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Practically Speaking

Kyle and her husband moved to Brookfield in 1986. She became active in local politics and started blogging in 2004. Her focus is primarily on local issues but often includes state and national topics, too. Kyle looks at things from the taxpayers' perspective in a creative, yet down to earth way, addressing them from a practical point of view.

The Blessings Box

Religion

Please, comment content should relate to the subject of the post. Although I try to respond to many, do not interpret my lack of a response as agreement.

Links: 

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Biscotti Nocciole Cioccolato (hazelnut, chocolate cookies)

Good food / recipes, Just for fun!, Living well on less $

It is no secret; I love coffee! And what goes better with coffee than a good cookie? Biscotti, of course!

Biscotti are twice baked cookies. The bis meaning twice and cotto meaning baked. They are a dry cookie, meant to be dunked.

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Exodus from public education?

Conservatives, Culture, Education, Religion

poll, 69.99% said it was easier and less expensive than private or homeschooling http://www.onenewsnow.com/Poll.aspx?ekfrm=371710

http://www.onenewsnow.com/Education/Default.aspx?id=370350

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Filabuster promised to prevent Franken Senate seating

Elections, United States, Voter fraud

 Al Franken has truly turned Minnesota election law into a Frankenstein of a monster--something the election laws were never intended to do: enable stealing an election.

http://thehill.com/campaign-2008/cornyn-promises-filibuster-on-franken-seating-2009-01-02.html

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RNC Chairman

Conservatives, Elections, Politics

http://steeleforchairman.com/index.php?option=com_myblog&show=A-New-Partnership-With-State-And-Local-Parties.html&Itemid=126#readmore

 

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Tipping point

Culture, Obama 2008, Slipping fast!

men doing their job go to jail while the drug dealer goes free

people who save and live within their means see others bailed out

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Minnesota's Franken/Coleman recount: One monster of a Senate race

Conservatives, Elections, Ethics, Government / Bureaucracy, Politics, Voter fraud

It appears Al Franken has truly turned Minnesota election law into a Franken-stein of a monster recount--something the election laws were never intended to do: enable stealing an election.

If you have been following this race since election day 2 months ago, you know that incumbent Senator Coleman was 215 votes ahead of opponent Al Franken when the votes were originally counted. But after Minneapolis' director of elections remembered she forgot 32 absentee ballots in her car the following Friday, and 2 liberal precincts claimed they initially miscommunicated the vote totals, Franken picked up another 346 votes, for a total of 378 Franken votes. The oddity being that "none of the other contests recorded any changes in their vote totals" due to this supposed miscommunication.

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Home schooling movement growing, so is "unschooling"

Education, Homeschooling

http://www.hslda.org/docs/media/2009/200901060.asp Homeschooling Grows Rapidly, HSLDA Jan. 6, 2009

Purcellville, VA—The National Center for Education Statistics, which is part of the Department of Education estimates that homeschooling grew 36% between 2003 and 2007. “Homeschoolers can now be found in all walks of life,” said Michael Smith, HSLDA President.

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2008 another big chill year

Going Green, Weather

http://www.rightsidenews.com/200901043207/energy-and-environment/global-warming-in-2008-a-record-year.html

  January 4, 2009
Right Side News Reports finds that global warming set some records in the disappointment catagory for those that believe the planet will fry itself due to mans Co2 emissions.  Michael R. Fox expounds on this in some detail.

Another Grim Year for the Global Warmers
By Michael R. Fox Ph.D.

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Ultimate Ponzi scheme OK, Madoff's not OK

Government / Bureaucracy, TAXES, THE ECONOMY

Ultimate Ponzi scheme OK, Madoff's not OK 

Creating better society through Dr. assisted suicide for children under 1?

Culture, Ethics, Health care, Religion, Slipping fast!

http://www.parentalrights.org/blog/courts-the-law/un3

Often on the internet one interesting link leads to another. I followed an article on homeschooling to one on Belgian parents going to jail for failure to vaccinate their children against polio. Since that issue is important to me I started reading UN Report: Belgium. That is when I found this bombshell: (My emphasis)

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Parental rights.org

Education, Ethics, Government / Bureaucracy, Health care, Pro Life / Pro Abortion, Slipping fast!

 http://www.parentalrights.org/blog/courts-the-law/un3

UN Report: Belgium Dec. 15, 2008

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Homeschooling movement is growing, so is "unschooling"

Elections, Homeschooling, THE ECONOMY

Even though I graduated from being a homeschool mom in 2007, the Home School Legal Defense Association still sends me email updates. These notices help me keep up with what is happening within the homeschool movement.

This week's notice reported that the homeschool movement grew 36% between 2003 and 2007, according to the Department of Education's National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). "'Homeschoolers can now be found in all walks of life,' said Michael Smith, HSLDA President." Also in HSLDA's report: (My emphasis)

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Economy affects Elmbrook's referendum bonding

Elmbrook 2008 Referendum

http://www.brookfieldnow.com/watch/?watch=14&date=1/8/2009&id=49309

Elmbrook again delays bond issue, Jan 8 2009

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Sara Palin interview: still strong after all the insults

2012, Conservatives

 

A must read article, atheist says, "Africa needs God"

Bigger picture, Charity, Culture, Religion, Truth

For the second time in a few weeks, another atheist acknowledges God as an important factor in helping people. The first time was in an email I received from an atheist in California concerning my Are you naughty, nice? Stingy, generous? blog on giving. In that blog I concluded "the real litmus test on giving is religion." My atheist emailer then replied, "Never thought I'd say this, but thank God for religion then, if it makes Conservatives altruistic."

Today, I received an email newsletter from my missionary cousin*. He included this article from Times reporter Matthew Parris with the question, "If you've EVER wondered, does it really matter, do missionaries really have an impact, does the Gospel change lives at the heart level, PLEASE read, As an atheist, I truly believe Africa needs God, Missionaries, not aid money, are the solution to Africa's biggest problem - the crushing passivity of the people's mindset."

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How hot was it at Dixon to save 66% on heating? What are they doing with their water?

Elmbrook, Energy, TAXES

I have been tightening our belt at our house thermostat wise and enjoying it less! I'm miserable. The thermostat is set at 68 during the day and 50 - 55 at night. For someone who is always cold (me), even in the summertime, this is a sacrifice. 

So when I read that Elmbrook was saving money because of the energy sleuth, it caught my eye.  

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This little piggy went to the bond market...this little Elmbrook piggy stayed home

Education, Elmbrook, Elmbrook 2008 Referendum, TAXES, THE ECONOMY

What if you went to the bond market and no one wanted to buy yours? What would you do? Well, not wanting to face that dilemma, the Elmbrook School district stayed home. They are "postponing $31 million worth of borrowing for construction [referendum] projects, citing an unfavorable bond market."

This is the second time they have put it off. Who can blame them? Investors aren't exactly champing at the bit, at the terms Elmbrook figured on, to buy up $31 million worth of debt. CNI's Amy Hetzner reported, Elmbrook again delays bond issue:

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Yearning for dog days of summer on a 3 dog night

History, Just for fun!, Weather

On cold days like today, I am happy when our little dog plants himself at my feet during the day or sits on my lap. He is nice and warm. Better yet is when he dives under the covers at night and snuggles in. One little 13 pound pooch can generate a fair amount of heat! That made me think of the phrase, 3 dog night.  

Back in the days before central heat, you can imagine having 3 hounds share your bed would be welcome additions. Other bed warming tricks from the good old days were bed warmers, a special lidded pan with a long handle. Hot coals from the hearth were placed in the pan, the lid closed, and then the pan was placed at the foot of the bed under the covers before bedtime.

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How warm was it at Dixon to save 66% on heating? What's with their water usage?

Elmbrook, Energy

In an effort to reduce our utility bill, I have been belt tightening at our house thermostat wise and enjoying it less.  (I'm miserable!) Our thermostat is set at 68 during the day and 50 - 55 at night; it is my choice. Heat vents to the living and dining rooms are closed unless we are using those rooms. For someone (me) who is always cold, even in the summertime, this is a sacrifice. So when I read that Elmbrook was saving money because of their new energy sleuth, the article caught my eye.  

I am all for energy savings--that is why I am trying to conserve at home. However, my efforts are not paying off in the way I expected. Although I am using about 9% less natural gas and electricity, my utility bill is nearly identical to last year's for the same number of days and same average daily temperature of 29 degrees*.

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Elmbrook's HG&D (sex-ed) materials need more review time

Culture, Education, Elmbrook, Family, HG&D (sex-ed)

Wednesday, Jan. 14th, 8:30am to 4pm, is the last official day for interested Elmbrook residents to review the Human Growth & Development sex-ed materials. The HGD committee meets this Thursday to discuss the review comment forms. If you have looked at the sex ed materials, make sure your comments are submitted to Elmbrook's school offices by noon, Thursday, Jan. 15.

I was at the district office to look through the curriculum again yesterday. That makes about 7 hours for me. I started at the kindergarten level last week and so far have only gotten to the middle school materials. Even spending that amount of time, I have not seen everything covered in the classes. I realize I need more time.

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Oops. Elmbrook made the news: Pot found at high schools

Education, Elmbrook, HG&D (sex-ed)

School districts probably like free publicity but not in this way.  Last night I saw footage of Brookfield East's parking lot on the evening news. Reason? Pot found in student cars at East, Central. The search was actually done on Monday. The 2 students involved were given a 5 day suspension for their "first-time possession on school grounds" offense. (Don't know if that means they had other offenses, just not connected with school?)

What I found remarkable was that the find was made by drug sniffing dogs outside in the cold!

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How warm was Dixon to save 66% on nat. gas? What's with their water use?

Elmbrook, Energy, TAXES

In an effort to reduce our utility bill, I have been belt tightening at our house thermostat wise but enjoying it less.  (I'm miserable!) I set our thermostat is set at 68 during the day and 50 - 55 at night. Heat vents to the living and dining rooms are closed unless we are using those rooms. For someone (me) who is always cold, even in the summertime, this is a sacrifice. So when I read that Elmbrook was saving money because of their new energy sleuth, the article caught my eye.  

I am all for energy savings--that is why I am trying to conserve at home. However, my efforts are not paying off in the way I expected. Although I am using about 9% less natural gas and electricity, my utility bill is nearly identical to last year's for the same number of days and same average daily temperature of 29 degrees*.

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Fantasy weather forecasts

Interesting idea, Just for fun!, Weather

Some people are obsessed with the weather. They are glued to the Weather Channel and hang on every word of the local meteorologist. Instead of reporting real news, as every snow storm or cold snap approaches, network and local news stations hype endless stories featuring newscasters shivering outside, show you how to layer clothing, or instruct you to carry a snow shovel in your car.

I tend to avoid all that. Since I don't have cable TV, the Weather Channel is out. And I have long given up watching network news. I do check the internet, however.

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Petition Congressman to block tax-funded abortions

Conservatives, Pro Life / Pro Abortion, TAXES, United States

From Family Research Council: 

http://www.frc.org/get.cfm?i=AL09A01

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Is TRILLION the new BILLION? Deficit spending must stop!

Conservatives, President Obama, Slipping fast!, TAXES, THE ECONOMY, Unintended consequences, United States

Conservatives were not pleased with President Bush's spending habits. Liberals criticized Bush for expanding the deficit too. So why is it, now that the Democrats are in charge of everything, they are making Bush look like a penny pincher? Why is it that these proposed unprecedented deficits are winked at as not having devastating consequences for us, our children, grand children, and great grandchildren?

The Heritage Foundation, one of the few, truly conservative voices left, posted an excellent piece today: Morning Bell: The Borrowing Bailout Parade Must End. (My emphasis added)

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Belgium, sanctity of life

Conservatives, Culture, Ethics, Pro Life / Pro Abortion, Slipping fast!, Truth

 Obama is not going to defend life like President George Bush did. It was pretty hard to swallow Obama's line in his inaugural address that science would have it's rightful place regarding health care. I couldn't help think he  referring to stem cells. Science is revealing Adult Stem Cells to be useful. Embryonic plagued with problems.

Brookfield needs to increase density and zoning, why?

City of Brookfield, Development

http://fairlyconservative.com/brookfield/brookfield-retail-takes-another-hit/

I was pretty much laughed at when I suggested increasing density and having unoccupied retail and office was a bad thing. The original Flanners is still vacant. http://fairlyconservative.com/brookfield/brookfield-retail-takes-another-hit/

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7 flick picks for cold winter nights

Just for fun!, Movies & Books, Weather

Here are a few of my favorite winter themed movies. Most are based on true stories; some are pure fluff.  I obtained many of them from the library*. They all make me glad I am snuggled up on the couch under an afghan instead of being out in the elements!

Drama

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ACLU squelches Gideon's preaching to military

Culture, Religion

 Military bows to ACLU demand against preaching 

 Americans entering the military often receive Bibles, courtesy of the Gideons International. But the Gideons have been told that while they can leave complimentary Bibles at most military induction stations, they cannot stay there to proselytize or preach to the recruits.

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Elmbrook: Handwriting's been on wall for school closings for years

Education, Elections, Elmbrook, TAXES

It must have been quite the meeting last Tuesday. At least two difficult subjects were discussed by the Elmbrook School Board: scaling back benefits and closing schools. (Wish I had cable TV.)

But discuss them, we must. The harsh reality is that we cannot continue with business as usual and keep the budget in line with revenue caps and sanity. Since most of the school budget goes toward salaries and benefits, closing a school makes sense. In Elmbrook, salary/benefit costs are currently 83.5% of the budget, the remaining 16.5% goes toward items like text books, facility improvements, and utilities.

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School board choices

Education, Elmbrook

Biography

Charles D. Wickens

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The Inauguration: a turning point

Obama 2008, Politics, President Obama, United States

Regardless of who you voted for, today is a historic day in America's history. It marks the first time in our history that a person of color was elected as president. In that, I can be glad because it proves the American dream. It will also make a future candidacy for men like Bobby Jindall or Michael Steele easier.

Obama's presidency also marks a turning point in America's history. Will President Obama turn from his extremely socialist rhetoric of the campaign and settle into the reality of governing, or will he take our country in a new direction.

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Charles Wickens 10 tips for "successful public private partnerships"

Elmbrook

 https://mail.google.com/mail/?zx=dppu8af1x8hs&shva=1#inbox/11ef46122b4bd8af

Actively engage prospective participans in dialogue: create the program together  Are these 10 tips like Delphi?

"Stealing Elections" author, John Fund here Feb. 24

Conservatives, Elections, Politics, Voter fraud

 

 

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George and Laura Bush, class act & desk trivia

Elections, Movies & Books, Politics, President Obama

America may be known for its peaceful transfer of power; it has always been done according to the Constitution. But transfer of the White House residence and office space has not always gone so smoothly. Remember 8 years ago when the Clinton's moved out more than they brought in? How about the snafu with the offices and keyboards ? None of that this go round from the Bush family. Despite some in the crowd booing President Bush when he arrived at the ceremony and some singing, Na, na, na-nah, Hey, hey, goodbye, when former President Bush and Laura flew overhead afterwards, he and Laura behaved as I would have expected. With dignity.

President Bush did continue the tradition of leaving a note for the incoming president in the drawer of the Resolute Desk. In the commentary on the radio today, after the swearing in of President Obama, I learned President Reagan was the first to do this with his successor President George Bush Sr. They said Reagan left a note with a turkey on it and the words, Don't let the turkey's get you down. Evidentially, every president since has followed suit.

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More trivia:Tardiness of oath costs Obama 1st status

Just for fun!, President Obama

 

The morning after. Life will never be same again for Obama

Elections, President Obama, United States, War

Last week, President Bush expressed some final thoughts about his presidency. In his speech, he reminded us of the heavy mantle of responsibility a president bears--especially in a post 9/11 world. He said, (My emphasis)

As the years passed, most Americans were able to return to life much as it had been before 9/11. But I never did. Every morning, I received a briefing on the threats to our nation. And I vowed to do everything in my power to keep us safe.

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Hopium and pork

President Obama, TAXES, THE ECONOMY

 

Think you know who is considered "white"?

Constitution, Culture, Government / Bureaucracy, Legislation

 

1st sign of spring--a gardening catalog!

Gardening, Interesting places, Just for fun!, WISCONSIN

One of the sure signs of spring are the gardening catalogs that arrive in my mailbox. I received the first yesterday, and what a beauty! It was from Klehm's Song Sparrow Farm and Nursery in Avalon, Wisconsin.

The catalog features some of the most beautiful peonies, daylilies, and hostas I have ever seen. They also have some unique shrubs and perennials. Unfortunately, the plants also feature a hefty price tag, but the photos do inspire.

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One area of economy booming: gun sales!

Conservatives, Constitution, Slipping fast!, United States

http://worldnetdaily.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=86039

WEAPONS OF CHOICE
Big Brother's new target: Tracking of all firearms
'This is nothing less than a declaration of war on American gun owners'


Posted: January 13, 2009
10:08 pm Eastern

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Porking up the stimulus package

Conservatives, President Obama, Socialism / Marxism, TAXES, THE ECONOMY

Most Americans were outraged at the pork included in the first TARP bailout. Remember the wooden arrows?

Not to be outdone, the coming Obama Stimulus Package promises to be the graddaddy of all pork programs.

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Ad celebrates Obama's mother's choice during Sanctity of Life week

Conservatives, Culture, President Obama, Pro Life / Pro Abortion, Religion

January 18 - 25th is Sanctity of Human Life week. It also marks "the 36th anniversary of the 1972 U.S. Supreme Court Roe vs. Wade opinion that struck down state restrictions on abortion, essentially installing that "right" in the Constitution."

WorldNetDaily posted a very thought provoking pro-life ad* from CatholicVote.org that celebrates "President Barack Obama's mother's decision not to abort the first black American president"  Click to watch. (It is very short and tastefully done.)

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Yearning for the dog days of summer on a 3 dog night

History, Just for fun!, Weather

The temperature is dropping again. On cold days like today, I am happy when our little dog plants himself at my feet during the day or sits on my lap. He is nice and warm. Better yet is when he dives under the covers at night and snuggles in. One little 13 pound pooch can generate a fair amount of heat! That made me think of the phrase, 3 dog night.  

Back in the days before central heat, you can imagine having 3 hounds share your bed would be welcome additions. Other bed warming tricks from the good old days were bed warmers, a special lidded pan with a long handle. Hot coals from the hearth were placed in the pan, the lid closed, and then the pan was placed at the foot of the bed under the covers before bedtime to warm the bedding.

Read more

Christians pray to change Obama's heart, Vatican criticizes Obama on abortion

Conservatives, Culture, President Obama, Pro Life / Pro Abortion, Religion

Last Thursday, I posted Ad celebrates Obama's mother's choice. That very afternoon, I received an email from Focus on the Family Action urging Christians to "pray for a change of heart for President Obama" regarding his pro-abortion and pro Freedom of Choice Act positions

If you recall, during the 3rd debate with John McCain, Obama made an effort to appear that he too was against partial-birth abortion.  Obama stated, "With respect to partial-birth abortion, I am completely supportive of a ban on late-term abortions, partial-birth or otherwise, as long as there's an exception for the mother's health and life..." That statement sounded somewhat conservative.

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Legislative looting

President Obama, TAXES, THE ECONOMY

looting How many jobs, exactly?

Vicki's cocktail napkin stimulus calculation

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The Jay Weber Show

Monday, January 26, 2009
Rush Limbaugh Responds to President Obama

Obama's billionaire buddies

Barack Obama picks a fight with Rush Limbaugh as bipartisan spirit crumbles

Blowhards - The fabulous debate over wind power on Nantucket Sound

A False Move on Gitmo

Obama’s Order Is Likely to Tighten Auto Standards

The Stimulus Time Machine

 

Don't want to see more of these jobs in Brookfield

City of Brookfield, Development, TAXES, THE ECONOMY

Several weeks ago, the sign was for Linens and Things going out of business sale. Last year it was Comp USA. Now it is Circuit City's turn. Who will be next?

Since I live near Brookfield Square, I tend to shop on Bluemound in that general vicinity. The vacancies are becoming hard to miss.

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Even MAD magazine has Obama on the cover!

Just for fun!, President Obama

Seems like President Obama's picture is on the front page of nearly every paper and magazine these days. In the pre-inaugural paper, one girl I know exclaimed, his picture is even in the food section!

But I dare say, none of the photos or caricatures look like this one. That Obama front page summed up the pressures of the presidency in a glance. Makes you wonder why anyone would even want to run for president.

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Will Republicans just say NO to pork? (Trillion $ stimulus plan)

Government / Bureaucracy, President Obama, Slipping fast!, Socialism / Marxism, TAXES, THE ECONOMY

UPDATE: Yes, the House Republicans did say NO. Every one of them, plus 11 Blue-Dog Democrats! Send them a BIG thank you. Next question: Will the Senate Republicans and Senate Blue-Dogs say NO next week too? (I'm praying they will vote NO.) If enough Americans squawk, loudly, they just might. (Yes, that is a longshot.)

Déjà vu. It's the TARP bailout all over again, but this time on steroids. Remember when we found out about all the pork in that emergency TARP legislation? (Hint: Tax break for wooden arrows.) Well, that pork laden bailout bill looks like a low cholesterol diet compared with Obama's "stimulus" bill.

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What happened to the "pay-as-you-go" Days of pork...as a strategy' are over Obama?

President Obama, TAXES, THE ECONOMY

 

http://elections.nytimes.com/2008/president/debates/transcripts/third-presidential-debate.html

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Michael Steele new RNC Chairman

Conservatives, Elections, Politics

Just heard this on WISN radio, Michael Steele was elected the new RNC Chairman: GOP elects first African American chairman, Steele of Maryland.

That news, along with the House Repulicans' rejection of the "stimulus" package gives a conservative like me a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel. Although Blackwell was considered the more conservative, Steele is said to be able to explain complicated concepts in simple, easy to understand way. (Something that was very lacking with say, a John McCain.)

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