Sunday, November 30, 2008

Barrack Obama Cabinet Selections - The Press Goes Gaga

Perusing the web, I can across a Newsweek article posted on MSNBC going gaga over Obama's selections of Hilary Clinton as Secretary of State, Janet Napolitano as Secretary of Homeland Security Secretary, and Susan Rice as US Ambassador to the United Nations.

Why is it that Obama gets a nice puff piece for his cabinet selections? George Bush selects Colin Powell as Secretary of State and Condoleezza Rice as National Security Advisor and Secretary of State. But no, it's Obama who credited with blowing through "racial barriers." Give me a break. Are readers of Newsweek and MSNBC that tuned out? Hate or love Bush (probably hate), crediting Obama, a black man, with blowing through racial barriers in cabinet appointees is humorous, and not newsworthy. Obama himself has blown through a barrier thanks to the American people. I am not an Obama fan, but I can give him credit for what is simple history, and I recognize and applaud its significance. Give Bush the same credit for his achievements in this area.

The War On Christmas Begins

It is officially time for the War on Christmas to begin. Schools will be forbidden to display anything in their buildings that highlight Christmas, Christmas Break has been renamed Winter Break, Santa Clause if off limits, and numerous guest speakers and displays of Ramadan, Kwanza, etc., will be presented to ensure students learn tolerance. Nativity displays from public parks, state buildings, etc will be removed and holiday phrases such as “Merry Christmas,” “God Bless You All,” “The Savoir is Born,” etc. will be removed and replaced my the more tolerant, “Happy Holidays,” and “Winter Blessings.”

In 2006, a passing Rabbi in Seattle-Tacoma International Airport decided that a display of Christmas trees was not tolerant of his religion. He therefore insisted an electric menorah also be added. He filed suit. The airport removed the trees. Christmas was over at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

In retaliation, a Colorado-Springs Christian political action group is producing a campaign to boycott retailers who use secular phrases such as “Happy Holidays.” Although I can’t disagree with the strategy, I don’t fully support it either. I am a big believer that business does what is best for business. In other words, if Old Navy chooses to use the phrase “Happy Holidays,” or “Merry Christmas,” then their bean counters are telling them so because of YOU! In short, markets respond to the demands of the people.

Putting the end to the War on Christmas, or at least taking the high ground, involves the people, and it begins and ends in our legislature and courts. Liberals are all for “tolerance.” However, this means that everything is OK so long as it isn’t Christian or has anything to with Christmas. When law suits are filed by various religious sects and liberal organizations such as, and the ACLU, displays of Christmas are quickly removed. Why? Because the cost of going to court simply isn’t worth it. In addition, they will probably lose!

Want your Christmas back? Look around the neighborhood. I can’t help but notice the number of displays decrease every year. Heck, buy a snowman for $10 at WalMart in the “Holiday Section,” and put him on your porch; do something! Say “Merry Christmas” to your co-workers instead of secular phrases. It’s OK; you’re allowed (1st Amendment). Do try to shop at stores that openly celebrate the “Christmas” season. This can help change marketing. But above of all, think about the people you are voting into office. Not that the secularization of Christmas should be the number one priority, but it will fit nicely into an overall evaluation of their character. For starters, stop voting in liberals!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

This Thanksgiving...

This Thanksgiving I give thanks....Thank God it wasn't me!

A tribute to my favorite YouTube video.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Why Obama’s link to Bill Ayers Did, and Still Matters

Are you aware of the National Sex Offender Registry? Ever taken a peek? Why? Did it bother you to find a sex offender, or even more than one sex offender living virtually next door? Does it bother you that the next President of The United States enjoys friendship with an unrepentant terrorist?

Bill Ayers was and is a terrorist. He has openly admitted in his book Fugitive Days to bombing New York City police headquarters in 1970 and the Capitol building in 1971 as a member of the radical group, Weathermen. Incredibly disturbing, he told New York Times reporter Dinitia Smith that, “I don’t regret setting the bombs." Come on, this is all in the past. He is a washed up terrorist. Ok, does it make you sick to the stomach to learn that this article was published in 2001? How about if I told you September 11, 2001? Yes, this article was published in the New York Times on September 11, 2001.

It boggles my mind that anyone in this country who considers themselves reasonably intelligent could have possibly voted for Barrack Obama. Did you not know? If not, why? Put politics aside. Obama has a chummy relationship with this coward. Ayers helped launch Obama’s Illinois Senatorial campaign in the mid-90s and served with him on the board of the Woods fund through 2002 (Ayers still serves, having begun in 1999). If you are honest with yourself, then you know very well that your friends represent, although to a limit, your own beliefs and value system. I would never be associated with a person such as Bill Ayers. And you know equally well that anyone with such a relationship says a lot about them.

Let me leave you with this thought to fester. In the same 2001 New York Times Interview with Ayers, he was asked if he would do it again? His response…

“I don’t want to discount the possibility."


  1. My own common sense and intelligence
  2. Roots of a Rhodes
  3. The New York Slimes. I Mean Times

Thursday, November 27, 2008

What Barack Obama Can Learn from Jefferson and the Barbary Pirates

Yesterday, a caller to Rush Limbaugh briefly discussed with him the history of the United States and the pirates off the Barbary Coast. Rush correctly identified these pirates as the first Muslim terrorists in American history. In brief, Barbary Pirates would seize merchant ships from all nations, requiring yearly tributes from their governments to gain immunity from such attacks. Even the most powerful naval force in the world, Britain, found it cheaper to pay the tributes than wage war. Once America gained its independence, the United States was no longer protected under Britain tributes. George Washington and John Adams, already struggling to keep a weak government alive, gave into the demands of tribute. Thinking began to change in Thomas Jefferson’s administration. However, I disagree with Rush’s account of Jefferson’s tact with the Barbary pirates.

Jefferson was weak, at best, in his resolve to eliminate tribute payments. Jefferson was a republican who believed in a weak central government. As such he resisted efforts to construct a military, including the build-up of a navy. Consequently, he had little to work with in sending a naval force to deal with the problem.

Real credit for creating a beginning to the end of the Barbary pirates belongs to William Eaton. Eaton, with his bombastic personality and stubborn will, led a mixed army of 500 marines, Greek, Arabs, and mercenaries in a successful attack against the Tripoli city of Derna. This is what set the stage for the incompetent Tobias Lear, Jefferson’s consul general, to negotiate a treaty with the Bashaw of Tripoli. Lear, not grasping the advantage Eaton had gained in his victory in Derna, enabling a possible assault on the Bashaw himself in Tripoli, negotiated a treaty with the Bashaw of Tripoli. Lear’s treaty included a ransom of $60,000 for American naval prisoners held by the Bashaw after the disgraceful capture of the naval frigate Philadelphia, due in large part to the incompetence of Captain William Bambridge. The Philadelphia was successfully destroyed in Tripoli Harbor in an attack led by the courageous Lieutenant Stephen Decatur. This is the origin of the Marine Hymn verse, “…to the shores of Tripoli.”

Despite Jefferson’s weak resolve to truly end the problem, he must be credited as the first President to take positive action towards a resolution. These events also serve as historical proof of the need to take serious and direct action against threats to the United States. Thanks to President George W. Bush for recognizing the extent of the terrorist threat and facing it head on. Since, we have not had a terrorist attack on United States soil. I hope President-Elect Barrack Obama recognizes that threats to the United States exist and must be dealt with directly. Friends can not be made with those who wish the destruction of America. Please Mr. Obama, learn from history rather than repeat it.

For great reading on the history of Jefferson’s dealings with the Barbary pirates and William Eaton’s exploits, I encourage you to read The Pirate Coast, by Richard Zachs.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Obama and the Economic Crisis

It is time to dispel the myth that Barack Obama is inheriting an economic crisis. Inheriting implies that one receives something that was previously not theirs from another. Barrack Obama is as much to blame for the economic crisis and two wars as Bush. Bush did not decide to create an economic crisis, democrats did. Beginning in the Clinton years, democrats asserted their influence on creditors to hand out ill-advised sub-prime loans. This should not be surprising; democrats are all about giving the poor hand-outs they have not earned with no care for the aftereffects to those they are taking away from (you and me). Rush Limbaugh lays this out eloquently, as always, in the video below.

But….this is not my main point. I am going nuts over the media premise that Obama is inheriting this potential recession. No he is not. He is a democrat who supported the institution of the same policies that led to this crisis. Bush and the Republicans attempted to reform sub-prime mortgages, foreseeing the danger. Democrats blocked every attempt with fervor.
The media is fond of giving Bill Clinton the credit for a boom in the economy during the 90s, giving no credit to the source, Ronald Reagan. Now they are propping Obama up to be the savior of the economy. In the media, he will not fail.

Allow me to educate you on the history of the ignorance of the American public in understanding cause and effect. For those of you who are already confused, cause is why something happens; effect is the result(s). John Adams, as the nation’s second President, resisted vehemently the call to war against France, as the French all but declared war by acting as pirates on the high seas. After the XYZ affair, the media had the United States in an uproar. Adams, understanding that the United States would not be able to survive a war, resisted popular opinion. Again, there was a major push in the media, driving public opinion. The people, as many are today, were far too ignorant to see their own manipulation. Who was behind this media push? Thomas Jefferson. Yes, Thomas Jefferson was the first American politician to recognize and use the power of the media to promote an agenda. He was successful; John Adams lost the 1800 election to him by a significant margin. However, Adams’ last envoy to France in 1799, which was abhorred by the media and Thomas Jefferson, resulted in peace between the two countries, saving the newborn United States from disaster. However, news of this success came after the ballots were cast. Many historians believe news of this success would have won Adams his second term.

And now, we arrive at the main connection and point. Thomas Jefferson ‘inherited” a peaceful United States. Consequently, America thrived and Jefferson received the credit. Even today, Jefferson receives much attention as one of the greatest of the founding fathers and Presidents, but few know he owes much of this to Adams.

Now, Obama is looking to withdrawal his original rants about letting the Bush tax cuts for Americans expire in 2009, opting to try again in 2012. Why, because the tax cuts are good for America. Does Bush get credit? No! The media continues to call it tax cuts for the rich and praise Obama and his dream team for fixing the economy before he is even the official president-elect. I implore all American to study history and learn what principles truly make this country great. Be on your guard for the ones that could very well destroy this great country, as a war with France in 1800 surly would have brought about.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Which Came First...The Placard or the Tie?

I don’t particularly care for, or about, the placard. Sure, it’s slightly pretentious and adds fuel to an unnecessary fire. But come on, somebody took a lot of time to get that tie to match the color filling, “THE OFFICE of the.” Think of all the time and effort that went into making the design of this public appearance. The only tie I have that comes close to that color is a fish tie. Forget about the chicken and the egg. I want to know which came first…the placard or the tie?

Why Raising Taxes Has Never Worked and Never Will

Democrats love to use the inherent jealousy of the rich to justify raising taxes and increasing government programs, and by extension, power. For reasons that escape me, a large section of America just doesn’t understand why this is always a disaster.

Sean Hannity is fond of asking the question, “Have you ever been given a job from a poor person?” Of course not! The rich drive this economy. They provide millions of blue and white-collar jobs. They are rich because they provide products and services that the public is willing to pay for. I love my car, cell phone, Internet, TV, computer, etc, etc. Take their money away and you take not only the potential of a new job away, but most likely an existing one.

Now think about it, when you have an unexpected expense, be it higher taxes or otherwise, what do you do? Do you spend as usual? Probably not. You cut back somewhere else. For me, maybe I skip my daily Slurpee from 7-11. Maybe I work some extra hours. Maybe I cancel my beloved Blockbuster Online account. The point is something has to give. The rich play by the same rules as we do. When the government raises the taxes on the rich ‘evil’ CEOs, they simply pass these increases on to you, the consumer, or to you, the employee. They don’t take one cent in profit reduction. When Obama gets around to raising taxes on the ‘wealthiest’ Americans in order to “Spread the wealth around,” understand that all this results in is the poor getting poorer. Prices for products go up and people lose their jobs.

Case and point; look at the Big Three automakers currently begging for a government bailout. Government and the United Auto Workers (UAW) fought for higher wages and work condition regulations. The result has been that American automakers cannot compete with foreign manufactures that do not operate under the same restrictions. Why? Because the Big Three CEOs passed those cost intensive UAW and government regulations costs right to the sticker price of every vehicle.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Obama Skips Church...Again

Why should Americans care that Barack Obama has not attended church since he was elected? It is because it serves as one of the many red flags that Obama is not who he claims to be. He attends the Chicago based church of Reverend Wright for twenty years, swears he can never disavow the man, then turns around and does it anyway when the political fallout increased. To be fair, Obama was not a regular at church on the campaign trail either, except in South Carolina and other states that puts God front and center (Politico). I don’t particularly care whether Obama sits in church every Sunday, opting for a nice sweat; I already know his thoughts on God. What I care about is that all those so-called moderates and independents out there are watching close. He made a lot of promises and guaranteed change. Let me be among the first to predict that when he fails, he will blame it on the, “Failed policies of the last eight years.”

Sunday, November 23, 2008

This Says it All

Learning Through Music

Who doesn’t use the Alphabet song to remember their letters? Music is such a great way to create long-term retention of important concepts and information. It is not that learning through music is the best way humans learn, it is just that it is so different from traditional methods that the brain builds extra connections to the experience. A lot of my success in teaching struggling learners has come from my use of music for key concepts. Be careful, if you use too much music in a short period of time, your students won’t retain. Pick key concepts you want to teach and give them repeated exposure. Don’t forget to instruct on what they are singing.
Here are two helpful ideas and links:

  1. Rhonda Schilling, from the Madison Metropolitan School District has created, through a grant, the Hip Hop Math Project. No matter what grade-level you are teaching, there is rap music for you. What is great is that she hired a professional rap artist to create recordings. In addition, the background music was created from a generic Hip Hop CD that can be purchased rather cheaply from Amazon. I have had a lot of success using the Mean, Median, and Mode track.

  2. Joe Crone has created a good amount of fun songs that hit on key concepts in a variety of subjects. He provides full lesson plans, vocal tracks, and background music. I enjoy using Geometry Park and the Capitalization Song with my students to great success. If you like him, your school and book him to do cultural arts programs.
  3. Ron Clark, winner of numerous teaching awards including the Disney Teacher of the Year, uses rap and music to help his struggling learners. He offers his original music through his site.

    For those of you, who are not musically inclined, don’t worry. The kids don’t care how horrific you are. Anyway, just make them do all the work.

    A useful opinion and review from Bryan

The Problem with Liberals Is...

The problem with liberals is that, I’m sorry, but they’re stupid. Now, I am not just name-calling here. Refer to the following list of evidence:

  1. The most incompetent employees where I work are all liberals.
  2. The most incompetent employees where you work are all liberals.
  3. The dumbest celebrities you can find are all liberals. Congratulations, Paris Hilton agrees with you!
  4. The laziest people in this country are all liberals.
  5. Washington D.C., the crack and crime capitol of the world, votes over 96% liberal.
  6. Tree huggers are liberals.
  7. Jimmy Carter is a liberal.
  8. College students, who have no responsibilities in life, are overwhelmingly liberal.
  9. Terrorists endorse liberals.

Now, republicans have their list of retards. The difference is that republicans quickly condemn them and support sending them to retard camp. And, the list is short. As evidence of the general stupidity of liberals, most recently, Obama supporters, I refer you to the following YouTube video. Please view the actual Zogby results as scientific evidence at Thanks to John Ziegler for his ongoing work.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Teacher Conferences – What Parents Need to Know – A Useful Opinion

As a teacher, I can soundly say that the parent-teacher conference can be one of the most valuable experiences, or the most useless. What makes or breaks the teacher conference is the attitude of the parent(s) coming in. Now, for argument sake, forget about the “bad” teachers and let’s talk mainstream. Your child’s teacher wants him or her to succeed. Despite all the discussion in the education world about strategies to motivate, engage, and better manage a classroom, the number one factor effecting your child’s education is your positive involvement. The following list will help you prepare for your parent-teacher conference in a way that will yield the best results for your child:

  1. Be on time: Oh my goodness, there is nothing that annoys a teacher more than a parent who shows up late. This is mainly due to the fact the teacher has up to thirty conferences and your lateness will set them behind for all the remaining conferences. This then aggravates parents who are on-time. It’s a big downward spiral.

  2. Be prepared to hear that your child is not an angel: Because he or she is NOT. Your son or daughter is a child; they behave like it all the time.

  3. Do not blame the teacher: Your child’s behavior problems are not the teacher’s fault. Your child’s poor grades are not your teacher’s fault. The second you start looking to place blame on a teacher instead of working with him or her on solutions is the second the conference fails to be useful. The teacher should have a plan already developed to help with either situation. They won’t blame you (to your face), so don’t blame them (to their face).

  4. Know what your child is learning and expected to do: Know your child’s schedule and the objectives they are working on. This allows you to go home and support the learning. Know the homework expectations. There is no excuse for parents not knowing what the daily homework assignments are.

  5. Ask questions: Your child’s teacher is a trained professional. Parents are fond of telling those with no children that they just don’t understand. We’ll, until you are responsible for the education, safety, and well being of thirty kids for 180 days with no spanking rights, then YOU don’t understand. If you have a question, ask the teacher. Don’t leave a conference confused.

  6. You are not a professional: Do not go into a conference with the attitude that you know how to best educate children. I once had a parent basically explain to me that I sucked as a teacher. He based his wealth of knowledge on the fact that he coaches eleven ten year old boys for one hour, once a week. Because I know what was best for his child in that situation, I said nothing.

  7. Your child lies too: Children bend the truth or outright lie to improve their situation. The teacher is an adult; they have no reason to lie about your child’s behavior. Accept what your child tells you, but verify.

  8. Understand that teachers have little to no time: I know you have little to no time too, but parents love to come in with special requests. For example, my favorite line is, “Why didn’t you call and tell me Johnny had a book report?” Because I am not your child’s secretary. If your child is not bringing graded work home, YOU need to call the teacher. If your child constantly says they have no homework, YOU need to call your child’s teacher.

Clearly, this list is from a teacher’s perspective. I feel much better that this rant is out. I guess I can go to bed now. Let’s make this fun, add your list from a parent’s perspective. Bring it on!

How Is Your Prayer Life?

Recently, my pastor asked the congregation, “How do you feel about your prayer life?” audible moans and groans filled the sanctuary. Why is it that no one ever feels that their prayer life is right where it should be?

It is because we can never be perfect. We can only strive to be more like Jesus. We have a false belief that we are somehow in control. It is when we inevitably lose control that we begin reflecting on our prayer life. The absolute need for prayer is laid out throughout scripture (click here for specifics). I believe God is pleased with our prayer life when we actively apply it to our lives and constantly reflect on its use in our life. I reflect by asking myself questions like…Am I making decisions without asking God for his wisdom? Am I thanking God for all the good in my life? Am I asking the Lord for what I need? Am I seeking God’s guidance even when I feel in control? The answer to these questions and others is almost never a yes. But I do not scold myself; rather seek Gods help in adjusting my priorities.

Don’t groan when thinking about your prayer life, or fall into the trap of comparing it to others. If you truly believe in the power of prayer and believe in the crucified and resurrected Son of God, Jesus Christ, then reflect on how you can apply these truths, as Jesus demonstrated. Remember, you are never in control and take steps to reflect on your prayer life.

Please, I welcome your thoughts on such an important element in the life of a Christian, prayer.

Overcoming Your Feelings in the Economy

Why you need to overcome you feelings in this ...

The American economy is not going anywhere. We are, and will remain, the world's economic leader. When the American market stumbles, the foreign markets follow. The essential understanding you need to have is that the market is going to rebound and rebound fast. Right now, poor decisions on the part of government and business have caused the banking industry to crash. Now, also as a result of government, unions, and poor business practice, the Big Three American automotive companies are in danger. These are serious issues that should instill real concern in every American. However, American's still need mortgages and still need cars. Therefore, the market will eventually stabilize. Remember the disastrous effects of September 11, 2001 on the economy? The airlines have learned to adjust and the economy reached new heights.

The question for you is...will you take of advantage of the current market economy? Warren Buffet has recently invested 100% of his wealth into the economy. Why? Because he understands the market will return and he enjoys making money. In the past months, I have lost 50% of my savings that are invested in mutual funds. This amounts to thousand of dollars! My reaction, transfer every last penny I have to spare into the mutual fund accounts. This is why... Before the economic downturn, the value per share I own was about $50. Now, the value is $21. First, I have absolutely no doubt the price per share will not only go back up to $50, but will far exceed it. Consequently, I stand to make a lot of money the more shares I purchase at the current low price. For example, if I buy 500 shares at a total cost to me of $12,500 ($25 x 500), then the value of those 500 shares will be $25,000 when the price reaches $50 and $37,500 when the price reaches $75 per share. Ric Edelman, CEO of one of the nation’s top financial advising companies, pointed out recently on his weekly radio show on , that the market usually rebounds 30% very quickly once it has bottomed-out. This means I could potentially see my $37,500 in just one year.

Certainly, you should never invest money that you don’t have. But this economy has produced a once in a lifetime buying opportunity. Now is not the time to sell. If you are selling now due to fear of the economy, then you are selling low. This violates the principle of buying low and selling high. If you are waiting for the market to rebound, trouble. By the time you realize the rebound is occurring, you will be buying high. If you are unsure how to start, contact a local financial investor and get help. Don’t miss out! By the way, are you maxing out your 403b and 403k account contributions?

Thoughtfully submitted by Bryan Johnson