Reality Check: Senate moving forward on Internet Tax Mandate

Between the Boston bombing and the ricin laced letters sent to members of Congress and the White House, it might be easy to miss a bill moving forward in the U.S. Senate. One that would mean every product you buy online will more expensive. Senators say this bill is about “fairness”, but is it?

via Reality Check: Senate moving forward on Internet Tax Mandate.

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Romney: I Would Repeal ObamaCare

If you believe this ……..I have some swamp land I’d like to sell you!!!

Mitt Romney: I Would Repeal ObamaCare

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (R) said this weekend during a highly anticipated speech to New Hampshire Republicans that he would repeal the federal healthcare law.

While speaking in the key early presidential primary state, the likely candidate went after President Obama’s healthcare law and defended the Massachusetts healthcare law he signed as governor that has come under fire from Republicans.

 

“I would repeal ObamaCare,” he said, according to The Boston Globe. “My experience has taught me that the states are the place where healthcare programs for the uninsured should be crafted, just as the Constitution provides. ObamaCare is bad law constitutionally, it’s bad policy, it’s bad for American families. And that’s one reason why President Obama will be a one-term president.”

Romney’s comments during the Carroll County Lincoln Day Dinner are some of his strongest against the federal healthcare law, arguably the Obama agenda item Republican voters dislike most.

The way he addressed Obama’s law, as well as his own, could preview his strategy on the campaign trail, should he decide to officially enter the race. The Massachusetts law could be one of Romney’s biggest political vulnerabilities in a GOP primary field.

He told the audience that his law is not perfect, but that it beats a “federal takeover” of the nation’s healthcare system.

“Our experiment wasn’t perfect. Some things worked; some things didn’t. Some things, I’d change,” he said. “But one thing I would never do is usurp the constitutional power of states with a one-size-fits-all federal takeover.”

In recent weeks, several potential candidates, such as Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour (R) and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R), and other key Republicans like House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (Wis.) have attacked the bill critics have dubbed “RomneyCare” as a failed approach that mirrors the president’s plan.

The fact that Romney made his argument in New Hampshire is also significant: Winning the state during the GOP primary could be crucial for capturing momentum during the campaign.

Romney finished second in the state to Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) during the 2008 presidential primary, and the former governor spent much time in the state helping candidates during the last election. Both of the state’s House seats flipped to the GOP in 2010. Saturday night’s speech was Romney’s first appearance in the Granite State since the midterms.

Romney also rolled out other parts of his message, criticizing Obama’s handling of the economy and dubbing the nation’s economic woes the “Obama Misery Index.”

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Darpa Wants to See Inside Your House

While I was reading this I had to ask myself………what is the U.S. military doing operating on U.S. soil? What about Posse comitatus, you know that law passed in 1878 to prevent the military from doing law enforcement inside the U.S. borders?  If you don’t know what Posse Comitatus is Read Here:

Darpa Wants to See Inside Your House

The Pentagon wants to be able to peer inside your apartment building — picking out where all the major rooms, stairways, and dens of evil-doers are.

The U.S. military is getting better and better at spotting its enemies, when they’re roaming around the streets. But once those foes duck into houses, they become a whole lot harder to spot. That’s why Darpa, the Defense Department’s way-out research arm, is looking to develop a suite of tools for “external sensing deep inside buildings.” The ultimate goal of this Harnessing Infrastructure for Building Reconnaissance (HIBR) project: “reverse the adversaries’ advantage of urban familiarity and sanctuary and provide U.S. Forces with complete above- and below-ground awareness.”

Darpa doesn’t come out and say it openly.  But it appears that the agency wants these HIBR gadgets to be able to track the people inside these buildings, as well. Why else would these sensors be required to “provide real-time updates” once U.S. troops enter the building? Perhaps there’s more about the people-spotting tech, in the “classified appendix” to HIBR’s request for proposals.

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Darpa’s Visibuilding program uses a kind of radar to scan structures. The problem isn’t sending the radio frequency (RF) energy in.  It’s “making sense of the data produced from all the reflected signals” that come back, Henry Kenyon wrote in a recent Signal magazine article. Besides processing data from the inside a structure, the system also must filter a large amount of RF propagation in the form of randomly reflected signals. Although radar technologies exist that can track people in adjacent rooms, it is much more difficult to map an entire building. “Going through one wall is not that bad, but a building is basically an RF hall of mirrors. You’ve got signals bouncing all over the place,” Darpa program manager Dr. Edward J. Baranoski says. Field trials are supposed to get underway this fall.

http://blog.wired.com/defense/2008/10/darpa-see-throu.html


FAIRNESS DOCTRINE: DEMS GET SET TO MUZZLE THE RIGHT?

There is certainly nothing fair about the “fairness doctrine”….since posting this article I found several other good ones you might want to read along with this one:

Nothing Fair About Fairness Doctrine

Rigging The Debate

Reject Orwellian Calls For Broadcast “Fairness”

Pulling The Plug

‘Fairness’ Follies

By BRIAN C. ANDERSON
SHOULD Barack Obama win the presidency and Democrats take full control of Congress, next year will see a real legislative attempt to bring back the Fairness Doctrine – and to diminish conservatives’ influence on broadcast radio, the one medium they dominate.

Yes, the Obama campaign said some months back that the candidate doesn’t seek to re-impose this regulation, which, until Ronald Reagan’s FCC phased it out in the 1980s, required TV and radio broadcasters to give balanced airtime to opposing viewpoints or face steep fines or even loss of license. But most Democrats – including party elders Nancy Pelosi, John Kerry and Al Gore – strongly support the idea of mandating “fairness.” (That’s probably because liberal talk radio failed on it’s own.)

Would a President Obama veto a new Fairness Doctrine if Congress enacted one? It’s doubtful.

The Fairness Doctrine was an astonishingly bad idea. It’s a too-tempting power for government to abuse. When the doctrine was in effect, both Democratic and Republican administrations regularly used it to harass critics on radio and TV.

Second, a new Fairness Doctrine would drive political talk radio off the dial. If a station ran a big-audience conservative program like, say, Laura Ingraham’s, it would also have to run a left-leaning alternative. But liberals don’t do well on talk radio, as the failure of Air America and indeed all other liberal efforts in the medium to date show.(That’s probably because the majority of Americans aren’t liberals.) Stations would likely trim back conservative shows so as to avoid airing unsuccessful liberal ones.

Then there’s all the lawyers you’d have to hire to respond to the regulators measuring how much time you devoted to this topic or that. Too much risk and hassle, many radio executives would conclude. Why not switch formats to something less charged – like entertainment or sports coverage?

For those who dismiss this threat to freedom of the airwaves as unlikely, consider how the politics of “fairness” might play out with the public. A Rasmussen poll last summer found that fully 47 percent of respondents backed the idea of requiring radio and television stations to offer “equal amounts of conservative and liberal political commentary,” with 39 percent opposed. (The 47% probably didn’t fully understand the consequences of the “fairness doctrine”, which is anything but fair.)

Liberals, Rasmussen found, support a Fairness Doctrine by 54 percent to 26 percent (Yeah, that’s the only way they can stay on the air for any length of time), while Republicans and unaffiliated voters were more evenly divided. The language of “fairness” is seductive.

Even with control of Washington and public support, Dems would have a big fight in passing a Fairness Doctrine. Rush Limbaugh & Co. wouldn’t sit by idly and let themselves be regulated into silence, making the outcome of any battle uncertain. But Obama and the Democrats also plan other, more subtle regulations that would achieve much the same outcome.

He and most Democrats want to expand broadcasters’ public-interest duties. One such measure would be to impose greater “local accountability” on them – requiring stations to carry more local programming whether the public wants it or not. The reform would entail setting up community boards to make their demands known when station licenses come up for renewal. The measure is clearly aimed at national syndicators like Clear Channel that offer conservative shows. It’s a Fairness Doctrine by subterfuge.

Obama also wants to relicense stations every two years (not eight, as is the case now), so these monitors would be a constant worry for stations. Finally, the Democrats also want more minority-owned stations and plan to intervene in the radio marketplace to ensure that outcome.

It’s worth noting, as Jesse Walker does in the latest Reason magazine, that Trinity Church, the controversial church Obama attended for many years, is heavily involved in the media-reform movement, having sought to restore the Fairness Doctrine, prevent media consolidation and deny licenses to stations that refuse to carry enough children’s programming.

Regrettably, media freedom hasn’t been made an issue by the McCain campaign, perhaps because the maverick senator is himself no fan of unbridled political speech, as his long support of aggressive campaign-finance regulation underscores. But the threat to free speech is real – and profoundly disturbing

http://www.nypost.com/seven/10202008/postopinion/opedcolumnists/dems_get_set_to_muzzle_the_right_134399.htm