we Christian celebrants share, with all, the spirit of hope and goodwill that comes to the forefront of this special occasion.

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What disasters could happen if you dropped the Christmas turkey? 

The downfall of Turkey, the break-up of China and the overthrow of Greece! 

 

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OFFER LEGISLATURE MERIT PAY LINKED TO THE ECONOMIES THAT THEY MANIPULATE

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ASSEMBLYMAN RICHARD MERKT
ASSEMBLYMAN RICHARD MERKT

Assemblyman Richard Merkt recently proposed to slash the salaries of New Jersey lawmakers by 10%.However, the Assemblyman is a candidate for the Republican gubernatorial nomination and the proposal could be viewed as an election gimmick. Then again, everything that any lawmaker does can be seen as a election gimmick.

In light of the recent pay raise of federal legislators, Merkt’s proposal is a noble one and worth looking at.

So his point is well taken. Times are tough and our representatives should be willing to make sacrifices and at least pretend to be empathetic to the people whose lives they affect.

Besides, lawmakers are partially responsible for any state’s economy including the one we are currently in here in Jersey so they should be more directly effected. I say they are partly responsibly because not everything is their fault. Nature, world events and human stupidity outside of Trenton politics, all play a part. But our lawmakers are elected to both steer us and our state economy in the right direction and to help our state better cope with the situations that we are dealt.

That being the case, it can easily be said that the current state legislature has not done a good job.

New Jersey has led the way in economic trouble over the past few years and under the direction of Governor Jon Corzine, the state legislature has been ill equipped at handling the situation. In fact, together the Democrat controlled state legislature and Democrat Governor have made matters worse.

Together they raised taxes, increased fees made it harder to do business in New Jersey and expanded opportunities for government corruption.

It could be said that Republicans bare no responsibility for this situation since they do not control any branch of state government. I can agree with that but it still doesn’t get Republicans off the hook.

Both parties have failed the people of New Jersey to one degree or another.

Democrats have failed to do anything right and Republicans have failed at convincing anyone that they could do better.

Given these circumstances, I have a more interesting proposal than Assemblyman Merkt’s.

How about we link state legislative and executive salaries to the economy and taxes of the state that they run.

Currently New Jersey State Assembly members and Senators make $49,000 a year.

I say let us reduce those salaries to a base of $41.000 a year and then use the following standard.

  1. For every percent or portion of a percentage that any given legislature raises income and property taxes, their salaries are decreased by 2%. For every percentage or degree of a percentage that they decrease income and property taxes their salaries can be raise by half of one percent.
  2. For every percent or portion of a percentage that they raise a sales or service tax, their salaries also decrease by that same percentage. Conversely, their salaries can be raised by half a percent for every full percent of a decrease in such taxes.
  3. For any new tax created, their salaries are reduced by 2% plus the equivalent percentage of that new tax.
  4. Every toll increase passed during any legislative session is matched by a reduction in legislative salaries that equal to the percentage of that increase.
  5. And finally, state legislative salaries are further reduced by the same number of percentage points that the state’s unemployment rate is whenever it exceeds 4%.

To make it fair. Newly elected legislators would not be held accountable for the taxes and economic situation that any previous legislative session, which they did not have a hand in, was responsible for, and so they would start with the base pay of 41K.

Of course, such measures would not prevent rich people like Governor Jon Corzine from raising fees and taxes, misappropriating funds and offering sweet heart deals to sweethearts like Carla Katz. After all, Corzine took a $400 million golden parachute from Wall Street and doesn’t even accept his salary for Governor but this system could help to make less well off lawmakers work a little harder to address our problems and to fight the wealthy Governor. Having their own pockets linked to what they pick out of ours could just help to make them finally work together for the benefit of themselves as well as us. Maybe such a pay scale system will help to really create a sense of bipartisanship?

Perhaps if the lawmakers of New Jersey had their financial well being directly linked to the state’s financial well being and our own financial opportunities, maybe tax increases and increased fees for everything from driving to landscaping and joining a gym will be viewed as a last resort. Like it should be.

Perhaps by immediately linking their decisions directly to their own incomes, they may better empathize with the financial impact that they bring to bare on those they are representing .

You could say that it is not fair to those who vote against penalizing taxes or policies that drive businesses away and raise the unemployment in the state. That might be so, but, those who simply voted against something are still culpable. They have more than a responsibility to vote against such measures. They have the responsibility of leadership and the responsibility of making their case and doing it so well that a preponderance of people in the state as well as the legislature are persuaded by their arguments. They must convince people why others are wrong and they are right. Failing to do so is a failure that they share in common with those who support regressive economic policies.

So Assemblyman Merkt’s proposed 10 % reduction in salary is nice.

It is certainly going in a direction far better than the 2.8% pay increase that Congress is willing to take, at of all times, now. But the gesture Merkt is making could be made more meaningful and be more enduring. By linking legislative salaries to their actions we are adding a new incentive to politics and a new level of innovation……..political merit pay. If you do a good job and keep a good economy going you get paid better.

Is this crazy?

Maybe it is. Maybe it is as far fetched as a State Senator taking money from a no show job given to him by a school funded with state money that the same State Senator helped procure with tax payer dollars that he helped get through the state legislature. Maybe this political merit pay scale sounds just as crazy as that same corrupt State Senator getting his state funded pension after ripping the state off and being convicted.

But just like former *Senator Wayne Bryant, it may sound crazy but it could be true if like Wayne Bryant, we just did it.

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*Wayne Bryant pressured officials of University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey  to create a no-show job  that  allowed him to lobby himsef’ for taxpayer funds. Bryant also chaired the Senate Appropriations comittee which Funneled large sums of taxpayers dollare to UMDNJ.

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Be Sure To Sign The Petition To

REPEAL THE CONGRESSIONAL PAY HIKE

Sign the Online Petition – Repeal The Automatic Pay Raise That Congress Is Receiving

Pass The Link On To Family, Friends and Co-workers

http://www.gopetition.com/online/24301.html

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 AND DON’T FORGET………….

BE SURE TO SIGN THE PETITION URGING THE NOMINATION

OF SENATOR BECK FOR LT. GOV.

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I was talking to a friend of mine’s little girl the other day.

I asked her what she wanted to be when she grew up and she replied, 

I want to be President!” 

Both of her parents are liberal Democrats and were standing there. So then I asked her, “If you were President what would be the first thing you would do?”

She replied, “I’d give houses to all the homeless people.” 

“Wow – what a worthy goal.” I told her, “You don’t have to wait until you’re President to do that. You can come over to my house and mow, pull weeds, and sweep my yard, and I’ll pay you $50. Then I’ll take you over to the grocery store where this homeless guy hangs out, and you can give him the $50 to use toward a new house.” 

Since she is only 6, she thought that over for a few seconds. While her Mom glared at me, she looked me straight in the eye and asked,

“Why doesn’t the homeless guy come over and do the work, and you can just pay him the $50?” 

And I said, “Welcome to the Republican Party.” 

Her folks still aren’t talking to me.

 Submitted by Dick, Williamsport, Md

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CHRISTIE TELLS SUPPORTERS THAT HE WILL MAKE IT OFFICIAL

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FORMER MORRIS COUNTY FREEHOLDER AND FEDERAL PROSECUTOR CHRIS CHRISTIE

FORMER MORRIS COUNTY FREEHOLDER AND FEDERAL PROSECUTOR CHRIS CHRISTIE

This morning Chris Christie officially declared that he will make a run for the Republican nomination for Governor official during the first week of February.

 

With access to lists of Republican supporters and activists collected by Christie supporters such as State Senator Joe Kyrillos, the former prosecutor sent the following message.

Dear Friend,

This morning I am filing papers to begin the process to become a candidate for the Republican nomination for Governor of New Jersey.

I did not take this step lightly. It was only after careful consideration and consultation with my family that I decided to become a candidate.

New Jersey is broken. New Jersey’s taxes have become so unaffordable that more families are leaving our state than moving here. Our state’s business tax climate is ranked 50th in the nation and has become so unattractive to employers that only government jobs are growing in New Jersey. Yet nothing in Trenton gets done to fix these problems.

We can change this. We can solve these problems if we’re willing to make the tough decisions.

In my seven years as your United States Attorney, I didn’t shy away from any of the tough decisions. I took on corporate greed, political corruption, terrorism and environmental polluters. Public officials from both parties were prosecuted for corruption – more than 130 were convicted, and not one was acquitted. Corporate executives who cheated their companies and hurt their workers were successfully prosecuted. Terrorist plots were disrupted; polluters punished.

Many didn’t believe we could win these battles. We did, and with strong leadership we will win the fight for Governor and change this state for the better.

My formal announcement for Governor will come in the first week in February and I hope you will join us (I will email you the details). With strong leadership now, we can fix our broken state and make it more affordable for all New Jersey families.

Sincerely,

Chris Christie

The filing of papers with the State Board of Elections to begin making his his candidacy for Governor of New Jersey a reality is about time.

For Christie to stall his decision to run or not run any longer would be detrimental to both his own success and our party’s success.

It is no secret that he would probably be running and to begin with a late, or later start than he already intends, only makes things tougher for the G.O.P. than they may already be.

From the message sent out by Christie, which essentially makes his intentions clear, one can see that the soon to be candidate for the Republican nomination for Governor of New Jersey is banking on a campaign that will play up his prosecutorial, clean government credentials and business interests.

Those are important issues however, Christie would be wise to highlight the damage done to the citizens of New Jersey due to the anti business climate that Corzine and Democrats have created in the state more than just the desire of businesses. The focus needs to be on the people. By simply making himself the “pro-business” candidate, Christie will fall into a trap that Democrats are great at. It is a trap that, in the minds of voters, Democrats perpetuate a sense that Republicans are the party for big business.

So Christie needs to carefully phrase his intentions to improve the environment for business in New Jersey.antchristiey

 

One of the most encouraging comments in his email was a reference to the fact that only government jobs are growing in New Jersey. If Christie can hammer home the fact that Democrats have made government a business that they treat like corrupt Wall Street, ponzi schemers and profit from at the sake of taxpayers, he may be on to a winning theme in November.

But first he must get our nomination.

It is my hope that Chris Christie will work hard for that nomination. He just might have to with people like Assemblyman Richard Merkt and former Mayor Steve Lonegan on his tail.

The two, especially Mayor Lonegan are going to be innovative in their approaches to government and in a time when Americans were wanting “change”, New Jerseyans are really wanting change. Business as usual is not something that New Jersey residents want from government and people like Steve Lonegan are anything but business usual. Many can see that as a refreshing change from the business as usual that we have gotten from the current administration in Trenton.

So once Christie does become an official candidate and starts campaigning as one, it will be interesting to see how he distinguishes himself from the pack and from your run of the mill politicians.

And the sooner he starts trying to do so, the better.

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Be Sure To Sign The Petition To

REPEAL THE CONGRESSIONAL PAY HIKE

Sign the Online Petition – Repeal The Automatic Pay Raise That Congress Is Receiving

Pass The Link On To Family, Friends and Co-workers

http://www.gopetition.com/online/24301.html

RedWhiteBlue.gif picture by kempite

 AND DON’T FORGET………….

BE SURE TO SIGN THE PETITION URGING THE NOMINATION

OF SENATOR BECK FOR LT. GOV.

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POSTED EARLIER TODAYJACK KEMP – A POLITICAL ICON BATTLES CANCER

It has been reported that Jack Kemp has cancer.

His office released the following statement:

“Mr. Kemp has been undergoing tests to determine the origin of the disease and the options for continued treatment. He will continue to serve as Chairman of Kemp Partners and plans to remain involved in his business, charitable and politically related activities. Mr. Kemp and his family are grateful for the thoughts and prayers of friends and appreciate respect for their privacy at this time”……….

To Read More, Go To:

https://politics247.wordpress.com/2009/01/07/jack-kemp-a-political-icon-battles-cancer/

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WITH LOTS OF HOMEWORK, REPUBLICANS LOOK TO REBUILD IN 2009

With the new year here, 2008 is a memory that many hope to learn from. For Republicans there were plenty of lessons taught. The loss of the White House as well as increased losses in the United States Senate and House of Representatives provided some extra tutoring and all those lessons leave us with a great deal of homework to complete during 2009.

In 2009 most honest political observers and participants will tell you that for Republicans, 2009 is a year for rebuilding. But how do we do that? How do we not only compete in future elections, but how do we win in future elections?

Part of the solution to our problem is not entirely up to us. Some of the Republican parties fortunes depend on Democrats. Part of the solution….not most of it.

If with total control of the federal government, Democrats begin lurching to the left, they will be opening up a window of opportunity for the G.O.P.. They will make themselves vulnerable to an attack that could easily make most Americans feel that Democrats are extreme and out of touch with the people and their needs.

I already know that Democrats are out of touch. I already know that most Democrats are no longer Democrats….they are liberals. And now, with a so-called Democrat in the White House, the blatantly liberal leadership of sad, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and extreme liberal loon Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, I believe their extremism will present itself so glaringly that most Americans will soon begin to remember just how liberal and incapable of leadership that today’s liberal party really is.

I am convinced that today’s Democrats will be unable to live up to the hopes of most and they will certainly not bring the kind of “change” that most people really want. Their failures to do so will give Republicans the type of opportunity that we could use.

However we won’t be much of a party if we simply count on the failure of Democrats in order to achieve a Republican victory. In my view, although there are many things we need to do, one of the most basic and important projects we must undertake is reconciliation. A reconciliation between the grassroots of the Republican party and the leadership of the party.

This reconciliation would go a long way in re-establishing Republican political preeminence.

The grassroots of the party has been quite disaffected by both Republican party leaders and Republican elected officials.

Over the past 5 years, many Republican elected officials avoided taking the lead in fights where ideological leadership was needed. Many of these elected Republicans also lost the antiestablishment sentiments that helped lead to the Republican revolution of ‘94. It was the sentiment that had congress sacrifice privilege and perks. The type of sentiments that allowed people to believe that congress was there for them, not for taking advantage of the people they represent.  Some Republican party leaders as well as some Republican elected members of congress may have lost their fervor for these sentiments but their supporters have not.   that is one reason why many of those Republicans did not return to congress. 

As for Republican party leaders, many of them, particularly those leading the national committee, lost organizational and communication superiority with their grassroots. Not only were many voters in the Republican base becoming increasingly disappointed by those in congress and less interested in what they had to say, but party leaders lagged behind Democrats in the area of technology. Republican leaders missed the opportunities that internet technology provided. As a result, grass root Republicans were further removed from the process and the G.O.P. lost the chance to energize itself with instantaneous feedback from the grassroots. Feedback that could have provided the party with the concerns and priorities of the Republican grassroots in real time. It also would have made more Republican voters feel more directly involved in the process.

There are many other major and minor issues and tactics that must be addressed but doing so will be a process that we need to undergo over time. 2009 will give us that time. As an off year, there will be no major elections except in New Jersey and Virginia where voters will be electing Governors along with members of their state legislatures. Illinois may have a special election to fill the vacancy that Barack Obama’s election to President has created but that whole issue has yet to play out. So while time is of the essence in New Jersey and Virginia there is still some room for breathing in most other states, but not much. Which is why I am glad that 2009 has kicked off with several efforts that can help to boost Republican fortunes.

These efforts have begun in of all places, the internet and by of all people, Republican grass root supporters.

One of the most promising sites and to date, most effective sites involves young, Republican internet guru Patrick Rufini.

CLICK HERE

CLICK HERE

Appropriately called ““REBUILD the PARTY”” the site helps provide the proper direction and leadership for the party not only with good advice but by example as well.

In the weeks following the election of 2008, “REBUILD the PARTY” conducted an open forum where Republicans submitted ideas and votes were cast on which suggested ideas were best. A long the way a ten point plan of Republican action was developed. It is a ten point strategy that, so far, has been endorsed by 5 of the six people running for RNC chairman.

In addition to official strategy development “REBUILD the PARTY” offers itself as a central headquarters for Republican to communicate and debate on. Through the social network “NING”, participants can even create their own homepage and blog. In it‘s totality, “REBUILD the PARTY” is a perfect example of how a rebuilt Republican party should proceed in 2009.

Another promising new site is “Flip4”.

CLICK HERE

CLICK HERE

“Flip4” is striving to “flip four seats in every statehouse where doing so will give Republicans the majority”. The sites creators understand that the state legislatures are where Republican fortunes lie. They know that after 2010, the state legislatures will be drawing the congressional district lines that will make up the house in Washington, D.C..

So Flip4 focuses on state legislatures by trying to find and elect “talented, principled, forward-thinking Republican candidates” and by implementing the following strategy:

  1. Identify four talented, principled, forward-thinking Republican candidates in every statehouse where their victories will give Republicans the majority.
  2. Collect and distribute information about these candidates, their issues and their races.
  3. Direct resources to these candidates, both financial and otherwise, to enable their victory.
CLICK HERE

CLICK HERE

Another new forum is another platform developed by Patrick Rufini. This one is called “THE NEXT RIGHT”.

The “The Next Right” highlights the current thinking of several of the sites politically experienced Republican operators. Here they detail and debate the weaknesses and strengths of the party and also present rich, thought provoking proposals for the party to undertake.

It also involves input from grass root Republicans, who can post their own blog entries and allow for debate through ongoing comment sections.

If one takes a moment to review these three sites, they will find themselves increasingly optimistic. They will see that hope is not lost and that Republican losses at the polls did not occur because the Republican principles we stand for are outdated or wrong but that they were not applied by many Republicans serving in office. A look at these sites demonstrates that the Republican base is strong and that they ready, willing and able to do what is necessary to help provide America with the leadership that true republicans can offer the nation.

So as 2009 unfolds, be a part of the rebuilding process. Get involved in the sites mentioned here.

They are helping to turn things around and upside down. To date, their activity is responsible for getting the attention of our leaders and instead of the people joining the proposed efforts of our party leaders, party leaders are getting involved in the efforts of the people. It is a redrawing of the political blueprint where the actions that the G.O.P. takes comes from the direction that the people want to go in as opposed to the people going in the direction that a party boss wants the people to go in. It is the type of blueprint that Republicans could have used a few years before we lost control of congress when they lost touch with the grassroots that elected them in the first place.

In 2009, for Republicans, these sites are trains  leaving the station and if you are not onboard, you’ll be left behind.

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Your Urgent Help Needed

Dear American;

I need to ask you to support an urgent secret business relationship with a transfer of funds of great magnitude.

I am Ministry of the Treasury of the Republic of America. My country has had crisis that has caused the need for large transfer of funds of 800 billion dollars US. If you would assist me in this transfer, it would be most profitable to you.

I am working with Mr. Phil Gram, lobbyist for UBS, who will be my replacement as Ministry of the Treasury in January. As a Senator, you may know him as the leader of the American banking deregulation movement in the 1990s. This transactin is 100% safe.

This is a matter of great urgency. We need a blank check. We need the funds as quickly as possible. We cannot directly transfer these funds in the names of our close friends because we are constantly under surveillance. My family lawyer advised me that I should look for a reliable and trustworthy person who will act as a next of kin so the funds can be transferred.

Please reply with all of your bank account, IRA and college fund account numbers and those of your children and grandchildren to wallstreetbailout@treasury.gov so that we may transfer your commission for this transaction. After I receive that information, I will respond with detailed information about safeguards that will be used to protect the funds.

Yours Faithfully Minister of Treasury Paulson

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THE TOP 10 POLITICAL HAPPENINGS OF 2008

With the new year here, we have the opportunity to reflect on the year gone by and to thank the passage of time for resolving some situations. While some happenings in 2008 came and went, other events of 2008 still require time, time that will absorb much of 2009 and even beyond.

So today, before we forge ahead with the rest of this new year, we reflect on the events that shaped politics and the politics that shaped events, by presenting to you the 10 most significant political stories of the year that helped to get us where we are today.

TONY SNOW

TONY SNOW

10. – THE DEATHS OF TIM RUSSERT and TONY SNOW

TIM RUSSERT

TIM RUSSERT

Both of these men loved politics. For a time they were both involved in politics on different sides of the aisle and at a different times they covered politics. Tony Snow started in print and broadcast journalism delivering political news and commentary and ended his career in politics as the Press Secretary for President Bush. Tim Russert began in politics working for a political legend, Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan of New York and ended covering politics on NBC. As host of Meet The Press, Tim became a part of every American household and despite his personal left leaning tendencies Tim Russert was respected for probing questions that were leveled at liberals and conservatives alike. Tony Snow was also a partisan. For decades he was a favorite in conservative circles, yet when delivering a news story people of every party carefully listened to the insightful delivery of facts that he presented. His last major endeavor was one that helped provide the White House with the ability to properly convey the right messages. Tony served as Press Secretary for 17 months. Probably the most understandable 17 months of the Presidents two terms in office. Tim Russert died after suffering a massive heart attack on Jun 13th at the age of 58 and Tony Snow died after battling colon cancer on July 12th at the age of 53. In life they shaped politics and political opinion. In death, they left us a legacy of lessons and examples to follow.

9 . – IS  THAT CAMPAIGN MONEY IN YOUR POCKET OR ARE YOU JUST GLAD TO SEE ME

FORMER NY GOVERNOR ELLIOT SPITZER

FORMER NY GOVERNOR ELLIOT SPITZER

The Empire State helped to set a tone for 2008 when early in the year, New York’s Governor, Elliot Spitzer got caught up in scandal. After serving only 14 months in office the rising Democrat star found himself standing next to his wife announcing his resignation. Suspicious transfers of money in and out of Spitzer’s bank account led federal investigators to believe that he might be taking bribes. However their probe discovered that for over several years Spitzer wasn’t taking bribes, he was paying out at least $80,000 for prostitutes. The period covered his tenure as New York’s Attorney General as well as his brief time as Governor. The happiest people of all in this episode were David Paterson and New Jersey. As Spitzer’s Lieutenant Governor, Paterson, became New York’s first African American Governor, and the nation’s first legally blind one. New Jersey was just happy to know that they were no longer the only state in the region to lose a governor because of sexual scandals and illegal conduct.

8. – WEEKEND AT KIM’S

NOT WANTED but is he dead or alive?

NOT WANTED but is he dead or alive?

Around August rumors began to circulate that North Korea’s obscure and, to put it kindly, eccentric leader, Kim Jong-Il, was dead. Since then no reputable sources have either seen him or heard from him. Not that that is unusual, few people have ever heard or seen Kim Jong-Il, but what is unusual are recent decisions that Kim Jong-Il supposedly made to eliminate efforts to develop nuclear power. Did Kim make that decision? Is North Korea really abandoning nuclear ambitions? Or is North Korea propping up Kim Jong-Il, like a bad, out of sync, Korean version of “Weekend At Bernie’s” while a different, unknown, brain dead ruler is pulling the strings and, at the same time, trying to pull the wool over our eyes? All jokes aside, the sensitivity of the situation is a dire one. Chaos on the Korean Peninsula could create a ripple effect that no one can afford. Dramatic events could alter sensitive relations with South Korea and negotiations with the United States. All of which could result in tensions throughout the world including those involving hard feelings between North Korea and Japan. And let us not forget North Korea’s greatest ally, China. With their booming economy, the Chinese are ambitious. Knowing who is in charge of things could be helpful in 2009.

7. – BID WELL FIDEL?

BID WELL TO FIDEL?

BID WELL TO FIDEL?

In 1959 Cuba took on the face of Fidel Castro. Just 90 miles off of our shores, Cuban communism and Castro were too close for comfort. As much as we didn’t like it, invasions, coups and even assassination attempts did not eliminate Castro’s hold on power. However, time did reduce Castro’s influence. As time changed most of the world, Castro and Cuba didn’t but the logistics which helped to make him a thorn in our side did change. The, once feared communist Soviet-Cuban relationship lost it’s potency as the Soviet Union lost it’s hammer and sickle. As time went by, our concerns with Cuba focused more on human rights for Cubans than defense from Cuba. So it was still welcome news when, in February, we discovered that an ailing Fidel Castro was resigning from office. Not that it mattered much. Before stepping down, Fidel told the Cuban Communist Party that they were too elect his brother Raul to be the new Commander in Chief. The event did not change things very much but after almost 50 years in power, and events such as the Bay of Pigs, the Cuban Missile Crisis, Elian Gonzales and other disconcerting situations, as minor as the effects of this change may be, Fidel’s painstakingly slow departure from the world stage is welcomed and ranks as the seventh most dramatic political occurrence of 2008.

6. – THE GEOGIAN-RUSSIAN WARant1georgis1a2

It was not a battle that reshaped Europe again but the surprising developments that caused the Russian Army to invade a neighboring, breakaway Republic with internationally recognized sovereignty, gave us all a glimpse of reality. It may not be the Soviet Union anymore but a bear by any other name is still a bear and the vulnerabilities of newly formed and reformed European nations and those with relatively new freedoms still offer some new Russian leaders the same old reasons for wanting control. The incident helped to demonstrate that freedom in parts of Europe is still a fragile concept.

ROD "How much do 'ya want" BLAGOJEVICH

ROD "How much do 'ya want" BLAGOJEVICH

5. – THE EBAY APPOINTMENT

2008 ended with a story that will carry well into the first months of 2009. As President-Elect Obama vacated his seat in the U.S. Senate, Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich began a private auction process to determine who will fill the vacancy. As investigators, under the direction of federal prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald, investigated Blagojevich for numerous improprieties, they discovered that he was basing his appointment to the senate seat on who could give him the most for it. Blago wanted either a “cushy union” job, a high paying cabinet position or at the very least an enormous financial campaign contribution. After being arrested the Illinois state legislature began impeachment proceedings against Blagojevich and he began digging in his heals refusing to resign. The events have the potential for drawing in some big name co-conspirators and participants. From Rep. Jesse Jackson, jr. to President -Elect Obama’s incoming Chief of Staff, Illinois Rep. Rahm Emanuelle, many reputations may yet be questioned in this scandal. And to make things even more interesting, Blagojevich took the opportunity to raise the stakes and named Roland Burris, a long time, old line, liberal Chicago Democrat party machine hack to replace Barack Obama. Not at all concerned with peoples faith in government, or the integrity of the process, Burriss accepted the tainted appointment and in doing so, puts the United States and it’s Democrat leader, Harry Reid in the position of denying to seat someone that would be the only African American in the United States Senate. So coming in as the fifth top political occurrence in 2008 is the story that will keep on bleeding and keep us reading…..the process to replace a Barack Obama in the senate. 

4. – BRINGING OUTSIDERS IN

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN

GOVERNOR SARAH PALIN

One of the most important political decisions made in 2008 was John McCain’s selection of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin for Vice President on the Republican ticket. It was a controversial choice for some and one of the only right decisions made in the opinions of others. No matter how you see it, it remains one of the most spoken about political stories of the year. Beyond the newsworthiness are the implications. For many it was a sign of the fact that government needs thinking that is as far removed from the Washington D.C. mentality as Alaska is from Washington D.C itself. Many Americans are tired of Washington politics and want common sense as opposed to the one hand washes the other, old boys bureaucracy that we perceive as screwing us more than helping us. Sarah Palin embodied, and still does embody, that thinking. She is a political outsider who became a Governor by opposing the political class while representing the working class. Without abandoning conservative Republican principles, Sarah Palin fought against corrupt Republican and liberal politicians. Although picking Sarah Palin for Vice President may have been the right decision for John McCain, trying to restrict and control her wasn’t. By trying to script Sarah Palin, the McCain campaign lost out on the greatest advantageous quality Palin brought to the ticket…….her anti-establishment, outsider qualities. As McCain lost the election for President, Sarh Palin won exposure. Exposure that has made her a person who conservatives look forward to advancing the cause and for Americans to have to consider for national leadership in the future. So at number four in 2008 is the selection of Sarah Palin for Vice President. Thank you senator McCain!

ant1oil23. – “OILS WELL” IN THE ECONOMY?

The price of oil ranks third on our list of top stories. As prices for a barrel of oil soared to heights in excess of 150 dollars a barrel , gas prices flew up to over 4 dollars a gallon and the ripple effects raise the cost of everything from milk, eggs and bread to lumber, air fares, and life in general. The high cost of energy generated heated debates over domestic oil drilling, and pushed issues like immigration and terrorism off of the front burners in the race for President. Based upon the duration of the immediate negative effects of the price of oil combined with its ripple effects on the economy, its control of the political agenda and the long term policy initiatives that it created, oil prices is number 3 in ‘08. It is also likely to become a top story again, at least around August of ‘09, when the now delightfully low prices we see rise back up. 

2. – THE ELECTION OF BARACK OBAMA 

PRESIDENT-ELECT BARACK OBAMA

PRESIDENT-ELECT BARACK OBAMA

Putting all political opinion aside. Barack Obama ran a long hard campaign, that Republican strategists are dissecting in order to reproduce in elections of their own. The Obama campaign not only effectively tapped into voter dissatisfaction they organized it and organized it well. Their utilization of the internet was exemplary and their ability win favor through eloquence and style over substance and fact was political perfection. Despite some pitfalls such as Bill Ayers, ACORN, Rev. Wright, admitting a desire akin to socialism by stating that he wanted to spread the wealth , Barack Obama won big. To do so his campaign raised historic amounts of money and more than just raising that money, they spent it right and put it to good use. A use that mobilized the forces well enough to produce his substantial victory. The election of President-Elect Barack Obama comes in second on out not only because of how he won but because he did win. His victory marked the election of America’s first African American President. Like ant other first, it is notable and in this case it is profoundly notable. It demonstrates an undeniable ability for our nation to overcome racial differences and the evidence of decency overcoming prejudice is promising. The effects of President-Elect Obama’s leadership are yet to be seen but the lessons learned and points made by his election are unquestionable.

ant1bailout21 . – BAIL OUT MANIA

POLITICS 24/7 considers the 700 billion dollar bailout that the federal government approved to be the most profound and important story of 2009. Not only was the suggested need for this bailout indicative of our wrong ways of the past, it signaled a continuation of wrong ways in the future. Our promotion of spending as the answer to all of our problems has created generations ands a government that spend beyond our means. The 700 billion dollar bailout meant to solve our problems didn’t solve our anything, it just provided a quick fix. It did however, create more problems. It has called upon more people and more industries to put their own hands out. The bailout set in motion a sense of government control that has taken freedom, with all of it’s risks and promises, out of the free market and it has helped to move America closer to the socialism that we have fought against in the past. Many major events come and go in politics. What we once saw as earth shattering developments often become something that we later laugh about but we fear that bailout trend established in 2008 is no laughing matter for any time.

2008 was an intense year. There were many events and some of the most dramatic ones did not involve politics. Human nature played a role in all of them though and hopefully our better instincts will drive the events and politics of 2009.

With that in mind we wish everyone a happy new year and hope that our better instincts help to make each and every day better than the last.

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HAPPY NEW YEAR !

Our Happy New Year wish for you
Is for your best year yet,
A year where life is peaceful,
And what you want, you get.

A year in which you cherish
The past year’s memories,
And live your life each new day
Full of bright expectancies.

We wish for you a holiday
With happiness galore;
And when it’s done, we wish you
Happy New Year, and many more.

By Joanna Fuchs

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From your friends at

POLITICS 24/7

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MERRY CHRISTMAS AMERICA

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On Christmas, politics takes a backseat to the birth of Christ, the savior.

The political divisions created by differing opinions are put aside so that something more important can be celebrated…..life. A life of goodness, goodness of purpose and intention. The type of goodness Christ tried to bring our world. The type of goodness that has faith in mankind and that wishes comfort and joy to all.

Liberal or conservative, republican or democrat, pious believer or devout atheist, today we Christian celebrants share, with all, the spirit of hope and goodwill that comes to the forefront of this special occasion.

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punchline-politics21

 

What disasters could happen if you dropped the Christmas turkey?

 

The downfall of Turkey, the break-up of China and the overthrow of Greece!

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Ho, Ho, Ho, Merry Christmas – Put Your Party Labels Down

On this night, whether to the left or to the right,
Politics disappears and there is no fight.
Christmas Eve is here, and Santa is near,
So be not grumpy, just be a dear.
Celebrate Christmas, with all its cheer.

With Christmas Eve upon us we take the time to put aside our differences and forget the overburdening taxation, intrusive policies and misguided direction of Democrats.

In the spirit of the holiday and the goodwill it brings, we wish all, who celebrate the birth of Christ, a merry Christmas and to those who don’t, we extend respectful wishes of comfort and joy for you and yours.

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And remember……….

For the next day, the letter “R” stands for reindeer, not Republican!

reindeer Pictures, Images and Photos

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YOU CAN TURN RIGHT ON RED BUT DON’T TURN LEFT TO GET ELECTED

antjohnashbrook1972boxWith the holidays upon us, family, friends, faith and other personal aspects in life come to the forefront, as they should. Although the world does not stop rotating, priorities do shift, at least for a few brief hours. Among one of the first fields of endeavor to experience a temporary cessation in hostilities is politics.

Considering the amount of headlines pointing out the treachery and lack of sincerity often associated with politics, a stop, even a brief stop, in the business of politics is warranted during this more spiritually sincere time of the year.

With the winding down of its activity, one becomes very reflective about politics. It makes you stop and think……what is it all for?

Is all the posturing, deal cutting, eloquent speeches and snappy catch phrases done for the betterment of the people? Or is it done for the personal advantage of the deal cutters, eloquent speakers and snappy phrase makers? Is it all done to achieve personal power or acclaim? Is all the demonstrated frustration and anger involved in the process caused because of the failure to pass a particular piece of legislation that benefit’s the people or is it arrived at more because of personal failure to be credited with passing a piece of legislation?

Politics, can be a wonderful arena of ideas for maintaining a prosperous and civilized civilization or it can be a cesspool of humanities worst motivations.

It is that way because politics is comprised of politicians and politicians are only human. Some are good while others are just inappropriate or downright bad. So it is only natural that as human beings, their policies are also a mix of good and bad.

Being human, politicians bring to the table all the human frailties that we as humans possess.antnoleftturnshtma2

The hope is that the best ideas and directions win the day due to there being a preponderance of humanities best people involved in the process. Unfortunately, I am afraid that many of today’s elected officials in the game are not humanities best, most sincere and altruistic people. I believe many of them simply want the power and perceived admiration of the masses. Many are in it simply for themselves. Take Illinois’ Governor Rod Blagojevich for instance.

So this leads us to wonder how we tell the difference between someone who wants to win for the sake of winning or to make a true change for the betterment of al the people.

The coming year will give New Jerseyans the chance to answer that question.

As the state gears up for a gubernatorial election, Republicans have to choose a nominee to run against liberal Jon Corzine.

Popular thinking would lead one to believe that, given the polls in New Jersey, a liberal approach would be the more expedient path to victory for Republicans in Jersey.

If  any Republican running for governor takes that approach, than I will know one thing about them.  I will know that they are not sincere.

The Republican who runs to the left in this election is the Republican who wants power for their own benefit and to win for the sake of winning, not for the sake of improving the lives of others.

The Republican who tries to avoid offending illegal immigrants by not demanding a strict enforcement of laws regarding their illegal presence and who avoids taking control away from unions like the National Education Association and giving more power to parents is the candidate afraid of standing up to the influence that those who impede progress may wield in the election.

Any candidate who allows the fear of losing an election to take precedence over doing what is right, is not running for governor for the right reasons. They would be demonstrating that they are running for themselves, not for the people.

The Republican nominee for Governor must be willing to stand up to the power brokers who have held the state hostage through secretive union negotiations and outrageous pension plans.

The Republican nominee for Governor must be willing to address the fact that municipalities in New Jersey must begin to consolidate. Our nominee needs to demonstrate that fewer governments throughout the state means less burden on the taxpayer and less of an affordability problem for residents.

Of course no local municipal king wants to give up their kingdom, but the people must hear about the advantages of reducing the costly proliferation of governments. They must be made aware of the fact that government has become the problem and that fewer governments in the state will lead to less of those things we don’t need. Like less government corruption, fewer operating costs, fewer bureaucrats and bureaucratic entanglements .

We need a nominee who will challenge that which hinders progress, not a candidate who goes along to get along.

Some might say that that is no way to win an election. They would argue that by offending the hands that organize volunteers and pours the mothers milk of any political campaign, money, into an election, is a road map to defeat.

Conservative Ohio Congressman Joh Ashbrook

Conservative Ohio Congressman Joh Ashbrook

If that is true, than I suggest we go down in defeat.

I would rather see Republicans lose by standing up for what we believe in than win by offering the same policies that liberals have provided us with.

I believe, like former Congressman John Ashbrook, who when asked why he often stood against the popular tide, explained that by representing what he believes to be right, the only thing he could lose was his seat in Congress.

For Congressman Ashbrook ideals meant more than power or winning an election.

His strong, uncompromising defense of conservative ideals did not always make him a popular figure.

Elected to Congress from Ohio in 1960, he came to Washington just as liberalism and big government was about to sweep out from Washington and through the rest of the nation. Yet he consistently stood against the tide of the time and articulated a hard line against communism, big government, social engineering and discrimination.

By 1970 a poll considered Ashbrook one of the 5 most influential conservative leaders in the nation.

In Congress he consistently added amendments to legislation important to liberals and successfully blocked their most detrimental effects.

In 1972 Congressman Ashbrook found himself fed up with the leadership of his own party.

Richard Nixon was President and despite his campaigning as a conservative, Ashbrook saw Nixon governing more to the left than the right. So in typical fashion, John Ashbrook opposed accepted popular thinking of the time. He ran against Richard Nixon for the Republican Presidential nomination.

Many Republicans were outraged that he would dare challenge “our” sitting Republican President but Asbrook wanted Republicans to be true to our principles and he believed that along with neglecting to fulfill campaign promises, Nixon was weakening our already lagging military.

As we know, Nixon was re-nominated but John Ashbrook was content with his poor showing in the primaries. Of it he said “I spread my message. So I guess you don’t have to be on the winning side to be victorious.”

From then on, not only did John Ashbrook continue to win the favor of the voters in his congressional district, he also continued to be the voice of the conservative cause.

By 1980 many in America realized that mediocrity was not what we needed in our leaders and along with John Ashbrook, people turned to Ronald Reagan for leadership.

For almost two decades John Ashbrook swam against the tide. He never gave up or took the path of political expediency. Ashbrook stayed in the game for the long haul and helped to turn the conservative movement into a mainstream movement without compromising conservative principles.

In 1981 the Congressman decided to take his conservative leadership to the United States Senate. He began to campaign against then popular incumbent Ohio Senator Howard Metzenbaum. For Ashbrook the race was to be an historic battle pitting conservatism against liberalism. Unfortunately the hoped for clash of ideas never came to be. Congressman Ashbrook died in April of 1982.

With his passing, we lost a man less concerned with himself and motivated more by doing what was right than what was popular. We lost the type of leader that Republicans need today. Leaders who campaign on the issues that differentiate us from the liberal agendas of Democrats.

Yet despite the loss of Congressman Ashbrook’s physical presence, we are still blessed by his spirit of unwavering commitment and the lessons he taught us.

Bumper Sticker From Ashbrook's 1972 Presidential Campaign

Bumper Sticker From Ashbrook's 1972 Presidential Campaign

He taught us that no one and no political party should establish or compromise their beliefs based on popular perceptions of the time

Ashbrook’s leadership proved that when one is right, others will eventually come to that realization. But if one fears to give the right answer because everyone else is thinking differently and offering the wrong answer, than no one will ever know what the right answer is.

Unfortunately, Republicans have been unwillingly to be honest about the answers we need to hear. Instead they run campaigns that duplicate the answers being offered by liberals and it obviously isn’t working.

Republicans are losing and rightfully so. Many candidates are not embracing the conservative principles that have led to our past successes. They have been more concerned with personal success at the voting booth than they have been with making life better for the voters.

During this holiday, when the spirit of giving and goodwill dominates the season’s atmosphere, I can only hope that Republicans in New Jersey can find a candidate who is willing to carry that sense of sincere goodwill and giving into the political atmosphere. I hope we can nominate a person who is willing to provide us with solutions to our problems rather than rhetoric that they think will deliver them a shallow victory at the polls.

John Asbrook campaigned for President on the slogan “no left turns”. At the time,  Americans were comfortable with the status quo. A few short years later, Americans were running away from the status quo that they once wanted. Instead they turned to the conservative principles that brought us out of the problems that the left and left leaning decisions created.

With the perceived popularity of President-elect Barack Obama some in New Jersey may feel that campaigning to the left is the politically expedient way to win an election but is political expediency good public policy?

In the words of Congressman Ashbrook the difference between the conservative and the liberal is that the conservative worries about the future while the liberal worries about the next election.

That being said, I want a Republican nominee for Governor of New Jersey who worries about tomorrow, not the next election. I want a nominee who is more concerned with doing what is right for the people not what the left wants to hear.

If Republicans want to achieve a victory in November that means something, they need to make sure that they take “no left turns.”.

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Coast Guard Christmas
Twas the night before Christmas and all through each state,
Coast Guard families were starting to celebrate.
Just then from the white House came an urgent call,
A crisis had arisen that would affect one and all.

In fact the U.S. State Department was frantic,
For Santa Claus had just landed in the Atlantic!
It Was foggy as ever; Rudolph had made a blunder.
Santa, sleigh, and eight reindeer were going under.

Though the stockings were hung by the chimneys with care.
Poor Santa gurgled, “I’ll never get there.”
When what to his wondering eye should appear;
But some coast guard cutters with their rescue gear!

The officers and crew were so lively and quick;
Sure was a lucky break for good ole Saint Nick.
With a nod from the captain. they went right to work.
Rudolph was embarrassed, he felt like a jerk.

Poor Santa was soggy, but as anyone could see,
He was very grateful to the U.S.C.G!
And we heard him exclaim as they towed him from sight,
“If it weren’t for age and weight, I’d enlist Tonight!”

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SOME HOLIDAY CHEER

With tonight’s arrival of Hanukah and Christmas not far off, on this cold and snowy Sunday, we take a brief moment to offer everyone some seasons greetings!

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Don’t forget to log back in on Monday

POLITICS 24/7 will start the week off with something fishy in the world of Monmouth County politics.

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