Category: Spending


Obama Calls For Highest Sustained Taxation In U.S. History

 

 

 

 

 

 

” In the budget proposal he presented to Congress last month, President Barack Obama called for what would be the highest level of sustained taxation ever imposed on the American people, according to the analysis published last week by the Congressional Budget Office.

  Under Obama’s proposal, taxes would rise from 17.6 percent of Gross Domestic Product in 2014 to 19.2 percent in 2024. During the ten years from 2015 to 2024, federal taxation would average 18.7 percent GDP.

America has never been subjected to a ten-year stretch of taxation at that level.”

 

 

DEBT HELD BY PUBLIC-OBAMA BUDGET-CHART

 

 

 

” In the twelve fiscal years preceding the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor (1930 through 1941), federal taxation averaged 5.3 percent of GDP.

  In the five fiscal years encompassing U.S. involvement in World War II (1942 through 1946), federal taxation averaged 16.1 percent of GDP.

In the fiscal years since World War II (1947 through 2013), federal taxation has averaged 17.1 percent of GDP.”

 

 

 

 

CNS News

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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62 Percent Of Americans Say They Favor A Flat Tax

 

 

effectivetaxrates

 

 

 

” The latest Reason-Rupe poll asked Americans if they would support or oppose changing the federal tax system to a flat tax, where everyone pays the same percentage of his or her income, finding that 62 percent favor the flat tax and 33 percent are opposed. When asked where they would set the flat tax, the average response was 15 percent.

  This reflects another recent Reason-Rupe poll finding that 67 percent of Americans say it is “not the responsibility of the government to reduce the differences in income between people with high incomes and those with low incomes,” while 29 percent say it is.

  Strong support for a flat tax extends across income groups (62 percent) among those making less than $30,000 a year and 73 percent among those making more than $110,000 a year. Similarly across education groups and age groups, 6 in 10 say they support the flat tax.”

Contrary to media memes and their class-warfare compatriots on the Left , the rich do pay a higher percentage of taxes …

” Urban Institute data reports that in fact, the wealthy do pay a higher tax rate than the middle class. Average effective federal tax rates in 2011, as a percentage of adjusted gross income find the following (after tax credits):

Lowest Income Quintile: -5.8%

Second Quintile: 1.3%

Middle Quintile: 9.2%

Fourth Quintile: 12.9%

Top Quintile: 20.6%

The “1 Percent” pay 25.3%” “

Reason has more

Dublin On Two-And-A-Half Million Dollars A Day

 

Dublin On $2.5 Mil Day

”  A couple of weeks back, I remarked on the cost of President Obama’s day-trip to Brussels, accompanied by 900 flunkeys and a 45-car motorcade. In fairness to Obama, the President is a public official of the Government of the United States: I do believe he’s even mentioned in the Constitution. You will search that document in vain for any mention of the office of “First Lady” or “First Offspring”. Nevertheless:

  The documents reveal that taxpayers spent a total of at least $7,921,638.66 on the first lady’s trip. She departed for the Dublin tour on Air Force Two after accompanying the president on a meeting with Northern Ireland youth.

  So “Air Force Two” has to be on hand to get Mrs Obama, Sasha and Malia the one hundred miles from Belfast to Dublin. For the purposes of comparison, flying the entire Royal Family around for a year costs taxpayers £3,101,771 (that’s the Queen, princes, dukes, the lot). Three million quid plus change works out to about $5,194,347.37. In other words, for the cost of two days in Dublin with three members of the Obama family you can keep the entire House of Windsor in the air for a year.”

As usual , do yourself a favor and read it all

7 Blockbuster Obamacare Charts That The White House Doesn’t Want America To See

 

 

” Remember all those promises that were made to sell Obamacare? Like lowering premiums for a family of 4 by $2,500 a year, allowing people to keep their plans and their doctors, not adding a dime to the deficit, and all of that?

  Well, let’s just see how much of a striking success”Obamacare” is based on the numbers so far. The Heritage Foundation created these charts based on the HHS’ own numbers, the CBO’s, and the Kaiser Family Foundation’s.”

 

 

1.Young People’s Premiums are Jacked Up

Premiums_Age27

 

 

” If you’re a young person, you’re pretty much screwed. Not only will you be paying higher premiums to subsidize your elders, you will be paying more taxes over your lifetime to pay back the loans we’re accruing just to pay for this boondoggle. You’re welcome, right?”

 

 

 

      Here’s one more sample for the reader and make note of the one time dip in the rate of the tax increases this year . The cynic in us can’t help but make note of the fact that this solitary dip coincides with some very important congressional elections , mere happenstance ? We think not .

 

 

 

3. New Taxes for Everybody!

CP-Obamacare-in-Pictures-11_HIGHRES

 

” Speaking of taxes, check out these bad boys. Not just one, but 18 new taxes lumped into one giant bill that should be called “Obamatax.” Hey, it’s not a tax! Oh yeah, well, now it is.”

 

 

 

See the whole thing at IJR

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uncle Sam Revives Feudal Practice To Collect From Children Of Debtors

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Holding children responsible for the debt incurred by their parents is a feature of historical feudalism and a few modern third-world shitholes.

  Developed countries, by and large, assume that a debt dies with the person who willingly incurred it, or at least stops with his or her estate. “By and large,” I write, because the U.S. government has broken with centuries of tradition holding individuals responsible for their choices, opting to withhold tax refunds from children whose parents incurred vague and often ill-documented obligations to the feds.

  Writes March Fisher of The Washington Post:

  A few weeks ago, with no notice, the U.S. government intercepted Mary Grice’s tax refunds from both the IRS and the state of Maryland. Grice had no idea that Uncle Sam had seized her money until some days later, when she got a letter saying that her refund had gone to satisfy an old debt to the government—a very old debt.

  When Grice was 4, back in 1960, her father died, leaving her mother with five children to raise. Until the kids turned 18, Sadie Grice got survivor benefits from Social Security to help feed and clothe them.”

 

 

tj generational debt

 

 

 

” Now, Social Security claims it overpaid someone in the Grice family—it’s not sure who—in 1977. After 37 years of silence, four years after Sadie Grice died, the government is coming after her daughter. Why the feds chose to take Mary’s money, rather than her surviving siblings’, is a mystery.

  Across the nation, hundreds of thousands of taxpayers who are expecting refunds this month are instead getting letters like the one Grice got, informing them that because of a debt they never knew about — often a debt incurred by their parents—the government has confiscated their check.”

 

    As Mark Steyn wrote the other day , “we have fewer rights than a 13th century peasant” … read the rest at Reason

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

‘Tax Freedom Day’ Falls Three Days Later This Year

 

Tax Freedom Day 2014 Map_0

 

 

 

” The day when the nation collectively has made enough money to pay its total tax burden for the year is three days later this year, according to a new report.

  According to a report released Monday by the Tax Foundation, this year Tax Freedom Day falls 111 days into 2014, on April 21.

  By April 21, to group says, Americans will have made enough to pay the $3 trillion in federal taxes and $1.5 trillion in state taxes — more than they will spend on food clothing and housing combined.”

 

 

Cal_TFD_Web

 

 

 

   Bear in mind that that is the national average . If you live in a high tax state you could be a government slave for an additional couple of weeks before you “earn” anything for yourself and your family …

 

 

 

” If further broken down by state, residents of high tax states would see their Tax Freedom Day later than residents of lower tax states.

“This means a combination of higher-income and higher-tax states celebrate Tax Freedom Day later: Connecticut (May 9), New Jersey (May 9), and New York (May 4),” the authors write.”

Read more at DC Caller and at the Tax Foundation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

7 Stone Cold Facts About the Economy That Progressives Cannot Wish Away

 

 

Food-Stamp-Nation

 

 

 

” Facts are unbelievably stubborn things.

  Compare these changes for the last year of the Bush presidency 2008 versus the last full year of the Obama presidency 2013:

 

Read the rest at IJR

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gowdy: Dem Rep. Complaints About Six-Figure Salary ‘Laughable’

 

 

 

 

 

 

” South Carolina Republican Rep. Trey Gowdy Friday called it “laughable” that lawmakers are underpaid, blasting veteran Virginia Democratic Rep. Jim Moran complaints about a six-figure salary for a job that’s “priceless.”

“ I know a lot of people in the world that are underpaid — in fact I live with one, who’s a schoolteacher,” Gowdy told FOX News host Greta Van Susteren in an interview posted by Mediaite.

“ But members of Congress are incredibly blessed … to have the jobs that we have. Nobody makes us run. Every two years we offer for public office, and if you don’t want to do it then don’t run.”

  Twenty-four-year veteran Moran, who is retiring at the end of the year, groused Thursday lawmakers are “underpaid” and that many cannot “afford to live decently.” 

  Gowdy called that hogwash. “The notion that you can make $174,000 in this country and be underpaid is laughable,” he added. “We are better off than 99.9 percent of the people we claim to work for. And I would be embarrassed to say that — given our job performance and our salary — that we are anything other than grossly overcompensated.” “

   Newsmax has the story on Jim Moran’s “laughable” notion that Congress is “underpaid” and Congressman Gowdy’s absolutely appropriate response .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

$6 Billion Goes Missing At State Department

 

 

gty_unclaimed_money_jp_110901_wg

 

 

 

” The State Department has no idea what happened to $6 billion used to pay its contractors.

  In a special “management alert” made public Thursday, the State Department’s Inspector General Steve Linick warned “significant financial risk and a lack of internal control at the department has led to billions of unaccounted dollars over the last six years.”

 

 

    The Washington Post points out that the post of Inspector General had been vacant for Hillary and Barack’s entire tenure until September when Linick was appointed .

 

 

” The alert was just the latest example of the federal government’s continued struggle with oversight over its outside contractors.

  The lack of oversight “exposes the department to significant financial risk,” the auditor said. “It creates conditions conducive to fraud, as corrupt individuals may attempt to conceal evidence of illicit behavior by omitting key documents from the contract file. It impairs the ability of the Department to take effective and timely action to protect its interests, and, in turn , those of taxpayers.” “

 

   Funny how the timeframe more or less coincides with our current administration’s handling of things , isn’t it ? Hillary and Kerry on the ball as usual . Fiscal Times has the report .

 

 

 

 

 

 

Broken ATM At Maine Bank Spits Out $37,000

 

atmhack_1

File Photo

 

” Police in Maine are investigating after a malfunctioning ATM at a bank spit out $37,000 in cash to man who requested $140.

  South Portland police tell WGME-TV that they responded to the TD Bank branch at about 5:30 a.m. Thursday after getting a call from a woman who said a man was spending an unusual amount of time at the ATM she was waiting to use. 

  Responding officers found the man stuffing cash into a shopping bag.”

 

More here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Team Obama’s Bizarre Efforts To Make Obamacare Cool

 

 

 

     In the Obama gang’s Herculean efforts to salvage their namesake they have: called kids “knuckleheads” (Michelle) , said that “Americans were too stupid to use the internet” (Dingy Harry Reid) , said that a scraped knee would cost “thousands of dollars in the emergency room” (Valerie Jarrett) , it will cost “less than your monthly cell phone bill” (Obama) , less than a “pair of gym shoes” (Michelle) , told us “it is all about choice and opportunity and freedom” (Crazy Joe Biden) among other bald-faced lies . 

   All of these lies have been put forth by the various parties during a media saturation campaign facilitated by the likes of Saturday Night Live , The View , Pop Sugar , Telemundo , C-SPAN , Ellen , Funny or Die , Jimmy Fallon , not to mention endless free proselytizing by the mainstream “news” organizations and yet the people still know the truth … we’ve been screwed over in a big way .  

   Yet they wonder why all of their insults , cajoling and lies haven’t managed to persuade us of the wisdom of our “betters” . Such sheer volume of chutzpah , condescension and deceit has seldom been displayed to the voters by the ruling class in this country .

    This video is a best of the lies compilation that must be seen to be believed . 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Buy The ICON D200 Power Wagon

 

 

Icon Dodge Power Wagon

 

 

” If you don’t remember the ICON D200 Power Wagon, I strongly suggest you take a moment to familiarize yourself. The truck is another one of Jonathan Ward’s brilliant creations, and it combines a 2006 Dodge ¾-ton pickup truck chassis with a 1965 Dodge D200 Power Wagon Crew Cab body. There’s a 5.9-liter Cummins turbo diesel engine under the hood that’s been worked over by Gale Banks that dumps 975 lb-ft of torque and 560 hp on the ground. “

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

” Incredible truck, fusing vintage aesthetic with modern functionality. We took a vintage 1965 Dodge Crew Cab, ex-military, truck, then restored and modified it upon the chassis and mechanical underpinnings of a modern 3500HD Dodge MegaCab turbo diesel truck. Get the best of both worlds, 975 lbs. of torque, refined performance and chassis dynamics with the timeless lines of the early Power Wagon. It is tough to describe everything that went into this truck. There are so many subtle design details. All custom ICON designed CNC’ed stainless steel trim, architectural silver glass, Hutchinson Bead Lock wheels, 37″ BFG tires, a host of Gale Banks engine performance modifications, enhanced suspension and brakes (with exhaust brake), class IV tow hitch, all LED lighting, Bison leather and Rolls Royce Wilton wool interior, extensive Dynamat insulation, Lear jet visors, high end Focal iPod dependent audio system, and much much more. We are currently building two more varations on this truck. This is the one that started the style. Featured in multiple magazines, numerous awards and reviews on line, simply Google “ICON D200″. “

 

 

 

This is one Badass truck and you can read more about it at Road & Track Magazine and the Icon web page .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Right Wing News

 

 

Moochelle Vacas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Probe Uncovers More Reid ‘Slush Fund’ Payments To Granddaughter

 

Dirty %22Middle Finger%22 Harry Reid

 

 

” The Nevada Democrat promised earlier this week to reimburse $16,787 his campaign gave to Ryan Elisabeth Reid in 2013 for what was described as payments for “holiday gifts.” Those payments were reportedly made to purchase items from Elisabeth Ryan Reid, who has her own line of jewelry. Reid defended the payments, saying they complied with Federal Election Commission standards that allow the purchase of goods from relatives if those goods are sold at fair market value.

  Jahan Wilcox, a Republican National Committee spokesman, decried Harry Reid’s use of campaign monies as a “personal slush fund.”

  Things got worse for Reid when the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported Thursday that federal disclosures show the campaign paid another $14,481 to Reid’s granddaughter in 2012, bringing to $31,268 the total paid to Elisabeth Ryan in 2012 and 2013 to purchase gifts for Reid’s support staff.

  Reid told the newspaper that 23-year-old Ryan has been the target of “harassing” phone calls and “negative unwanted attention on the Internet.”

  In a statement, Reid said, “This has gone too far and it needs to stop now. I deeply regret any role I had in creating this situation but now, as a grandparent, I say enough is enough.

“Landra [Reid’s wife] and I are extremely proud of our granddaughter, we love her very much and we regret any unwanted attention that these stories have brought to her.” “

 

 

    Notice how the the Dingy Senator from Vegas regrets the trouble “these stories” have caused his granddaughter while seeking to downplay the criminal acts on his part that generated the stories in the first place . This seems to be a recurring theme with the Dems . It’s not the deeds that are wrong , it’s the reporting on said deeds that causes the problems . 

    Note to Harry … yes the reporting causes problems , but only for those that have something to hide . Speaking of things to hide , what about those awful pederasty rumors regarding yourself ?

Read the latest chapter of the Dirty Reid saga at Newsmax

 

 

 

 

 

THE DARK STATE: Discarded Tea Leaves, False Positive Drug Tests Prompt Search Warrant Of Family Home

 

Dark State

 

 

” The Sunflower State has very little sunshine for law enforcement records. Most Kansans are unaware of their inability to see records collected about themselves or loved ones. They’re either forced to spend thousands of dollars to open them or can’t afford to even try. This story is part one of a three part investigation that shows what can happen when records are restricted in Kansas. Read about the other two and watch our documentary at KSHB.com/darkstate.

  Bob Harte groggily opened his front door and found a fully-armed Johnson County SWAT team in front of him early in the morning of April 20, 2012.

  It was 7:30 a.m. when he’d heard a knock at the door and pulled himself out of bed to answer it while his wife and two kids slept.  A SWAT team surrounded his home, and a deputy had a battering ram ready to charge through the door had Bob had not opened it.

  The deputies pushed Bob to the floor of the entry way of his home and stood over him with rifles screaming, “Where are the children in the home?” Bob told them they were in their rooms and the deputies ran to find them.

  The commotion woke his wife Addie Harte who came downstairs to find out what was going on.

“ We just kept saying ‘You’re in the wrong house!’ said Addie.

  Deputies searched the sofa and then allowed the family of four to sit on it, in front of their picture window, as armed deputies searched the home. For two hours, the family sat on that sofa, afraid and puzzled as to why deputies were in their home.

On television, they always come to the door and say ‘we have a search warrant’ and hold it up. Here it is. Let us in. We were told in Kansas, they don’t have to give you the search warrant until they leave,” Bob Harte said.

  The Hartes’ kept asking deputies why they were in their home but deputies would only say that they were looking for “narcotics.”

  At the end of the raid, deputies handed the warrant over to Bob. On it, they had written they hadn’t seized anything. They had not found anything illegal in the home. Bob would end up taking that warrant door to door in their neighborhood to convince his neighbors nothing inappropriate had happened at their home.

  After the raid, the couple thought they could access public records to find out why law enforcement suspected drugs were in their home. They told 41 Action News they were shocked to find out they could not access any of those records under Kansas law.

  EDITOR’S NOTE: HB 2555, which would’ve opened some records to the public, was all but killed the night of March 25, by the Kansas Legislature.

“ We were chosen more or less at random for this drug raid and we were like ‘what do you mean we can’t get the records? They raided our house,” said Addie.

  The Hartes spent $25,000 hiring an attorney to fight to get access to the records. It took a year, but the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office eventually released the records. The Hartes were surprised by what they read.

  Records showed on Aug. 9, 2011, a Missouri Highway Patrol trooper observed a man leaving the Green Circle hydroponics store in Kansas City, Mo., in a KIA with his children and a small bag.

  Bob said he had been to the store to get supplies for a science project he was working on with his son: a basement hydroponic garden.

  Troopers had been observing customers at the hydroponics store because hydroponic supplies are often used in cultivating indoor marijuana plants.

  The Missouri Highway Patrol didn’t turn over the information to Johnson County authorities until March 20, 2012—seven months after the initial tip was observed. The records contain no information about why MHP waited so long to contact Johnson County law enforcement and no information about what triggered them handing over this information.

  Records show Johnson County deputies traced the tag number on the KIA observed by MHP to Bob and Addie Harte. On April 3, 2012, investigators visited the Harte’s home at 5 a.m. They went through the Harte’s trash and found wet plant material. At this time, investigators reported they didn’t know what it was so they failed to test it.

  A week later, on April 10th, investigators returned to the home. Again, deputies searched through the trash. This time, when they found plant-like material, they performed a field test which indicated the substance was marijuana.

  Deputies went to the home a third time on April 17th, 2012. Again, deputies found plant material in the Harte’s trash. They performed another field test which again indicated a positive result for marijuana.

  The Hartes say they knew immediately what police had located.

“ Bob instantly said, ‘It’s your tea!’ because I drink loose tea and those are saturated leaves,” said Addie, who told 41 Action News she often threw the leaves in the kitchen trash.

  Though field tests are known to be unreliable, reports obtained from the Johnson County crime lab indicate the deputies did not send any of the samples to the crime lab for confirmation. The records also note that deputies did not intend to, but changed their minds when the Hartes started questioning why deputies raided their home.

  When the crime lab processed the evidence, their tests came back negative for marijuana. The results came back in May of 2012.  The Johnson County Sheriff’s office had that information months before the Hartes were able to get the records that the material was not marijuana.

  The embarrassing misstep for deputies would have remained hidden if the Hartes had not had the means to spend money to gain access to the records.

  Along with taking legal action in federal court over the incident, Bob and Addie Harte have also testified in Topeka to encourage Kansas lawmakers to open police records. Bob believes if police had known the media would be able to analyze the warrant information in their case, deputies never would have gone through with the raid.

“ Nobody wants to be on the nightly news or front page of the paper explaining a scandal, and they don’t worry about that in this state because they know the media isn’t going to get ahold of it,” Bob Harte said.

  The family has also been contacted by people across Kansas trying to figure out how to access records about themselves. Addie said many of the people who have reached out to her do not have the same resources financially to fight to get records released.

“This not what justice in the United States is supposed to be. You shouldn’t have to have $25,000, even $5,000. You shouldn’t have to have that kind of money to find out why people came raiding your house like some sort of police state,” Addie Harte said.”

 

Read the whole thing from kshb.com and be sure to watch the three part video on Kansas secrecy laws 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Agribusiness Political Donations And Farm Bill Votes

 

 

mitchell-agribizz-small

 

 

 

” When governments dispense privileges such as insurance subsidies, price supports, or protection from foreign competition, they create incentives for firms to invest large sums of money in obtaining and maintaining these privileges, as the farm bill demonstrates.

  The fact that members who ultimately voted for the bill received so much more than those who opposed it may indicate that interest groups prefer to donate to members who are likely to support their issue. This is known as the “political man” theory of interest group behavior. On the other hand, the pattern of giving may indicate that political donations actually affect the final votes that members cast. This is known as the “economic man” theory of interest group behavior. Economists and political scientists have studied these questions extensively, and the balance of evidence suggests that there is some truth to both theories: interest groups do tend to give to candidates that already agree with them, but they also give to candidates in order to sway their votes.

  The final farm bill is expected to cost taxpayers $956 billion over ten years, but the economic costs will be much larger. These costs include not just the explicit taxpayer subsidy and the money wasted in seeking these privileges but also the higher prices that consumers will pay for some food and the resulting misallocation of capital.”

What A Bank Run In China Looks Like: Hundreds Rush To Banks Following Solvency Rumors

 

People gather in front of a branch of Jiangsu Sheyang Rural Commercial Bank, in Yancheng

 

 

” Curious what the real, and not pre-spun for public consumption, sentiment on the ground is in a China (where the housing bubble has already popped and the severe contraction in credit is forcing the ultra wealthy to luxury real estate in places like Hong Kong) from the perspective of the common man? The photo below, which shows hundreds of people rushing today to withdraw money from branches of two small Chinese banks after rumors spread about solvency at one of them, are sufficiently informative about just how jittery ordinary Chinese have become in recent days, and reflect the growing anxiety among investors as regulators signal greater tolerance for credit defaults.

 

Reuters explains:

 

  Domestic media reported, and a local official confirmed, that ordinary depositors swarmed a branch of Jiangsu Sheyang Rural Commercial Bank in Yancheng in economically troubled Jiangsu province on Monday. The semi-official China News Service quoted the bank’s chairman, Zang Zhengzhi, as saying it would ensure payments to all the depositors. The report did not say how the rumour originated.

 

  Chen Dequn, a resident in Yandong, just outside Yancheng, said she saw a crowd of about 70 to 80 people gathering in a branch of Sheyang Rural Commercial Bank in her town on Tuesday.”

 

ZeroHedge has more

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Barack Obama’s First Visit To Brussels To Cost Belgium More Than €10m

 

 

sendthrift-president

 

 

” As Belgium’s capital and host to the EU and Nato, Brussels is used to deploying heavy security when big names pop by. But US President Barack Obama‘s visit on Tuesday will strain the city like never before with €10m ($10.4m, £8.4m) of Belgian money being spent to cover his 24 hours in the country.

   The president will arrive on Tuesday night with a 900-strong entourage, including 45 vehicles and three cargo planes. Advance security teams orchestrating every last detail have combed Brussels already, checking the sewers and the major hospitals, while American military helicopters were last week given the green light for overflights. The city hosts at least four EU summits a year, with each of these gatherings costing €500,000 in extra police, military and transport expenses. “But this time round, you can multiply that figure by 20,” said Brussels mayor, Yvan Mayeur.”

 

The Guardian has more on the cost for Brussels , but what of the cost to American taxpayers ? 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Federal Employees Using Government Aircraft For Hundreds Of Non-Official Missions, GAO Says

 

Federal Flight Fraud

 

 

” Senior federal officials use government airplanes for many non-official purposes, but agencies don’t track the trips, according to the Government Accountability Office.

  More than 1,700 aircraft are owned or leased by the federal government and are used to “accomplish a wide variety of missions,” including firefighting and law enforcement, according to GAO.

  From fiscals years 2009 through 2011, for example, the FBI didn’t report to GSA 395 unclassified non-mission trips that cost around $7.8 million, according to GAO. “

 

 

    This report comes just two weeks after another GAO report that documented the outrageous abuse of Federal employees flying first class instead of coach at an additional cost to taxpayer of millions of dollars per year . We the taxpayers are being taken for fools .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Travel Study Update: President Obama Is Most Internationally Traveled President through 5 Years

 

5yr

 

 

 

” The President is overseas once again, this time for a rapid-fire trip to Europe and the Middle East, with plans to visit five countries in five days: the Netherlands, Belgium, Vatican City, Italy, and Saudi Arabia. Ahead of the trip, we here at National Taxpayers Union Foundation (NTUF) are taking a moment to update our ongoing Presidential travel research to give taxpayers an idea of how often the President is going abroad using taxpayer dollars, and how that compares to past Chief Executive travels.

  When we released our last major update of Presidential travel in June of 2013, Barack Obama was scheduled to make at least two international trips in the final six months of the year. Now that the calendar has turned and his trips are officially in the books, the final count stands at:

  • Days abroad: 24
  • Countries visited: 13
  • Trips taken: 6 “

 

 

Most traveled and most expensive …

 

 

” The most internationally well-traveled President, through five years, is also flying the most expensive-to-operate Air Force One to date.
 
  As reported in the Washington Examiner last month, new records obtained via a Freedom of Information Act request show that it cost about $228,288 per flight hour to operate Air Force One in FY 2013. That figure represents a 27 percent increase from the previously confirmed $179,750 cost that NTUF used in our last study of Presidential Travel.
 
  Taken on its own, the $48,535 jump may not sound all that significant. However, when trips are many thousands of miles and span several time zones and continents, the difference can quickly add up.
 
  For example, the President’s current European trip will likely involve about 29 hours of total travel time, assuming a cruising speed of 575 mph between Washington, Amsterdam, Brussels, Rome, and Riyadh, and then back to D.C. Using the previous estimate, the total cost of flying Air Force One between those international cities would be about $5,212,750. Using the new data, the cost comes out to $6,620,352.”

 

 

See more at National Taxpayers Union

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

French Far-Right Triumphs In Local Polls That Hammer Ruling Socialists

 

France's local elections

 

 

” France’s far-right National Front party dealt a major blow to the ruling Socialists Sunday after several of its candidates took prime position in the first round of local elections.

  The main centre-right opposition UMP party also hailed a “big victory” as initial estimates showed it came out trumps in the elections, as President Francois Hollande suffers record unpopularity against a backdrop of near-zero growth and high unemployment.

  According to preliminary results from the interior ministry, the UMP and allies took 47 percent of the vote nationwide while the Socialist party and allies took 38 percent, and the FN five percent — far higher than its 0.9 percent result in the first round of 2008 municipal polls.

  Applauding what she said was “an exceptional vintage for the FN”, Marine Le Pen — head of the anti-immigration, anti-EU party — said the polls marked the “end of the bipolarisation of the political scene”. “

 

Story continues at Yahoo News … a preview of the US elections ? 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Public Service Announcement From The Alabama Medical Marijuana Coalition

 

 

The Top Five Special Interest Groups That Lobby Against Medical Marijuana

 

 

 

 

For some simple facts to back up the assertion on the poster above the reader is invited to check out this link .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Find Out Here

 

 

” Last summer, I stumbled across a clever 1993 paper by education statisticians Mark Dynarski and Philip Gleason that proved it was possible to adjust average state SAT scores for variations in the test participation rate and demographic factors, making them comparable to one another. Barely able to contain my excitement (hey, don’t judge), I set about extending their method so that it could discern trends in state SAT scores over time, and improving the validity of its estimates by using more data, fewer assumptions, and more exhaustive methods. Last week, I released the technical paper presenting those extensions. Yesterday, I released a paper that uses them to chart academic achievement and spending trends, for every state, back to 1972. How did your state do? Find out here.”

 

      As the reader can see from the graph of New York above , while education spending has skyrocketed the concomitant results put the lie to the Liberal mantra of “more spending” . Lest our readers think that NY is an outlier we leave you with another state as further proof that the ever-increasing spending is not benefiting the children …

 

 

 

     The trend is widespread and hardly unique to the northeast . It’s quite simple really . In the past 40 years as education spending has grown exponentially nationwide and our taxes have gone through the roof the benefit to the students has been nil . See where your state stands here courtesy of the Cato Institute .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New York And California Suck For Taxpayers, And For Freedom

 

Tax Burden Map

 

 

” New York and California are the worst and second worst states in terms of tax burden, in what is less than shocking news from the financial website,WalletHub. The ranking tallies annual state and local taxes, and puts the Golden State and the Empire State at the bottom of the heap, with Wyoming and Alaska at the top as the two least burdensome states for taxpapers in a listing that also includes the District of Columbia (number 37, if you’re curious).

  In and of itself, the ranking is helpful—but it’s also helpful to cross-reference the tax ranking with separate rankings of economic liberty and overall freedom to see how they correlate. The result is a handy guide to places to live—or avoid like the plague.

  For its tax rankingsWalletHub compared: real estate tax, state income tax, local income tax, vehicle property tax, vehicle sales tax, sales and use tax, fuel tax, alcohol tax, food tax, and telecom tax.”

 

 

    We thought it would be helpful to be able to look at WalletHub’s tax rankings through the red state/blue state prism and as one would expect , with the occasional  outlier the majority of blue states fall in the heavily taxed category . No real surprise to anyone who pays attention , but interesting to see it on the page with actual hard numbers .

 

 

 

 

Rank State Avg. Annual State & Local Taxes % Difference from National Avg. Adj. Rank (based on Cost of Living Index)
1 Wyoming $2365 -66% 1
2 Alaska $2791 -60% 4
3 Nevada $3370 -52% 2
4 Florida $3648 -48% 3
5 South Dakota $3766 -46% 5
6 Washington $3823 -45% 6
7 Texas $5193 -25% 7
8 Delaware $5195 -25% 12
9 North Dakota $5588 -20% 13
10 Colorado $5674 -18% 14
11 New Mexico $5822 -16% 8
12 Alabama $5846 -16% 9
13 Arizona $6057 -13% 18
14 Utah $6069 -13% 10
15 Mississippi $6210 -11% 11
16 Indiana $6358 -9% 15
17 Louisiana $6373 -8% 16
18 West Virginia $6598 -5% 19
19 Montana $6641 -5% 20
20 Oklahoma $6795 -2% 17
21 Massachusetts $6884 -1% 35
22 Rhode Island $6905 -1% 40
23 South Carolina $7070 +2% 25
24 Georgia $7201 +3% 22
25 Missouri $7220 +4% 23
26 Tennessee $7252 +4% 21
27 Virginia $7333 +5% 29
28 New Hampshire $7419 +6% 41
29 Hawaii $7427 +7% 48
30 Arkansas $7455 +7% 26
31 Kentucky $7472 +7% 24
32 Ohio $7604 +9% 28
33 Kansas $7695 +11% 30
34 North Carolina $7705 +11% 31
35 Idaho $7776 +12% 27
36 Michigan $7867 +13% 32
37 District of Columbia $8034 +15% 46
38 Minnesota $8261 +19% 36
39 Pennsylvania $8344 +20% 34
40 Oregon $8416 +21% 42
41 Maryland $8571 +23% 44
42 Maine $8622 +24% 43
43 Iowa $8788 +27% 33
44 New Jersey $8830 +27% 47
45 Vermont $8838 +27% 45
46 Wisconsin $8975 +29% 39
47 Illinois $9006 +29% 38
48 Connecticut $9099 +31% 49
49 Nebraska $9450 +36% 37
50 California $9509 +37% 50
51 New York $9718 +40% 51

 

   Read more at Reason where you can see not only the tax rankings but how they correlate to freedom and liberty rankings as well . Spoiler … The red states predominate in liberty too …

 

 

 

 

 

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