Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Credit counseling, we're fat, environment, Gitmo, and the economy.

Those non-profit credit-counseling organizations that you see advertising on TV all the time. Well guess what? They're for profit and trying to squeeze every dime they can out of the people that can least afford it. Sounds like a Republican wet dream.

The IRS is revoking their tax-exempt status. Why aren't they being locked up?

The Internal Revenue Service said yesterday it plans to revoke the tax-exempt
status of every one of the 41 credit-counseling organizations on which it has
completed an audit, saying many of these firms appeared to be primarily
motivated by profit, not by helping debt-burdened consumers.

Commissioner Mark W. Everson also said the agency had begun criminal
investigations of some of the firms but declined to elaborate.

This should cheer you up. The U.S.A. is number one. That's right we are the most over weight nation in the world. So let's all wave our flags and go to McDonalds for a Big Breakfast to celebrate.

World leader

Not surprisingly, the U.S. is the world leader: The U.S. is home to nearly
23% of the world's obese population aged 15 or older, according to the analysis.

The U.S. share of obesity, with 22.6% of the world's fattest residents age
15+, is far above the 5.3% share of runner-up Mexico, according to American
Demographics' analysis.

The Environment. Our planet that has been around and pretty well thriving for hundreds of millions of years, might just have met it's match in the form of an idiot boy from Texas and his brain dead supporters.

Bush is wanting power plants to be able to produce more pollution, it saves money that can better be used in campaign coffers. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit went right along with Bush, because they're obviously just dumber than dirt. Environmental Defense stepped in and said this is just stupid, we'll just appeal this to the Supreme Court. The biggest surprise is that the Supreme Court has agreed to hear it.

The Supreme Court announced yesterday that it will review a controversial
federal court ruling that environmentalists had said would weaken
pollution-control requirements for aging power stations across the country.

In a one-line order, the justices said they will hear Environmental Defense's
appeal of a June 2005 ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit,
based in Richmond, which said that Duke Energy Corp., a North Carolina utility,
could operate refurbished power plants even though their total annual emissions
would go up.

The Bush Administration has also decided, he is the decider, you know, that the EPA doesn't need to have access to any of that new fangled science stuff. So they are just going to stop funding the EPA's library and resource system. Just give them each a Gideon Bible, if it's good enough science for the President, it's good enough for the EPA.

Proposed budget cuts could cripple a nationwide system of Environmental
Protection Agency libraries that government researchers and others depend on for
hard-to-find technical information, library advocates say.

The $2 million
cut sought by the White House would reduce the 35-year-old EPA Library Network's
budget by 80 percent and force many of its 10 regional libraries to close,
according to the advocates and internal agency documents.

The public has a lot at stake in the future of these libraries, said Jeff
Ruch, executive director of Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, a
nonprofit advocacy group that obtained internal EPA documents on the proposed

"We view this as another example of the Bush administration marginalizing EPA
research so that the agency scientists and other specialists can't do their
jobs," Ruch said. "And then in the absence of information, plans by industries
and others that have environmental implications go forward."

Bureau of Land Management, can't do it's job because they just can't get the funding. And the funding they do get mostly goes to assisting energy companies exploit the land the BLM is supposed to be preserving.

The new study says the agency lacks the money to deal adequately with these
issues. Beyond that, Moe charges that the BLM "has let their missions get out of
whack. The extraction part, serving the energy industry, is hugely out of
balance with the preservation business. Their priority is energy right now, and
the rest gets short shrift."

The Pentagon finally gets around to releasing the names of the Gitmo detainees. It didn't mention if any of them were actually terrorists. Guess they should have gave them all phones and they could have checked them out while they were checking us out.

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) -- The Pentagon gave The Associated Press on Monday
the first list of everyone who has been held at Guantanamo Bay, more than four
years after it opened the detention center in Cuba. But none of the most
notorious terrorist suspects were included, raising questions about where
America's most dangerous prisoners are being held.

And finally, The Freefalling Dollar and Bush's war on the Middle Class. A recommended read for anyone who actually gives a crap about what's going on with our economy.

Can't the American people see what is happening to their future? In just 6
years Bush has taken the world's strongest currency and chopped it into finally
ground hash. By the time people rouse from their stupor, the greenback will be
eye to eye with the peso.

Bush has piled up more debt than all the other presidents combined. His tax
cuts have fattened the bankrolls of his constituents but they've put the dollar
on a downward slide. Since he took office the once-mighty greenback has
plummeted a whopping 35%.

Meanwhile, at the Federal Reserve, new Fed-master Bernacke has the printing
presses running at warp-speed. The soaring price of oil has soaked up more than
a trillion dollars of freshly-minted fiat currency, but it's the only thing
that's kept the greenback from slipping beneath the waves. Unfortunately, that
trick won't last forever.

You really should read the whole thing. It shows how they're taking the money from the bottom and sending it to the top. Related story.

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I did not mean that Conservatives are generally stupid; I meant, that stupid persons are generally Conservative. I believe that to be so obvious and undeniable a fact that I hardly think any hon. Gentleman will question it.

John Stuart Mill (May 20 1806 – May 8 1873)