Archive for October, 2011

Do we have to have a Gold Plated Military?

October 31, 2011

✯✯✯✯ Several years ago I was one of a few Colonels and Generals involved in restructuring the Air Force and Air National Guard. The result was a very effective new Wing where all the forces worked for the same commander.  In Vietnam the tankers, fighters, bombers, transports and AWACS all worked for different commanders.  Desert Storm was fought with three of these Provisional Wings with great success.  Before I retired I Commanded the Cope Thunder Provisional Wing which is now called Red Flag Alaska.  We have made great strides in the military but there is still monumental waste.

An example of what I believe is a total waste of money is Whiteman AFB and its $2 billion dollar B-2 bombers. The Pentagon claims they cost $1 billion each. Even at that price, each would cost as much as five of Boeing’s new 787 Dreamliners.

The Admirals and Generals want the biggest and most expensive. You may remember that while we have very expensive bombers and submarines, our leaders sent our troops into combat without body armor. There is nothing glamorous about body armor except to the solder wearing it.

America is now at a point where we cannot or will not defend our own borders and coastline. Perhaps we should rethink our priorities during these tough times and look at places like Whiteman AFB and other fluff. Did you know that there are five government academies? It costs less to send someone through Harvard Medical School than to a government academy.

Don’t expect the military brass to make cuts that make sense.  Simply find out what the warfighters need and give it to them.  Make sure we don’t pay too much.  What is proving to be a very effective weapon is the Predator Drone.  But even so, we are looking at about $5 million each for a little aircraft powered by a 115 hp Rotax engine like the ones that power tiny light private aircraft that can be manufactured and equipped for well under $100,000.

We need a strong defense but it does not have to be gold plated.  Just because a congressman votes to cut defense spending does not mean he or she is anti-defense, it may mean they are cost conscience.

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No Tax Pledge, Really?

October 25, 2011

Dick Morris called out Congressional Candidate Steve Womack for not signing the NO TAX Pledge. Within minutes Morris was notified that Womack had signed the pledge. Politicians often run for office saying they won’t raise taxes, but then quickly turn their backs on the taxpayer. Now first term Arkansas Republican Congressman Steve Womack has teamed up with Democratic San Francisco California Congresswoman Jackie Speier to TAX INTERNET SALES. Arkansas and California did the same thing which caused Amazon to dump all its Arkansas Affiliates with the resultant loss of jobs and taxes. California quickly delayed implementation.

Who sells on the Internet? More people than you can imagine. Many bricks and mortar businesses also sell on the internet. Amazon is the largest but the company has millions of affiliates. People in your community who take part in the opportunity to earn money through this new venue. It includes pie shops, jewelry stores, auto parts, electronics, health foods, pet supplies and just about everything else. In addition to individual companies, millions of people sell on eBay. Grandmothers sell pot holders they make themselves. Artists sell their work. Grandpa sells his coin collection.

Bill Clinton placed a moratorium on Internet taxes because LIBERALS were clamoring to TAX IT TO DEATH. How many years did Montgomery Ward, Alden, Spiegle and hundreds of other mail order companies operate without collecting sales tax and remitting it to all the individual states? The nightmare of mom and pop businesses collecting sales tax and then sending the tax to all (57) states on top of packing and shipping the items will KILL the Internet except for the big boys. No one benefits except companies like Walmart. Incidentally, Walmart Corporate Headquarters is located in Congressman Womack’s District.

Salivating over Internet Taxes

October 22, 2011

✯✯✯✯ Has Wal-Mart Declared War against Amazon.com? Steve Womack the Arkansas Congressman who sponsored the Marketplace Equity Act happens to represent the district where the Wal-Mart Corporate Headquarters is located. His co-sponsor is San Francisco Democratic Congresswoman Jackie Speier.

What is the difference between Internet purchases and Montgomery Ward, Alden, Spiegle and all the other catalog sales that took place for so many years? The cost of shipping was the equalizer. Wal-Mart is the LARGEST RETAILER IN THE WORLD with almost twice the market capitalization of Amazon.com. Do they really need to do this? Do we REALLY need another tax? How will this affect the five states with no sales tax?

Politicians have been dreaming about taxing the Internet for years. Mike Huckabee wrote a letter as Chairman of the National Governors Association demanding Internet taxes several years ago. It was Bill Clinton who placed a five year moratorium on Internet Taxes when he was President. Yep, a Democrat stopped the taxes and now we have a Republican championing Internet Taxes. Do Taxpayers have any chance? Will anybody champion a Taxpayers Equity Act? Go figure!