MY GOVERNMENT !MY COUNTRY !
BELOW ARE SOME ITEMS TAKEN FROM THE 14 VOLUME US BUDGET FOR 1999, AS AGREED UPON FRIDAY, OCTOBER 16th BY THE HOUSE AND SENATE AND SIGNED BY THE PRESIDENT:
$240,000 grant for the development of a twoheaded stethoscope.
$615,000 for renovation of a skating rink in Plattsburg, NY.
> $26,500 grant for improving the packaging of fly paper.
$112,350 for brass polish for the Marine band servicing the White House.
$84,425 printing allocation for posters commemorating Bernard W.Trencher, the
first settler of Muskegon Heights, MI.
$7,200,000 refund of a fine paid by Royal Carribean Cruise Lines, in connections
with their admission of dumping bunker oil at sea, off the Florida coast.
$1,200,000 special allotment to the US Department of Agriculture to commence a
feasibility study of commercial applications for peach pits.
$836,000 travel and expense allocation for the Ormond Group to conduct a Leprosy
Mission in India.
$520,000 grant to Tufts University to develop a program of retraining, and healing of
injuries, for ballet dancers.
$312,500 for a sculpture and memorial tablet to Princess Diana, to be erected in
Lake Ozark, Missouri.
$4,850,000 grant to Booz, Allen, Hamilton, Inc. to study the possibility
of setting up a central email system for rural post offices
$770,000 grant to the College of the Pacific to study the effects of the 1994
devaluation of the Mexican Peso on the US ball bearing industry.
$2,075,000 to establish the Skateboard Hall of Fame in Palo Alto, California.
$425,000 special allocation to the Smithsonian Institute to purchase the
baseball hit by Babe Ruth as his 60th home run.
$3,000,000 to the District of Columbia to promote a Miss District of Columbia
Pageant in the year 2000.
$6,700,000 grant to Medi-Care First Corporation to study the feasibility of reusable
$5,325,000 allocation to the National Institute of Health to study alcohol
consumption on college campuses.
$14,000,000 special grant to the Dominican Republic as hurricane relief.
$12,600 to replace the waffle irons in the Congressional dining room.
Hey...it's only your tax money
Pythagorean Theorem: 24 words.
The Lord's Prayer: 66 words.
The Gettysburg Address: 286 words.
The Declaration of Independence: 1,300 words.
The US Government regulations on the sale of cabbage: 26,911 words.
This comes as no surprise, huh?
The Supreme Court made one thing perfectly clear this week. There is no "War on Drugs" in America.
Whatís happening ought to be called by its
proper name -- a "War on Some Drugs." The drug war is a limited war.
It is limited to drugs whose users and pushers donít kick in with fat campaign contributions.
The court acknowledged that cigarettes are
the nationís "single most significant threat to public health." But then,
in a 5-4 ruling, the court said that federal health authoritie have no power to regulate the manufacture and sale of
Maybe this makes legal sense. It certainly
makes no common sense. But then, law school is where you go to learn
how to smother reason with double talk. Get real good at it and you can move on to Congress, which is more
crowded with lawyers than the bar used to be at the old Theatrical Grille.
The other day I wrote about Patrick Dorismond.
He was shot and killed by a policeman on a New York street corner after
an undercover cop tried to buy some marijuana from him. A search of his
pockets at the morgue disclosed he
didnít have any.
Dorismond was a casualty of Americaís war on
some drugs. If he had been spotted with a carton of Luckies under
each arm and a cigar in his mouth, he would be alive today.
But why? Suppose the cops had found him with marijuana? How much of a menace would that have made him?
According to the Clinton administration, legal
tobacco products kill more Americans each year than AIDS, alcohol,
car accidents, homicides, suicides, illegal drugs and fires combined. I donít trust statistics much anymore, but I
havenít heard anybody challenge those.
You might think, from the tone of this, that
I am a marijuana user. Iím not. I tried some about 30 years ago and, because
I had no plans to run for president, I even inhaled. But it wasnít my thing.
I donít like to smoke things
that people pass around.
In the interest of full disclosure, I have
to admit that I am a cigarette user. This admission makes me wince because
I know what the voice mail is going to sound like today. Iíll get 50 sermons and it ainít even Sunday.
We cigarette addicts get pushed around a lot. People wrinkle their noses at us and go "phew!" In restaurants, they seat us next to the kitchen if they seat us at all. In the winter, employers send us outside to freeze in a doorway. Lord knows how many deaths from pneumonia are included in the cigarette mortality rate.
But at least cops in disguise donít sneak up
and gun us down the way they gunned down poor Dorismond. Thatís because
the government wants us alive. We are a great source of revenue. So are
our drug dealers in the tobacco
We pay the taxes that build the stadiums and fund other flights of municipal fancy. Members of Congress receive fat campaign contributions from cigarette companies. And even the lawsuits against such companies are a gold mine for lawyers.
Nicotine is a drug and itís addictive. And the Suprem Court admits itís the most dangerous drug in America. But, until Congress gives the nod, the Food and Drug Administration canít even regulate it, let alone ban it.
This ruling, apparently, was based on a 1938
law that Congress hasnít seen fit to amend. In 1938, sports stars and opera
singers were making commercials for cigarettes. The surgeon generalís
report about cigarettes was decades away from being published. What
a kid heard about cigarettes was, "They stunt your growth." That law is
out of date, but the tobacco lobby money is still crisp and green.
If weíre going to have a drug policy in America,
it ought to be a consistent policy that makes some sense. I donít see much
difference between a cigarette company handing a senator a campaign contribution
and a drug pusher handing
a cop a bribe. Except, of course, for who gets locked up.
The War on Some Drugs put Dorismond in a grave and me in a doorway. But itís Congress thatís blowing smoke.
Mr. Speaker, in today's
military a young enlisted person serving out his or her first contract
can expect to make one
thousand, seventy-five dollars and eighty cents a month. Over a forty-hour workweek, this averages to six dollars and seventy cents an hour. But most of our military personnel don't work forty-hour weeks. We all remember the famous
Army slogan-'We do more before 9:00 a.m. than most people do all day.' Mr. Speaker, we don't pay them overtime.
These young people train for weeks at a time away from home. They keep themselves in a state of top physical readiness. They live their personal lives according to the high standards of integrity and honor we mandate for them. These young servicemen must uproot their families on a moment's notice, moving to a new duty station across the country, or across
the globe. They do it all on six dollars and seventy cents and hour.
For members of the military with families, the situation is worse. Despite a modest living allowance, 12,000 families currently serving our Armed Services are dependent on food stamps. We have government employees living off of government subsidies. Mr. Speaker, why don't we skip the intermediary step and just pay them properly the first time?
During the holidays at the Mountain Home Air Force base in Idaho, a network of military spouses work together to
collect donations of money and toys for the enlisted families who cannot afford to give their young ones Christmas or Thanksgiving. Last November and December, the Mountain Home Warm Heart organization, run by the spouses of servicemen, distributed over eighteen thousand dollars worth of food, toys and cash to needy military families. Where
did this money come from, Mr. Speaker? From the pockets of servicemen for already had very little to give. If this were
not bad enough, many military families have more serious concerns than just Christmas and Thanksgiving. At the
Mountain Home Air Force Aid Society made $131,000 in emergency assistance loans to military families. I am very concerned about what will happen to these families when the money runs out and they still have to make monthly
payments on the loans.
In the 18th Century, citizen soldiers won our independence and secured our liberties. We hailed them as heroes and revered the courage and commitment they demonstrated in defense of our nation. Today that nation is protected by
citizen soldiers with the same integrity and sense of duty. Only in 20th Century America, we don't even pay them living
wage. We should be ashamed of ourselves. From 1988 to today there have been thirty-two deployments of our military.
In the previous sixty years there were only ten deployments. Put another way, Mr. Speaker, prior to this Administration,
the military was deployed and average of once every six years. During the Clinton Administration the military has been deployed an average of four times every year.
Furthermore, since 1987, we have depleted our ranks by eight hundred thousand servicemen. In practical terms, that translated into more frequent deployments and dangerously long hours. It is illegal in this country for truck drivers to be
on the road longer than eight consecutive hours without rest. We have pilots patrolling the Mediterranean in fourteen
hour shifts. In short, this Administration is expecting our servicemen to do one hundred times as much and place their
lives at risk one hundred times as little as six dollars and seventy cents per hour. Mr. Speaker, I recently paid a plumber
$90 an hour to unstop my garbage disposal. An auto mechanic can expect $50 an hour. A teenager working as a bagger in
a grocery store can earn up to $12 dollars and hour. None of these jobs require 24-hour dedication to duty and a constant threat to life. Mr. Speaker, one young Marine I know of has taken a second job to supplement his income. Every night,
this Lance Corporal goes home and trades his Marine uniform for a blue and red t-shirt and matching hat from Dominoes. This young Marine, this hardworking father of two, delivers pizza because he is too proud to accept welfare. He is not
alone in this endeavor. But it is nearly impossible to know how many young servicemen are in this position because most
of them hide it from their Commanders. A young Lance Corporal serving in the Marine Corps today can anticipate being combat-deployed at least once in a four-year enlistment. I wonder what this Lance Corporal's family will do when he is
away and they have to make do without the supplemental income from Dominoes. I am humbled by this young Marine, and the many others like him who work so hard to protect us. I am ashamed that we don't do right by them. I urge this body to seriously consider the ethics of our government's continued over extension of our military in light of our complete lack of
gratitude for their service.
Don't forget, our girl, Hillary Rodham Clinton, now comes under this Congressional Retirement Plan. Talking about the Clinton's, it's common knowledge that, in order for her to establish NYC residency, they purchased a million + house in upscale Chappaqua, NY. Makes sense.
Now, they are entitled to Secret Service protection for life. Still makes sense. Here is where it becomes interesting. A residency had to
be built in order to house the Secret Service agents.
The Clinton's now charge the Secret Service rent for the use of said residence and that rent is just about equal to their mortgage payment, meaning that we, the tax payers, are paying the Clinton's mortgage, and it's all perfectly legal.
Mr. Speaker, I have a request to make of the members of this body. Tonight when you go home to your families, to the security and comfort of your homes; when you tuck your children in to bed; say a prayer for the men and women of our
armed forces. As you sleep, approximately one hundred thousand of them stand watch, away from their own loved ones,
ready to give their very lives to protect you. For as little as six dollars and seventy cents an hour.
Subject: YOUR SOCIAL SECURITY
Thought you'd be interested to know, Our Senators and Congressmen don't pay in to Social Security, and, of course, they
don't collect from it. The reason is that they have a special retirement plan that they voted for themselves many years
ago. For all practical purposes, it works like this:
When they retire, they continue to draw their same pay, until they die, except that it may be increased from time to time,
by cost of living adjustments. For instance, former Senator Bradley, and his wife, may be expected to draw $7,900,000,
with Mrs. Bradley drawing $275,000 during the last year of her life. This is calculated on an average life span for each.
This would be well and good, except that they paid nothing in on any kind of retirement, and neither does any other Senator
This fine retirement comes right out of the General Fund: our tax money. While we who pay for it all, draw an average of
$1000 per month from Social Security.
Imagine for a moment that you could structure a retirement plan so desirable that people would have extra deducted so
that they could increase their own personal retirement income. A retirement plan that works so well, that Railroad employees, Postal Workers, and others who aren't in it, would clamor to get in. That is how good Social Security could be, if only one
small change were made. That change is to jerk the Golden Fleece retirement out from under the Senators and Congressmen, and put them in Social Security with the rest of us. Then watch how fast they fix it.
could probably be shown by facts and figures that there is no distinctly
criminal class except Congress."
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Based on records prior to the summer break, 29 members of Congress have
been accused of spousal abuse, 7 have been arrested for fraud, 19 have
been accused of writing bad checks,
117 have bankrupted at least two businesses, 3 have been arrested for assault, 71 have credit
reports so bad they can't qualify for a credit card,14 have been arrested on drug-related
charges, 8 have been arrested for shoplifting, 21 are current defendants in lawsuits, and in
1998 alone, 84 were stopped for drunk driving, but released after they claimed Congressional immunity.
(from Capitol HIll Blue)
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Don't forget, our girl, Hillary Rodham Clinton, as a New York
Senator, now comes under this fancy Congressional Retirement and
Staffing Plan. It's common knowledge that, in order for her to
establish NYS residency, they purchased a million+ dollar house
in upscale Chappaqua, NY. Makes sense. Now, they are entitled to
Secret Service protection for life. Still makes sense. Here is
where it becomes interesting. The mortgage payments hover at
about $10,000 per month.
BUT, an extra residency had to be built within the acreage in
order to house the Secret Service agents. The Clinton's now charge
the Secret Service $10,000 monthly rent for the use of said Secret
service residence and that rent is just about equal to their
mortgage payment, meaning that we, the tax payers, are paying the
Clinton's mortgage, their transportation, their safety and
security, their 12 man staff, and it's all perfectly legal.
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Just Jealous Because The Voices Are Talking To Me
The Earth Is Full - Go Home
I Have The Body Of A God......Buddha
This Would Be Really Funny If It Weren't Happening To Me
So Many Pedestrians - So Little Time
Cleverly Disguised As A Responsible Adult
If Progress Means To Move Forward What Does Congress Mean?
If We Quit Voting Will They All Go Away?
Politics - From The Words "Poly," Meaning "Many," And "Ticks," As In"Small, Bloodsucking Parasites"
The Face Is Familiar But I Can't Quite Remember My Name
He Who Dies With The Most Toys...Still Dies
Eat Right, Exercise, Die Anyway
Illiterate? Write For Help
Honk If Anything Falls Off
Cover Me I'm Changing Lanes
He Who Laughs Last Thinks Slowest
He Who Hesitates Is Not Only Lost But Miles From The Next Exit
I Refuse To Have A Battle Of Wits With An Unarmed Person
Dyslexics Of The World - Untie!
You! Out Of The Gene Pool!
I Do Whatever My Rice Krispies Tell Me To
Where Are We Going And Why Am I In This Handbasket?
It's Been Lovely But I Have To Scream Now
I Haven't Lost My Mind, It's Backed Up On Disk Somewhere
Last Edited 1-4-2002