Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Retro Ads: Girls & Cars

CAR PHONE!!!



Tell me, why is this girl pushing a car (not to mention she is pushing the side of the car & not behind it) in the snow in nothing but a bikini? This girl needs therapy...plus a coat.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Adventures in Homebuying: An offer they can't refuse...I hope


Well, I made an offer on a house. It is a bit smaller than what I wanted, particularly the kitchen, but there is so many benefits to this house that everything balanced out.

My sister & I met with my realtor Thursday morning. We toured 4 houses & this particular one happened to be the first & the cheapest we looked at, however it was the one that would need the least amount of work. After touring all 4 houses, I called my dad & asked if he could come out & look at the house on Saturday. He & mom walked though the house with me on Saturday morning. They were both very impressed & I decided to make an offer. So now it is just a waiting game. I hope I know in the next couple of days because I have to give 60 days notice to my apartment.

So, here are the some of the pluses of this house:
  • big, beautiful back yard...I'm not kidding this yard is to die for
  • raised planters perfect for the garden I have been wanting for 5 years
  • huge tool shed in the back
  • absolutely nothing needs to be done in order to move in
  • garage with tons of built in storage
  • the price was perfect

The kitchen is a bit smaller than what I would love but it is still nice & all the large appliances are pretty new & clean as opposed to the ones I have in my apartment which are older than me & were filthy when I moved in & still are quite terrible no matter how much time I have spent scrubbing them. The closets aren't huge but there are three bedroom closets & it is just me so I think I'll manage. :) The only other thing that my dad noticed was the AC unit is getting a bit old but even if I have to spend $5000 in the next few years it still wouldn't be the cost of the other houses I looked at that needed several thousands of dollars of work just to bring the house up to being able to move in.

This house is a bit small but is just fine for me, even if I get married & have a baby. Now if I do have a kid one of these days I'll want to look for a bigger house but for now, I don't need any more space to clean. :)

I'll have plenty of room for Rock Band parties & Bible studys. I've wanted to have a Halloween party for years but never felt comfortable having one in my apartment. Now, I'll have a place of my own for one. :) Unfortunately, I won't have the house for this year's Halloween but maybe next year. :D

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

States Exploration: Assignment 2: My State's Name


State Name: Texas

Research where the name of your state came from. Is there a story to tell?: There are several stories but the most common is that the Native Americans in East Texas referred to themselves as thecas or “friend” when they met some Spanish explorers. Later it was found that this word was probably actually Texias which more correctly translated into any ally against the Apaches. It was spelt differently many times including tejas, but eventually we ended up with Texas. You can read a more in-depth story here.

What does the state name (the word) itself mean?: According to another site & supporting what I said above, “Texas comes from the Hasinai Indian word tejas meaning friends or allies.”

When was it established as it’s “official” name?: After breaking away from Mexico during the Texas Revolution, the Republic of Texas became a it’s own nation in 1836. Nine years later, in 1845, Texas joined the United States of American as the 28th state.

Several states were owned by other countries. What was your state’s name before it was a part of the US?: Six flags have flown over Texas. This is where you get the name of the amusement park Six Flags which originated in Texas. Those countries that have owned Texas are: Spain (1519-1685 & 1690-1821), France (1685-1690), Mexico (1821-1836), The Republic of Texas (1836-1845), United States of America (1845-1861 & 1865-present), and the Confederate States of America (1861-1865).

What main nationality were those who first populated your state? Did their nationality have anything to do with the naming of your state?: The native people of Texas were several groups of Indians including: Comanche, Caddo (where we get the name “Texas”), Tonkawa, Apache, Lipan, Karankawas, & Coahuiltecan. Read more about them here.

Was your state name after a person? Tell us about the person & how they inspired the name.: No, the name is not after a person but many of the cities & counties are named after famous people including: Bowie county (after James Bowie who fought at the Alamo; the county I am originally from), Austin (after Stephen F. Austin who is known as “The Father of Texas”), & Houston (after Sam Houston who commanded the Texas Army during the Texas Revolution).

Were there any particular people involved in naming the state?: The Caddo Indians & the Spanish explorers (especially Alonso De Leon, Damian Massanet, & Francisco de Jesus Maria)

US History Assignments-red

Great Video/Politics: "Mr. Tax Law Writing Evader"

Friday, September 18, 2009

U.S. Political Parties: The Libertarian Party


Founded in 1971, “Libertarians believe the answer to America’s political problems is the same commitment to freedom that earned America its greatness: a free-market economy & the abundance & prosperity it brings; a dedication to civil liberties & personal freedom that the makers this country above all others; and a foreign policy of non-intervention, peace, & free trade as prescribed by America’s founders.”

2008 early registration ballots announced 24.82% of the population registered Libertarians making it the third largest political party in the US.

Their Stance on the Issues:

The Economy: "A free and competitive market allocates resources in the most efficient manner. Each person has the right to offer goods and services to others on the free market. The only proper role of government in the economic realm is to protect property rights, adjudicate disputes, and provide a legal framework in which voluntary trade is protected. All efforts by government to redistribute wealth, or to control or manage trade, are improper in a free society."

Civil Liberties: “ The defense of the country requires that we have adequate intelligence to detect & to counter threats to domestic security. This requirement must not take priority over maintaining the civil liberties of our citizens. The Bill of Rights provides no exceptions for a time of war. Intelligence agencies that legitimately seek to preserve the security of the nation must be subject to oversight & transparency.”

Crime & Violence:
  • Step 1. Protect Victim’s Rights: “Libertarians would do more than just punish criminals. We would also make them pay restitution to their victims for the damage they’ve caused, including property loss, medical costs, pain, & suffering.”
  • Step 2. End Prohibition: “Drug prohibition does more to make Americans unsafe than any other factor.”
  • Step 3. Get Tough on Real Crime: 'The Libertarian Party is the party of personal responsibility. We believe that anyone who harms another person should be held responsible for that action. By contrast, the Democrats & Republicans have created a system where criminals can get away with almost anything." "For instance: sentences seldom mean what they say. Fewer than one out of every four violent felons serves more than four years. Libertarians would dramatically reduce the number of these early releases by elimination their root cause - prison over-crowding."'Since nearly six out of every ten federal prison inmates are there for non-violent drug-related offenses, it’s clear that drug prohibition is the primary source of this over-crowding."
  • Step 4. Protect the Right to Self-Defense: “We believe that the private ownership of firearms is part of the solution to America’s crime epidemic, not part of the problem.”
  • Step 5. Address the Root Causes of Crime: “The Libertarian Party would increase employment opportunities by slashing taxes & government red tape. We would also end the welfare system with its culture of dependence & hopelessness. Most important of all, we would promote low-cost private alternatives to the failed government school system.”
Environment: “Government, both federal & local, is the greatest single polluter in the U.S. This polluter literally gets away with murder because of sovereign immunity. Libertarians would make government as responsible for its actions as everyone else is expected to be. Libertarians would protect the environment by first abolishing sovereign immunity.”

Foreign Policy: “Foreign aid is little more than welfare for nations -- with the same disastrous effects as domestic welfare programs.” “If Americans truly want to help other countries, they can best do so not through failed foreign aid programs, but by improving the U.S. economy, so that U.S. businesses have funds to invest abroad, and pursuing free trade policies.”
Freedom of Speech: “We defend the rights of individuals to unrestricted freedom of speech, freedom of press & the right of individuals to dissent from government itself.”

Gun Laws:
“Law-abiding, responsible citizens do not & should not need to ask anyone’s permission or approval to engage in a peaceful activity. Gun ownership, by itself, harms no other person & cannot morally justify criminal penalties.” “Studies show that where gun ownership is illegal, residential burglaries are higher. A man with a gun in his home is no threat to you if you aren’t breaking into it.” “Rather than banning guns, the politicians and the police should encourage gun ownership, as well as education and training programs. A responsible, well-armed and trained citizenry is the best protection against domestic crime and the threat of foreign invasion.”

Healthcare: “The Libertarian Party knows the only healthcare reforms that will make a real difference are those that draw on the strength of the free market. The Libertarian Party will work towards the following: (1) establish medical savings accounts, (2) deregulate the healthcare industry, and (3) remove barriers to safe, affordably medicines.”

Immigration: “For those workers already in the United States illegally, we can avoid ‘amnesty’ and still offer a pathway out of the underground economy. Newly legalized workers can be assessed fines & back taxes & serve probation befitting the misdemeanor they’ve committed. They can be required to take their place at the back of the line should they eventually apply for permanent residency.”

Websites to check out:

Libertarian Party
Wikipedia: Libertarian Party

New Book: "The Valley of Vision"

So I ordered a few new books the other day. Not because I had finished the ones I already had but I have an addiction to books that I really need to work on. Anyway, one of the new ones, The Valley of Vision, I opened this morning & read a bit of it. I think I am already hooked & I think this may be one of those books you read & refer to continuously.

It is "a collection of Puritan Prayers & Devotions" & after reading only one prayer, I am in love with it. Here is the first prayer in the book called "The Valley of Vision."



The Valley of Vision

Lord, High & Holy, Meek & Lowly,
Thou has brought me to the valley of vision,
where I live in the depths but see thee in the heights;
hemmed in by mountains of sin I behold they glory.

Let me learn by paradox
that the way down is the way up,
that to be low is to be high,
that the broken heart is the healed heart,
that the contrite spirit is the rejoicing spirit,
that the repenting soul is the victorious soul,
that to have nothing is to possess all,
that to bear the cross is to wear the crown,
that to give is to receive,
that the valley is the place of vision.

Lord, in the daytime stars can be seen from the deepest wells,
and the deeper the wells the brighter thy stars shine;

Let me find they light in my darkness,
thy life in my death,
they joy in my sorrow,
they grace in my sin,
they riches in my poverty,
they glory in my valley.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Adventures in Homebuying: The Decision


Well, I decided the other night that I am going to take the plunge. I'm going to buy a house.

My dad has been bugging me to buy a house for years telling me that renting is just "throwing your money away." And he is right...as usual. I kept putting it off because I really don't care much for the city & didn't really like living here & wanted to move back to Arkansas but I really think I was just running from myself & God. I don't think I would have been happy no matter where I was. Now my relationship with the Lord is back on the right track & I am genuinely happy. I have things I want to change in my life & longings but you always do. The joy that comes from Christ is different than from having all your wants & desires...but I digress. So, after living here for 5 yrs I have decided to take that enormously frightening step into home-ownership & hope I don't crash & burn.

So how did I just decide all of a sudden? I'm glad you asked...Ms/Mr. Nosy...

Well, every year about this time (& usually just after the New Year) I get the itch to start looking. I usually get scared & blow it off but this year I decided it was time to quite playing & do this thing. Actually, I really hadn't thought much about it lately. I knew that my lease was coming up for renewal pretty soon but I really hadn't thought of what I was going to do. I knew that I really didn't want to stay here in this apartment another year but I have very little money saved up (at least not as much as I have always planed on) due to me not living as frugally as I should (I'm working on that & actually I have done a lot better...with a few exceptions).

Anyway, lately the weather has been quite nice so I have been skipping the gym & taking advantage of the nice weather & walking the neighborhood across the street from my apartment. (I've also had a cough for the last month & didn't want to do anything too vigorous to get me into a coughing fit...I do plan on starting back to running sometime soon.) One day a couple of weeks ago I walked by one house & noticed a "For Sale By Owner" sign & decided to take one of their flyers out of the old Pringles/Stacked Lays canister. They were asking a reasonable price for my neighborhood & that is what sparked the idea.

Now, don't get excited, I probably won't purchase this particular house. The asking price is still a bit out of my max price zone & they have a pool. While I would absolutely love a pool & probably use it quite a bit, pools always raise your electricity, water, & insurance rates, not to mention the price of upkeep (chemicals, cleaning, replacing pumps, etc). I still want a pool but I'm really going to have to watch what I spend for the next few years. Now if I could attract me some rich young man, things might change but until then, it's Ramen Noodles & Velveeta. Well, maybe not that extreme but still...can't be careless.

The final push that made me decide was that I finally got my new lease agreement & noticed they had gone up on my rent again & while I expected it, seeing the actual number they were going to be charging me, ticked me off for some reason & I said that was it, I am buying. :)

Really, there is no reason for me not to buy right now & with that $8000 tax credit that they are offering right now, it would kind of be stupid not to...at least for me. So, this morning I met with a realtor & a mortgage broker to see what I can afford & get things moving. The tax credit thing ends at the end of November along with my lease so we have to get the ball rolling. The broker told me I was in good shape & can afford what I was thinking I could afford & maybe slightly more (but not too much). Now I've just got to get my paperwork together for him & sign the other paperwork for the realtor & get this show on the road.

Now I'm freaking out a bit. What am I getting myself into? Am I making a terrible mistake? What if I get careless with my money & mess up big time? What if this is my will & not the Lords?

People who make less than me, have much worse credit, tons of debt &/or loans buy houses everyday, why am I freaking out so much? If they can do this, then surly I can too.

I think the a one of the big stressors for me is in order to be in a safe neighborhood, I am going to have to be willing to spend a little bit more &/or maybe live a little further out. The living a little further out actually would be nice...at least in the areas that I would consider. I grew up in the country & for 4 years drove 45 min one way twice a day so adding 5 mins onto already 5-10 min commute would be nothing. Plus, moving a little further out gets me away from so much city like life & two of my closest friends live in or at least closer to the area I am referring to, so that would be nice too.

Another stressor is being I'm a single income really restricts you on how much you can spend & if something happens, I'm it. Eek!

Another is that I really want my parents to like the place I pick out but being limited with budget & time means that (1) I may not get as big of a house my dad would like to see me in & (2) it may not have some of the features that would really be nice such as a back or side facing garage. My did really does not like the garage facing the street & with good reason & I also agree but it is actually pretty rare to find houses like that. Also, I do not care for a fire place. They take up wall space & I doubt I would use it enough to get any worth out of it but for some really strange reason, almost every house in this area have a fireplace. We're in Texas people! Of course I may change my mind when the electricity goes out during an ice storm . LOL

Ok well, I would talk more but this is already long enough & I've been up over 24 hrs now & I've got to clean house tomorrow so I am heading to bed. Pray for me, guys. I really need guidance, wisdom, peace, & self-discipline/restraint.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

States Exploration: Assignment 1

So this is from a blogger I've just recently started reading. This is a project that she does with her children (she homeschools) & has opened it up for anyone to be involved. So, since you're never too old to learn something...here it goes.

Name of your state: Texas

How long have you lived there?: 29 years, with 2 years living in a dorm in Arkansas while at college but my permanent address was Texas, so that still counts, right? :)

Area of the country your state is in: I would say south but most maps say southwest. So, whatever.

What are some things your state is known for? Cowboys, rodeos, The Alamo, The Bush's (W & H.W.), longhorn cattle, horses,....

Which season do you like the best about your state?: Fall. You finally get a break from the terrible heat (even though this year hasn't been that bad & by today's weather, it seems fall has come early...no complaints here)

What are some of the things you dislike?: The heat, the crowds & traffic of the big cities, the allergies I see to have now that I live near Dallas, mosquito, humidity, dust, the assumption that if you are from Texas you must like country music & wear cowboy boots & hats (I'm rock & roll, enough said), I have a love/hate relationship to our accent (it's enduring but sometimes people think you are not intelligent because of it)

If you have ever lived anywhere else, what differences have you noticed?: weather, accents, different words used to describe the same item. For example, when I moved to Arkansas, I told my friend to get a buggy, she laughed & said they call it a cart. Another time, I told my friend to go set something on the bar & she spent about 10 min looking for a wet bar when I actually meant the counter in our kitchen. LOL Loved that story. Poor Catholic girl staying in the house of a Southern Baptist family. LOL




US History Assignments-red

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Good News: "Hospital chaplain's free-speech rights restored"

clipped from www.onenewsnow.com
Hospital chaplain's free-speech rights restored

A chaplain at a Michigan veterans' hospital has been invited to return and minister to patients.

hospital IVMartin Colburn, a Christian chaplain of two veterans' organizations, had been meeting patients who gave him permission to do so, counseling them and praying with them. Daniel Blomberg is an attorney with the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF).

"One day back in February he was just summarily thrown out of the hospital because he had a Bible in his hand and he had been meeting with a patient," Blomberg explains. "And on February 13, he received a letter saying he wasn't welcome to come back except to receive his own veteran's benefits because he was a wounded warrior himself."
blog it

Saturday, September 12, 2009

U.S. Political Parties: The Republican Party


The Republican Party was founded in 1854 in Ripon, WI by anti-slavery activists. It was referred to as the Grand Old Party, hence the “GOP.” Abraham Lincoln became the first Republican President in 1860.

During the Civil War, “Republican of the day worked to pass the Thirteenth Amendment, which outlawed slavery, the Fourteenth, which guaranteed equal protection under the laws, and the Fifteenth, which helped secure voting rights for African-Americans.” The Republicans “also played a leading role in securing women the right to vote.” (GOP)

When FDR enacted the “Second New Deal, “it was heavily criticized by the Republicans in Congress, who likened it to class warfare & socialism. The volume of legislation, & the inability of the Republicans to block it, soon made the oppositions to Roosevelt develop into bitterness. Conservative Democrats, mostly from the South, joined with Republicans lead by Senator Robert Taft to create the conservative coalition, which dominated domestic issues in Congress until 1964.” (Wikipedia)

Main Platforms

National Security:
  • Homeland Security: “We must continue to remove barriers to cooperation and information sharing. Modernized 9-1-1 services must be made universally available and be adequately funded. We must be able to thwart cyber attacks that could cripple our economy, monitor terrorist activities while respecting Americans’ civil liberties, and protect against military and industrial espionage and sabotage.”
  • Terrorism and Nuclear Proliferation: “The U.S. should lead that effort [nuclear arsenal reduction] by reducing the size of our nuclear arsenal to the lowest number consistent with our security requirements and working with other nuclear powers to do the same.” “We must develop and deploy both national and theater missile defenses to protect the American homeland, our people, our Armed Forces abroad, and our allies.”
  • Better Intelligence: “We must increase the ranks and resources of our human intelligence capabilities, integrate technical and human sources, and get that information more quickly to the war fighter and the policy maker. The multi-jurisdictional arrangements that now prevail on Capitol Hill should be replaced by a shingle Joint Committee on Intelligence.”
  • Immigration, National Security, and the Rule of Law: “Our commitment to the rule of law means smarter enforcement at the workplace, against illegal workers and lawbreaking employers alike, along with those who practice identity theft and traffic in fraudulent documents.” “The rule of law means guaranteeing to law enforcement the tools and coordination to deport criminal aliens without delay -- and correcting court decisions that have made deportation so difficult. It means enforcing the law against those who overstay their visas,” “denial of federal funds for self-described sanctuary cities,” “it does not mean diver’s licenses for illegal aliens, nor does it mean that states should be allowed to flout the federal law barring them from giving in-state tuition rates to illegal aliens, nor does it mean that illegal aliens should receive social security benefits, or other public benefits” “We oppose amnesty.” “We celebrate the industry [legal immigration] & love of liberty of these fellow Americans.” “In our multiethnic nation, everyone -- immigrants and native-born alike -- must embrace our core values of liberty, equality, meritocracy, and respect for human dignity and the rights of women.” “We support English as the official language in our nation”
  • Providing for the Armed Forces: “They and their families must have the pay, health care, housing, education, & overall support they need. We must significantly increase the size of our Armed Forces” “Injured military personnel deserve the best medical care our country has to offer.” “We oppose reinstituting the draft, whether directly or through compulsory national service.” “To protect our servicemen & women and ensure that America’s Armed Forces remain the best in the world, we affirm the timelessness of those values, the benefits of traditional military culture, and the incompatibility of homosexuality with military service.”
  • Fulfilling our Commitment to our Veterans: “We want to build on the bipartisan expansion of the GI Bill by encouraging private colleges to bridge the gap between GI Bill education benefits and tuition costs.” “The VA’s current disability compensation formulas need to be restructured and modernized.” “There must be adequate counseling when veterans return home”
  • Israel: “We reaffirm America’s commitment to Israel’s security and will ensure that Israel maintains a qualitative edge in military technology over any potential adversaries.”
Economy:
  • Republican Tax Policy: Protecting Hardworking Americans: “We believe government should tax only to raise money for its essential functions.” “doubling the exemption for dependents,” “permanently ban internet access taxes and stop all new cell phone taxes,” “continue our fight against the federal death tax,” “The Alternative Minimum Tax, a stealth levy on the middle-class that unduly targets large families, must be repealed.” “We support a major reduction on the corporate tax rate” “we support giving all taxpayers the option of filing under the current rules or under a two-rate flat tax with generous deductions for families.”
  • Small Business: the Engine of Job Growth: “Republicans will advance a multi pronged plan to support small business & growth of good-paying jobs.”
  • Free & Fair Trade: “we need to be at the table when trade rules are written to make sure that free trade is indeed a two-way street.”
  • Supporting our Agricultural Communities: “We advocated the creation of Farm Savings Accounts to help growers manage risks brought on by turbulence in global markets & nature itself.” “we affirm our fight against the death tax.” “We reaffirm traditional state supremacy over water allocations and will continue to make available renewable rangeland under sound environmental conditions.” “The U.S. government should end mandates for ethanol and let the free market work.”
Health Care Reform: Putting Patients First: “Republicans believe the key to real reform is to give control of the health care system to patients & their health care providers, not bureaucrats in government or business.”
  • “We will protect citizens against any & all risky restructuring efforts that would complicate or ration health care.”
  • “We will encourage health promotion & disease prevention.”
  • “We will facilitate cooperation, not confrontation, among patients, providers, payers, & all stakeholders in the healthy care system.”
  • “We will not put government between patients & their health care providers.”
  • “We will not put the system on a path that empowers Washington bureaucrats at the expense of patients.”
  • “We will not raise taxes instead of reducing health care costs.”
  • “We will not replace the current system with the staggering inefficiency, maddening irrationality, & uncontrollable costs of a government monopoly.”
Education:
  • “Education is a parental right, a state & local responsibility, & a national strategic interest.”
  • “We advocate policies & methods that are proven & effective: building on the basics, especially phonics; ending social promotion; merit pay for good teachers; classroom discipline; parental involvement; & strong leadership by principals. We reject a one-size-fits-all approach & support parental options, including home schooling, & local innovations such as schools or classes for boys only or for girls only & alternative & innovative school schedules.”
  • “we support the English First approach”

Crime: Protecting Our Families:
  • “Republicans remain the party of vigorous action against crime & the party that empowers the law-abiding by protecting their right to keep & bear arms for self-protection.”
  • “We support the law prohibiting gambling over the Internet.”
  • “Illegal alien gang members must be removed from the United States immediately upon arrest or after the completion of any sentence imposed.”
  • “Courts must have the option of imposing the death penalty in capital murder cases & other instances of heinous crime”
  • “We support the right of off-duty & retired officers to carry firearms. Criminals should be barred from seeking monetary damages for injuries they incur while committing a crime.”

Preserving Our Values:
  • “We uphold the right of individual Americans to own firearms”
  • “We condemn decisions by activists judges to deny children the opportunity to say the Pledge of Allegiance in public school.”
  • “We support freedom of speech & freedom of the press & oppose attempts to violate or weaken those rights, such as reinstatement of the so-called Fairness Doctrine.”
  • “we assert the inherent dignity & sanctity of all human life & affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed.”
  • “We oppose using public revenues to promote or perform abortion & will not fund organizations which advocate it. We support the appointment of judges who respect traditional family values & the sanctity of dignity of innocent human life.”
  • “we oppose the non-consensual withholding of care or treatment from people with disabilities, was well as the elderly & infirm, just as we oppose euthanasia & assisted suicide”
  • “we call for a constitutional amendment that fully protects marriage as a union of a man & a woman”
  • “The public display of the Ten Commandments does not violate the U.S. Constitution & accurately reflects the Judeo-Christian heritage of our country. We support the right of students to engage in student-initiated, student-led prayer in public schools, athletic events, & graduation ceremonies, when done in conformity with constitutional standards.”
  • “We affirm every citizen’s right to apply religious values to public policy & the right of faith-based organizations to participate fully in public programs without renouncing their beliefs, removing religious objects or symbols, or becoming subject to government-imposing hiring practices.”

For the full most recent platform, click here.

Websites to check out:

This kid is a rock.

I was reading a blog this morning & for the life of me I can't find it now, but anyway, a friend of the family gave her family a bunch of jallopenos from his garden. Their little boy found the quite interesting & the father was going to let him have a little taste so he would know how hot they were. But, that isn't exactly what happened. Click here to see the video they shot. It is well worth it.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

U.S. Political Parties: The Democratic Party

The Democratic Party is the oldest continuously operated party in the US. It was founded in 1792 by Thomas Jefferson & James Madison due to differences in opinion with the Federalists. “In 1798, ‘party of the common man’ was officially named the Democratic-Republican Party and in 1800 elected Jefferson as the first Democratic President of the United States.”(Democrats.org) “The party favored states’ rights & strict adherence to the Constitution; it opposed a national bank & wealthy, moneyed interests.”(Wikipedia)

The party split when trying to decided who would take James Monroe’s place. Andrew Jackson & Martin Van Buren let the new Democratic Party.

“In the 1850’s, under the stress of the Fugitive Slave Law & the Kansas-Nebraska Act, anti-slavery Democrats left the party. Joining with former members of existing or dwindling parties, the Republican Party emerged.”(Wikipedia) But, more on that topic, next time. :)

With the decision on who would replace James Buchanan, the Democrats split once again predominately along Northern & Southern lines. “As the American Civil War broke out, Northern Democrats were divided into War Democrats & Peace Democrats & Southern Democrats formed their own party. Most War Democrats rallied to Republican President Abraham Lincoln & the Republicans’ National Union Party. The Democrats benefited from the white Southerners’ resentment of Reconstruction after the war & consequent hostility to the Republican Party.” (Wikipedia)

“The party was dominated by pro-business Bourbon Democrats led by Samuel J. Tilden & Grover Cleveland, who represented mercantile, baking, & railroad interests; opposed imperialism & overseas expansion; fought for the gold standard; opposed bimetallism; & crusaded against corruption, high taxes, & tariffs.”(Wikipedia)

Franklin D. Roosevelt replaced Herbert Hoover as President in 1932 & put into action his “New Deal.” “New Deal liberalism meant the promotion of social welfare, labor unions, civil rights, & regulation of business. The opponents, who stressed long-term growth, support for business, & low taxes, started calling themselves ‘conservatives.’”(Wikipedia)

As quoted from the Democratic Party website, what they stand for is: “The Democratic Party is committed to keeping our nation safe and expanding opportunity for every American. That commitment is reflected in an agenda that emphasizes the strong economic growth, affordable health care for all Americans, retirement security, open, honest and accountable government, and securing our nation while protecting our civil rights and liberties.”

Under their “Agenda,” they claim “that every American, whatever their background or station in life, should have the chance to get a good education, to work at a good job with good wages, to raise and provide for a family, to live in safe surroundings, and to retire with dignity and security. We believe that quality and affordable health care is a basic right. We believe that each succeeding generation should have the opportunity, through hard work, service and sacrifice, to enjoy a brighter future than the last.”

Their main platforms are:

  • Healthcare For All: “We believe that covering all is not just a moral imperative, but is necessary to making our health system workable & affordable.” “Research should be based on science, not ideology."
  • Environment & Climate Change: “We must end the tyranny of oil in our time.” “We understand that climate change is not just an economic issue or an environmental concern--this is a national security crisis.”
  • Energy Independence: “For the sake of our security -- and for every American family that is paying the price at the pump -- we will break our addiction to foreign oil. We Democrats commit to fast-track investment of billions of dollars over the next ten years to establish a green energy sector that will create up to five million jobs.” “And we will help those who are hit hardest by high energy prices by increasing funding for low-income heating assistance and weatherization programs, and by providing energy assistance to help middle-class families make ends meet in this time of inflated energy prices.”
  • Comprehensive Immigration Reform: “We also need to do more to promote economic development in migrant-sending nations, to reduce incentives to come to the United States illegally. And we need to crack down on employers who hire undocumented workers. It’s a problem when we only enforce our laws against the immigrants themselves, with raids that are ineffective, tear apart families, and leave people detained without adequate access to counsel.” “For the millions living here illegally but otherwise playing by the rules, we must require them to come out of the shadows and get right with the law. We support a system that requires undocumented immigrants who are in good standing to pay a fine, pay taxes, learn English, & go to the back of the line for the opportunity to become citizens.”
  • National Security: Some of “this century‘s threats“ they list include: “weapons that can kill on a mass scale;” “violent extremists who exploit alienation & perceived injustice to spread terror;” “rogue states allied to terrorist;” “rising powers that could challenge both America & the international foundation of liberal democracy;” addiction to oil that helps fund the extremism we must fight & empowers repressive regimes;” and “a warming planet that will spur new diseases, spawn more devastation natural disasters, & catalyze deadly conflicts.” “It is a strategy that will end the war in Iraq responsibly & focus our efforts on the terrorists who did strike us.”
  • Reclaiming Our Civil Rights & Liberties: “We believe in the essential American ideal that we are not constrained by the circumstances of birth but can make of our lives what we will. Unfortunately, for too many, that ideal is not a reality. We have more work to do. Democrats will fight to end discrimination based on race, sex, ethnicity, national origin, language, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, and disability in every corner of our country, because that's the America we believe in. We all have to do our part to lift up this country, and that means changing hearts and changing minds, and making sure that every American is treated equally under the law.”
  • Economic Stewardship: “In this time of economic transformation and crisis, we must be stewards of this economy more than ever before. We will maintain fiscal responsibility, so that we do not mortgage our children's future on a mountain of debt. We can do this at the same time that we invest in our future.”
  • Open, Honest & Accountable Government: “The Democratic Party is committed to real ethics reform and meaningful campaign finance reform that protects our rights and ensures that elected officials act ethically -- not just within the law, but within the spirit of the law. Democrats offer an aggressive reform package to reverse Republican excesses and restore the public trust.”
  • Invest in Science and Technology: “We will lift the current Administration's ban on using federal funding for embryonic stem cells” “We will end the Bush Administration's war on science, restore scientific integrity, and return to evidence-based decision-making.”
  • Secure Retirement: “We will automatically enroll every worker in a workplace pension plan that can be carried from job to job and we will match savings for working families who need the help.” “We will ensure all employees who have company pensions receive annual disclosures about their pension fund’s investments” “we will eliminate all federal income taxes for seniors making less than $50,000 per year.”

For the full Democratic Party platform click here.


















(Liberal Opinions by CoolKid1993)

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Too Cute


This is a picture of me when I was little. I loved my bouncy horse & my red hat. I was reminded of it today after viewing a blog entry of a blog that I follow.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Reading the Bible: Today's verse(s) 9/7/09

"Because we belong to the day, we must live decent lives for all to see. Don't participate in the darkness of wild parties & drunkenness, or in sexual promiscuity & immoral living, or in quarreling & jealousy. Instead, clothe yourself with the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ. And don't let yourself think about ways to indulge your evil desires." -- Romans 13:13-14

Great Video: "Simon's Cat in 'TV Dinner'"

It is as if this artist lives in my house.



"The Opinion Of Women"

I have really been enjoying reading this young lady's blog. She is so wise despite being only 18.


clipped from aponderingheart.com

The Opinion Of Women

Woman as inferior beings (Inferior meaning more like an animal than a person) is from the Greek mindset. The Hebrews revered women as precious delicate vessels. The woman took an active part in the community and religious life.

Much of the misunderstanding of Paul’s writing is because of the lack of Hebrew understanding. Some of his teaching were against female domination from Greco-Roman paganism (temple prostitutes and female gods) not from women in general.

We all know of the woman who is priced far above rubies, pearls, diamonds. If you gave a man diamond how well do you think he’d take care of it? If he doesn’t take care of it as it should be then he will have to answer to Yehovah for not being a good steward of the blessings he was given.
I’m finding that a majority of believers not only don’t know the WORD well-enough, but aren’t too keen are the character of Yehovah either.
How does one go from “far above rubies” to “treated like cattle”?
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Sunday, September 6, 2009

"When Prayer Was Taken Out Of School"

Here are some interesting statistics. There is no way to accurately say that these increases are solely due to taking prayer out of school but the time in history when prayer was removed from schools marks a turning point in our history as a nation. Starting in the '60's, our country has taken a nose dive on the scale of morality. And, that is evident in these graphs. All the same, this info is interesting & extremely disheartening.

clipped from heartofwisdom.com

When Prayer Was Taken Out of School

David Barton graphically illustrates how America has plummeted from righteous living, prosperity, and success in the last quarter-century. Consider the following charts compiled from his publication, America: America: To Pray or Not to Pray

Since the 1962 removal of prayer:
SAT Total Scores
CASES OF SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASES
Includes: Gonorrhea, Syphillis, Chancroid,
Granuloma Inguinale, Lymphgranuloma Venereum, and AIDS
PREGNANCIES TO UNWED GIRLS
Under 15 Years of Age

PREGNANCIES TO UNWED GIRLS

Under 15-19 Years of Age
BIRTH RATES FOR UNWED GIRLS
Under 15-19 Years of Age

PRE-MARITAL SEX

Percentage of U.S. Teenage Girls
Who Have Had Pre-Marital Intercourse
SINGLE PARENT HOUSEHOLDS
Female Head, No Spouse Present
UNMARRIED COUPLES LIVING TOGETHER
ALCOHOL CONSUMPTION PER CAPITA
VIOLENT CRIME: Number of Offenses
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So annoyed!


I just spent the last hour working on my write up discussing the Democratic Party & it froze up on me & when I reopened the document, everything was gone. I could have sworn I had saved everything several times because this happens a lot but I guess I didn't. Very frustrating. So don't expect the Democratic Party write up for a while. I'll try to work on it more this week. :P

Politics: "Obama adviser Van Jones resigns amid controverysy"

Awesome news:

clipped from news.yahoo.com

Obama adviser Van Jones resigns amid controversy

WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama's adviser Van Jones has resigned amid controversy over past inflammatory statements, the White House said early Sunday.

Van Jones, an administration official specializing in environmentally friendly "green jobs," has been linked to efforts suggesting a government role in the Sept. 11 terror attacks and to derogatory comments about Republicans.
The matter surfaced after news reports of a derogatory comment Jones made in the past about Republicans, and separately, of Jones's name appearing on a petition connected to the events surrounding 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon.
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Friday, September 4, 2009

Health Care: "HR 3200 'encroaches' on parental rights"

clipped from www.onenewsnow.com
HR 3200 'encroaches' on parental rights
home schooling parent reading to childA spokesperson with the Independent Women's Forum is concerned that healthcare reform will limit parental rights.

Senior policy analyst Nicole Kurokawa is concerned that decisions concerning healthcare for children will be left up to a proposed Health Benefits Advisory Committee instead of parents. According to H.R. 3200, that committee will be responsible for setting recommendations for government-approved healthcare plans, which citizens will be forced to buy into, whether they be public or private.

Kurokawa is worried that under that approach, government officials could require that children receive all available vaccines -- even the controversial ones such as the HPV vaccine.
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Great Video: Uncle Jay -- 9/6

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Economic & Social Ideologies: Capitalism


Capitalism usually refers to an economic & social ideology “in which investment in & ownership of the means of production, distribution, & exchange of wealth is made & maintained chiefly by private individuals or corporations.” In other words, you earned it, you keep it. “Labor, goods, & capital are traded in a market; profits are distributed to owners or invested in new technologies & industries; & wages are paid to labor.

Economists usually put emphasis on the market mechanism, degree of government control over markets (laissez faire), & property rights, while most political economists emphasize private property, power relations, wage labor, & class.

Support:

Criticisms:

Politics: "White House Adviser Apologizes for Calling Republicans A--holes"

This man can say whatever he wants, the problem comes when the President of the United States would choose such a despicable, classless person to "advise" him. How can we not be surprised at the appalling stuff that comes out of the White House when he surrounds himself with such people?

clipped from action.afa.net
White House Adviser Apologizes for Calling Republicans A--holes

Van Jones, the White House "green jobs" adviser, apologized yesterday for calling Republicans "a**holes," saying the comments were "clearly inappropriate" and were made before he joined the Obama administration. See FOX News.

Jones had told a group of listeners earlier in the year that the reason Republicans are stonewalling the president is because they're "a**holes," remarks that were recorded in a video and posted to YouTube.

"I apologize for the offensive words I chose to use during that speech," Jones said in a written statement to Politico. "They do not reflect the views of this administration, which has made every effort to work in a bipartisan fashion, and they do not reflect the experience I have had since I joined the administration."

Warning: This video contains profanity.

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