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Archive for the ‘Flaming Capitalism’ Category

Dear Readers: In honor of October and the Halloween season, as well as giving my usual homage to capitalism, I have some very fun guests for a special session of Canto Talk on Tuesday, Oct. 1 (click here for podcast)!

The first guest will be Scott Ferrel, who is the owner of Chivalry Today, a small business he opened specifically to “create an understanding of, and respect for the principles of a universal standard of ethical and honorable behavior by exploring the history, development, and meaning of the Code Of Chivalry; examining its value, evolution, and applicability in all aspects and eras of society from the Middle Ages to the 21st century; and challenging students, educators, and leaders at all levels to pursue the Knightly Virtues in all of their endeavors.”

His website is devoted exploring the concept of chivalry and how it applies to the modern world. Scott offers a wide array of historical weapons courses, including special programs he puts together for schools and other groups. One of his most recent articles explores this aspect of his business:

School’s back in session – and soon students will be studying the history of the Middle Ages and Renaissance once more. Reading tales of King Arthur and his knights; learning about the politics and culture of medieval Europe; and imagining what life would have been like for a knight or a lady in the 13th or 14th century.
That’s exactly the sort of learning opportunity that Chivalry Today can help with. Many schools put on some sort of Renaissance Festival or History Faire as part of their social studies curriculum, but it can be difficult to make such an event both memorable, and historically accurate (after all, you don’t want to bring in some fantasy role-playing group to muddle up your history lesson). For many Southern California-area schools, the answer to this dilemma is to bring in Chivalry Today’s “Festival of Chivalry” – full-scale team of historical interpreters that come right to your campus or classroom, to give students an up-close look at life in the Middle Ages.
This month, as students get back into the classroom, Chivalry Today is honored to be the focus of the “Salute To Education,” a monthly television segment produced by Cox Communications. You can catch the video on-air throughout the month of September (if you live in San Diego); or check out the segment in the video below.
Chivalry Today would like to thank the Cox production team for their interest in our program, and for putting together a really fine video feature! (We’d also like to thank our team of interpreters for doing their [normal] outstanding job in front of the video cameras.)
If you, or an educator you know, would like to learn more about bringing Chivalry Today’s Festival of Chivalry to your school, please contact us quickly. After this segment hit the airwaves, our school calendar is filling up quickly!

CLICK HERE FOR SCOTT’S CHIVALRY TODAY CONTACT INFORMATION!!!

And we will also be talking to another California entrepreneur who specializes in historical costuming. It is Kirsti Ovidia Scott of Ovidia 550 AD’s Historically Inspired Garb. She is the personal designer for the Goddess of Capitalism. Here is a look at the red dress she is designing for me, based on Elizabeth Taylor’s outfit in 1963′s “Cleopatra”.

Cleopatra Red Dress

She is so gifted! Here is some more of her work, which features one of Canto Talk’s frequent guests, Barry Jacobsen, on the right!

Her contact information is as follows:

Ovidia 550 AD Facebook Page (click HERE).
Ovidia 550 AD main website (click HERE)
Email: ovidia550ad@rocketmail.com
CONTACT PAGE!

AND: www.etsy.com/shop/OvidiasGarb

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Dear Readers: In homage to a graphic fellow SLOB W.C. Varones shared yesterday.

Mutnodjmet Goddess of Capitalism

I am working on some big things today and tomorrow, so stay tuned. :)

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Dear Readers: I wanted to take a few moments to give thanks to all of you, who have followed many of my hip-breaking adventures this year. As a reward for your honoring the Shrine of Flaming Capitalism so, I wanted to share with you one of my favorite movie scenes (from the movie, Addams Family Values).

I also wanted to give a GODDESS OF CAPITALISM – FLAMING CAPITALISM PROMOTION to 2 specific websites. If you adore the Goddess, then do her bidding: If you plan to shop for the holidays at Amazon.com, then go though either of these sites (their profits become my profits).

LEGAL INSURRECTION - A big thanks to Bill Jacobson for his support, observations, editing and wit. Please check out my new post on Legal Insurrection — and click on the Amazon link to the right!!! (My post – College Diversity Supporters Form Circular Boycott Squad)

CAPTAIN CAPITALISM: A big, big thank you to Aaron Clarey — who kindly links to my history based posts (otherwise, they may have languished in electronic oblivion) . I am a big fan of his book, “Worthless (Indispensable Guide to Choosing the Right College Major“, and will join his haremteam of female editors for his newest publishing endeavor. I am thrilled by work with College Insurrection also ties into “Worthless” so perfectly.

I also wanted to thank Silvio Canto of Canto Talk for making me his “Executive Producer” and allowing me the opportunity to gain more experience in the newly developing world of podcast radio. It has been a real blessing.

I am adding a “Happy Birthday” to Charles Caesar of DooDoo Economics, who keeps the SLOBs running like a well oiled machine. We are truly going to need citizen journalists more than ever after 2012. I just hope the government keeps its hands off our internet.

And a Thanksgiving round-up from the SLOBS:


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Dear Readers:  Today is a bit of show preparation, which allows me an excuse to highlight some great work by one of the Shrine’s dearest heroes:  Captain Capitalism.  The Captain, also known as Aaron Clarey, will be chatting with Silvio Canto Jr. and myself this Thursday, Aug. 23rd at 7 pm Pacific Time/9 pm on CANTO TALK.

Today, I would like to feature 2 of his works. “Worthless” is a fabulous book covering the outrageous tactics of big education to direct students into degrees that are of no significant economic benefit to them or the country (but enrich big education types needlessly). This leads to his lecture series, “Crusaderism”, which tends to be the ultimate career direction for those who have obtained “Worthless” degrees.

Before I describe both, I want to highlight the fact Aaron is perhaps the best example of a Renaissance Man that I know. He is savvy about economics and finance, which is his profession. He teaches ballroom dancing. He is an amazing photographer, and a badass motorcyclist. He is a wonderfully succinct and engaging author. He has extensive knowledge about cigars and fine alcohol-based beverages. For links to his site that direct you to his varied interests (e.g., Independent Analytics, Seminars/On-Line Courses, Dance Lessons, and Books) – CLICK HERE.

My favorite line from “Worthless” is: THE TRUTH IS NOT OPTIONAL. However, young students are persuaded to obtain college degrees that do not give them skills at real wealth production, as they are persuaded to pursue the “interests” instead of obtaining something actually marketable. In an environment in which the Internet and social medial allows one readily to engage in boutique hobbies, we are in dire need of people who can design and manufacture computers, iPods, DVD players… or materially produce the energy to run them (e.g., petroleum engineers, chemists). As a result, Americans are losing the ability to generate real wealth for themselves, which damages or bottom-line/generantional Gross Domestic Product and directs them into “crusader” careers that steals the wealth from those of us who manage to actually get a worthy degree.

An excerpt that gives your a feel for Aaron’s exceptional sense of humor blended with compelling data to prove his case:

“Here are some [college] degrees that cost you roughly $30,000 in tuition, their much cheaper replacements, and the savings you’d realize:

…Since none of these degrees help increase your employability, you might as well avoid these majors and do it on your own.”

The degrees that are “Worthy” are STEM: Science-Technology-Engineering-Math. Fortunately, I have degrees in Chemsitry, Biochemistry, and Geology; otherwise, I think I would have felt really bad. (I would like to admit, however, that I got the Geology degree because the guys were cute and I like gems: I AM the Goddess of Capitalism, after all!!!). But Aaron did get me thinking about why there seems to be a “wage-gap” between men and women: If you pick a worthless degree, don’t complain when you don’t make as much money as someone who took the time to work toward one that actually was a money-maker!

Ladies: If I can get several science-based degrees, so can you. BONUS – Some of your fellow students will be HOT! As a matter of fact, you can check my ABOUT page to scope out what a dish my geologist husband is. :)

One of the most galling aspects brought to my attention was the fact “Big Education” directs students into worthless degrees because they don’t have to spend quite so much on supplies and equipment (e.g, the cost of chemical analytical machines can range from $1000 into the hundreds of thousandsof dollars). I spent hundreds of dollars for lab courses for supplies and materials. The worthless degrees are basically cash-cows — little money is spent on chairs and podiums, students are forced to buy massively overpriced and inane texts, and the credit hour costs are high. I am constantly hearing about the evils of Big Oil. Actually, oil companies supply something essential to sound economics. Frankly, I consider Big Education to be the villainous entity…especially when you consider this graphic:

Big Education gets away with this theft because it is not PC to attack education. I think that Americans have gotten over “PC” crap, in light of the continuing Tea Party movement. I suspect getting our children into meaningful education programs, or directing them to trades (e.g. Mike Rowe Works) will be a focus of future activism — especially after Instapundit/Glenn Reynolds has documented the “Higher Education Bubble” most thoroughly. I also plan to highlight the fact that this book is also valuable for the “non-young” person looking to get some retraining for a new career.

Finally, those who get worthless degrees tend to become pains in the posterior to us producers. In fact, many of them go into politics! So, I am going to conclude with a compendium of Aaron’s “Crusaderism” video-series. I promise to come back and opine more on this, though I am a little nervous to do so: I somewhat resemble a “Sean Hannity Trophy Wife”(see the second video down the list) . :)

Please watch: These videos are brilliantly entertaining and highly informative.

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Dear Readers:  I will be a guest on CANTO TALK tonight, 7 pm PST/9 pm CT — in which I will talk about being a Tea Party Democrat.   To that end, today’s post is a bit of show prep, as well as a continuation of my dialog with with Capt. Capitalism’s wonderful fans: Explaining the Unexplainable. (MUT note: a big THANKS to the Captain who will soon be joining me on Silvio’s show: Also, please check out this fabulous history piece BY a MAN for MEN).

This time, I will be dealing with women.

Veiled Isis in Herbert Hoover Historic Park

Today, Silvio mulled over the following item: I’ve noticed that you’ve writing a bit about women and showing a little frustration with your gender (see HERE and HERE for specific instances). It is true that women in this country seem a little confused, (i.e., their love affair with Barak Obama). ..{A} a lot of women are for Obama and that is hard to understand.

Yes, when women are confused, they do act in confusing ways!

Then, serendipitously, Instapudnit’s gracious wife Dr. Helen opines: Should Men Open Doors for Women?

 I can understand why men no longer want to open doors or help women. I do feel sad, however, that it has come to a situation where society is at this level. In fact, in my forthcoming book on the war against men, I address how our society is breaking down because men no longer want to, or are even afraid to interact with women and girls.

Yes, this is what happens when 50 years of social experimentation replaces 3 million years of finely honed evolution and thousands of years of culture and history. But we are now where we are, so what can we do?

I think women can shake things up. In fact, I think women are shaking things up..and will continue to do so. Let me start by saying women voter shifted Republican in the 2010 mid-terms (except in California, but I vented about that yesterday). Not because Republicans are awesomely awesome, but because they could see how wretched the economy has become under Team Obama.

In fact, most of the nation’s Tea Party groups were started by women, and many are still lead by women. Women, “mama grizzlies”, are often the gate-keepers of the family finance. So, when gas hits the high $3′s per gallon, and decent bread is costing $5/loaf, and they are working 2 part-time jobs to make up for an unemployed/under-employed spouse, women are pretty keen to target the source of economic hardship.

And when the source of that economic hardship plays golf instead of participates in economic briefings, then they will remove that entity.

And, no, as much as many of like good fashion, Anna Wintour endorsements are not going to persuade us President Obama is worth re-electing.

Obama is trying to spread the meme that Romney is leading a “War on Women”. I am a PUMA: I had front row seats for Team Obama’s war on Clinton, then watched it join with the elite media to take-out Sarah Palin. OBAMA IS A 5-STAR GENERAL IN THE WAR ON WOMEN.

Now, will many women vote for Obama? Sure. For example, the women that I know who are committed to doing so are essentially one-issue voters (focused on abortion rights). And, sadly, many who do vote are not fully informed on the issues, and rely on their traditional history of voting Democratic because of “feel good intentions”. But, they are persuadable, as the 2010 mid-terms indicate.

Also, 30% of businesses are owned by women. Like myself, they enjoy a profit and resent the “you didn’t build that” attitude expressed by the Administration.

And, here is another thing that women don’t like: DESPERATION. And the Obama campaign reeks of desperation. Trying to make it seem that Mitt Romney, who cared for his wife during her bout with cancer, doesn’t have compassion and essentially killed the wife of an auto-worker is not the hallmark of a vibrant, healthy campaign.

However, as

Team Obama gets more desperate, this ad is going to seem like the height of good taste when Nov. 6th rolls around. And desperation is never attractive, even for liberal women.

Silvo pondered something, as he was thinking about a dance form he admires:

In tango, the man leads but with incredible care and respect for the woman. He leads but does not push, that’s a big difference. He earns his leadership role and she gladly accepts because she is being treated like a queen the whole time.

She follows but with total trust and understanding that he will pick up her at the end. He will always be there for her……he won’t let her fall.

I don’t know but I think that too many American girls need a class in the kind of chivalry and respect for women behind the tango dance.

Obama’s Julia really needs it. After all, how can you tango without a man?

Which is a great excuse to share a video with my audience:

The best response I could give to Silvio is this: Women are not all one way, or the other, and dancing is not voting. How women behave and vote goes to who they are: Water seeks its own level. Empowered women who take personal responsibility for themselves will vote one way; dependent women who do not wish to make the most of their freedoms and liberties will choose another. Women need to decide who and what they are and what they will tolerate, and vote accordingly…not vote based on feelings and hope it works out for the best.

I have good hope we will not disappoint the good men in this country on Nov. 6th.

To highlight this point, I want to share some punditry from Silvio’s other Angels:

  • From Jeannie-Ology:  Obama Stoops to New Fundraising Lows, discussing the sleazy and disingenuous tactics used to extract money from small donors by Team Obama.
  • Melanie Sturm:  The welfare state — you didn’t build that:  We didn’t build the welfare state, but now that it’s crumbling and imperiling our way of life, we have the opportunity to transform our government so that it will serve us better. Doing so will renew the moral promise inherent in the American Dream while making it accessible to all.
  • Dr. Illeana Johnson-Paugh (Romanian Conservative): My Trip to the Liberal Zoo - A pizzeria with its doors opened wide in Italian style invited in both patrons and flies. It was hot, expensive, $4 per slice, and it came with an environmental surcharge added to the bill. I love planting trees and caring for the environment, but I hate when people force me to do something by charging a fee to my bill when I am not paying attention and calling it optional online. It reminds me of the involuntary “volunteer” work forced by the communist party on us every month in the country of my birth.

And, then there are my Circle of Mom friends:

  • Lonely Conservative: While Pandering to Women, Obama Gripes About Michelle Not Getting Paid As First Lady :  President Obama spent part of the day pandering to women. In addition to trying to scare them by saying Mitt Romney will take us back to the 1950′s, he also griped about how Michelle doesn’t get paid for being FLOTUS.
  • SittingOnTheEdge: Blame OzzyThe politicization of what is now being investigated as an act of domestic terror began before we learned the perpetrator’s name.  American Power has twitter feeds of both the prominent figures on the left and rank-and-file twitterers (or whatever you call them) demanding more gun control and blaming Michele Bachmann.  Professor Jacobson reports that “Both CNN and Fox News cut away when the U.S. Attorney took the stage and launched a lengthy speech which sounded like an Obama campaign speech.”
  • NoOneOfAnyImport: An Article Full of Fail  (a great fisking of a trite elite media piece) - I love this particular bit of journalistic fail because it admits the larger failure of the leftist powers-that-be:  without conservative attention, darlings of the left like Fluke would remain unnoticed.
  • PoliticalJunkieMom: Uncomfortable Olympic Go(l)d : I’ve watched so much craziness unfold this week on Facebook over the Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day. People I thought to be rational went nuts calling out others (by name!) for their support of “hate chicken” by arguing that they believe in a loving God. I do, too, but I also believe in a facist-free country that allows others the right to free speech. Apparently some speech is more free than others and “the right to not be made uncomfortable” is tolerated much more than the right to express one’s faith. That’s what makes me uncomfortable.

I hope that my post gives gentlemen everywhere feeling a bit better about the women’s vote! As further proof, I offer this remark from a Las Vegas oddsmaker who says Obama is going to lose by a landslide:

*Suburban moms. The issue isn’t contraception…it’s having a job to pay for contraception. Obama’s economy frightens these moms. They are worried about putting food on the table. They fear for their children’s future. This is not good news for Obama.

One last item:  A piece of advice from the Goddess of Capitalism to the Captain’s single, male fans, that is based in 3 million years of evolution.  If you find a women appealing, before going over, see if you can look her in the eye for 5 seconds.  If she returns your glance (especially with a smile), then go over and chat with her — she is interested.  If she turns around promptly, and looks down at her drink, don’t bother.

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Dear Readers:  Being an environmental health and safety professional, I am often called to assist companies preparing for agency inspections.  It is a very stressful time, as my clients strive to come into full compliance with arcane requirements and regulatory minutia that seems to have no bearing on science or common sense.  However, all of my clients work hard to create the healthiest environment and safest work place possible.  So, the Goddess of Flaming Capitalism is in a rage today over the tactless, soulless, vile words of an EPA bureaucrat:  Exciting new EPA enforcement method revealed: Single out a few offenders and crucify them

(Via Weasel Zippers and the Foundry) A video surfaced on Wednesday showing a regional administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency comparing his agency’s philosophy with respect to regulation of oil and gas companies to brutal tactics employed by the ancient Roman army to intimidate its foes into submission.

EPA’s “philosophy of enforcement,” said EPA’s Region VI Administrator Al Armendariz, is “kind of like how the Romans used to conquer little villages in the Mediterranean: they’d go into little Turkish towns somewhere, they’d find the first five guys they’d run into, and they’d crucify them.”

“That town was really easy to manage for the next few years,” Armendariz added.

I invite you to go to fellow SLOB Word Warrior for the video clip featuring this buffoon. UPDATE: HOT AIR recovers the video that the EPA seemingly wanted to have disappear. Yes, the EPA is covered in shame!!!!

I would have to strongly disagree with Armendariz on comparing post-crucifixion results. For you see, the Roman legions often restructured civic management so that there was even more prosperity (e.g. Roman Egypt was extremely productive, as can be attested to by the “Valley of the Golden Mummies” that were the burials of regular merchants and farmers). The Romans brought in a quasi-meritocracy, in which a slave could eventually become free and wealthy (e.g., Gaius Julius Zoilus, the freed slave of Julius Caesar who founded the affluent and cultured city of Aphrodisias). The Romans helped unify their world via language and culture. Hell, they even allowed children to work on farms!!!

There is no way in hell any of Rome’s post-takeover accomplishments resembles those of the Obama Administration’s. And to compare Rome’s bureaucratic efficiencies with those of of the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Labor, Transportation Security Agency (or most other government entities outside of our military) is incomprehensible. And, as a bonus, we now have cultural/race division galore. Instead of meritocracy, Team Obama imposes rampant crony capitalism.

Also, comare PAX ROMANA with POX OBAMA, with the legacy of the Arab Spring and all the other foreign policy chestnuts we will be dealing with for many years!!!

Check out the “If I wanted America to Fail” video via Lipstick Underground for more instances of ineptitude and incompetence that differentiates  the success trajectory of Rome versus the full-of-fail approach of Team Obama/Big Government Minions.

As another example to refute the Armendariz assertion, while Romans had problems dealing with their barbarian invasions, at least they didn’t sue the Governors of provinces that decided to stem the flow of invaders. SoCal Tax Revolt Coalition’s Dawn Wildman had a chance to opine today about the Supreme Court’s hearing on Arizona’s SB 1070:

San Diegans on high court’s take on Ariz. immigration law

This goes to a question of states’ rights, including whether a state has the right to maintain and keep its citizens safe and secure its borders.

We knew Justice Antonin Scalia may be on board for at least most of the law and even justices Clarence Thomas and John Roberts. With Justice Elena Kagan recusing herself, as she should, we could see a divided court at 4-4. I hope this isn’t the case.

The justices seemed worried about the effect of SB 1070 on the Fourth Amendment. They showed real due diligence when it comes to making sure the Constitution is followed in its totality and not just the parts one group or another would like to see supported. I was impressed with how Paul Clement (representing Arizona) handled the questions.

One of the most stunning and interesting aspects of the questioning revealed that the federal government does not seem to be enforcing current laws for dealing with illegal immigration. We are cautiously optimistic that Arizona’s law will remain and other states will then secure their borders.

I will admit that Obama has a certain celebrity complex, like Emperor Nero or Caligula. And Israel was a pain in Rome’s posterior, like it seems to be for Obama. But, I digress with these meaningless similarities.

At least the Roman senators had the decency to offer straight-up bribes for votes. Charles Caesar is following the story of a Spanish firm that is poised to be put in charge of this country’s electronic voting: Scytl… a [Spanish] company which purchased SOE and now will process U.S. election results overseas. From the Scytl About page and confirmed here…Prior to joining Scytl, Mr. Valles was Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer of GlobalNet, a NASDAQ publicly-traded telecommunications company headquartered in Chicago. A quick look at Obama donors from KPMG hits the jackpot. Four pages of Obama donors is definitive of Senior Manager Pere Valles’ team. Anyone who has worked in a consulting company can attest to the “birds of a feather” associations. While not a direct connection to Barack Obama, this is circumstantial evidence.

And while the Romans were game to eat nearly any living thing, including dormice in honey and brown bear, there is no evidence that Fido was on the menu.

VS

As the data plainly indicate, Rome knew how to create wealth. And, despite the fact that Roman soldiers had little qualms about inflicting pain, I would also argue they showed more compassion during their crucifixions than the EPA does during theirs.

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Is unnecessarily insulting to third-world, banana republics everywhere!!!

Dear Readers:  Before I give another pro-capitalism inspired news analysis, I would like to thank everyone who voted for me in the Circle of Moms Top 25 Political Mom’s competition (I am at #38 as of now!!!).  Apparently, like in Ron Paul polling, you can vote more than once — on different days and computers.  So, please help promote the Shrine and its associated SLOBs site and click HERE (how to vote for Temple of Mut).

Now onto the analysis:

It seems when Obama came into office, many city workers in the blue enclave of Los Angeles thought that it meant free gas, as Obama would pay for it.  They got their gas, but it was not “free” (it was worth $7 million) and Obama didn’t pay for it (Los Angeles tax-payers did).  Via Channel 7 ABC in Los Angeles: $7M worth of LA city fuel unaccounted for

The city of Los Angeles is having trouble explaining millions of dollars of missing gasoline and other fuels.

“What I uncovered is startling. We found millions of dollars of unexplained high-risk fuel transactions by city departments,” said City Controller Wendy Greuel.

Greuel released the results of an audit on the city’s fuel use Thursday. She said that some of the missing gasoline may have been used for personal vehicles. The audit showed that millions of gallons of fuel were pumped without any record of where it went, according to the audit.

Of course, this Banana Republic insanity is not confined to the LA Basin: Feinstein Ends Truce, Restarts Water Wars

California’s water wars are back. U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., sent a letter to the Association of California Water Agencies late Tuesday March 27 again pitting North against South.

The letter stated Feinstein was no longer entertaining compromise legislation on House Resolution H.R. 1837, the San Joaquin Valley Water Reliability Act, sponsored by Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Clovis. HR 1837 would have repealed Feinstein’s three-year-old H.R. 146, the Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2009 (formerly called the San Joaquin River Restoration Settlement Act of 2009).

The reason for this action: Feinstein is running for reelection in November and doesn’t want taint her eco-activist credentials in the eyes of her environmentalist political base. Which is rather shocking, because the powers that be seem all aces with the eco-devastation that will be wrought with the Bullet Train. I am still wondering how the greenies can justify the ecological impact of a major transit system — especially since it goes to that den of capitalist inequity — Las Vegas.

I only wish that what goes to Vegas actually stayed in Vegas, but I digress.

But, alas, it seems some tax-payer oriented groups may be to the rescue in the fight to stop this toxic train: Bullet train derailed? Path to demise looking clear! Woo. Hoo.

Monday’s L.A. Times story with this headline — “Bid to appease bullet train critics may violate law” — and this subhead — “Revisions are in conflict with the ballot measure approved by voters and may go against the Obama administration’s plans. Gov. Jerry Brown backs the changes but admits potential legal problems” escaped my notice for a day. But it’s epochal: It points out the clear path to the bullet train’s demise. Sharp attorneys hired by well-heeled opponents of the project — whether they are cities in the Silicon Valley, the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association or Central Valley agribusiness, or all three in tandem — are going to kill this dead in court, using the incredibly specific provisions in Proposition 1A exactly as they were intended: to prevent a boondoggle. Hip hip hooray!

It’s official: GREEN LOGIC IS AN OXYMORON!!!!!!!!

This gem from the Other McCain:

‘Due to Her Excellent Reputation Among California Democrats …’

About Kinde Durkee, a once a trusted treasurer to dozens of California Democrats, who is guilty of  biggest campaign embezzlement case ever to hit U.S. politics.

That pretty much round’s out California’s Banana Republic status quite nicely.

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To conclude this round-up, I would like to thank Zilla for her support of the Shrine during the Circle of Moms voting process (only a couple of more days, so please vote early and often). I would like to encourage everyone to help out this great patriot blogger with some medical expenses (ZILLA-AID-ATHON). I also am going to add MUT’s MOM FRIENDs to the blogroll on the right — no matter where I end up on the list, I will be grateful for making some new friends and having some new sites to enjoy. Such networking will be critical for success in November.

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Dear Readers: A new post from the Shrine’s Prophetess of Finance: Professor Athena. Given the uptick in gas prices, weak Congress, and attacks on constitutionally protected freedoms, it seems most timely. Enjoy!

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You don’t have to be part of the financial industry to know that the past few months have been crazy, with a serious debt crisis in the European Union devolving into economic recession and riots in the streets, making for a challenging environment in which to manage money and investments. As I have listened to the windup for the coming 2012 Presidential election season, I have found it nothing short of astounding that the sitting President of the United States is waging his re-election campaign highlighting the distinctions between the “haves” and “have-nots” in our own country. Class warfare is a new low for politics. Are we not all Americans, united in love for our country’s survival in a difficult economy and faced with problems of a mounting federal deficit? Don’t we all, even the most liberal among us, fear in our hearts the type of creditor-driven meltdown seen in the EU? Don’t we wonder what would happen if China and other creditor nations began to dictate policy to us? The President’s answer to these huge challenges is to drive us farther from a solution by asserting that certain Americans are the villains, have “not played by the rules”, and are “not paying their fair share”. Nowhere is it ever mentioned that the policies of various administrations in Washington, D.C. have contributed to a national entitlement mentality, one which must be changed once and for all if we are to survive. From now on, we are in a battle for the hearts of Americans. We must all choose. Either we have a heart of responsibility for our own individual problems or a heart that expects the solution to come from our federal government. We cannot have both. As our demographics shift to reflect the retiring baby-boomers, what is to stop the current distinctions of class warfare from becoming distinctions between the young and healthy vs. the aged and sick in the name of political expediency?

This observation brings me to a further illustration. I commute to work every morning in the dark, on a highway where traffic moves at 70+ MPH in 3-4 lanes. There are no lights until you reach the metro limits, and even then you would think cars would turn on their lights in order to drive safely. Many don’t. My only conclusion for this phenomenon is that they believe they don’t need their headlamps because they can see. Which they probably can, because OTHER drivers have THEIR headlamps turned on! What totally narcissistic culture we must live in when we cannot be bothered to understand that even though we might be able to see other cars in the dark because of their headlights, they cannot in turn see US in order to avoid an accident! What would happen if everyone thought headlights were optional in the dark?!! Yet this “driving in the dark because I can see everybody else” mentality is indicative of the narcissistic bent in our culture, where everyone else must sacrifice and do the responsible thing so that those who refuse to can survive.

Though loathe to use myself as an illustration, this time I think it important to admit that I am one of the 1%. As part of this minority I want to share details of what has by now been already thoroughly debunked but nevertheless continues to be repeated, that convenient lie about “paying our fair share”. I have for the past 27 years paid over 30% of my income in taxes. Statistics show that members of “the 1%” (throwing out the exceptional billionaires and anecdotal stories) pay an average of almost 20% in taxes, even when taking into consideration passive income and other non-ordinary-income-taxed declarations. Not only do we pay MORE as a group than any other bracket in our nation’s progressive income tax, we also are declared by this President of the United States as the “more fortunate”, but never “hard-working Americans”. We are separated from the President’s distorted truth as the group who has had it easy. Since anecdotal evidence (aka Warren Buffet and his secretary) seems fair, let me use my own biography.

I worked not one but two jobs to support my family, often going without food in the early years (one job was waiting tables, the other was working in the banking and finance job I had chosen as my career). I went to work in the morning before it was light most mornings and came home when it was dark, often putting in 9-10 hour days and often not being paid any overtime because I was “on salary”. Even after I worked by way into promotions as an investment portfolio analyst and eventually into fixed income sales my days were far longer and much more stressful than the average job. I never went to lunch (still don’t), often worked through weekends to stay up on my reading and study material, all while passing numerous securities tests and requirements for proficiency. I missed school programs and parents days, and have never had more than a one week’s vacation. You can assume that being referenced as other than “hard-working” and instead “fortunate” makes me resentful, and you would be correct.

But being a member of “the 1%” means much more than the mere fact that I have worked hard to get here. Far more important is what I do with it. One of my father’s sayings was, “It’s not what you have; it’s what you do with it that counts”. This is a philosophy I live by. My income goes to support at least six employees on a monthly basis who are sole proprietorships and for which the check I pay them represents both a dependable and essential part of their income. Charity is the first thing deducted (after the federal government takes their share) from my income each month, supporting my church and also my local community. Ask yourself (as I do) if you think the federal government is going to employ as many small business people at a fair wage, or give as much directly in order to support those in need, after deducting their administrative cut and expanding their overhead to decide who they will anoint for their trickled-down largesse. I don’t wait on the federal government to meet needs I see around me, whether it is the guy holding up a sign at a traffic light or flood victims who need food and shelter or young people in a bad neighborhood who need a safe place to play and go to school. I give, directly from my hand to theirs.

The current White House budget announced today proposes one of the largest single tax increases ever in our history. It will include many special groups for hand-outs, this after a big press release last week trumpeted a hand-out for those not paying their home loans, made possible through a legal settlement (read “shakedown”) of various of the largest U.S. financial institutions (who were “bailed out” during the financial crisis by taxpayers, according to the White House). Cloaked in the phrase of “fair share”, ask yourself where in that is the bonus for you as a taxpayer who helped during the financial crisis with your tax dollars, yet have responsibly paid your bills on time. Ask yourself why you are never mentioned or praised as “hard-working”. Ask yourself, if you are in construction, why the real estate market is having trouble recovering, when no one is certain from one day to the next whether or not title of ownership matters when a homeowner is in non-payment status. Ask yourself if banks want to lend money on real estate in such an unpredictable and highly expensive regulatory environment. Ask yourself why you can’t work on the new Keystone XL pipeline, or in the coal industry, or in off-shore oil drilling. Ask yourself what the current administration’s definition of “green jobs” is (take note that the EPA has targeted both crop farmers for dust and also milk producers for potential hazardous spills). Ask yourself if you saw any of the nearly $1 trillion in stimulus money in your own checking account. Ask yourself if you think it is right for you to work to pay others’ health care insurance. Ask yourself if school teachers should collect their pay (already more than 40% higher than the private sector, when all benefits and salaries are tallied) even when not working and when children are failing to even read or do basic math. Ask yourself if you trust the current administration not to tell your church or religious organization they must supply free contraception for their employees, along with (their real hidden agenda) free abortions. Then ask yourself what requirement they won’t push down in the name of social “justice”. Ask yourself if you believe that we are divided into “haves” and “have-nots” as Americans. Ask yourself, when you drive in the dark, if you turn your headlamps on.

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Dear Readers: I was thrilled to discover that the local newspaper published an article I prepared, which featured my esthetician (Van). She has been doing my nails for years, and was brave enough to take over her salon during this economically challenging time.

It has been a long time since I published any writing in a traditional manner. I must say, it was nice going back to my roots. A scan of the article is below, for your enjoyment.

Page 23 Tierra Times

I promise to go back to my new media tomorrow. Meanwhile, Left Coast Rebel has a good, and related, piece on the free market and self-interest.

And, focusing a bit on California, I want to share an article that Caesar Charles prepared on CARB (California Air Resources Board) and its awful version of “Cash for Clunkers”.

Cash for Clunkers is still alive and well in California as Voluntary Accelerated Vehicle Retirement (VAVR). The misconceived program makes vehicles unattainable for young and low income people. VAVR also pushes middle income people into debt for new cars with the cost of adherence to environmental regulations combined with large cash incentives.

Also, the Legislative Analysis Office has slammed Brown’s budget for its inanity, as we did last week. If Brown were smart, he would take Shane Atwell’s suggestions as a place to begin making fiscally responsible changes that would actually work for the state. But that will happen on the day Mitt releases his tax records and Obama issues his college transcripts.

Finally, I would like to note that I would rather be published on page 23 of my local newpaper than to have the cover story on Newsweek (hat-tip, Beers with Demo).

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Dear Friends: I have so happy news to share. Capitalists have scored some victories over the forces of eco-tyrants and nanny-state do-gooders.

Courtesy of Professor Athena, this gem from the Wall Street journal: U.S. Nears Milestone: Net Fuel Exporter

U.S. exports of gasoline, diesel and other oil-based fuels are soaring, putting the nation on track to be a net exporter of petroleum products in 2011 for the first time in 62 years. A combination of booming demand from emerging markets and faltering domestic activity means the U.S. is exporting more fuel than it imports, upending the historical norm.

According to data released by the U.S. Energy Information Administration on Tuesday, the U.S. sent abroad 753.4 million barrels of everything from gasoline to jet fuel in the first nine months of this year, while it imported 689.4 million barrels.

As if that were a tasty treat, this marketing maneuver from McDonald’s is delicious (via HotAir):

Victory: McDonald’s outsmarts San Francisco on Happy Meal ban

Remember when San Fran “banned” Happy Meals by requiring fruit and vegetables to be served with any meal that includes a toy? Question: What if the meal doesn’t automatically include the toy? What if the toy’s “optional,” purchasable with a Happy Meal plus a small additional fee that you’ll be happy to pay just to shut up that screaming brat who wants the toy, mom, c’monnnnn?

Yes, it is time to do a Happy Dance:

I would like to give a full Flaming Capitalism blessing to Hell on Wheels, my new favorite show (replacing Mad Men). Iconic. Non-PC. Intelligent. Beautifully filmed and superbly acted. And fully American.

Dawn Wildman of SoCal Tax Revolt Coalition wants everyone to know that Stop-the-CA-Dream-Act petition signings will be featured on Jon and Ken (AM640/KFI) from 3pm and 7pm tomorrow. There will be a ton of locations for petition signings, and more information can be found HERE.

Beers with Demo is featuring a video covering Tea Party vs Occupy. Flaming Capitalist Promotion: Anna’s Clue Tank is featuring Occu-Potty bumper-stickers that are hilarious; order yours today!!! Inspired by KT, here is my concluding image:

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