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November 10, 2011

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SOME INTERESTING NOTES---

Romney opens a 49-40% lead on Obama in New Hampshire. Perhaps the first sign that the strategy of stonewalling and blaming Republicans is shaky. Also how powerful Romney will be once the primaries are settled.

A Democratic real estate developer said today that the failure of the Super Committee to reach an agreement will not have much effect on small business people because the only make about $200,000 a year and thereefore the impact will not effect their hiring. He stated that it is the big guys like himslef who will be damaged the most meaning I guess that he makes a lot of money and the expiration of the Bush Tax cuts will keep him from hiring. Logical? Take away $20,000 from each of 9,000,000 small business owners and just see how many more people are layed off. Rich liberals--don't you love them?

The GDP for the 3rd quarter is revised down 25% from 2.5% to 2%. And, we still have one more revision to go. Merry Christmas, America.

In a poll this morning 93% ofItalians voted that reducing entitlements was the most pressing issue for their government. In a follow up question only 23% were willing to have their retirement age increased to help accomplish the goal. Socialism becomes a way of life.

BACK FRIDAY---

There are 300 million people in the US. 152 Million will shop on Black Friday (probably 150 Million women)---better get an early parking space and an early start. Stay clear of the stampedes. Supposedly the earliest stores will open for Black Friday at 10PM on Thursday (Thanksgiving) UGH. This has become a NATIONAL SPORT! By the way Target kicked Walmart’s tail this quarter –means people are moving up the quality tree a little. Housing starts are up a little. Jobless rate is down a little. Maybe a small light ahead on the economy. Hope so!

UNEMPLOYMENT RATE: A look at today's data shows that 13,000 more private industry people applied for benefits. Meanwhile, 52,000 came off extended benefits. For whatever reasons. Either they finally found a job or they ran out of time or they stopped looking.
You only count as unemployed if you have looked for work in the last 4 weeks. I have no idea how they define looked for work these days. With the internet it should be pretty easy to keep looking by a government standard. In the end the jobless claims fell this week and Wall Street was happy but with unemployment benefits running out and seasonal hiring beginning it may be just the opposite is actually taking place. Did you know that unemployment is measured by a survey of 60,000 households nationwide? For Montana it is about 421 houses.

Harrycat---Amen to you finding the moral high ground. It is a worthy goal. Unfortunately, the gamble on what people think of our standards may cost us our children. I leave it to the President and the Courts to determine when and what we do when confronted with a tragic potential outcome.

I am looking for the "high ground" here. This is not left vs right. Comparing our enemies tactics to ours and then saying that if they do some terrible act, then we are justified to do whatever we feel we want to do, is definitely not the "high ground".

This is a moral issue, not a discussion of tactics. We are supposed to have higher standards. Certainly no Christian church would condone torture. And if John McCain says that waterboarding is torture, he ought to know, and that for me is the answer to that one.

Harrycat---I'm in agreement with Bill Bowen. Waterboarding isn't life threatening but mass murder as practiced by the enemy in this war is. The use of this technique and other nonlethal measures to "out" mass murder plots and perpetrators who plan and conduct them is in the interest of civilized society. It should only be used with the approval of the President and a judicial committee. But, it should be in our inventory. Better we do it than ship the suspect off to a foreign country where the outcome,conduct cannot be monitored.

Harry: I'm not sure what you mean by our "normal arsenal". Confusion in this area comes from two sources - partisan ideology and failure to distinguish between criminal activity and war.
- In the first category is the NYT contention that enhanced interrogation techniques don't work. They gave us the intermediary who eventually led the Navy Seals to bin Laden.
- In the second category is the thought that it was illegal to kill al-Awlaki in Yemen because he was an American citizen who had not been convicted in a court. He was an active combatant, not a criminal.
I find John Yoo's legal rationale to have enough merit to allow waterboarding in extreme circumstances - and I think that the majority of Americans agree with him. Any reservations certainly didn't dampen the bin Laden celebration, even among the Left.

The necessary discussion of torture as an element of national policy is back now that several of the GOP candidates have endorsed waterboarding. I understand the "Jack Bauer moment" of extreme urgency, but to conclude that torture should be part of our normal arsenal against our enemies seems to me to be completely un-American. Comments please.

NO WONDER THEY CAN'T AGREE: Two speakers at 'Occupy Oakland';one lady MD; one Social Engineer in simulated clerical garb. The MD promoted 'O' Care and the expense of the present system. No discussion of cost cutting i.e.tort reform etc. The social expert explained the 'prairie fire' expansion of employee owned enterprises out of a Cleveland lettuce greenhouse. This enterprise was presented as though the 'Right'would press against such activities. In each case,facts and the Country's success are sacrificed in favor of ideology .
Now take it to the next level; well 'credentialed' economic figures such as Paul Krugman. His Sunday Editorial discusses the basic 'hand to mouth' cause & effect Economics of the Italian and Greek crisis. He is insisting that the use of Euros and not Federalism led to this crisis. Included in the solution; austerity will not affect prosperity.

I'd like to know why the GOP thinks it's ok to endorse shaming a pregnant rape victim for deciding to not abandon her life (studies, dreams, etc.) and become a single poor mom. This is a violation of human rights, specifically articles 4 (slavery) and 12 (honor). Just curious. Separation of church and state? The GOP just doesn't get it. It's ok, just to let that slide?

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