Friday, November 11, 2011

The Edification of Maria Bartiromo

Newt Gingrich educated Maria Bartiromo, CNBC November 10th Republican presidential nomination debate co-host, on history and economics. He was also amused at her "funny" defense of the liberal news media.

Polls released Friday, show Newt Gingrich is now trailing only Romney for the Republican nomination.
By the numbers: Mr. Romney, 23%; Mr. Gingrich, 19%; Mr. Cain, 17%; Texas Rep. Ron Paul 10%; Texas Gov. Rick Perry, 8%, and Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, 5%. Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum got 1% apiece.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

1000 Employees to Lose Jobs to ObamaCare

But, no worries - ObamaCare guarantees the newly unemployed skilled workers will have health care for life.
Stryker, the Kalamazoo-based maker of artificial hips and knees, will cut 5% of its global workforce by the end of next year to reduce costs in the face of new fees on device makers required by the U.S. health care law.

The job cuts will reduce annual pretax operating costs by more than $100 million beginning in 2013, when the medical-device excise tax is scheduled to take effect, Stryker said Thursday in a statement. Stryker had more than 20,000 employees as of Dec. 31, according to Bloomberg News data.

Stryker expects to record $85 million to $95 million of the expense in the fourth quarter of 2011.

"These actions are part of our ongoing focus on quality, innovation and cost, and position the company to continue to provide strong, consistent growth in a changing environment," CEO Stephen MacMillan said.
Sure hope the former Stryker employees won't be needing hips replaced with one of the squeaky models they themselves made. Along with having their health care saved by the very program that put them out of a job, they experience the ignominious irony of having their self-made $40,000 squeaky hips implanted.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Thursday, November 10, 2011


(Photo by Eric Thayer/Getty Images)
Occupy Oakland deposited $20,000 in a Wells Fargo Bank just days after vandalizing a Well Fargo branch during a large downtown street demonstration. On Wednesday, 4 Nov, one Oakland Wells Fargo branch had windows smashed by what was described as mostly peaceful demonstrators.
An Occupy statement said the money only will be with Wells Fargo temporarily while they work to establish an account with a credit union or community bank. Protesters said it was the easiest way to access the money to bail out people from jail.
Ruben Pulido, a Wells Fargo spokesman, said,
the move demonstrates that Occupy Oakland recognizes the value and service the bank provides its customers.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Scrooge Obama and the Merry Christmas Tree Tax

Barack Obama Christmas Tree
For his first Christmas in the White House, Obama gave to us Mao, transvestite, gay, and Obama tree ornaments. On his third Christmas in the White House, Obama gives to us a Christmas Tree Tax. The Foundry of the Heritage Foundation says the Dept of Agriculture is imposing a 15¢ tax on all fresh Christmas trees sold by sellers of more than 500 trees/year who are then free to pass the 15¢ fee along to consumers of Christmas trees, primarily Christians presumably.

David R. Shipman, Acting Administrator of Agricultural Marketing, said the Sec. of Agriculture will appoint a Christmas Tree Promotion Board (Christmas Tree Czars?) to administer a
"program of promotion, research, evaluation, and information designed to strengthen the Christmas tree industry’s position in the marketplace; maintain and expend existing markets for Christmas trees; and to carry out programs, plans, and projects designed to provide maximum benefits to the Christmas tree industry." And the program of "information" is to include efforts to “enhance the image of Christmas trees and the Christmas tree industry in the United States."
Or as Doug Powers put it,
"The alleged point of the fee… or tax… or levy… whatever — is to stem the growth of the artificial tree industry to promote the sale of real trees (by making them a little more expensive?)"
Media Matters correctly points out that the Christmas tree lobby has been pushing to create a fresh Christmas tree marketing campaign since 2008, the final year of the Bush Administration.
USDA received a proposal for a national research and promotion program for Christmas trees from the Christmas Tree Checkoff Task Force (Task Force). The program will be financed by an assessment on Christmas trees domestic producers and importers and would be administered by a board of industry members selected by the Secretary of Agriculture (Secretary). The initial assessment rate will be $0.15 per Christmas tree domestically produced or imported into the United States and could be increased up to $0.20 per Christmas tree. The purpose of the program will be to strengthen the position of fresh cut Christmas trees in the marketplace and maintain and expand markets for Christmas trees within the United States.
So, it could have been worse - a 20¢ tax; I feel so much better. And Media Matters cites other examples of agricultural commodity Checkoffs that
include the egg, beef, pork, mushroom, milk, and honey, etc. industries. We're all familiar with the Dairy industry's ad campaigns; "Milk Does a Body Good" and "Got Milk." "Pork: the Other White Meat," "Beef: It's What's for Dinner" and "The Incredible Edible Egg" are recognizable slogans developed and funded by Checkoff programs. These four 'big guns' collect between $45 and $91.2 million in assessments annually.
Hey! Is that why the price of all those products have increased to the point of unaffordability for many millions of Americans? I used to buy a lot of eggs, beef, pork, mushrooms, milk, and honey; not so much any more. This is why I'm not an economist in government. I would have thought to increase the sale of fresh Christmas trees, one would lower the cost of the fresh trees and increase the cost of the artificial trees the fresh Christmas tree lobby is trying to destroy.

Merry Christmas from Scrooge Obama.

UPDATE: The U.S. Department of Agriculture is going to delay implementation and revisit a proposed new 15 cent fee on fresh-cut Christmas trees, sources tell ABC News.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.