Part II - Worthy Sheriff Sutton is looking for a carpenter to do a job for him. Plans for the structure is by no means difficult. Two upright posts with a cross beam supported by braces; underneath a platform with a “trap” only comprise the outfit. Proposals solicited by day or job.”
Are you ecstatic with the performance we’ve been getting from Springfield and Washington these days, or have you had enough?
In Springfield, our “leaders” won’t “man up” and admit their totally irresponsible spending has bankrupted the state, so they just walked away, leaving the mess for the next guy. If they won’t address their self-created problems, why do they even run for office? Did they not know this was coming? Apparently the No Child Left Behind law totally missed these folks.
Washington, of course, will not be outdone by a mere state. All of the cash on this planet – every Peso, Euro, Dinari, Yen, Yuan, and Dollar – totals $17 trillion. Our national debt just passed $13 trillion. Many of us have railed that our spending is saddling our grandchildren with unmanageable debt. I fear we were mistaken – this economy will collapse long before it’s our grandchildren’s problem. Washington succeeds with these failed policies by ensuring a divided, ill-informed electorate. In other words, as voters, we’re dysfunctional.
The first weapon in keeping us ill-informed is political correctness. If the politically correct term for a spade is “feather”, they can smack us upside the head with a spade, and we have to say they hit us with a feather. It makes it difficult to have a meaningful dialogue when you can’t call a spade a spade.
The second weapon is refusal to discuss issues, instead resorting to name-calling. If I differ with the policies of our president, I’m called a racist, domestic terrorist, or some other name, which ends any reasonable debate. This also promotes division, as does perpetuating “hyphenated” –Americans. If you’re not hyphenated, you can still be assigned to some group or another. You’re entitled to unique treatment if you’re “rich”, “gay”, “union”, “Christian”, etc. If you’re black, female, or Hispanic, you have your own caucus. Is there some reason Congress won’t treat “American” as special? Yes, since until now we haven’t united to threaten the status quo with a powerful voting block.
Perhaps the most potent weapon in their arsenal is obfuscation. The Tax Code is now seven times the size of the Bible, and growing. And it doesn’t even mention the seventeen new taxes added in the 2000+ page health insurance bill passed by our reading-impaired Congress. Speaking of reading impairment, administration officials were quick to denounce Arizona’s immigration enforcement law, despite admitting they hadn’t read the law.
It’s spring, traditionally time to clean out the house. While we’re at it, we might as well clean out the senate. In Lanark, Wednesday is trash day. In America, “National Take Out the Trash Day” is November 2nd.
Boating is Tourism
I have written many letters regarding the subject of needing a courtesy dock in Marquette Park, so boaters can go uptown to places of interest, get groceries, pizza, etc. Don’t the Park Board and City Council work together to promote the things that tourist’s need on the river to come to Savanna?
The last thing they need is another boat ramp. If the marina fee wasn’t so outrageous, a lot more people would launch there. Why, when Marquette Park is free, do they want to overcharge visitors like that? Is that promoting tourism?
I used to go to Marquette Park to launch years ago, but as a senior citizen, I don’t care to deal with the current, wakes and wind anymore. I am not a Savanna resident, but I have been a tourist here for 40 years. Savanna’s business people are wonderful. But years ago, my letter-writing started when a business person told me that this town wasn’t tourist-oriented, and I should write a letter to the editor, since we would spend weekends on the islands, then would park on Ritchie’s gas dock after dark, and crawl across the tracks and walk uptown.
Penny Gharts has written about this, and was told that a previous administration had requested only a free ramp. I, too, have written about this “courtesy dock.” Countless boaters have dwelled on this. Thanks for nothing. Now, the council is raving about the wonderful new ramp! Big deal, when everybody knew a courtesy dock was needed. Why ask for a ramp? Maybe they will launch there and go to a place where they can park and go uptown.
Congratulations to all the great business owners who are trying to make a living, but who attend council meetings and are sometimes ignored or fought at every attempt to survive and make a living through promoting tourism.
In closing, I wish to say that all the residents of Savanna that I’ve had the pleasure to know over 40 years ARE tourist-friendly. It’s sad when they (Park & Council) say they are promoting tourism. Well, make a move to prove it! Apply for a grant for a courtesy dock like you knew you needed to begin with.
Happy boating, in spite of them.
Taxation Scam & Nothing More
Re: the May 12 “Methane Hazard” & “Photos Tell the Story” letters . . .
Having worked in central and southern Illinois for many years, I am familiar with the sinkhole problems in that region. Long wall coal mining is the primary cause. If a picture paints a thousand words, it also depicts multiple explanations.
As far as the methane hazard goes, each time a human enters a manure pit without proper equipment, they die. Methane gas reclaiming systems have become state of the art, and are capable of generating huge amounts of electricity. here is a handy reference: if you get close enough to a “mega dairy” lagoon to die from it, you were trespassing.
Agriculture IS rural Illinois. Only in our recent history did tourism show promise. Take a drive through northwest Illinois’ hill country. Note the millions of dollars of broken promises that litter the landscape. These high-dollar homes are rarely slept in, and the “for sale” signs are badly weathered.
Concerning the “greenhouse gas” games, non-government funded science has uncovered so much information in just the past year - clearly, it is time to change the catch-phrase of “Global Warming” to “Global Climate Cycle” - from ice core samples in the arctic, to ancient human remains under a glacier in Greenland. Just the other day, i saw a study on ten thousand year old trees which had been preserved in an irish bog. All the information pointed to Global Warming and Cooling, cycling thousands of years before human industry began. Obviously, the whole “Cap & Trade” fiasco has been a taxation scam.
Synopsis: Those who relocate to farm country understood we do not have an urban setting out here. Now that some have determined that country living is not for them, thousands of empty homes in Chicago await their return. Since many country golf courses seem to be empty, please take some of them back with you - we need our pasturelands returned.
The cap & trade issue is not as simple to remedy. Even though proven false, the whole scam represents the possibility of great wealth. We can see our future when Wal-Mart announced last winter that they hired a scientific study to be done on their carbon footprint. Found to be minimal, this prepositions them out of liability, and sets them up to sell carbon credits. Wealthy China might make a killing off of that one, before common sense prevails.
Take a Stand
Citizens, don’t let the fire go out, stay involved, especially as we think of the blood, sweat, tears, and lives our great soldiers sacrificed over the past 200 plus years on this past Memorial Day weekend. Let us not take our first amendment rights for granted; freedom of the press, religion, speech, and the second amendment, the right to own and bear arms.
Our gun rights have already been compromised. We see what is happening in Venezuela under Hugo Chaves, trampling on citizens rights in every area. Even though I like the stand the Australians are taking against radical Muslim immigration, they did take away the right to bear arms in 1996.
In America, we saw President Obama try to keep Fox News out of a meeting that other networks were invited to. More of this will come our way if “We the People” do not take a stand. This is not the time for indifference. Be diligent, be active. If we wait for the next person to do it, it won’t get done.
“To sin by silence when they should protest makes cowards of men.” ~ Abraham Lincoln
Mark it on your calendar! The Stephenson County Tea Party will meet Thursday, June 10th, 7 pm., Dietz’s Old School Apartments, 111 E. Mason St. in Lena IL. Our guest speaker is Savannah Liston, a home-schooled 16 year old who will be talking on economics of our country, as well as our gift of Liberty.
Savannah has served as County Coordinator for the Campaign for Liberty and has been involved with Tea Party groups. She has received a scholarship to attend courses in economics and history at the Ludwig von Mises Institute, as well as a scholarship to Jekyll Island on economics with Ron Paul, Tom Woods and others. Please put a lawn chair in your car trunk in case we have to move to the Gym. All Fiscal Conservatives are welcome.
ObamaCare, Tried in Greece, Leads to Bankruptcy, Rioting & Bloodshed
Some people learn from others’ mistakes, and some have to “learn the hard way.” Will America follow the lead of countries who have actually tried their own version of ObamaCare, or could we still learn from their mistakes? In a remarkable statement, the International Monetary Fund has recommended that, before any bailouts are considered, the Greek government must privatize transportation, energy and health care to rein in costs. The IMF recognizes that increased government involvement in health care does not save money. It also does not lead to better health care.
In 1983, when the socialists were in power, Greece established “health care for all.” Today government spending is unsustainable and Greece is awash in red ink. Talks of budget cuts and program cutbacks are causing rioting and bloodshed.
The Greek system is employer- based but the Greek Ministry of Social Health and Cohesion has enacted strict regulations so that innovation cannot exist. Employers must choose from government-approved insurers, with rates and benefits packages clearly delineated. This sounds much like ObamaCare-- private but heavily regulated insurance.
According to Michael Tanner of the Cato Institute, “the Greek health care system is funded through payroll taxes, general tax revenue and bribery.”
Tanner, Michael D. (2008) “The Grass Is Not Always Greener: A Look at National Health Care Systems Around the World” Cato Policy Analysis no. 613. (http://www.cato.org/pub_display.php?pub_id=9272)
While half of the Greek physicians are employed by the government, the other half have private practices and are paid directly by the social insurance fund. Physicians are not allowed to balance bill, so many have devised creative ways to augment their mediocre incomes. Many brazenly demand under the table additional payments in order for a patient to be seen. Waiting times for medical care are very long in Greece due to provider shortages and attempts to keep government costs down. Simple blood tests take a month to schedule. It routinely takes five to six months to see a specialist or schedule surgery. Not surprisingly, patients who pay out of pocket receive faster and better care.
The practice of medicine involves a huge range of human interactions that cannot be properly incentivized, regulated, or controlled by government. A centralized system is shielded from competition, so inefficiency is protected and multiplied. As costs inevitably arise, systems are set up to lower them, usually meaning more paperwork and greater costs. As bureaucracy grows, productivity declines. An expanding workforce does not lead to better medical care-- only to greater expenditures, rules and frustration.
In a perfect world, people would pay for their routine health care needs in the same way they pay for the servicing of their cars. They would find and pay a local primary care physician who could take care of 90% of health care needs, recommend preventive services and refer to trusted specialists when necessary. In this scenario people would learn that healthy lifestyles and activities would save them money. Health insurance would be reserved for the rare unexpected events and thus be a small percentage of total health care costs.
The poor in Greece are covered by the National Health Service with government hospitals and employed physicians. Medicaid covers the American poor by attempting to get private physicians to incorporate them into their practices, but since reimbursements are so low, doctors drop out of the plans and enrollees turn to the emergency rooms for urgent care-- a tremendously costly and inefficient alternative.
Even the poor would do well in a true free market. Before the government got involved, American physicians volunteered to care for the poor at free clinics mostly operated by hospitals. Minimal bureaucracy was involved. These types of clinics could be established all over our country-- filled with volunteers instead of government bureaucrats. Personal responsibility would be encouraged and true charity would thrive. Community would no longer be a casualty of government bureaucracy and better physical and financial health of all would be the satisfactory end result.
There is still time for America to learn a valuable lesson from Greece. ObamaCare will increase government involvement in health care, the opposite of what we need. Will we have to learn the hard way?
By Jim Sacia, State Representative 89th District
It’s my favorite and perhaps busiest holiday - Decoration Day as it was first called - a day to decorate the graves of fallen Civil War Soldiers. Today, far more appropriately, it’s Memorial Day, a day to reflect and to remember what so many have given to keep our great country free.
Sometimes we lose sight of the significance. In some ways we are no longer the people our Founding Fathers had hoped for, but in many ways we are exactly their greatest dream. This is most evident to me in our fights in the General Assembly. The budget is a great example. My vision is to offer tax credits to businesses, entice them to hire more Illinoisans, create good jobs and jump-start the economy. I also believe in eliminating unnecessary government entitlements and doing all we can to promote a capitalist society. After nearly perishing, our first settlers in Jamestown became successful when they decided to allocate a plot of ground to each settler to do with as they pleased. Then, and only then, did they begin to flourish.
Others see our country very differently, supporting government entitlements to provide more and more. I vividly recall receiving my first honorable discharge in the summer of 1965, after serving three years in the Army. Already accepted to begin college two months hence, it was suggested that I sign up for unemployment. I was, simply put, hurt. Why would I do that? I’m healthy and I can get a job. I did just that and for the first time in my life I was making more than $100 per week. At $3.10 an hour with lots of overtime I was living large, and living the American Dream. Uncle Sam was not going to take care of me! Sadly, there are those who feel the government owes me; I’m going to get all I can.
With jobs as a police officer and a member of the Wisconsin Army National Guard, I graduated from college and became an FBI Agent. Some will say “See, Uncle Sam did take care of him”. No, thanks to great parents who instilled a great work ethic, I worked hard at proving I would be a good agent.
Many years later my proudest honor is the one title no one can ever take away. I am a veteran. I am a former police officer, a former FBI agent, a former (many other jobs)…but I will never be a former veteran. That is a title I will proudly take to the grave.
As we gathered at Stockton High School to pay tribute to all who have given their last full measure, in particular hometown heroes Sergeant Andy Lancaster and Private First Class Devin “Fuzzy” Michel, my heart was ready to burst with pride at the large number of us young and old, rich and poor , who stood as veterans. I think our Founding Fathers would say “well done!”
As always, you can reach me, Sally or Barb at 815/232-0774 or e-mail us at email@example.com. You can also visit my website at www.jimsacia.com. It’s always a pleasure to hear from you.