Friday, November 29, 2013

Dayton Says MN Can't Afford To Feed It's Own

Even though MPP has censored me from commenting there, I do check in once in awhile to see what the far Left is thinking about.  I have them to thank for informing me of Gov Dayton's foolish statement below.

MPP Dayton Rips SNAP Cuts
Think Progress Reconsider Pardoning a Turkey

“They’re taking away from the neediest people in the nation,” the governor said. “These federal cuts are going to be beyond our capability, or any state’s capability to absorb and make up the difference. It’s a very, very difficult time for farmers…as well as food recipients. It’s a cruel way to treat them in the holiday season.”  Gov Mark Dayton

Now he seems to believe that Minnesotan's can afford to pay more Federal taxes and/or go deeper in debt to pay for SNAP, however Minnesotan's can not apprently pay directly for their own poor and unfortunates to have food.  This of course makes no sense...

On top of this, he says that farmers need help...  Doesn't he realize that farm land prices are at record highes and the last 5+ years have been great for MN farmers...


Wednesday, November 27, 2013

America: Poor at Tranferring Wealth

From Laurie.
"Here is another off topic link, though I don't think it will lead to any insight or mind changing, as views on reducing inequality through govt policy seem quite entrenched."
MJ America is the Stingiest

My first thought is why don't these people do some kind of comparing "relative wealth" when they create these tables/graphs?  If USA wealth distribution is bigger, but the distribution is typically higher than other countries, why should we care?  (ie meaning if our "poor" are similar or better off than their poor, but our rich are richer)  Remember that we have some incredibly nice homes, cars, vacation homes, etc compared to a lot of these other general populations...

The countries they picked are fairly interesting to me.  They seem like they are countries that are not real diverse or actively / aggressively allowing people to immigrate.  However I could be incorrect.

So I dug a little further...  It seems that MJ is abusing data to aggressively mislead...  New Yorker Inequality  See figure 3, and note that the NY says that US does less than most. And the data clearly shows that Taiwan and South Korea do significantly less than the USA.  Now do we want to be growing aggressively like Taiwan / South Korea, or growing slowly like Ireland, Poland, Sweden, etc...

Also, please note that figure 2 supports my theory.  The change occurred about the same time people stopped buying American and started buying from low cost countries...  You know, the ones like Taiwan, Japan and South Korea

Thoughts and Happy Thanksgiving !!!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

MN Dayton vs WI Walker

Laurie took the ACA post for a turn, so here the new topic gets prime billing.
"On a separate, but slightly related topic, it seems Dayton/dfl policies here lead to better economic results than Walker/conservative policies in Wisc.  NYT MN vs WI " Laurie
Of course my first thought is that the opinion writer must be smoking something...  Then again let's look at his bio. "Lawrence R. Jacobs is a professor of political science at the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota and the author, with Theda Skocpol, of “Health Care Reform and American Politics.”"  I think that about says it all, no pot involved... just some serious wishful thinking.

Giving the Liberal policies of the "last 6 months" credit for the strength of MN's economy has to be one of the silliest things I have ever heard...  Come back in a couple of years and maybe there will be something to discuss...


Saturday, November 23, 2013

Monday, November 18, 2013

Common Core Standards

Occasionally I find these gems where the Far Left and Far Right wrap all the way around to the point where they agree.  Apparently Common Core Standards is another example.  Both seem to be against adopting base national education standards.  See the following:
"John, education is NOT a nation top down standards. Education is a LOCAL issue with standards at the local level. Also, follow the money (national publishers & testing assessment companies)." Numbers Guy

"I am guessing that the global labor market disagrees. And local communities can always set their stds higher." John
I personally think we need Common educational objectives, just like we need to maintain just one official language.  Just think then maybe we could actually compare how the State and Local educational systems are performing. 


Common Core State Standards Initiative
CC by State
CC Math
CC English

Baltimore CC Protesters
WP 8 Problems with CC
ASCD CC Summary
About CC Pros / Cons
CC Voices of Support
AZ Daily CC Benefits

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Liberal Comment Moderation

For a "non-partisan news organization", MinnPost must have some pretty Liberal biased comment moderators.  The normal crew of commenters were bashing Mill's views, qualifications, money, family, etc.  Including "As far as food stamps or SNAP is concerned, we have to make sure we preserve our social safety net and we wring out any fraud, waste or abuse that is in the program."  And then Doug chose to start bashing us Christians Republicans, "For a bible thumping political party this is the epitome of hypocrisy. What do the gospels teach if not helping the needy and seeing that they do not go hungry?"

So I threw my normal views into the fray(MinnPost Mills Four Pillars):
"It seems Local and State governments should be caring for their citizens. The feds should be worrying about national defense and other issues.  I'll never understand why Liberals want to fund programs that help individual citizens at the highest possible level of government... Thereby ensuring at least 3 levels of bureaucracy and waste are needing to be funded.

Please also note that the farm program funds also pay for "nutritional assistance" for middle and upper class children... . No matter who you are, the tax payers are paying for part or all of your child's school breakfast, snacks, lunch, etc... It seems there is some unnecessary spending there... I think I could afford to buy my children lunch. 
The Bible speaks of charity and voluntarily caring for the less fortunate. Through this process of giving, both parties receive.  I must have missed the part that said "though shall forcibly steal from Peter and give to Paul"... Even if Paul just isn't motivated to work hard, makes poor choices, etc.  I'll have to go look through it again. Do you have a chapter and verse to point me in the correct direction.  Don't forget to pry your wallet open on 14Nov13."" G2A
 Which of course led to comments like this:
"If you'd like to know why liberals want SNAP and other programs federally funded as opposed to the local and state level, look no further than your own comments. Too many states with Republican majority legislature or governors have the exact same attitude such as yours...that people who need assistance are lazy. They've done everything they can to shame and cast dispersions on the less fortunate, the jobless & the homeless You assume that if you can buy your kid lunch, everyone else should be able to. It's so easy to pass judgement on others without any knowledge of their personal struggles, but that eliminates any need to feel empathy. Just the fact that you can equate SNAP with "forcibly stealing" from you, illustrates why I want people like you to have zero influence as to who gets help." Jason
So I challenged Jason regarding Give to the Max, to see who empathized more with the poor when it comes to spending their own personal funds to help them?  And who preached well on spending other peoples money, while being a miser with their own?   Unfortunately we may never get an answer because about 4 of my comments have never show up, and some were there and then censored.

So apparently in the eyes of the MinnPost moderators it is okay for Liberal commenters to insult the "Bible Thumper Politcal Party Hypocrites", and insult Conservative governors (and me personally), since their comments are still there.  However comments that point out the inconsistencies of the Liberal position are censored.

At least I understand now why there are not many Conservative commenters on the site.  They learned faster than I do.  I understand this censorship from MPP, they are a Liberal blog.  I didn't expect this from a "non-partisan news" site.

By the way, here are some links I had provided for Dan and RB...  They can support both sides of the argument.
Open Bible: Welfare
Open Bible: Hard Work

Also, I am thankful for Jason's honesty.  He said what I believe is the truth. Liberals believe they know better how to take care of people in "all states" than the people in "each state".  Thus they don't trust local people to make the "CORRECT" decision for their neighbors, friends and relatives.  They believe THEY know best, therefore they want to FORCE everyone to comply by making it happen at the Federal level. No matter how much extra it costs or how ineffective it is.

They sound kind of like the "Bible Thumpers" to me.  Thoughts?

Monday, November 11, 2013

Give To The Max Day 14Nov13

Well folks, Give to the MAX day is upon us again.  So pry open those wallets and give deeply to support the causes that you think deserve the help.  Yes that means using your money, not someone elses.
Give to the Max Day
Give to the Max Categories

Odds are good that I will be supporting PRISM and Seven Dreams as usual.
GM PRISM                                          PRISM Mpls
GM Seven Dreams Foundation            Seven Dreams Foundation

However I am torn about Parents United, I do find their legislative updates useful, and sometimes appreciate their perspective.  However they seem to be highly "Education MN" friendly.  Meaning they seem to want to raise funding and rarely mention raising accountability or eliminating tenure.  So they may get the lump of coal this year, however I'll take some time to read their recent information before making a final decision.
GM Parents United
Parents United

So who else do you think the other readers and I should consider giving to this year and why?

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Medicaid, Obamacare and Religion

I am puzzled why the "no comment" religious leaders don't just say, "we believe in charity, not government mandated and controlled wealth redistribution."  Thoughts?

CNN The ObamaCare Scandal You Have Not Heard About

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Democrats for School Reform

I must say that I am surprised but hopeful.  It seems like more Democrats and Teachers are beginning to understand that serious changes need to take place in the schools if we really want to close the achievement gap.

Personally I think the school issues only contribute to about 25% of the problem.  However it is the factor that we have the most control over.  G2A Education Factors List  Meaning that management, funding, performance management, training, curriculum, etc can all be adjusted.  Employees at all levels can be praised, fired, promoted, demoted, etc.  Compensation systems can be adjusted, etc.

The above are not simple, however they are much more manageable than eliminating poverty, changing Parent's methods, stopping drug abuse, changing American or local cultures, etc.

Now if we can convince the Conservatives to support Early Childhood Education, especially in the high risk households, therefore reducing the influence that deadbeat Parent's have on their kids...  Maybe we can stop some of the generational poverty issues and belief systems from being "inherited"...  Thoughts?

MinnPost Education Community Applauding
MinnPost Mayor Rybak's New Job
MinnPost Defending Teachers to Pushing Reform
MinnPost Minneapolis Education Politics
MinnPost Teacher Wars
MinnPost MFT Closes the Doors
MinnPost Q Comp for MPS
MinnPost Deeply Engaged in Schools
Terri Bonoff Education
Achieve Minneapolis
Generation Next
Strive Together

Monday, November 4, 2013

Koch Brothers: Angels or Devils?

Apparently Harry Belafonte decided to go on a tirade against the Koch Brothers.  According to the CNN article he compared their activities to those of the Ku Klux Klan and said "They are white supremacists."

Now I am used to Liberals vilifying the Koch Brothers and accusing them of a multitude of sins,  however this seems extreme even by the standards of a leftist group like the MPP folks.

Since I know nothing about the Koch Brothers other than what I have read below, I figured I'd post and see if there are some strong opinions out there.  Are these guys greedy white supremacists or generous freedom fighters and philanthropists?  Thoughts?

CNN Koch, Belafonte and the Klan
Koch Brother's Charitable Giving
Koch Family Foundations
Koch's Influence Spans...

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Washington Technology Magnet: Success Story?

Okay, as promised I have returned to ALEC's post regarding what they perceive to be a school turn around.  They say that it kept the same kids, same teachers, and they were able to improve the situation.  From the comments it seems there is some dissent regarding this claim.

And from my very brief review, I think ALEC is doing a lot of positive thinking.  Unfortunately I am having a hard time working with the new and improved MN Dept of Education site.  Sometime after Gov. Dayton joined us they "improved" the system.  Since I am pretty tech savvy, and I find it hard to find school info, I feel sorry for any technophobe trying to get anything useful out of it.  The previous version had a nice button called "School Report Card" that let you search for your school, then it would give access to general info.

MPP A Story of Reform That Worked by ALEC
Washington Technology Magnet
WTM Registration Policy

Arlington Senior High School
AHS Will Not Rise from Ashes
Tempers and Tears

Any thoughts regarding what I am missing on the "improved site", or what you know about this Arlington to Washington change / improvement would be greatly appreciated.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Why Do Liberals Buy Foreign Cars?

Since I have to sit in traffic on 494N most evenings, I have too much time to think and observe.  And since I have been writing about Liberals, car buying loyalties, causes of the wealth gap, causes of slow growing wages for American workers, etc, I have been looking at cars...  In particular I have been reading bumper stickers... Apparently Conservatives aren't too into bumper stickers, however so far I have 5 clearly Liberal stickers... (2 VW, 1 Subaru, 1 Honda & 1 Toyota & 0 Domestics...  To bad it isn't an election year, I could collect the data much quicker.

So I decided to do a little google searching to determine if I was being biased, or if it is true that Liberals prefer cars built by foreign firms.  Well, it appears I am not alone in this belief.  The first link is actually written by a Liberal who is asking one of the exact same questions.
LHL Why Do Liberals Buy Foreign Cars and Conservatives Buy American?
Baristanet Do You Drive a Liberal or Conservative Account?
Washington Times Political Leanings Drive Car Choice
I'm Right: The Most Liberal Cars in America
Politics Daily Liberals, Get Patriotic and Ditch the Volvo
US News Is Your Car a Republican or Democrat?

So with all this in mind, the questions I posted on MinnPost still remain unanswered.  I know it is unlikely I will get answers here, however I thought it was worth one more try before moving on to new and more fertile ground.  Besides maybe it will help some folks to at least test drive a modern GM, Ford or Chrysler.
""counterfactual to claim that 50% liberal consumers buying cheap imported stuff are more responsible for wealth disparity than the other 50% of conservative consumers" Where did I claim this?

I have asked. Do the Liberals accept their huge personal contributing role in the current situation? 

And are they willing to change their personal behaviors and spending habits to help their American co-workers? 

Or are they going to keep sending their money over seas while blaming others for what they perceive to be problems in America?

If every Liberal bought a GM or Ford vehicle next time, just think what that would do for American jobs..." G2A  MinnPost Wealth
Here is a link to a site that tries to be more accurate in their Foreign/Domestic index.  They do this by trying to account for more than just the Manufacturing content.
 Kogod Now

Farm and Food Program Info

Now it seems that I will more often disagree with the commenters at MinnPost than agree.  However I do I agree with Paul's comment regarding food shelves and encouraging people to up their support for them as the supplementary funding comes to an end.
"I would suggest that anyone who can, make a cash donation to their local food shelf.
Cash enables them to buy food more efficiently than we can, and does them more good than a few leftover soup cans."
My charity of choice for this is PRISM in Golden Valley...
The Get Help function on Hunger Solutions looks like it can help you find your local shelves.  Whether you want to give or receive.

Bloomberg Food Stamp Benefits Drop
NYT Farm Bill Lobbying
MinnPost Temporary Food Aid Expires
MinnPost 3 MN Lawmakers on Farm Bill Committee
NFU Farm Bill Summaries

With all the Farm and Food Program discussions occurring, I had the following questions and thoughts...
"Any idea why in the world people want SNAP funded at the federal level?

It seems this should be a local or state issue?

Also, the farm program subsidizes the meals of all pre-school and school children. (ie Poor, Middle Class and Rich) The poor get a "full reimbursement" and the others get about a 50% subsidy.

Why don't they cut the partial subsidy and ear mark it for the poor? Thoughts?
 And ....
I'll never understand why they don't move all the welfare into one department...

Maybe people are concerned that if we actually knew of much money is in that bucket at the federal, state and local levels, we may be even less excited to fund it. And wonder how we can have any poor people at all.

Does anyone know how many dollars are in the total welfare bucket?
And how much goes to recipients? And how much goes to run the system?
 Thoughts or answers?