Lawsuits and wars keep America occupied

Notre Dame sued the government over the President’s health care law. Secretary Sebelius told them, “You can claim a religious exemption if you are one hundred percent Catholic.” Notre Dame says, “If we only enroll Catholics, we wouldn’t win enough games. There are plenty of good Catholic football players but sometimes we need to bring in a Methodist or two, maybe even a Southern Baptist.”

Forty other colleges, hospitals and charities operated by religious organizations jumped in, too, because they don’t want anybody telling them they can only deal with people of their own faith. It’s hard enough in this country to get folks interested in religion without Washington throwing up roadblocks.

Here’s another lawsuit. People who got to the front of the line to buy shares of Facebook are mad because in a week they lost (on paper) one dollar for every five they invested. Looking back on it, all I heard from various business news folks on TV for the last month or two was, “Stay away from Facebook.” Even Warren Buffett said he was not interested in buying. So you got no more right to complain about Facebook than if you lost big betting on Bodemeister in the Derby and Preakness.

Hardly any of the recent IPOs for internet tech companies has made any money, except Google.  Of course it’s not just the internet companies; GM is way below it’s initial price, and we’re all stuck with that investment whether we wanted it or not. Buying Ford stock would have been a better bet.

You have to sympathize a bit with Mark Zuckerberg. You remember he got married the day after Facebook shares sold for $38. Well, how many brides do you know who would stand by their man if, in the first week of marriage, he lost ten Billion dollars?

You have heard of Pakistan. It is located between India and Afghanistan and we have been paying ‘em about two Billion dollars a year to be our friend and help fight Al-Qaeda. Well, we have been suckered again. They hid bin Laden for years, but with the help of a local doctor we finally tracked him down. Instead of giving that brave patriotic doctor a medal, Pakistan gave him 33 years. If they won’t release the doctor immediately, I suggest we stop payment on our check, and instead give an extra Billion to India and say, “Sic ‘em.” If India keeps the Pakistan army occupied on the south border, maybe we can take out more terrorists along their north border and give the Afghans a chance at peace when we leave in a year or two.

Syria is causing problems but we’ve got our hands full. It’s Muslims vs. Muslims as it usually is in that region. Muslims seem to divide up just to have someone to fight against. We don’t understand it any more than we would if the Presbyterians and Lutherans declared war on each other. Iran is raising a ruckus, but we got Israel keeping an eye on them for us.

Historic quote by Will Rogers:
“There’s one thing no nation can accuse us of, and that is secret diplomacy. Our foreign dealings are an open book, generally a check book.” 
 WA#45, Oct. 21, 1923

Chicago hosts huge convention, plus NATO

Chicago was in the news this weekend. The city hosted a huge convention of thousands and thousands of protesters. At the same time, a small group of NATO country leaders met there, too.

These protesters replaced Al Capone and the bootleggers in drawing attention to the city. But give the Chicago police credit; after eighty years of failure they figured out how to solve the problem. Every protester had his own cop.

In addition to these hoodlums, the nurses union was protesting. Now, nobody in the world is more deserving of praise than nurses, so I can’t exactly figure out what they were after. They claim they want a “Robin Hood” tax to be collected every time somebody trades a stock. And they want some of the loot to go into the nurses’ pension fund. So instead of Robin Hood, it should be the Florence Nightingale tax. But I don’t think it will pan out for ‘em because their pension funds are invested in those same stocks that they want taxed every time they are traded.

Bill Clinton jumped up and said reducing the federal debt should be the top priority for the president and Congress. But President Obama is not concerned with debt; remember a couple of years ago he asked Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles to come with a plan. They did and he ignored ‘em. Nobody likes to tell folks how bad their debt is, especially if they want to get re-elected.  I think you’ve got to get people’s attention and then inspire ‘em to solve the problem.

Here’s my plan. President Obama should announce that on July 1 the federal debt will be divided evenly among living Americans. Every man, woman, child, grandchild… everybody gets their share. That’s about $50,000. Ok, now he has their attention. Next he will say, “In October we need to raise it to $55,000. And if you re-elect me, it will soon go to around $70,000.”

You’ll hear a howl like a stuck pig, “What do you mean, I owe $50,000? And soon to be $70,000? If it’s my debt, I want it to go DOWN, not up.”  See, right there the President’s got the answer. He can call in Simpson and Bowles and Congressman Paul Ryan and Boehner and Pelosi and say, honestly, “These folks want their debt reduced. How can we do it?”

Of course the president won’t do that. And I wonder if  Mitt Romney would either. Ron Paul would, but it’s too late for most of these “debt holders” to change their vote.

With this kind of personal debt prospects, that fellow from Facebook would not be the only one moving to Singapore. You would be surprised how many thousands of families, many with unpaid student loans and underwater mortgages, would be planning a one-way trip.

Historic quotes by Will Rogers:
“I was in Chicago. There was a few murders while I was there but not enough to keep up the town’s reputation.”  WA #280, May 6, 1928
“Just passed through Chicago. It’s not a boast, it’s an achievement.” DT #1079, January 9, 1930

Wedding planners and divorce lawyers favor more marriages

COLUMBUS: President Obama announced he’s for gay marriage, just like he was 15 years ago. See, he was for it before he was against it, and now he’s for it again.

He forgot to mention it is also a Jobs Plan because it will get wedding planners off unemployment lines. Hardly anybody has been getting married. The whole wedding business has been in the dumps, along side manufacturers of buggy whips, rumble seats, and LP records. That’s why the average wedding cost has jumped to $25,000. When a wedding planner can only find a half dozen couples willing to get hitched, they have to take in enough to last all year.

Of course more weddings will lead to more jobs for divorce lawyers. They are getting geared up for the influx. Some will be handing out their business cards at the reception.

The baby business in this country was on the rocks until someone said it’s ok to have a kid without being married. Today that accounts for nearly half of the baby food and diapers sold.

Hollywood held a fund-raiser and came out strong for gay marriage. Can anyone remember the last time Hollywood said something favorable about marriage? Seems the only way to get anyone in Hollywood to marry is to offer ‘em a million dollars for the wedding photos. George Clooney and his fellow actors  raised $15 million for President Obama. George could have covered the whole check himself, just by signing on for another movie.

West Virginia held an election Tuesday that drew almost as much attention as Senator Lugar’s defeat in Indiana. A fellow named Keith Judd got on the ballot against President Obama and got forty percent of the vote.

A lot of voters apparently saw the name Judd, guessed he’s a country music singer, and figured he’s better than a Chicago lawyer. It was only after the election, where he won 10 of the 55 counties, that someone discovered he’s in prison. But really, why hold that against him; look at all the elected officials that end up there. And several others ought to.

Well, I know the real reason Mr. Judd got so many votes. It’s like I said on the radio in 1935: “In this country people don’t vote for, they vote against.”

JPMorgan Chase Bank admitted Thursday they lost $2 Billion in three months on a bad bet, and three or four people in charge have already been let go. Our federal government goes in debt $4 Billion every day, and nobody in charge has been let go.

Historic quote by Will Rogers:

“If sentiment at [election] time is strong enough against Roosevelt, why the Republicans can nominate Shirley Temple and win with her.” Radio, June 9, 1935

Presidential Campaign is Charging Forward

COLUMBUS: President Obama declared May 5 the official start of his re-election campaign. So any political comments and promises made previously are not official.

He started his campaign by speaking to college students in Ohio and Virginia. I think he wanted to offer encouragement to ‘em before they move back in with their parents for the summer. Or longer.

His theme is: “Forward!”  You may say it’s not inspirational. But it sure beats Backward. Maybe they will add other words to Forward. See, in 1924 the Democrats used “Economy” as their theme to take on President Coolidge, and they got burned. So in 1992 Bill Clinton changed it to: “It’s the Economy, Stupid.” So, how about “A Big Step Forward”, or “Forward Pass”, or “Paying Forward”, or “Charging Forward”, or “Looking Forward to Prosperity.”  “Forward Ho!” has a nice ring to it, but the Secret Service might object.

Mitt Romney has not announced a theme. You might remember a 1928 Republican theme: “A chicken in every pot, a car in every garage.” I doubt if Mr. Romney will use anything connected with cars and garages.

Sometimes it seems that the only millionaires allowed to run for President are Democrats. Franklin Roosevelt was President during the Depression, and no one complained about his family wealth. Did anyone ask President Kennedy how many cars were parked at Hyannis Port?  Or what Jackie’s clothes cost? Yes, John Kerry was criticized in 2004 after he married into the Heinz family fortune. And Mrs. Obama received some barbs for wearing expensive shoes.

Frankly, if a rich man or woman, Democrat or Republican, wants to pay $900 for a shirt or buy diamonds at Tiffany’s, that’s fine. It’s their money, and they probably paid cash. But when the government decides to spend an extra Trillion dollars a year, “charged forward” on a Chinese credit card, it doesn’t seem fair to our grandchildren.

France held their election six months before ours. Sarkozy had been trying to pull the country out of their unemployment doldrums and deficit problems so it would not collapse like Greece. But he lost to a socialist, Mr. Hollande, who campaigned on a promise to raise income taxes to 75%, lower the retirement age by two years, and increase government spending. Hollande proclaimed, “Austerity is dead.”  President Obama immediately invited him to the U.S. for a NATO meeting, an economic summit, and to ask for advice on campaign tactics.

Sarkozy lost the election, but as long as he doesn’t lose his young wife he’s happy. Don’t be surprised if rich Frenchmen learn to speak English and move to Florida. Or if our tax rates go up to match France, maybe the Cayman Islands.

Historic quotes by Will Rogers:
“Mr. Owen D. Young invited me to annoy on this program this evening. You all know Mr. Young. He’s the sole surviving wealthy Democrat.” 
 The President’s Organization on Unemployment Relief Broadcast (radio), Oct. 18, 1931
 “These (unemployed) that you are asked to aid, why they are not asking for charity. They are naturally asking for a job. But if you can’t give them a job why the next best thing you can do is see that they have food and the necessities of life.”  Same broadcast.