Saturday, May 28, 2011

Didn't Budge It

By Stilton Jarlsberg

Didnt Budge It

Here at Hope n' Change, we were initially skeptical of Barack Obama's claims that he could get politicians of both parties to "reach across the aisle" and meet in agreement. But that's exactly what happened Wednesday when the Senate voted on Mr. Obama's proposed budget and decided that it emitted such a pungent stench that not a single Senator, Republican or Democrat, supported it.

The president's $3.7 trillion budget, first proposed in February, was notable for making absolutely no attempt to rein in deficit spending or reduce our national debt. Still, you'd think that the president would have picked up at least a couple of mercy votes from his party, just to keep him from looking like a complete fiscal ignoramus.

Unfortunately, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has had his arm in a sling since injuring himself in a fall recently, and was thus unable to lift the ten-foot-pole he would have required to vote for the president's proposal. And other Senate Democrats didn't want to find any portion of their anatomies in a sling when having to answer to voters about how they could support a budget which seemed designed to make things worse.

So with a vote of 97-0, the president has managed to get the first and only unanimous negative Senate vote of this session.

In other countries, this would be referred to as "a vote of no confidence." Come to think of it, that's what we call it over here, too.

See more great Webcomics at Hope n' Change

Friday, May 27, 2011

PA Honors Families of Arch-Terrorists Serving Life Sentences for the Murder of Hundreds

This is sad. People glorifying EVIL.

PA Honors Families of Arch-Terrorists Serving L..., posted with vodpod

Pennsylvania Vouchers - A Correction and Response

There was a serious mistake in yesterday’s DR News. We wrote: “According to the Senate’s official fiscal note, only about 8% of vouchers would go to poor children in the lowest performing schools. Nearly 67% of the vouchers would go to children in middle-class families who already send their children to private and religious schools.”

In fact, all of the children to be served are low-income children, not middle-class children, in the years described in the Senate’s fiscal note. A special thanks to Pete DeCoursey at for setting us straight.

We apologize for this error. However, it does allow us to respond to questions and concerns raised by readers, all in the context of whether taxpayers are getting value for their money.

Vouchers are being sold as a way for children to leave low-performing public schools. 

However, the overwhelming majority of students who will get vouchers already have left public schools (or never were in them), whether they were low-performing or not.

Also, they are attending schools of unknown quality. In the absence of a universal system of academic and financial accountability, it is hard to justify requiring taxpayers to support private and religious schools that may, in fact, be worse than the public schools. It also begs the question of whether students in nonpublic schools really need a state subsidy if their parents already can afford to send their children to nonpublic schools. Shouldn’t voucher money be reserved for poor students whose parents cannot afford to make that choice?

In the beginning, the voucher program is limited to students in low-performing public schools. In the second year, the program expands to students in the attendance area of low-performing schools, regardless of whether the student actually attends the school, including students already in nonpublic schools. By the third year, the program expands statewide, providing tax-funded vouchers for nonpublic schools, regardless of how well the public schools perform or how poorly the nonpublic schools perform. The question of whether taxpayers are getting value for their money is conspicuous.

Several readers wrote to ask what the difference is to taxpayers whether money goes to a public or nonpublic school as long as the child is being educated. Even assuming that the schools are of the same academic quality, there still are important differences.

Attending public schools is not just requirement (unless the student attends some other school or is home-schooled); it is a legally enforceable right. It also is a constitutional duty of the General Assembly to ensure that public schools are “thorough and efficient.” There is no such legally enforceable right to attend a private or religious school and no mandate for the General Assembly to support non-public schools or ensure their quality.

Further, when public money (acquired by force of law in the form of taxes) supports public schools, there is a continuing public benefit. The money isn’t used just to pay salaries. It pays for books in the library and the classroom, computers and white boards, science labs, building maintenance, machinery for vocational programs, and a host of other things that continue to be public assets. The same is not true of money that goes to non-public schools because the public loses the lasting benefit of those dollars. Instead, a private or religious school gets that benefit at the expense of the public.

Please support our work with a tax-deductible contribution. They hate it when you do that (some of them anyway).
Click here  or send a donation to Democracy Rising PA, P.O. Box 618, Carlisle, PA 17013.

This is a correction to the previous article:  Pennsylvania's Voucher Math

(Editor's response: Ahh, but we all know that the teacher's union really runs the show and they aren't governed by the Parents or any Government oversight. They are more interested in the school teachers and their dues than they are in educating our children! Look at the  past and present record of the crap they are piling on our children under the guise of education!!! And NO ONE, NOT the Parents and NOT the Government is able to change this abysmal curriculum!

No, Public (Government) Schools are the WORST option. Home Schooling has consistently proven to be the best with Private and Religious Schools in 2nd place as a whole.  ---Al)

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Pennsylvania's Voucher Math

Please Note: There is a correction to this article at: Pennsylvania Vouchers - A Correction and Response

  • Why should parents who get vouchers receive more in taxpayer subsidies than they pay in taxes?
  • How much does a public school really save when a student leaves for a non-public school?
  • What are the real costs to a non-public school when a voucher student arrives?

Because accountability is a fundamental concern for DR, the February 15 edition of DR News  presented serious problems with Senate Bill 1, the proposal to send some students to private and religious schools with tax-funded vouchers. The problems dealt with a complete lack of academic and financial accountability among schools that would receive tax dollars.

Since then, Senate Bill 1 has been amended, but none of those amendments has made the proposal any more accountable than it was in February. One new requirement for student testing in non-public schools does not include the same tests that public school students must take and therefore gives parents no real basis of comparison. Non-public schools may choose the norm-referenced, standardized test that will make them look best, not a test that demonstrates mastery of the state's mandated curriculum.

Because giving taxpayers value for their money is another fundamental concern for DR, we now look at the murky math surrounding vouchers. Officially, the average voucher would cost taxpayers $7,041 per student in the first year (2011-12), growing to $7,253 per student in the second year (2012-13).

The bottom line is that a $7,253 voucher for just one student is more than a typical household pays in state sales and income taxes plus local property taxes in a year, which is $5,852 at most. A household that gets vouchers for two students would receive a subsidy of $14,506  more than twice what they pay in taxes. This begs the question:

  • Why should parents who get vouchers receive more in taxpayer subsidies than they pay in taxes?

Doing the math.
In 2009, the median household income in PA was $48,172. The annual state income tax, assuming that there was no non-taxable income, was no more than $1,479 (3.07% times $48,172). Click here  for the US Census data.

Using a five-year average (2005-2009), the median local property tax in the median PA county (Washington County) was $1,483. Click here  for the analysis by the Tax Foundation (warning: it takes a while to load).

That's a total of $2,962 in state income and local property taxes. If the median household also paid sales taxes on all of its income  a ridiculous assumption, but one that creates the best case for vouchers  add another $2,890 (6% times $48,172).

That's a total in state and local taxes of $5,852 per year for the median household.

The other voucher math questions are far more difficult to estimate, but they continue to be worth asking. To pass a voucher bill without answering them, we believe, would be irresponsible.

  • How much does a public school really save when a student leaves for a non-public school? The public school cannot shut down a classroom or turn down the heat. The actual savings are probably in the hundreds of dollars, not the thousands public schools will lose for each voucher student.
  • What are the real costs to a non-public school when a voucher student arrives? Even several students spread around several grades could not raise costs by the thousands of dollars per student the non-public school would receive for each student.

Vouchers are not about poor children, and they're not about better schools.
Who really benefits from vouchers? Although the rhetoric portrays vouchers as a way to help poor children escape troubled public schools for better private and religious schools, the voucher plan is not guaranteed to do either. According to the Senate's official fiscal note, only about 8% of vouchers would go to poor children in the lowest performing schools. Nearly 67% of the vouchers would go to children in middle-class families who already send their children to private and religious schools. Click here  for the analysis by the Education Law Center-PA, which includes a link to the fiscal note.

Nor is there proof that non-public schools provide a better education for poor children, according to studies of the nation's longest-running voucher experiment in Milwaukee. This has led some former voucher supporters to become voucher opponents, as noted in a May 23 Philadelphia Inquirer article, Pennsylvania: Voucher Ground Zero.

"African-American students in Milwaukee have scores on National Assessment of Educational Progress that are below those of African-American students in Mississippi, Alabama and Louisiana," said Diane Ravitch, a former high-ranking education official in the George H.W. Bush administration who once favored vouchers but now opposes them. "Vouchers helped no one."

But Senate Bill 1 is certain to hurt tens of thousands of children who cannot take advantage of vouchers and who will remain in schools that have dramatically less money to sustain the gains of recent years, much less make additional needed improvements.

To be clear, DR does not oppose vouchers per se. We oppose the lack of accountability and the inability of the voucher proposal to make financial sense and therefore provide value for taxpayers.

The final question is whether voucher supporters will fix these conspicuous problems.

Please support our work with a tax-deductible contribution. They hate it when you do that (some of them anyway).
Click here  or send a donation to Democracy Rising PA, P.O. Box 618, Carlisle, PA 17013.

Thank you!

Please Note: There is a correction to this article at: Pennsylvania Vouchers - A Correction and Response

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Gassing Up with Obama

RightChange releases new Politizoid "Gassing Up with Obama". Gas prices continue to climb at a steady rate. Rather than drilling and taking action to stop the crisis at the pump, the Obama Administration is busy telling Americans what they should do.
(It's Obama's American Oil Dependency/Slavery --Al)

Gassing Up with Obama, posted with vodpod

Come Out, Come Out Wherever You Are - our Nation Needs a Leader

Carol A.TaberBy Carol A. Taber    President – Family Security Matters

Republicans, we’ve got a problem.  Or better said, boy, do we have an opportunity!

All our putative frontrunners (ever narrowing) are either retreads, dull, old, polarizing, odd, not trustworthy, not ready, or not telegenic.  They have excess baggage, brain deficits, name recognition challenges, peculiar wives, policy mistakes, even less experience than Obama had in 2008, and/or shortages of charisma.  Even so, many people — if not all Republicans and the majority of independents — gladly would vote for these candidates over the unpopular Obama any day of the week; yet, despite the fact that this current president is eminently beatable, no new, exciting face has yet stepped forward to claim the crown, or to electrify the crowd.

And why ever not?  Two recent polls show Obama to be nearly dead in the water.  The numbers from these polls, for an incumbent, are devastatingly ominous.  The Hill newspaper’s recent poll shows that nearly half of American voters (46 percent) say they feel worse off than they did a year ago.  And then the Fox News poll revealed that enormous numbers of Republicans (82 percent) and independents (71 percent) think the country is now weaker than it was five years ago.

What opposition candidate would not want to jump into this slam dunk? America is crying out for a candidate to bring true (as my friend Ruth King says)…change and hope.

Republicans are disappointed too.  A pollster said recently that 75% of the GOP base is unhappy with its candidate selection for 2012.  But what should Republicans do?  First, we’ll have to get over our pesky habit of choosing the “next guy in line,” journeymen who masquerade as stars.  Folks like lukewarm Bob Dole in 1996 and lukecold John McCain in 2008, who naturally enough went down to defeat to electoral steamrollers like Bubba the Philanderer and The Stranger With No Background — candidates who, in their own right, would otherwise have been truly lousy choices.  We can’t afford to repeat this senseless pattern.

Continue reading – click here

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Israeli Born Kiss Star Gene Simmons on '67 Borders: 'Obama Has No F--king Idea What World is Like'

By Noel Sheppard

Most Americans are probably familiar with outspoken Kiss star Gene Simmons, but likely didn't know that he was born and partially raised in Israel.

With this in mind, when he was asked by CNBC's Jane Wells what he thought about President Obama's suggestion that Israel's borders be redrawn to pre-1967 levels, Simmons replied, "He has no f--king idea what the world is like because he doesn’t have to live there" (video follows with transcript and commentary):

Read more:

Israeli Born Kiss Star Gene Simmons on '67 Bord..., posted with vodpod

Thursday, May 19, 2011

ObamaCare Regulations Can Crush Businesses

Uploaded by ALGNewsNetwork

The concept of forcing companies to use a certain health care program can be devastating. Reporter Frank McCaffrey spoke with's John Vinci about this government imposed plan.

ObamaCare Regulations Can Crush Businesses, posted with vodpod

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

92-Year-Old Palestinian Woman Gloats Over 1929 Rape-Massacre, Wants Encore

Uploaded by MEMRITVVideos

From Arutz Sheva:
As the world is subjected to a hail of propaganda from Arabs regarding the 1948 “disaster” inflicted upon them by the creation of the state of Israel, Arab press watchdog MEMRI has released a video that places the Arab claims in perspective ...
See photos and more Israel news:

92-Year-Old Palestinian Woman Gloats Over 1929 ..., posted with vodpod

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Uncle Jay Explains the Osama Versions: May 9, 2011

Uploaded by UncleJayExplains

Osama-Rama! Osama is now like Elvis, enjoying a great popular surge thanks to the ultimate career move. Uncle Jay explains every version of exactly what happened!

Uncle Jay Explains the Osama Versions: May 9, 2011, posted with vodpod

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Is Obama Right Not to Release Bin Laden Photos?

Uploaded by patriotupdatereport on May 5, 2011

Columnist Ann Coulter sounds off on administration's decision not to release pictures of Al Qaeda leader; as does Sarah Palin!

H/T The Patriot Update

Is Obama Right Not to Release Bin Laden Photos? , posted with vodpod

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Monday, May 02, 2011

American Muslim Organization Applauds US Effort to Bring Osama Bin Laden to Justice



American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD)

PHOENIX (May 1, 2011) - Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser, a devout Muslim and the president and founder of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD) issued the following statement regarding President Obama's announcement that the United States had killed Osama Bin Laden:

"This evening's announcement by President Obama that the United States had carried out an operation in Abbottabad, Pakistan that resulted in the death of Osama Bin Laden is a victory for the United States of America against the face of Islamist terror and the man who perpetrated war crimes against our nation on September 11, 2001. Most importantly this will allow the American people and especially the 9/11 families to begin to get a degree of closure.

This operation is a testament to the dedication and steadfastness of the United States military, our homeland security, and intelligence community. There is no finer force than the men and women of the United States military who defend and secure our freedom every day.

The death of Osama Bin Laden is significant because it closes a chapter in our war against Islamist extremists. But make no mistake this war is far from over. Bin Laden was but one head on the Hydra that is the Islamist movement. It is our hope that Bin Laden's death will serve as a means to transition this war from a reactionary approach to quell violence to a proactive war of ideas against the ideology that breeds the extremism.

We will not be free of terror until we openly confront the ideology of political Islam which is the underlying fuel for the militant Islamism of groups like Al Qaeda. To deliver true national security we must demonstrate the same dedication and steadfastness in creating a liberty narrative within the Muslim conscience as we did in hunting Bin Laden."

About the American Islamic Forum for Democracy

The American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) charitable organization. AIFD's mission advocates for the preservation of the founding principles of the United States Constitution, liberty and freedom, through the separation of mosque and state. For more information on AIFD, please visit our website at

OSAMA BIN LADEN IS DEAD! – Breaking News Updates as they occur

Posted 05/01/2011

Osama-bin-Laden is Dead


Great News!!!!

Osama Bin Laden is dead!

Updates will be posted as they occur.

Confirmed from six reliable sources that Osama was killed by an American bomb about a week ago.

The Military have been waiting for confirmation from DNA testing for positive proof before making an announcement.

Update #1

There are conflicting reports of the cause and the day of Osama bin Laden’s death.
one day seems a bit too soon to have DNA test results completed.
I don’t know who’s right, but the big thing is he is DEAD!
For that I am grateful to our American Military Heroes for being over there!

Breaking News Updates as they occur

The Death of Osama bin Laden

from VOA News: News by VOA News 0545 UTC – The United States is warning its citizens around the world to be on the alert for potential anti-American violence in response to the announcement of Osama bin Laden’s death. The State Department issued a statement early Monday saying U.S. citizens in sensitive locations “are strongly… [Read more…]

We Got The SOB! Bin Laden Dead


We Got The SOB! Bin Laden Dead from YID With LID by Jeff Dunetz For almost ten years we have heard the same thing over and over, how the heck does a six foot four Arab who needs dialysis evade capture or death.  We don’t have to hear that anymore.  Today it has been announced… [Read more…]

Bin Laden Dead

Osama bin Laden

By Andrew Bolt The US reports that it has the body of Osama bin Laden, the al Qaeda chief.. UPDATE Fox believes bin Laden was killed by a missile. Barack Obama is said to be considering an urgent address to the nation, closer to midnight. What is significance of this? Bin Laden said it best,… [Read more…]

The Death of Osama bin Laden

The war isn't over but this is a great victory for the world!

The Death of Osama bin Laden, posted with vodpod