Friday, February 28, 2014

Barker's Newsbites: Friday, February 28, 2014

Semi-newsbite opening...

Here's why I'm so often depressed:

"If you listen to the chattering class in Washington, D.C., Hillary Clinton is a virtual certainty for the 2016 Democratic nomination, and the front-runner in the next presidential race."

Geezus... while it just kicks me in the gut to acknowledge the truth of the above statement, acknowledge it I must!

Folks... face it... neither integrity nor even competence rank high on the American Sheeple's list of qualifications for public office!

Hillary Clinton's tenure as Secretary of State was a total disaster! 

Remember "Senator Clinton?" OK... without googling... name one thing she did while a Senator other than assume the title in advance of running for president?

First "First Lady Clinton?" It's a title a president's wife is given! All American presidential wives get the title!

Remember "Attorney Clinton?" Hmm... vaguely... wasn't she a noted constitutional scholar before she met Bill? (Just kidding! No... she wasn't...) Hmm... one of America's foremost legal scholars? (Nope... afraid not.) But she was successful right...? She made millions winning case after case against the finest adversary attorneys in the national and throughout the world... right? (Sadly... no... perhaps you're thinking of fellow-democrat scumbag John Edwards?)

Seriously, folks, although Nancy Pelosi too is a simply horrible person she at least is a true example of a woman who made it on her own! (Well... with a bit of financial help from her multi-millionaire husband...)

Folks... Hillary Rodham Clinton is an empty suit! No one would have ever heard of her had she not married Bill Clinton! Any and all successes of her adult life were directly tied to whose wife she was! (First the state Attorney General's wife... then the state Governor's wife... ultimately the President of the United State's wife.)

For God's sake, if Americans truly desire a return to Monarchy, can't they at least focus upon a competent contender for the Crown?

If you read the article that prompted this newsbite post opening you'll see that it's actually focused not upon politics, but upon Mrs. Clinton's health. Is she sick? Will she "come out" and share her medical problems with us during 2014 and 2015, only to make a miraculous full and total recovery just in time to run in 2016 and win as "the miracle candidate" partly on the sympathy vote? (I'd put nothing past this woman.)

Hell... perhaps Michelle will run! This nation's political system is so broken it could happen! Another Bush perhaps? (Over my dead body!) Another Gore run? 

Ladies... Gentlemen... all I know is that I'm living in a nation which just two years ago re-elected a proven failure to a second term. (Though it didn't hurt Obama that the RINOs ran Romney!)

Is there a "new Reagan" on the horizon who can win the GOP nomination and then the presidency in 2016? Let us pray so! 

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Barker's Newsbites: Thursday, February 27, 2014

Folks... read this.

Yes... Jonathan Turley's latest testimony before Congress.

The topic: Enforcing the President's Constitutional Duty to Faithfully Execute the Laws."

We're losing our country, people. It's not my imagination.

Just... please... read the testimony.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Monday, February 24, 2014

Barker's Newsbites: Monday, February 24, 2014

Early morning... up at 3:15 a.m. for a ride to JFK. One of my "buddy" customers. God bless his wife - she always has the coffee hot and waiting for me when I get to the house!

No traffic either going or coming home; treated myself to a sausage, egg, and cheese on an egg everything bagel!

A little nap... 6:30 a.m. till 11:30 a.m.


Since then I've watched last night's Walking Dead and now I'm watching Percival Jackson and the Lightning Thief. (Yep... gotta call my "little" buddies George and Harry to discuss later.)

Yesterday was a good day! Indeed, the entire weekend was a good one! Saturday was my buddy Coll's surprise birthday party - she hit the big FIVE OH (today in fact)! Nice party... open bar... Rebel IPA and Goose Pond Pale Ale were my beers of choice (though I did partake of a few other taps). Good food as well, though I ended up forsaking food seconds in favor of more drinking... and then made myself a sandwich when I got home.

Yesterday? A ride down to Westfield, NJ for a wine run! Yep... the nearest Trader Joe's with a beer/wine/liquor license  is an hour away... but it's worth the trip! Well-chosen selection... unbeatable prices... the mixed case we bought couldn't have been more than $100.

Finally... to end the night... Mary took me out to dinner at Bellissimo in Park Ridge, NJ! Family owned and run... BYOB... the place was packed on a Sunday night! Excellent food and service including old-world touches such as a little bowl of olives with your bread basket and complimentary sambuca con la masca with dessert and coffee.

Well... let's see if I can do a bit better with newsbites today!

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Weekend Newsbites: Sat. & Sun., Feb. 22 & 23, 2014

Mornin', gang! Let's start out day with a rousing rendition of...

(Puts ya in a good mood, doesn't it...?!?!)


Anyway... on to newsbiting!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Barker's Newsbites: Thursday, February 20, 2014

Ya know that flight I wrote about yesterday...?

They ended up diverting to JFK! (Yep... Stewart International Airport... alternate landing site for the friggin' Space Shuttle... was deemed too risky to land at!)

What happened to the kid? His aunt ended up picking him up. Why? Apparently a soon-to-be 18 year old traveled absent enough money to deal with unforeseen problems.

The aunt had to drive from Katonah to JFK to Suffern and back to Katonah. (Now that's doing the kid a solid!)

Folks... let's stick to this situation for a moment. Tell me... am I too much of a hardass...?

The mom and dad are in Florida where they've bought a new home which they'll soon be moving to. There are two teenage sons (twins), one of whom will be attending college down in Florida next year while the other will be proudly serving our national as a member of the U.S. Air Force. The college bound son was in Florida on... er... pre-college business. The other son stayed home while his parents and brother took care of their perspective business.

I was asked to pick up the "traveling" kid at Stewart (25 minutes north of me) and drop him off at his house in Suffern (25 minutes south of me). No problem! My pleasure! (Heck... the parents even offered to pay - but they're friends of the family.) I figured that with the time the flight was (supposedly) coming in the other brother would have been either in school or working... which was why I was asked instead of brother picking up brother.

Anyway... when the mom called me on my cell to tell me about the diversion I told her what the deal was. I told her that the airline was responsible for getting the kid up to Stewart from JFK and that they'd either fly him (and the other waylaid passengers) or bus him. I warned her, however, that it could take some time for the airline to get their act together. I suggested the kid proactively ask for a voucher for a "limo" ride home (or close to home - the nearest commuter shuttle stop) or else that he simply hop on a shuttle bus to the city and from there take either a train or bus home. (This is when I was told the kid didn't have money with him...)

Folks... forgive me... but who lets their "kid" fly without money... or at least an "emergency use only" credit card? Is it me...???

Here's the thing, though; my feeling was that even if the kid had had a wallet stuffed with hundred dollar bills, the parents (at least the mother) wouldn't have been "comfortable" in letting this soon to be college student get home on his own.

Oh... but here's the key "rolling eyes" moment: When I repeated that they might as well just be patient and wait for Jet Blue to get the kid to Stewart if that was the only option offered they asked me if I'd still be able to go back to Stewart and ferry the kid down to Suffern... whenever Jet Blue got him to Stewart that is.

I told 'em I could if I had to... but I also asked if the brother might be available at that point. The mom's reaction? Absolute horror! Why... "he'd never been to Stewart!"

Folks... this woman is my best friend's sister... a friend of mine in her own right... but geezus... I would have loved to have been able to reach through cyberspace, grab her by the scruff of the neck, and shake her!

I mean... folks... we're talking asking the kid - who is going to be in the Air Force in a matter of months - to drive three exits north on the New York State Thruway and from there follow the signs for five minutes right to the main terminal of the airport! (And the mom was absolutely horrified that I'd even suggest such a thing!)

(And don't all these kids have "smart phones" with GPS anyway...?!?!)

It would have taken the brother the same amount of time to pick up his sibling and bring him home from Stewart as it would have taken me to drive north... then south... then north... all after I'd already made the trip north and south once already!

The aunt...??? Apparently it took her a good four hours (or more) all told from door to door to "rescue" her nephew at JFK.

So... question... is it me, folks? Am I too "demanding?" Am I too much of a hardass? Do I expect too much of 17-year-old young men bound for college and the Air Force respectively? Do I demand too much common sense - and trust - of their parents...?!?!

All I know is that when I was 17 going on 18...


Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Barker's Newsbites: Wednesday, February 19, 2014

So... "regulation"... "government regulation"... how's it work in practice? 

Not all that well from what I can see. What say the rest of you?

Let's just take one facet of government regulation I'm intimately familiar with - airline/airport regulation.

I just checked on a Jet Blue flight coming into Stewart at 2:15. (Actually, Jet Blue shows it coming in at 2:17 p.m. - two minutes later than scheduled.) It's a direct flight from Ft. Lauderdale which... according to Jet Blue's website... actually "departed" at 11:13 a.m. - two minutes early.

Here's the thing, though...

It's all lies...

The Jet Blue plane is at this very moment sitting on the tarmac. In Florida. Ft. Lauderdale to be precise.

Because I do this for a living I know that by "departed" Jet Blue meant "departed the gate" and that by "2:17 p.m." they mean... er... maybe... perhaps... unless it's later... or unless the flight is cancelled. 

And here's the thing, folks... all this bullshit... this gamesmanship... it's all Grade A government approved! Departing "the gate" yet sitting on the runway while the Jet Blue corporate website does all within it's power to create the illusion that the flight is speeding on it's way to New York is apparently the government's idea of "regulation in the public interest."

I could go on and on... but you folks get it.

Heck... yesterday I mentioned the Ethanol mandates! I'm confident that each and every one of my regulars - including "He Whose Name Dare Not Be Mentioned" - understands what a counter-productive and actually harmful crony capitalist scam the Ethanol mandates are... but we all keep paying, don't we...??? 

Anyway... icy rain up here in Orange County is the problem with my flight I'm guessing. I've already hit the gym so they can delay the flight all they want. Frankly, I'm more worried about driving conditions than flying conditions. I was just out there... it's a bit slippery.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Barker's Newsbites: Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Yep... been a few days...

Yep... read "Majority Interim Report: Benghazi Investigation Update" Total bullshit. Total cover-up. But, hey, don't take my word for it... read the report for yourself... note the subcommittee chair is a longtime Boehner loyalist who just "happens" to be retiring after his present term... note who hasn't been questioned under oath; folks, it's 31 pages including the title page and footnotes; read the report yourselves and if you fail to see what I see just contact me (post right here!) with questions and/or comments.

Anyway... on to newsbites!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Barker's Newsbites: Friday, February 14, 2014

Man, oh, man... the flower growing and flower delivery business is sure as hell gonna take a hit this year!

AND the insurance companies!

Hey... folks... any "global warming" - man-made global warming - fanatics still out there...?

Back to economics... ya know how I bitch and moan each time "the authorities" lose their collective minds and close down... life... because it's either snowing or may snow? Well... notice also... you don't see much news analysis of the economic effect when schools are closed... when roads are closed... when government workers are told not to go to work, but to stay home... when private employers give workers the option of whether to come in or not...

Whether I'm too hard core for you or not, think about it... the push for economic growth... the push for employment expansion... what's happened to it where nowadays the media doesn't even pretend to try and connect the dots and cover - at the very least - the economic effects of voluntarily "pausing" our nation's economic engine again and again and again.


God bless Glenn Beck, folks! He's really pounding "Defund the GOP." I pray to God that Rush Limbaugh joins him. Mark Levin is already there... he was ahead of the curve in fact! Folks... we've got to keep the pressure on! We've gotta keep on reaching out to the likes of Sarah Palin and other "conservative" movers and shakers and convince them that as long as the likes of Boehner and McConnell control the GOP... well... then we might as well just announce that America is a single-party dictatorship and that's the way they like it.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Barker's Newsbites: Thursday, February 13, 2014

Well... we got our snow!

Of course Mary went to work. Took her 55 minutes to get to work; usually it takes her around 35 minutes.

She left early so as to be able to leave early and get home before dark. Mission accomplished! (The Thruway between Nanuet and Harriman is clear, by the way.)

Me? No rides! (If I'd had a ride... well... then I would have done the ride...)

Enjoyed a little Jameson in my coffee this morning...

Enjoying a little lemoncello in my afternoon cold beverage as I type this...


Well... on to today's newsbiting...!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Today's Responsorial...

The debt of the U.S. government has increased by $2.678 trillion in the 2.5 years since House Speaker John Boehner (R.-Ohio) completed his first "deal" to put legislation increasing the debt limit through a Republican-controlled House of Representatives.


On Aug. 2, 2011, President Barack Obama signed legislation, approved by the Boehner-led House, permitting the Treasury to increase the debt by $900 billion.


Since then, the debt limit has been repeatedly suspended by legislation that needed to pass through the Republican-controlled House.


Yesterday, the House once again passed legislation to suspend the debt limit — this time through March 15, 2015, which is after November’s mid-term congressional elections.


This time, the House voted 221 to 201 (with 10 members not voting) to suspend the debt limit. The majority consisted of House Democrats plus 28 House Republicans - including Speaker John Boehner (R.-Ohio) and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R.-Va.).


House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan (R.-Wis.) voted against suspending the debt limit.



A bill cannot come to the House floor for a vote unless the majority leadership allows it.




On Aug. 2, 2011, when the first debt increase allowed by the Boehner-led House was enacted...


...the total debt of the federal government was $14,580,704,743,080.97, according to the U.S. Treasury. As of Feb. 10, 2014, the total debt was $17,258,793,918,103.22. That is an increase of $2,678,089,175,022.25 in the national debt in the two years and six months — or 2.5 years — that the nation has lived under debt limits moved through a Republican-controlled House of Representatives led by Speaker Boehner.


So far, under Speaker Boehner’s debt-limit deals, the national debt has been increasing at a rate of $1,071,235,670,008.90 per year.


That works out to an average of approximately $9,315 in new federal debt per year for each of the approximately 115,006,000 households the Census Bureau estimates there are in the country.


Barker's Newsbites: Wednesday, February 12, 2014

A nice relaxing day...

BodyPump (9:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.) followed by a shower and trips to the bread store (Freihoffer's outlet), ShopRite, and Walmart.

Late lunch.

A couple hours watching "Dexter."

Now some computer time while I wait for Mary to get home. Once she does I'll make us dinner and we'll eat, watch TV, and discuss - what else - the upcoming cataclysmic event... aka: tomorrow's snow.

Yep. Another "disaster." We're supposed to get between 5-15 inches of snow up here in lovely Orange County, New York.

Ya know what we used to call a storm that dumped 5-15 inches of snow on us when I was a kid? We called it... er... snow.

Well... it figures... after all, ya know what my dad and uncles used to call a "war?" World War Two! "The Big One!" "Dubya-Dubya-Two!" Hitler. Tojo. Pearl Harbor. The Battle of the Bulge. Nowadays... well... are we not in the midst of the...


..."War on Terror...?!"

(Hey... how's "The War on Drugs" going...???) (Nah... forget it... never mind...)

The "New" Amerika, folks... ain't it great?