Monday, October 12, 2009

Who's money?

So according to these two women, the money they are hoping to get comes from President Barack Obama.
Well, not exactly.
The funds were appropriated from the General Fund in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 — passed by Congress and signed into law in February.
The cost of the "stimulus" bill will be added to our national debt, to be repaid by taxpayers.
So, the money will not come from the President's "stash" but from each and every American's paycheck.

Lauren Ricks
Associate Editor

Friday, October 9, 2009

What a shocker

President Barack Obama and former President Jimmy Carter have even more in common now that the former is also a recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize.
All I want to know is what has he done to promote peace? Iran is on the verge of gaining a nuclear weapon, with little resistance from the U.S. China, Venezuela and Russia are all rattling their sabers. To top it off, the Obama administration are considering allowing the Taliban to be active in Afghanistan's government.
It seems to me the administration's tactics are making peace a distant dream.
Did all these problems just appear in January? Of course not, but the actions of this administration has encouraged those who want to do us harm.
The Nobel Prize is nothing more than far-left liberals patting each other on the back. Why else would the President be nominated a full two weeks into his first term?
So congratulations on your many accomplishments President Obama. I just hope America can survive your tenure.
Lauren Ricks
Associate Editor

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Texas Representative Kevin Brady (R) has created a chart that is downright scary.
The chart is a representation of what the Democratic health care plan will do for us little people.
Remember, President Obama and other Congressional representatives will keep their current plans, rather than jump aboard this amazing sinking raft.
Nancy Pelosi and others of her ilk are attempting to restrict Republican representatives from sending the chart to their constituents, saying it is inaccurate.
They claim the "illustration of low-income subsidies is misleading and false" and argue the chart depicts a "Health Insurance Exchange Trust Fund" that is “simply a recipient of IRS funds, with no outflow. ... This is false." The quotes are from a Roll Call report, which also provides a really good pdf of the chart.
Okay — just for the sake of argument — take these two factors out of the chart when you look at it.
Doesn't the mass bureaucracy between you and your doctor still freak you out?
We should distribute this chart to everyone we know and even some we don't. Let the American people know what is about to come down on our heads.
A small battle has been won but they are going to pick up where they left off after their little vacation, if we don't tell them otherwise en masse.
— Lauren Ricks, Associate Editor

Thursday, July 16, 2009

So much for pro-choice

Our Dear Leader was interviewed by Dr. Jon LaPook on CBS News yesterday about his plan to overhaul health care.
President Obama said every American should be required to have health insurance. Required is not a word typically used in a free society when it comes to something so personal.
During this interview, he made this incredibly disturbing statement:
"I've been persuaded that there are enough young uninsured people who are cheap to cover, but are opting out. To make sure that those folks are part of the overall pool is the best way to make sure that all of our premiums go down."
As a young person, I highly object to the idea behind his words. We are already responsible for subsidizing the retirement of the "Baby Boomer" generation, who greatly out-number us.
Now, we will have the additional responsibility of keeping the nation's premiums down. This will be accomplished by forcing us to be in the "overall pool," i.e. the state-run health care system. A system which will be able to deny any procedure or medicine on a whim, without another option. One that will force us to live within certain perimeters, set by government bureaucrats.
A fan of a good old-fashioned hamburger? Too bad, it will be too costly for the government for you to eat one.
He has basically just admitted in this one statement that his plan does not include any other option but Uncle Sam.
Investor's Business Daily published an editorial Wednesday which underscores this point. The article reports a interesting passage from the U.S. House of Representatives' "health care for all Americans" bill on page 16.
The article says the "provision would indeed outlaw individual private coverage."
The section of the bill in question states:
"Except as provided in this paragraph, the individual health insurance issuer offering such coverage does not enroll any individual in such coverage if the first effective date of coverage is on or after the first day."
So, the bill is destined to actually wipe out private health insurance companies altogether, through attrition.
This Presidential agenda is just one of the many that will fundamentally change our country if passed. I don't know how much hope there is for stopping this stuff but it isn't over until Barney Frank sings.
— Lauren Ricks, Associate Editor

Friday, June 26, 2009

Last nail

The House of Representatives passed a bill by a very slim margin — 212 to 219 — that will do nothing less than destroy the last shred of hope our economy has, if it is signed into law. It has been called the climate change bill or the cap and trade bill, either way it is unconstitutional.
The bill gives the federal government the ability to trump every state and local law imaginable, including how a house is to be built. It will shut down oil refineries, increase energy cost and ship jobs overseas.
And it will put even more money in the pockets of people like Al Gore.
The absurd part of this story is many of the representatives who voted for it did so after the American people expressed their dissent loudly. Once again, the phones lines and e-mail boxes were jammed with American voices, but this time those sitting in the seats of power chose not to listen.
Eight Republicans voted for the bill and each and everyone should lose their job come election time. There is no reason a small government, fiscally responsible Conservative would approve of this travesty.
If you don't prescribe to the philosophy of the Republican Party, you should not represent it.
We will not be the Grand Old Party again until we return to first principles and deny those who do not vote the correct way.
We can be a big tent all day long, and keep losing representatives, or we can stand up for what is right and proper.
The government should be returned to the U.S. Constitution, where the White House and Congress has limited powers and the states are not the handmaidens.
— Lauren Ricks, Staff Writer

Monday, June 22, 2009

No more hiding

I never thought I would see the day when I, a proud American and Texan, would cheer on a French politician. But it has arrived.
French President Nicolas Sarkozy spoke out against a specific garment in a presidential address to a joint session of France's two houses of parliament. He actually called the burqas what it is, a prison, and said they are not welcome in France.
Sarkozy stood up for women's rights in the strongest terms I have heard yet. He is quoted as saying, "The burqa is not a religious sign, it's a sign of subservience, a sign of debasement — I want to say it solemnly. It will not be welcome on the territory of the French Republic."
I have never seen any representative from the National Organization for Women speak in such terms.
Yet the issue goes beyond the simple garment itself. It is a symbol of the woman being inhuman, being like every other. The burqa robs a woman of her uniqueness and hides it behind a black mesh strip across the eyes. It gives leave for the men in a woman's life to treat her with utmost disrespect.
As a woman, and a true feminist, I find the garment and everything it stands for entirely disturbing.
- Lauren Ricks, Staff Writer

Monday, June 15, 2009

Bravo Netanyahu!

I am so proud of Israel's Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu for standing up to the pressure brought on him by United States President Obama and other Western nations.
Mr. Netanyahu has apparently learned from his past mistake of accepting all concessions to the Palestinians, as presented to him by squishy liberals. He came out this weekend and squarely faced the main problem between Israel and Palestine.
Those in power in Palestine refuse to recognize the legitimacy and sovereignty of Israel. They want nothing less than the complete destruction of the country. That fact is stated in its charter.
Netanyahu also said he would not stop the settlements in the West Bank, keep Jerusalem and demands the new Palestinian state be demilitarized. I don't blame the Israelis for these conditions. Look at the mess the Gaza strip became after Israel gave that to Hamas.
So, I think it is a great development for both the U.S. and Israel that the leader of the latter stands up to the former.
We need to respect our long-time friend in the Middle East, not bully her.
— Lauren Ricks, Staff Writer

Friday, May 29, 2009

Why America likes Shawn Johnson

Fresh from her surprise win on Dancing With the Stars, 17-year-old Shawn Johnson has been on the move. The kid who reigned as the world champion at 15 and brought home a gold medal from Beijing is riding a new wave of popularity.
How this high school senior-to-be will bear up under the pressure and publicity that goes with her success remains to be seen, but so far she's been a class act.
Like many Americans, I watched the 2008 Olympic Games pretty intently. It was fun to see Nastia Liukin, who lives just up the road in the Dallas area come away as the women's all-around gymnastic champion. But she took the title at the expense of her roommate, Shawn.
Shawn gave us all a little lesson in some of the things all coaches would like their kids to learn. Among those are: accepting defeat with grace, supporting our teammates when things aren't going our way, not letting jealousy over a friends success poison a relationship and of course–don't give up.
It's always good when we see these values displayed by our sports heroes. It's a surprise when the lessons come from someone so young. As long as Shawn holds to those principals, she'll go far.
— Rich Flowers, News Editor

Friday, May 15, 2009

Make up your mind

President Barack Obama criticized the current government's economic policy — saying it is taking on too much foreign owned debt — at a town-hall meeting in New Mexico.
He then went on to praise government's policy on the economy saying we are turning a corner and "we do know that the gears of our economy, our economic engine, are slowly beginning to turn.”
I wonder sometimes if our President hears himself saying these outrageous things.
You say the debt is going to cause a substantial increase in interest rates when China loses interest in owning our debt. This much is true and we have already seen this happening to a degree. The Treasury Department announced in April it would add "more auctions of 30-year bonds to its calendar to address the increase in projected financing needs."
The May 7 auction received little interest from buyers and was reported as "terrible."
In what universe, Mr. President, does this seem to be good news?
Oh, I must be pleased with the increase of gasoline prices recently. That is a positive sign to him, right? He did say during last year's campaign he thought $4 a gallon gasoline was a good thing, he just wished it hadn't happened so quickly. No matter what it did to the regular people.
I'm sorry but I cannot see that the "wheels are turning" on the economy, at least not in the right direction.
It seems to me we are going backwards with a hearty push from the Obama administration.
— Lauren Ricks, Staff Writer

Monday, May 4, 2009

Thank God (literally)

The "Most Eloquent" White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs announced today there would be no bailout for the newspaper industry.
After what has happened to the automobile and banking industries, I am thankful this totalitarian administration is not considering taking over my bread and butter. I could not be part of an industry that does not have independence of thought and the freedom to express opposing views.
The last thing America needs now is for it to go the way of Pravda.
America was founded on the desire for freedom of speech, thought and action. On the ability to choose our own destiny. We are losing bits and pieces of this everyday thanks to a heavy dose of apathy. I pray someday soon the citizenry will wake up and see the destruction all around us, before it is too late.
To some, this may sound much like the rantings of an alarmist. Though I respect others opinions, I would disagree with this conclusion. I am a realist and the things I see going on everyday is disturbing.
A recent example is a charge from a leading bankruptcy attorney Thomas Lauria, who alleges the administration threatened an investment bank with public ruination for not agreeing to the Chrysler deal. According to Lauria, Steve Rattner, the leader of the Obama administration's Auto Industry Task Force told Perella Weinberg Partners the White House would use the press corps to destroy its reputation.
For the sake of posterity, both the administration and the bank have denied the charge.
Considering the "deal" the bank received compared to the Christmas present the UAW got, I would bet something was said behind closed doors. We will wait and see.
As a member of the press, albeit not in the same position of one in the press corp, I an indignant if the White House thought they could "use" a journalist to do their bidding. The profession is not meant to be the attack dog of ANY administration. It is meant to be a unbiased source of factual information.
Unfortunately, I don't believe many of the more powerful newspapers have risen to this standard, which is why they are failing. The best way for the industry to get back on its feet is to have integrity.
— Lauren Ricks, Staff Writer

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Good riddance

Senator Arlen Specter has announced he is going to be with his ideological equals today. All I have to say to that is, can you take the other RINO's with you? I hope you get trounced soundly this election cycle and lose your job.
Lauren Ricks, Staff Writer

Friday, April 24, 2009

It is a lie!

Apparently, the facts are beginning to scare Congressman Barney Frank, Democrat from Massachusetts.
The same man who was recorded three years ago saying "there is no housing bubble" and calling those who wanted to investigate Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac racists, is now saying the opposite. He appeared on the Tavis Smiley show and said it was the Conservatives who pushed people into home ownership regardless of their ability to pay.
My question is simple. How long will the American people continue to let politicians such as the not-so-honorable Mr. Frank get away with such lies. What he said is easily disproved, which makes the claim even more infuriating.
Some of our politicians think they can get away with saying the sky is purple — in August at high noon. They believe this because they are not challenged when they tell a falsehood. It is past time for this to rectified.
Frank was one of the major players in this crisis, as was Chris Dodd and Bill Clinton.
They should not get away with turning history on its head the way they have the Great Depression.
Lauren Ricks, Staff Writer

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Deja Vu

Our dear leader and his underlings are now saying the "fundamentals of our economy is sound." Does this sound at all familiar to anyone???
The Republican's ridiculous and weak candidate in the general election, John McCain, was ruthlessly hammered for saying the "fundamentals of our economy are strong."
After finally being called out for hypocrisy, the administration is saying it is a vastly different statement due to "sound" and "strong."
This is a good teaching moment for Americans. The administration is obviously splitting hairs to save face. The argument is absurd when looking at the statements and arguments at face value. The economy is in much worse shape now than it was last September, yet the administration thinks NOW the world is full of flowers and sunshine.
I happen to honestly believe we are in fact in a position to recover from the recession, if we change course. If the government continues to hand out money like candy, without concern for where it is coming from, the economy will be driven further down. But if we see the error of our ways and buckle down, we can come out stronger. As we have before.
All is not hopeless however. If the Obama administration stubbornly continues on this path to economic destruction, it will be painful but not permanent. The American spirit has survived one such leader in Franklin Delano Roosevelt and we will survive this one.
I have no doubt whatever the obstacle, whatever the price, we will thrive. That is the American way.
— Lauren Ricks, Staff Writer

Saturday, March 7, 2009

All things must pass.

The great former Dallas sportswriter Blackie Sherrod was fond of the saying "You can't do something again, you can only do something similar."
That's kind of the way it is here at the Athens Review with the departure of Benny Rogers after 27 years of sports coverage. I met Mr. Sherrod. I told him I'd read his column since I was a kid. He replied, "I'll bet your daddy did too."
It was kind of getting to be that way for Benny I guess. When he started covering sports, the players looked like kids-now it's the coaches.
Benny has his opinions-his likes and dislikes-but he always covered sports with a positive spin. Not that he would varnish the truth, but he seemed to prefer to use words that would build up rather than tear down.
Like Mr. Sherrod, Benny's interests reach far beyond the arena. He was a valuable source at the Review for what happened when in weather or in the news. And of course he new the newpaper business inside and out.
Like Sherrod said, "You can't do something again." There'll never be another Benny, but the guys in the front office are already looking for someone with the special set of skills it'll take to keep the ball rolling. As for another 27 years-bet the under.
Angela Weatherford left the Review February 27 after about 18 months on the job. She wasn't born when Benny took over the sports desk, but that didn't keep her from jumping in and impressing us with her abilities. Angela grew up in Athens and I'm sure her family, friends and the folks at the AISD are more than a little proud of the job one of their own did at the hometown paper.
Miss Weatherford resigned to move to Los Angelas, which I'm sure she thinks means "City of Angela." She may be right.

RIch Flowers

Thursday, February 26, 2009

We're all wet

Well, it's never good when you are awakened at 5:15 in the morning by a frantic fellow employee who says he heard a loud boom and then felt water under his feet.
Yet that's how my day started.
The Athens Review was submerged for a short time this morning after a hot water heater burst (in my office closet, no less). It wasn't long before our entire newsroom was under water (see pictures above). It was a bizarre sight to come in to see that.
So after we called the fire department and dragged them out of bed, they got our water turned off and we were left to begin the task of getting rid of some of the water. I'd estimate we (me and our publisher, Lange Svehlak) scooped 50 gallons of water off the floor -- and there were still plenty of water puddles left after that. He was using a 5-gallon Shop vac. I was using our Hoover electric mop, with its half-gallon tank. Tons of fun.
But ... we're on the mend now. Who knows how much damage was done in here. I can tell you the carpet is toast, but we probably won't know how bad it all is for a couple of days.
Please excuse our mess if you happen to stop by the paper today. Yes, we're still here and working hard. We hope to send you on your way as dry as you came.
-- Jayson Larson, editor