Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Thank God! Kenny's Gonna Be Fine


Just spoke to my buddy Ken's daughter and he's out of surgery; apparently it went well.

(She did tell me he had another heart attack "on the table" but by the same token she told me his heart remains only minimally damaged... perhaps - God willing - not damaged in a layman's meaningful sense at all!)

Apparently they put two stents in. Apparently one artery was 99% blocked... at least that's what Amanda tells me.

Since I believe the world revolves around me... I just want to thank "The Big Guy Up There" for not taking my buddy Ken.

I actually do believe that God watches over me and my friends... and I honestly do believe that God doesn't "test" me beyond my endurance.

OH... HOLD ON! JUST GOT A CALL FROM COLL - KEN's WIFE!

Yep. One artery was 99% blocked; another artery was 90% blocked; (these were the two stented arteries, obviously); and they found the third artery 60% blocked - which they're dealing with via medication without stenting for the moment, but he may be getting another stent before too long. (He's supposedly being released tomorrow and is supposed to meet with the cardiologist in two weeks to decide on the next move.)

It looks like he's gonna be out of work for at least the next six weeks.

(*SIGH*)

Ken would have died if Colleen hadn't forced him to go to the Urgent Care on Monday night. There's simply no doubt about that.

Folks... my friends... take care of yourselves.

My buddy Ken is 44 years old! He's a worker! I mean he's a guy who busts his balls driving a pump truck and digging holes. He makes a good living at it too - but he earns every last cent the hard way.

As of Monday night he's now an ex-smoker! (The rainbow behind the cloud so to speak!)

This is gonna make Colleen quite too, I'm sure.

To have looked at Kenny a week ago you'd have thought him the picture of "rugged" health.

It was the cholesterol apparently. Apparently he should have been on medication years ago - but not being a "doctor kinda guy" he wasn't properly diagnosed and so he wasn't under treatment.

Dumb...!!! Dumb! Dumb! Dumb!

I get my full physical every year and my doc insists on seeing me at the six month mark whether I think I "need" to see him or not.

I get my skin checked once a year... I get my colonoscopies regularly... I see the eye doc every 18 months or so... when I was 45 (a year older than Ken is now) I made sure to get checked out by the cardiologist (stress test, etc.) just "because."

I walk... I take my baby aspirins... I don't drink enough booze but I'm working on it...

(*GRIN*) (Seriously, folks! 1-3 drinks a day is what the experts recommend!)

Seriously, folks... what I'm saying is that there's nothing more important than your health and everyone reading this should take this message to heart... so to speak.

Anyway... enough lecturing... enough preaching... please just add my friend Kenny to your prayers and remember that life can change in an instant... life can end in an instant.

Barker's Newsbites: Wednesday, August 31, 2011


Sorry for the lack of newsbites, but I'm a bit distracted - what with my buddy in the hospital and me still trying to tie loose ends before we head out for vacation on Friday.

Oh... and then there's the need for the following mini-rant "against" today's "Facebook Culture."

What the F#%K is wrong with people...?!?!

Seriously...!?!?

Do I not make it clear on my Facebook page that I have no f#%king interest in "friending" people or "liking" things...?!?!

My upcoming high school reunion is being organized around a Facebook page and so I have to deal with that. Fine! This is my one exception to the Barker Rule against Facebooking!

So... I go on the damn Reunion Facebook page... I "chat" with a few folks I haven't had contact with since 1981 or so...

So far... so good...

I note right there in my comments that I'd love to hear from folks and I list my email address and my home phone number as well as noting that if they visit my Facebook page they'll find the link to my blog and not much more.

So... what do I end up with...?!?! Every frigg'n day I'm getting "invitations" to "friend" people via Facebook...!!!

I can't frigg'n take it...!!!

Do people think I'm joking about not wanting to involve myself in this Facebook nonsense?

Is it really so hard to believe that some of us still rely upon email and personal phone calls as opposed to the modern day "party line" that is Facebook?

(Do you guys remember party lines? I do! My aunt and uncle up in Saugerties, NY had one!)

Anyway... (*SIGH*)... rant off.

Oh...! Wait...! I almost forgot...

Newsbite theme song #1... Newsbite them song #2...

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Barker's Newsbites: Tuesday, August 30, 2011


Unfrigg'nbelieveable...

My buddy Kenny is in the hospital; he suffered a mild heart attack.

The guy is 44 years old!

Anyway... he's gonna be fine. He had symptoms over the past few days and thank God his wife made him go to "Urgent Care" center to get checked out and they sent him straight to the hospital where it was determined that he's had a couple heart "episodes" and yes... a mild heart attack.

On the bright side... after this Kenny's gonna be a non-smoker! Colleen too no doubt!

Hopefully a stent or two... some medication... a bit of "lifestyle modification"... and Kenny will be good as new - better than new!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Barker's Newsbites: Monday, August 29, 2011


All good things in moderation!

So... alive and well following "The Great Storm of 2011."

(*SNORT*)

But, hey... it's not like I got away unscathed! The frigg'n cable went out for 20 minutes!

(*HUGE FRIGG'N GRIN*)

In all seriousness, a lot of people did get nailed, but the damage was mostly limited to flood plain areas. That said... if you're one of the folks in a flood plain area - or among those for whom "mostly" didn't cut it - this storm was indeed no joke.

Hey... the NYS Thruway was still closed this morning between our exit here in Orange County and the Rockland County line when Mary left for work!

No real damage here at my place. A couple large tree branches fell, but luckily they fell safely where there was nothing but grass below.

We experienced three or four microsecond power surges, but aside from having to reset the clock on the microwave and reboot the cable box, no actual power outages.

My father-in-law got four inches of water in his basement down in Pearl River, but that was only because a power outage disabled his sump pump. Luckily his washer and dryer are on blocks to begin with so they were fine and except for the pilot light going out, his boiler is fine too. Minimal damage and clean-up.

My "brother" Joey answered the storm by getting a generator! (And of course... after getting the generator he ended up not losing power... but, hey... now he has it - meaning I have it too!)

My friends Coll and Kenny made it through with all their trees - and thus their house, cars, pool, and shed - intact, though the street behind them was flood and several of their neighbors suffered major flooding... as in evacuation by boat!

All my other friends and relatives are o.k., thank God.

And today... it's a beautiful day!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Weekend Newsbites: Sat. & Sun., August 27 & 28, 2011


I betchya Mayor Bloomberg hates this song...

People... remember who we are! Remember who we were... who we can be again!

Government is out of control and we've gotta regain control of this country...!!!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Weekend Newsbites: Sat. & Sun., August 20 & 21, 2011


Hey, Mike D.; Joey Baby; Jared; Carl; Rob D.; and ODM...

Before you hit either of the links call your spouse on over! (If your spouse ain't home - wait till she... or he in ODM's case - is!)

OK... are you with the one you love...? (They've gotta be in the same room with you! You'll know what to do when the video starts!)

* ODM - for you... THIS link!

** Boys... for you guys... THIS link!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Barker's Newsbites: Friday, August 19, 2011


Again, folks... apologies for slacking off on the volume of newsbites; when I'm in vacation planning mode pretty much everything else slips to the wayside.

In any case... in honor of booking "Leg #2" of the upcoming Oregon trip, allow me to offer you as today's newsbites theme song a very special ballad that brings tears of joy to my eyes as I remember all the wonderful coastline journeys I've made during my life while looking forward to experiencing the Oregon coast in just a few short weeks time!

It's good to be Bill...

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Barker's Newsbites: Thursday, August 18, 2011


O.K., people... clear your throats... get the phlegm out, baby!

It's singin' time!

Oh...! By the way! Sorry for only one newsbite yesterday - I got caught up researching for my upcoming Portland (and greater Oregon!) trip.

I'll try and do better today... but no promises!

(*GRIN*)

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

I Despise Karl Rove With All My Heart and Soul


Rick Perry’s attack on Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke - calling the country’s central banker “almost treasonous” for adopting quantitative easing policy - has drawn a sharp round of rebukes from former Bush administration officials, starting with known Perry skeptic Karl Rove.

First of all... if pointing out the facts is an "attack"... well... I just hope to God Rick Perry keeps on attacking!

Rove blasted on Fox News (via GOP12): “It's his first time on the national stage, and it was a very unfortunate comment. You don't accuse the chairman of the federal reserve of being a traitor to his country and being guilty of treason and suggesting that we treat him pretty ugly in Texas - that's not, again, a presidential statement … Governor Perry is going to have to fight the impression that he's a cowboy from Texas. This simply added to it.”

Jeezus... I only wish dueling were legal! I'd love to see Perry slap Rove across his face, challenge him to swords or pistols at dawn, and either shoot the little backstabber's earlob off or carve an "L" onto his sweaty forehead!

Attacking the Fed chairman probably won’t do Perry much harm with the GOP primary-voting man on the street, but it won’t do him any favors, either, with a national conservative elite that’s deeply skeptical of him as a potential president.

National conservative "elite?" Does the author mean the folks who squandered the years between 2001 thru 2006 unleashing their "inner Democrat" on our nation and therefore earning only a swift boot in the ass which ushered in the Era of Pelosi and Reid? Those "elites?"

To give Ben Bernanke the benefit of the doubt, assuming he hasn't literally been doing everything within his power to destroy the dollar and thus undermine our entire economy while deliberately spurring inflation...

(HOLD IT...!!!)

(*TAKING A DEEP BREATH*)

Bernanke is a damned traitor! He has - via his actions as Chairman of the Federal Reserve - been deliberately working to undermine our national currency and foist inflation upon the American People! There's no denying this! This is the fact! If that's not treason... what is it? If deliberately following policies certain to lose the U.S. Dollar it's unique World Reserve Currency status (just as we've been losing our once unquestioned credit rating one downgrade at a time) then tell me... what's the definition of such behavior if not "almost treasonous?"

Folks... Karl Rove represents George W. Bush and "Bush Republicans."

Rick Perry... Michele Bachmann... people like Congressman Jim Jordon and Senator Jim DeMint... that's the real Republican Party!

Enough said.

God bless Rick Perry for having the guts to tell the truth - a refreshing change from Rovian politics as usual.

Bushbama Crosses a Line - Taiwan is Betrayed


Folks... consider this a front page highlighted newsbite:

Bowing to Chinese pressure, the U.S. will deny Taiwan's request for 66 new F-16C/D fighter aircraft, a Taiwan Ministry of National Defense (MND) official said.

"We are so disappointed in the United States," he said.

China has called the sale a "red line."

A recent editorial in the state-controlled People's Daily called for the use of a "financial weapon" against the U.S. if new F-16s were released.

A U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) delegation arrived here last week to deliver the news and offer instead a retrofit package for older F-16A/Bs that includes an active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar.

In July, the U.S. State Department indicated a final decision on the F-16 issue would be made by Oct. 1.

Read on, folks... you're about to learn why this post is titled "Bushbama" instead of "Obama"...

Since 2006, the U.S. has repeatedly denied Taiwan's request for 66 F-16C/D Block 50/52s, a prospective sale estimated at more than $8 billion.

The U.S. decision comes as a blow to the self-ruled island's effort to counter China's growing military, whose first aircraft carrier began sea trials last week, and therefore to its independence.

There are fears that losing Taiwan could spell the end of U.S. power projection in the region. Losing Taiwan would "change everything from the operational arch perspective to the posture of Japan and the U.S." in the region, said Raytheon's Asia president, Walter Doran, a retired admiral who once commanded the U.S. Pacific Fleet.

And, folks... the decision is also a blow to our own economy...

A June report by the Perryman Group, a Texas-based economic and financial analysis firm, estimated that Taiwan's F-16C/D program would create more than 16,000 jobs and almost $768 million in U.S. federal tax revenue.

Barker's Newsbites: Tuesday, August 16, 2011


I feel your pain, Dierks!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Barker's Newsbites: Monday, August 15, 2011


Well, folks... welcome to Monday!

I had a busy morning! I guest-hosted my buddy Frank's radio show on WTBQ and aside from me giving out the wrong phone number in the first segment it went pretty well.

I don't really like my own speaking voice. (Funny... 'cause as friends know, I'm in love with my own singing voice!)

(*HUGE FRIGG'N GRIN*)

I'm no Rush Limbaugh - let's just put it that way.

Doing a radio show on one's own - especially if no one calls in - ain't easy, folks. (There's a reason Rush Limbaugh makes tens of millions of dollars a year, folks!) You're constantly worried about allowing "dead air" and if your goal is to get out as much information to folks as possible in the shortest amount of time... well... you're gonna end up simply spouting facts and figures for minutes at a time without pause.

In any case, I got through it and now I'm back here blogging; soon I'll start searching for and posting today's newsbites.

I gave out the web address of this blog quite a few times on the radio this morning; hopefully at least a few folks who have never heard of "Usually Right" or "Bill Barker" will pop in and peruse the site.

For anyone visiting for the first time... the "newsbites" themselves are to be found within the comments sections of each daily Newsbite posting.

Anyway, folks... on to today's newsbites!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Weekend Newsbites: Sat. & Sun., August 13 & 14, 2011


Raise your hand if you've heard the tune "Sleepwalk."

(*PAUSE*) (*TAPPING MY FOOT*)

O.K., time's up!

You have, you know; you just may not know the tune's title!

Anyway... here ya go!

Enjoy!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Barker's Newsbites: Friday, August 12, 2011


We're going to frigg'n PORTLAND...!!!

Ah... the beer!

Ah... the vino!

Ah... the coffee!

And, oh... oh... the food...!!!

My friends... invest in anything Portland related right now! Their local economy is about to experience a boom!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Thursday Night's Republican Debate


The two big winners tonight were Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney.

As regular readers know, I've never been a fan of Romney (I just don't trust him) and as for Newt... over the past few years he's lost much of my respect via actions such as his "reluctant" support of TARP and by supporting government subsidized ethanol production - not to mention "private" actions that simply rub me the wrong way.

This said... I call 'em as I see 'em and what I saw tonight was two men - Gingrich and Romney - elevated themselves by their performances in my eyes.

The biggest loser?

Heck... it's not even a close call! Tonight's "Biggest Loser" was without doubt Chris Wallace.

Gingrich simply tore Wallace to pieces - and clawed a bit of flesh off moderator Bret Baier as well!

Michele Bachmann? Pawlenty went after her. Santorum went after her. (*SHRUG*)

The panel members questioning the candidates obviously had a pre-planned agenda to push Pawlenty and Bachmann into a brawl and they succeeded.

Santorum's only shot at a VP slot is to take out Bachmann - so he tried his best. (*SHRUG*)

The thing is... while Bachmann didn't do as well in this debate compared to the first debate, in my view Pawlenty put paid to any chance he ever had at winning the nomination and as for Santorum... as previously noted... he just had to take Bachmann out in order to preserve even the hope of a VP slot. He failed.

Huntsman? (Let's put it this way: Jon Who...???)

Cain? He did o.k.... perhaps o.k. enough to be Secretary of Commerce in the next Republican Presidential administration.

Ron Paul? Hey... if I could make Ron Paul President of the United States I would, but the average American simply just doesn't know enough to understand how right Ron Paul is on so many issues.

To bottom line it, at least based upon tonight's debate, Newt Gingrich has emerged as a real contender for the VP slot under... well... any Republican candidate who becomes the eventual nominee.

(Heck... Newt may even have won the title "Dark Horse GOP Presidential Nominee" via his stellar performance tonight!)

That said... Michele Bachmann is also a strong contender for the VP slot.

To those who viewed Mitt Romney as the smart money odds on favorite for the GOP nod prior to tonight's debate... (*PAUSE*)... even though I'm not one of you, I must state my opinion that following this evening's debate... Mitt is (for the moment) leading the pack.

Ah... but what about Rick Perry, Sarah Palin and Rudy Giuliani?

I doubt Palin will run. I may be wrong. We'll see.

Same with Giuliani.

Perry though... (*PAUSE*)... his "unofficial" entry into the race is about as "official" as it can get prior to an actual official announcement following filing all the necessary paperwork.

Perry's candidacy is a game changer as I see it. The moment Perry enters the race, he becomes the new front runner - at least as far as I'm concerned.

Here's the thing about Perry: he could choose Bachmann as his running mate and that would work... he could choose Gingrich as his running mate and that would work... he could choose Giuliani as his running mate and that would work...

Heck! He could even choose Sarah Palin as his running mate and... assuming she'd do it... that would make a mighty strong ticket and indeed draw all the oxygen out of the room.

(I know you Palin haters violently disagree... but you're wrong; Palin would rehabilitate herself on the campaign trail with Rick Perry at the head of the ticket.)

Anyway... we'll see what the newspapers, the "experts," and the pundits have to say about the debate when the sun rises tomorrow and no doubt all through the weekend.

Barker's Newsbites: Thursday, August 11, 2011


Proposal #712 -- Obama 2012 Theme Song

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

John Boehner (and Mitch McConnell) Strike Again


STRIKE THREE...!!!

Well, folks... if the newsflash at WSJ.com is correct, John Boehner and Mitch McConnell have betrayed true fiscal reformers - and thus the nation - yet again.

The Journal reports that John Boehner has named Jeb Hensarling, Dave Camp and Fred Upton as his picks for the 12 Member "Super Committee" which is supposed to do the heavy lifting for their peers in the House and Senate.

All three of these men are Boehner loyalists.

All three of these men voted for the Boehner-Obama-McConnell-Reid-Pelosi Budget (Out of) Control Act of 2011.

Not one of these men represents the "Tea Party."

AS FOR MCCONNELL...

It's being reported that Mitch McConnell is appointing Jon Kyl, Rob Portman and... interestingly enough... an actual "Tea Party" proponent of fiscal sanity... Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania.

Give McConnell props for at least having the brains to realize (unlike that clown Boehner) that appointing no one who had voted against
the Boehner-Obama-McConnell-Reid-Pelosi Budget (Out of) Control Act of 2011 would create a schism impossible to heal.

Folks... it goes from bad to worse with these Republicrat clowns. Unless somehow the internal opposition to RINOism can be transferred into a nationwide broad based successful effort to dump Boehner and McConnell from their leadership posts and transform the GOP into what it can and should be - a true defender of economic sanity - I fear all is lost even if the GOP is able to hold the House, capture the Senate, and take the White House via next November's election.

Barker's Newsbites: Wednesday, August 10, 2011


Hey, Mike... thanks again for the loan of the car all those years ago!

Oh... and by the way... don't be surprised if the above theme song is adopted by Obama 2012!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Update re: Bill Barker "vs." Dr. Nan Hayworth (R-NY-19)


Well, folks... I finally heard back from Nan directly early this past Friday morning.

Dr. Hayworth sent me two emails in fact - one sent at 12:32 a.m. and the other two minutes later, at 12:34 a.m.

(Hey... gotta give her props for working late into the night!)

Interestingly enough... Nan didn't actually address me as such!

Rather, she chose to utilize emails written to her by a fellow conservative both of us know as the springboard to forward her replies to... er... him.

The only direct response to anything I personally wrote to her or posted on my blog was an assurance that no, taxpayers wouldn't be picking up the tab for her (current? upcoming?) trip to Israel.

(The trip is being paid for by the American Israel Educational Foundation...)

Anyway, folks... here's the email I sent to Nan on Thursday, August 4, which she did - in a fashion - respond to:

Nan,

Since you haven't replied to any of my emails in awhile and since you keep on ignoring my advice and frankly my pleas regarding policy, let me just ask you... has it not yet occurred to you that maybe... just perhaps... the Boehner/McConnell leadership is... oh... INCOMPETENT?

I mean, hey... the market ONLY went down 265 points the day after you "helped" John Boehner "save" the economy.

And, hey... the market ONLY went down... what... 512 points today...

(*SHRUG*)

Seriously, Nan, what's it take to get through to you?

I just cruised on over to your official website. You're quoted as saying, "Irresponsible spending must stop."

Nan. You just voted for a "plan" that if "successful" will... er... "only" add a "bit" over $7 trillion dollars to the existing National Debt over the next 10 years. You seem to be operating in some alternate "Nan in Wonderland" reality where down is up and more is less.

Nan. My views are made quite clear day in and day out via my blog. I'll never talk behind your back. When I have a problem with you - as I do now - I'll never hesitate to either contact you directly, comment publicly upon my blog, or do both. I hope that you appreciate that unlike most of the people you must deal with on a regular basis now that you're in that cesspool we call our nation's capital... with me... what you see is what you get.

By the way... your upcoming trip to Israel... I do hope that the taxpayers aren't footing the bill. Congressional junkets have always to my mind been inappropriate - but especially nowadays... what with you and your colleagues destroying the nation's economy... free travel on top of roughly a quarter-million dollars in pay and benefits (including retirement funding) would be wildly irresponsible and a poke in the eye to taxpayers such as myself.

Nan. It's not too late for you to change course. There's still time for you to be the congresswoman whom I and many others thought we were voting for.

BILL BARKER

Direct... to the point... wouldn't you all agree?

And of course I could post many more of my personal emails to Nan, which, along with public blog posting, present a clear record of my questions for, and commentary directed to, Dr. Nan Hayworth (R-NY-19).

It's within the context of that reality that I ask those of you reading this to tell me what you make of the following direct (excerpted from two separate emails) reply from Congresswoman Hayworth to... er... another constituent:

I am in a position of grave responsibility. There is no conspiracy to capitulate to the President; the American people have been dragged into a dangerous place through unwise decisions made for decades by Congresses and administrations past. Reality is harsh right now and we have to slog through this morass, which will take years to exit.

You didn't sign up for this, but you are being made to pay for it because of the (well-meaning) ignorance and poor judgment of others who have outnumbered us.

Think of it as analogous to our having been forced to make a very deep dive towards the bottom of the fiscal ocean and having to rise gradually in order to avoid getting the bends.

Our problem is fairly straightforward to identify and quantify: the federal government takes too much and spends too much, it is too invasive, it has gone far beyond its Constitutional role and it needs to shrink and become more efficient.

Our problem is also very difficult to resolve - in the first place, because we are without a Senate majority and a President to cooperate fully with what the House majority would do if it were acting alone.

Our situation in Congress is not analogous to a business owner. Our situation is equivalent to your business being run not by you singly, but by you with two other people, who feel very different than you do, who are just as adamant about their philosophy as you are, and whose assent you must have before moving forward. Irrespective of your own personal resolve or passion, you will simply not be able to do exactly what you would do on your own.

Another fact that makes resolution extremely difficult is the stark reality that we cannot balance the federal budget without compromising what we have promised to our seniors, our troops, and our veterans. Bluntly, Michele Bachmann, and every other prominent political figure who advocates no increase in the debt ceiling, is wrong.

I learned that quickly very soon after I entered Congress and the full facts became available to me. Even if we take the rest of the federal budget to zero, which would be disruptive in and of itself (while I would readily close the Departments of Education and Energy, for example, it would be impossible to administer Social Security and Medicare without some federal infrastructure, for one thing among many others), we still would be unable to pay sovereign debt, fund Social Security and Medicare and veterans' benefits, and pay our troops if we were to balance the federal budget immediately.

Much as a balanced budget is our goal, towards which the passage of a Balanced Budget Amendment (a vote on which is required in the Budget Control Act we just passed) - which I have co-sponsored since my first week in office - will be a great advance, we would do the public a disservice to renege on what our seniors, veterans, and troops count on.

It is true that the federal government has far more, and more costly, commitments than it can afford, but unwinding most of these commitments will take years, even working as fast as we can; too many seniors are incapable of going without the benefits they have come to expect.

It is also true that it is current and future taxpayers on whose dollars Social Security and Medicare depend to pay for these benefits, which go far beyond what the beneficiaries have paid into the system during their working lives - the programs were never age-indexed at their inception, which would have prevented some of this problem. But they weren't indexed, and our seniors need them, and we have to pay for them.

As things stand now, Medicare is the single fastest-growing segment of the federal budget. It already dwarfs oft-mentioned and frequently maligned foreign aid, which is 1% of the budget.

[A past] comment about having a house being the American dream is emblematic of our challenge. In service of that concept, past administrations and Congresses took on obligations to back mortgages and the housing industry that have now necessitated close to 150 billion taxpayer dollars to fulfill, and the cost continues to increase.

I personally am an advocate of getting the federal government out of the mortgage/housing sector, but a plan to wind down that involvement will take several years to carry out because so many Americans have come to depend on the government to back their mortgages.

We can make progress and we are making progress. We can do more and faster if we have a small-government majority in the Senate and if we have a small-government President.

I continue to believe that the Republican Party represents the cause of small government far more than does the Democratic Party, and the Tea Party has made a significant contribution to our political discourse and to the achievement of a Republican majority in the House.

Independent voters - some of whom are Tea Party members, to be sure - also played a big role.

I am responsible to all of our citizens in the District to do my best for them. We do have a very difficult several months and years ahead of us, and I am going to be honest with you about what I am learning and what I am doing and why, as I have been all along.

I would like to tell you that we could afford not to raise the debt ceiling, but that simply isn't true.

I would like to tell you that we can balance the federal budget right away without hurting our seniors, our veterans, or our troops, but that simply isn't true.

I would like to tell you that I personally can accomplish everything we would like to see done by dint of determination alone, but that simply isn't true either.

We need a Senate and a President and we need to hold the House, and in the meantime I will continue to work my heart out every day and to be accountable to you at every step.

I have not distanced myself from the Tea Party; my relationship to the Tea Party has always been straightforward. I am a member of the Hudson Valley Patriots and I have always readily made that clear when I am asked about the Tea Party.

I share the Tea Party's reverence for the Constitution and their goal of bringing the federal government back to its intended size and scope; that is the fundamental bond.

I did not join the Tea Party caucus for a number of reasons: first, it is true that I am defined by more than being a Tea Party member, as well as by more than being a doctor, being a mother, being from Westchester County, being a Lutheran, and any number of other discrete traits or descriptors. I am first and foremost the representative working in behalf of every citizen in the 19th District, irrespective of their affiliation, and it is important always to be mindful of that.

Second, I have felt that the Tea Party caucus was on some level Michelle Bachmann's show, and I maintain that she acts against the best interests of our Conference and of our cause. She has directed fire upon her House colleagues in ways that have been both unwarranted and damaging. She is correct that we have not accomplished nearly as much as any of us would have liked to, but to imply that this relative lack of progress is due to a lack of dedication on the part of the House Republicans is utter nonsense, and toxic to boot.

The real impediment to progress is the fact that we hold but one of the three levers of federal legislation, and Senator Reid and President Obama still wield power that checks that of the House, irrespective of our level of passion or dedication. Therefore, we need to turn that passion towards changing the Senate and the President, so that we can achieve our goals more fully and more rapidly.

For the reason just stated, we did not - regrettably, to be sure - have the leverage that we needed to pass Cut, Cap, and Balance (CCB) through the Senate. Mr. Reid is not responsive to public pressure to that degree. Changing the Senate majority in the next election is the answer.

Regarding expiration of the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts, we intend in the House to continue them and we will fight for that. I am confident that the Select Committee will not be able to raise net taxes that way or any other way.

We have great opportunities to make the tax code flatter and fairer, to close loopholes and lower overall rates, and that is what I have advocated for in the national and local media and will join my House GOP colleagues to fight for as the Committee does its work.

Which brings me to the issue of political courage: it takes substantial intestinal fortitude to do what I have determined is right when it would be easier politically to do the opposite. On Monday afternoon, when we had more than enough votes to pass the Budget Control Act (which I have felt all along we needed to do, for the reasons specified in the previous Email), I could have changed my "yes" vote to a "no," but I didn't.

It might have been politically palatable to vote "no" when the Act was going to pass anyway, but I felt that I had to take responsibility for affirming the Budget Control Act, so I kept my vote as it was.

Back in January I explained to the Patriots that I had learned that we had to raise the debt ceiling, as soon as I understood what we were dealing with we did the right thing - not the fun thing, not the exciting thing, and not the big thing that constitutional conservatives would like to see happen - but we did the best thing we could do under the circumstances.

I am a voice both nationally and locally (as you can see on our congressional Facebook page) for the small-government, free-enterprise philosophy, Chip. I'm a voice that seeks to unite and not divide, to attract support and not to alienate, to find common ground rather than to stake out a position behind the barricades. In that way I am indeed different from Rep. Bachmann, Senator DeMint, and Governor Palin, and I don't apologize for that.

We need to build on the progress we have made, to broaden the movement - and that requires the kind of tact, wisdom, humor, and good nature that President Reagan deployed so skillfully in the nation's service, and that is sadly lacking among some of our most prominent conservatives. I take my cue and inspiration from him, and I'm doing all I can to emulate a welcoming, affirmative, positive, constructive attitude.

A few points in reply:

First... somehow I don't remember this dislike - indeed seeming contempt - for Michelle Bachmann expressed by Candidate Hayworth.

Indeed, it breaks my heart to read Dr. Hayworth's repudiation of honorable Americans such as Michele Bachmann, Jim DeMint and Sarah Palin.

Basically Dr. Hayworth seems to want it both ways with regard to her connection in the public mind to the Tea Party Movement. On the one had she's a member of "a" Tea Party - The Hudson Valley Patriots - but on the other hand she seems to think that Tea Party positions defended from the national stage are... um... unworthy and unbecoming of er... a doctor, a mother, being from Westchester County, being a Lutheran...

(*RUEFUL CHUCKLE*)

Anyway, folks, you'll notice Nan fails to respond to my point about her vote adding to, rather than subtracting from, our nation's National Debt over the next 10 years.

(*SIGH*)

You'll also notice that Dr. Hayworth fails to directly address the McConnell issue except as to note what we all know... the Republicans don't as yet control the Senate.

(*PURSED LIPS*)

Notice any lack of comment concerning the tanking of the stock market following the the "deal" she supported.

Notice the complete failure of this self-described constitutionist to address any of the constitutional questions swirling around this "Special Committee" that the Boehner-McConnell-Obama-Reid-Pelosi "deal" sets up.

(*DEEP SORROWFUL SIGH*)

Folks... I could go on and on, but you get the point; as far as I can tell, Dr. Nan Hayworth (R-NY-19) has been "captured" by the forces of Dempublican-Republicrat "bipartisan cooperation."

Is it simply that she doesn't understand the reality that I present each day here via my stand-alone posts and newsbites? I truly wish I could believe that, but... she's a doctor for God's sake... I simply find it hard to believe that she doesn't understand the reality I so clearly share with each of you day in and day out!

In any case, folks, I'm gonna keep on sending Congresswoman Hayworth emails... I'm gonna keep on addressing her via my blog and I'm gonna keep on putting out a blog which gives readers the sort of factual information and keen perspective...

(Yeah, yeah... I never claimed not to have a ginormous ego!)

(*HUGE FRIGG'N GRIN*)

...necessary for anyone who wants to avoid being "rolled" by the politicians and their media parasites.

In the meantime, folks... keep reading!

(Yeah... you too, Nan...!)

Barker's Newsbites: Monday, August 8, 2011


Folks...

(*PAUSE*)

Unfortunately I was unable to find a song titled, "Die, All You Left Wing Incompetent Sons of Bitches Who Are Destroying My Country"

So...

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Weekend Newsbites: Sat. & Sun., Aug. 6 & 7, 2011


Remember who we are...

I won't say "enjoy" the newsbites found (within the comments section), because there's nothing "enjoyable" in reading of our nation's decline...

(*SIGH*)

...but armed with knowledge in context - being willing to share and educate - it's our only real hope of being part of the solution rather than part of the problem.
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Friday, August 5, 2011

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Barker's Newsbites: Thursday, August 4, 2011


First... let's get ol' Bill's blood pressure under control...

(*SMILE*)

Now... just a quick (rhetorical) question:

Is there anyone reading this who hasn't noticed that ever since the Budget (Out Of) Control Act of 2011 was passed by both Houses of Congress and signed into law by the President that... well... now... the entire mainstream media seems fixated upon pointing out that the bill is basically a fraud which cuts nothing, is unenforceable upon future congresses, and simply kicks the can down the road past the next election?

Yeah, folks... maybe I sound like a broken record... but unlike all these folks who get paid to write the news and give their opinions, I "report" the truth day in and day out and don't attempt to manipulate my readers.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Barker's Newsbites: Wednesday, August 3, 2011


How can ya resist a song that has "Uh-Oh's" in it?

Answer: Ya can't!

Folks... I truly hope you're all taking the time to read the daily newsbites found within the comments section of each individual "Newsbites" posting.

Friends... whether you're a regular reader or just someone who stumbled upon this blog... whether you're "to the Right," "to the Left," or consider yourself a "moderate" or an "independent," I'm begging you... take advantage of the service I provide here.

You're constantly being lied to... manipulated... "managed" by the politicians and their media co-dependents. Not only do "Barker's Newsbites" and my stand-alone posts educate you on the facts, but I also give you the context that far more often than not is missing from mainstream reporting and certainly from political rhetoric.

Please... keep abreast of the truth!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

As for Republican Senators re: The Boehner-McConnell Sell-Out


Here's the math: The U.S. Senate vote 76-24 to sell the American People out.

Republicans Who Voted "Nay"

Ayotte (R-NH)
Chambliss (R-GA)
Coats (R-IN)
Coburn (R-OK)
DeMint (R-SC)
Graham (R-SC)
Grassley (R-IA)
Hatch (R-UT)
Heller (R-NV)
Inhofe (R-OK)
Johnson (R-WI)
Lee (R-UT)
Moran (R-KS)
Paul (R-KY)
Rubio (R-FL)
Sessions (R-AL)
Shelby (R-AL)
Toomey (R-PA)
Vitter (R-LA)

Don't get too choked up over 19 Republican Senators voting as Republicans, however...

The sad fact is, except for Toomey, Rubio, Paul, Lee, and DeMitt, I'm betting most if not all would have switched sides and voted "yea" had McConnell actually needed their votes.

As for those Republican Senators who actually cast "yea" votes enthusiastically and publicly signaling their support for kicking the can down the road and snatching defeat from the jaws of victory, if one or more of these the following men or women represent your state... you have a real problem:

Alexander (R-TN)
Barrasso (R-WY)
Blunt (R-MO)
Boozman (R-AR)
Brown (R-MA)
Burr (R-NC)
Cochran (R-MS)
Collins (R-ME)
Corker (R-TN)
Cornyn (R-TX)
Crapo (R-ID)
Enzi (R-WY)
Hoeven (R-ND)
Hutchison (R-TX)
Isakson (R-GA)
Johanns (R-NE)
Kirk (R-IL)
Kyl (R-AZ)
Lugar (R-IN)
McCain (R-AZ)
McConnell (R-KY)
Murkowski (R-AK)
Portman (R-OH)
Risch (R-ID)
Roberts (R-KS)
Snowe (R-ME)
Thune (R-SD)
Wicker (R-MS)

We're in trouble, folks; America is in deep, deep trouble.

Dow Drops 265 Points After "Successful" Deal


Folks... I don't spend a lot of time fixated on the markets for the simple reason that the markets are rigged.

Computer trading... the politicization of targeted short term investment... speculation...

(*SHRUG*)

Understand, folks - Wall Street is more about gambling than investment.

It didn't have to be this way and it's not one party's fault but rather the fault of the tax code which pushes investors towards short term vs. long term (and dividend focused) investment - if one can even use the term "investment" anymore in the sense of building great companies the value of which is their ability to make real profits in the real world rather than simply provide a "better's spot" upon which to wager a few chips.

Anyway... big picture aside, let's look at today's small picture.

The House, the Senate, and the President did exactly what Dempublican and Republicrat leaderships and the media - including the greater part of the "conservative" media - had been saying all along they "needed" to do to... er... avoid a financial catastrophe.

So... why'd the market go down 265 points...?

Folks... I gotta tell ya... although what happened today on Wall Street is exactly what should have occurred what's this phony deal was signed... (*PAUSE*)... I would have bet that the "movers and shakers" could have created the absolute opposite reaction - markets shooting through the roof!

We're in trouble, folks. Even if the market rebounds tomorrow... even if it climbs to new heights over the next few months... that's just gamesmanship at the highest levels.

(*SHRUG*)

Those of you who read my posts... who read my newsbites... who do your own first-person research... you know what's true and what's not.

What Obama, Reid, Pelosi, Boehner, and McConnell "achieved" today was nothing more and nothing less than the setting the United States up for the biggest economic fall we've suffered since the Great Depression... perhaps the biggest financial crisis ever.

House Vote 690 - Sixty-Six Votes Too Little Too Late


As you know, yesterday 174 RINOs and their enablers joined with 95 Democrats to pass the "Keep Borrowing and Spending Bill of 2011" (aka: "The Budget Control Act of 2011") which basically locks in the massive government growth of the Pelosi/Reid/Obama years.

My own member of Congress, Dr. Nan Hayworth (R-NY-19), voted with the Congressional majority for deficits and debt as far as the eye can see.

I'll save the detailed critique of the bill for today's and no doubt future newsbites, but you do deserve a stand-alone post naming those Republicans who stood against business as usual and voted "nay" yesterday. (Along with 95 Democrats - though they voted "nay" for far different reasons.)

The same 22 Real Republicans who denied Boehner and the GOP "leadership" their votes this past Friday were back again yesterday voting "nay" once again:

Justin Amash (R-MI-3)
Michele Bachmann (R-MN-6)
Paul Broun (R-GA-10)
Jason Chaffetz (R-UT-3)
Chip Cravaack (R-MN-8)
Scott DesJarlais (R-TN-4)
Jeffrey Duncan (R-SC-3)
Trey Gowdy (R-SC-4)
Tom Graves (R-GA-9)
Tim Huelskamp (R-KS-1)
Timothy V. Johnson (R-IL-15)
Jim Jordan (R-OH-4)
Steve King (R-IA-5)
Tom Latham (R-IA-4)
Connie Mack (R-FL-14)
Tom McClintock (R-CA-4)
Mick Mulvaney (R-SC-5)
Ron Paul (R-TX-14)
Tim Scott (R-SC-1)
Steve Southerland (R-FL-2)
Joe Walsh (R-IL-8)
Joe Wilson (R-SC-2)

This time, however... of course after it was too late to make a difference... 44 other Republicans cast "nay" votes:

Todd Akin (R-MO-2)
Rob Bishop (R-UT-1)
Mo Brooks (R-AL-5)
Ann Marie Buerkle (R-NY-25)
Dan Burton (R-IN-5)
Geoff Davis (R-KY-4)
Jeff Flake (R-AZ-6)
Chuck Fleischmann (R-TN-3)
John Fleming (R-LA-4)
J. Randy Forbes (R-VA-4)
Trent Franks (R-AZ-2)
Scott Garrett (R-NJ-5)
Phil Gingrey (R-GA-11)
Louie Gohmert (R-TX-1)
Morgan Griffith (R-VA-9)
Ralph M. Hall (R-TX-4)
Andy Harris (R-MD-1)
Vicky Hartzler (R-MO-4)
Randy Hultgren (R-IL-14)
Duncan D. Hunter (R-CA-52)
Walter B. Jones (R-NC-3)
Jack Kingston (R-GA-1)
Raul Labrador (R-ID-1)
Doug Lamborn (R-CO-5)
Jeff Landry (R-LA-3)
Randy Neugebauer (R-TX-19)
Devin Nunes (R-CA-21)
Steve Pearce (R-NM-2)
Ted Poe (R-TX-2)
Bill Posey (R-FL-15)
Ben Quayle (R-AZ-3)
Denny Rehberg (R-MT-1)
Martha Roby (R-AL-2)
Todd Rokita (R-IN-4)
Dennis Ross (R-FL-12
Steve Scalise (R-LA-1)
David Schweikert (R-AZ-5)
Austin Scott (R-GA-8)
Cliff Stearns (R-FL-6)
Marlin Stutzman (R-IN-3)
Scott Tipton (R-CO-3)
Michael R. Turner (R-OH-3)
Lynn Westmoreland (R-GA-3)
Kevin Yoder (R-KS-3)

While of course all "nay" votes are to be appreciated in a sense, there's far less than meets the eye here.

Remember, folks, Congress is largely a pro forma Kabuki dance where once a party leader (in this case John Boehner as Speaker of the House and head of the GOP caucus) knows he has the votes necessary for passage of a bill, he "allows" public defections taking into account which of his caucus member most "need" to appear to be standing up for their constituents, their own ideals, and what's best for the country.

Heck, folks... had push come to shove in the Friday vote, I can't say with certainty that all 22 would have stuck to their guns - that's how dirty politics is.

Oh... and then there are the 174 Republicans who voted "aye" to support the Dempublican/Republicrat deal that kicks the can down the road past the 2012 elections.

Sickening.

Is each and every one of those 174 a scumbag? No. Some actually believe that a "deal" was necessary, that a "deal" was in the best interests of not only themselves in terms of re-election but also in the best interests of their constituents and the country as a whole.

Of course they're wrong... but being wrong doesn't automatically make someone a scumbag.

Again, folks... I've been outlining the "meat" of the Boehner-McConnell betrayal within each day's newsbites for... forever it seems.

In the days, weeks, months and years to come I'll continue to catalog the disastrous policies and decisions that are slowly but sure destroying our once great nation and which will leave most of our children and grandchildren - our posterity - living not in the United States that we, our parents, and our grandparents grew up in, but rather, a pale shadow of what "we" used to be.


Barker's Newsbites: Tuesday, August 2, 2011


Remember when everything that was "cool" came out of America?

Monday, August 1, 2011

Barker's Newsbites: Monday, August 1, 2011


No doubt another frustrating day awaits, folks.

(*SHRUG*)

Just having browsed a few Drudge headlines it appears that there is indeed some sort of "deal" in the works that will pass the Senate, the House (where Tea Party Republicans don't have the votes to stop it; remember, there's no filibuster in the House) and be signed into law by the Dickhea... er... President of the United States.

Of course the "details" are - as various media accounts note - "fuzzy" at this point.

(*SNORT*)

And of course, par for the course, not one single Senator or member of the House or even the Dickhea... er... President himself will actually read or fully understand all the provisions and repercussions of whatever final bill is signed into law...

(*JUST SICK TO MY STOMACH*)

But, hey... this is Washington DC! This is America 2011! This is the Age of Obama, McConnell, Reid, Boehner, and Pelosi!

According to some of the news browsing I've been doing it looks like the part of the "McConnell Plan" which unconstitutionally transfers purely legislative functions, powers, and responsibility to the Executive Branch - in this case Barak Hussein Obama.

And, yeah... looks like we'll get another "Commission" while again (or so the politicians think) absolves them of bearing individual responsibility for any decisions made by said commission.

Folks... understand... ignore the news media and most of the pundits; we're not gonna even have a chance to go over what's going to be done until after whatever final version of a bill they're working on is actually passed and signed into law.

Is there ANY... ANY chance at all that the Tea Party Republicans can stop this corrupt bargain from going through? I don't see how... but I'll be praying up until the end.

(Yes... literally praying...)

Last but not least, folks, once again... I truly fear that violence is the next step in the political process. I'm no criminal (let alone terrorist) threat to anyone, but no doubt there are Americans out there for whom this latest betrayal by the GOP leadership of the American People marks the crossing of a bright red line.

(*SHRUG*)

Heck... perhaps more than a few of the kinds of folks I'm thinking of have Semper Fi tattooed on their left arms...

I literally weep for my country...

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