A brief commentary on today's [Wednesday's] Internet news stories:
Garry South bailing on Gray(out) Davis to join the Lieberman campaign is clearly a case of a rat leaving a sinking ship for one that will soon run aground.
That Martha Stewart, who is merely irritating and greedy, is facing a stretch in the Big House, while Hillary Clinton, who has harmed this nation at every opportunity, sits on her fat butt in the Senate at the taxpayer's expense, may be taken as proof that God really does have a sense of humor.
That President Bush appears to believe that the Palestinians, who are possibly the largest assembly of serial Jew-killers since the Einsatzgruppen, will actually live in peace with Israel, indicates that he might have fallen off the wagon.
Is Mel Brooks now writing news stories under a variety of assumed names? I sure hope so.
-- Tillman L. Jeffrey
Re: R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr.'s Get Off Stewart's Case:
The shares involved in this transaction would have to be 3,900 shares, not 39 shares. No one could save $45,673.00 on a sale of 39 shares unless it was one of the Berkshire Hathaway stocks!! Besides, it's obvious that Ms. Stewart was privy to information that you and I were not aware of! I'm sure this happens often, but Ms. Stewart is a pedigree and with a clamor within the republic to punish greed she will be made an example of! In fact, she may have done what Leona Helmsley did, which in her case involved tax evasion, but she lied to the feds! When her husband offered to pay huge fines etc. to spare her jail, they basically responded, tough situation, Harry! If the petard fits you might be strung up with it.
-- Edward Del Colle
END OF THE ROAD MAP
Re: Jed Babbin's Cannon Fodder, Terror Fatigue:
Once again, Babbin is right on the nose! Everything he said I believe to be exactly right. Abbas has absolutely no stroke. The Arabs will never agree that Israel has the right to exist. Period. And the terrorists will continue to kill Israelis forever, as long as they know they are welcome to do so by Syria, Jordan, Iran and Egypt. We may be the only country who can stop this business, but it will never be stopped by negotiation.
-- Mike Webster
Your commentary about the dangers of that "God awful" road map just exploded in this A.M.'s news as G.W. demonstrated he ain't about to drop his pursuit of the map as he just bashed Sharon across the side of his head for attacking a Hamas terror leader. Blasting the good guys to placate the bad guys' "feelings" as he has just done, the Prez is dangerously eroding his rep as a "peace maker" earned in Iraq as he understood the need and use of force to "make a point." Hitting Sharon for doing the same for his country is incongruous to me.
-- Ken Wyman
Re: David Hogberg's The Taxing Life of Riley:
Reading your article about some of the Republican governors moving into the "raise taxes" camp causes me to cheer our Missouri legislature. The Democratic Governor Bob Holden has and continues to propose tax increases to balance the state budget and the Republican led legislature (so far, at least) has resisted, pointing out that three times in the last year or so state wide votes on tax increases failed.
Doesn't it still boil down to; the legislative branch writes the law, the executive branch executes the law (i.e., does what the law says to do).
If the Missouri legislature successfully prevents a tax increase in this state, shouldn't your complaint also include the various legislatures in those other states you listed? (Alabama, Alaska, etc.)
In Illinois, the legislature has passed tax increases for, among others, casinos. At least one casino in the St. Louis area immediately announced that they would rethink their expansion plans in light of the higher tax burden, providing a clear example of the economic impact of tax increases.
A great article; please continue to monitor state activities as well federal activities re tax policy.
-- Richard Renken
A couple of years ago, to great public fanfare, New York State exempted clothing from the state sales tax. When the idea was first floated, most of the counties agreed to exempt their sales tax as well, rendering clothing tax free. Gradually, however, most of the counties quietly reversed their decisions. Even so, for a couple of years New Yorkers paid only the county sales tax on clothing, generally cutting the tax bite in half.
Then last month, in another attempt to stanch the fiscal bleeding, New York State reinstated its sales tax on clothing, and for good measure they raised it, from 4% to 4.25%.
There was no public fanfare of this decision, as when they exempted clothing, and no real advance notice for the affected businesses, either. Only a few inconspicuous whispered mentions in the papers.
I work in an outlet shoe store in Corning, NY, and first read about this early Friday morning, May 30th, two days before June 1st, the day the new tax was to be charged. This meant that in my county of Steuben, clothing would be taxed at 4% on Saturday then jump to 8.25% on Sunday. I called our district manager, who knew nothing, who in turn called the regional manager, who probably called the head office. The shoe company was caught unawares, as many clothing businesses in the state apparently were. Our customers got a tax break on Sunday, June 1st, but it was business as usual by Monday morning.
This added tax is troublesome to the county as it borders Pennsylvania, a state where clothing is tax free, and it's especially troublesome to Corning, which has been clawing out of its own economic quagmire. Pennsylvania is noted for its outlet malls and New Yorkers used to flock to them by the busload. Shoppers didn't make these pilgrimages just to buy some underwear, as they might closer to home; they made an entire day of serious consumerism and bought in quantity. New York State exempted its portion of the sales tax on clothing in an attempt to keep New Yorkers' dollars within New York. This added tax will once again ship them and their money south.
Gov. Pataki is supposedly on record as having opposed this tax, which might be why David Hogberg's article did not include him. However, most of us conservatives in New York view Gov. Pataki with a jaundiced eye at best, so I'm certain I'm not the only New Yorker who read this article looking for him. Maybe Mr. Hogberg will be writing an update in the near future, as I hear that New York State is considering raising the sales tax again to 4.75%.
-- Kitty Myers
Painted Post, NY
What is it about Republican governors? For once, they hold the cards in the high stakes game of politics, and somehow they manage to shoot themselves by raising taxes? That is one sure way of really making certain they are never re-elected. Maybe they were never conservative to begin with, but rather sheep in sheep's clothing...
-- Cari Gravellinini
Re: "To Hillary and Back" in Wlady's Corner:
Hillary Clinton's book leave us with only two choices about her: either she is lying about all of the subjects that have made so much news over the last week, in which case she is unqualified to be President, or she is telling the truth and is impossibly naive and gullible, in which case she is unqualified to be President. There is no middle ground.
-- Warren Mowry
George Neumayr's "Cardinal Stonewaller" so perfectly-expressed Roger Cardinal Mahony's ruthless hypocrisy that it requires no additional comments. Tod M. Tamberg's spew in response pretty much captures the attitude of the archdiocese (and undoubtedly Comrade Mahony himself) toward all traditional and conservative/doctrinally orthodox Roman Catholics.
It is clear from Toddy Tamberg's rather pissant-hysterical rant, that in his (and Mahony's) view, we traditional Catholics -- who yearn for beautiful liturgy that is God-centered rather than Man-centered; who dislike ICEL's bad, banal and politically correct translations of liturgy; who prefer sacred music to the astonishingly banal and badly-executed trash plinked out on badly-played guitars too often accompanied by tambourine-bangers, rattle-shakers and hand-clappers; who strongly prefer to worship in beautiful Churches instead of Wal-Mart-inspired "worship spaces"; who despise Mahony's Fascist-grandiose "cathedral" where a Soviet-Realism-style statue stands near an entrance trying to pass itself off as an image of the Blessed Virgin; who despise the yearly Mahony-patronized Religious "Education" Congresses that are essentially pulpits for every nominal-Catholic dissenter to promote his or her own junk theology and pet heresy intended to undermine the true Catholic Faith -- we are all 14th Century medievalists.
Because we favor orthodox Roman Catholic teaching on morality (reflecting what it actually says in the Bible instead of what happens to be politically correct in our profoundly self-indulgent and carnal culture); because we want priests who are holy instead of the warped products of corrupt and immoral seminaries (such as described in Michael S. Rose's Goodbye Good Men) we are hatred-filled.
Combine Tamberg's contemptuous spew with the emails from Mahony to one of his chancery-office lawyers discussing strategies for obstructing the DA's investigation into boy-molesting priests. These emails -- that somehow ended up in the hands of two local radio personalities who read them on the air (John & Ken on KFI AM640) for the titillation of all of Los Angeles -- were so dark, so self-protective, so Richard Nixon in attitude, that it became clear to everyone who cares (excluding certain blindly-obedient, blindly faithful ethnics) that either Mahony needs to convert and become a Roman Catholic again (if he ever was one) or he has got to go (along with Tod Tamberg and all of Red Roger's other myrmidons). No wonder so many conspiracy theories about plots to destroy the Catholic Church from within abound (e.g. Malachi Martin's roman à clef, Windswept House, Diary of an Anti-Apostle by Marie Carre; Dodd's 1950's era testimony to HUAC, to name a few)
Tamberg, Sitrick and Company -- how many flaks does Red Roger need anyway? And why should any of my money, siphoned out of Sunday collections, have to pay for them? Oh, to have a Roman Catholic Cardinal in Los Angeles again!
-- Alice Ramirez
I agree with George Neumayr. He speaks for me, and I have seen that Los Angeles "Cathedral." It is a monstrosity and the result of a sick mind set. There is nothing holy about it or its creators. The Cardinal should be forced into retirement for allowing such an insult. However, it does reflect him quite a bit and all he stands for.
-- Mrs. Scott
This is great! I'm glad to see you're back. I love the site.
-- Jonathan Shultz