Sunday, July 24, 2011

Tan without the sun or streaking

For many of us, summer means trying to look tan with some spending a great deal of time and money in tanning booths or to be spray tanned. There are other alternatives out there if you want to look tan, things like the tantowel, it uses the chemicals in your body to create a tan instead of dyes and uses a gradual process, so you don't look pale one day and super tan the next.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

For the record ...

While I took shorthand back when I was in college, most of the times I report on a story I prefer to record as opposed to taking notes, the modernization of digital recorders makes it easy to transcribe by using my computer and having a recording of an interview or event can come in handy. This is especially important when it's a controversial topic, having the ability to prove a comment as opposed to saying, "that's what I wrote down" can be critical. I've had situations where someone accused me of not quoting them properly, only to have to change their stance when the recording is played back to them. With digital, all you have to do is make sure you have space and batteries as opposed to worrying about mini tapes.

Products for a cause

Although the majority of Americans (96%) say they can identify two to three causes that are important to them personally, the recent 2011 MSLGROUP Social  Purpose Index found that only thirty-seven percent of Americans have actually purchased a product associated with a cause in the past year.  The gap between socially-conscious consumers' and their actual cause-related purchase decisions can be explained through heightened skepticism in the marketplace today. This skepticism is a result of many companies supporting causes that don't necessarily make sense for their business or their brands. Seventy-four percent of Americans agree that there is often too much of a disconnect between the causes companies support and the brands and products they sell (74%), while nearly as many (67%) feel that companies only support causes to sell products.
"These findings suggest that simply tying a cause to your product to get consumers to purchase is no longer enough, despite what others are telling you," said Scott Beaudoin, SVP, North America Director of Cause Marketing and CSR at MSLGROUP, one of the world's top five global  PR and events agencies.  "In order to connect with consumers in an authentic and meaningful way, companies need to elevate beyond purpose-driven table stakes and better align their core competencies with societal needs in order to fuel greater participation and profits."

House Act most extreme pieces of budget legislation in decades

 The "Cut, Cap, and Balance Act" that the House of Representatives will vote on next week stands out as one of the most ideologically extreme pieces of major budget legislation to come before Congress in years, if not decades.  It would go a long way toward enshrining Grover Norquist's version of America into law.  It is so extreme that even the budget plan of House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan would not fully satisfy its requirements — the Ryan plan's budget cuts wouldn't be severe enough.
The bill also would threaten the U.S. government with default and would likely cause the loss of roughly 700,000 jobs in the year ahead.  In addition, the bill would target programs for the poor for cuts, while protecting tax breaks for the wealthy and powerful.
The version of the "Cut, Cap, and Balance Act" that House Republican leaders are now circulating would require total federal spending to be shrunk to less than 20 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by 2018 and years thereafter.  The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has estimated that under the Ryan budget plan — which cuts non-security discretionary programs by 33 percent by 2021, cuts Medicaid by$1.4 trillion over the coming decade (and slices it in half by 2030), and shifts thousands of dollars a year in costs to Medicare beneficiaries — federal spending would exceed 20 percent of GDP in most coming years.  CBO estimates, for example, that federal spending under the Ryan plan would equal 20 1/4 percent of GDP in 2022 and 20 3/4 percent in 2030.

Terms of insurance

If you have ever wondered what is term life insurance compared to whole life insurance, the answers can easily be found on the internet. There are many reasons why term life insurance works better for some as an option and there can be a price difference between term and whole life. However, at times whole life can be a better option, while you can easily purchase insurance on the Internet, take some time to do your homework first.

Three vie to replace Ron Paul

Shortly after Congressman Ron Paul announced he was not seeking re-election, three Libertarian candidates announced their interest:

Beaumont real estate agent Amy Jacobellis, 54, serves currently as Chair of the Jefferson County LP affiliate.

Bob Smither, 66, who in 2006 was the Libertarian Party of Texas’ candidate in the special election to replace former U.S. Rep. Tom DeLay. A self-employed engineering consultant, Smither chairs the Galveston County LP affiliate.

Dallas attorney Eugene Flynn, 62, with service on the Texas State Libertarian Executive Committee and experience in immigration law.

How Winnie-the-Pooh took over the world

Recommended article -- from The Atlantic -- just one small part:

The latest Winnie the Pooh film comes out today, marking the fifth time Pooh, Piglet, Tigger, and friends have appeared in a feature-length movie. But the inhabitants of the Hundred-Acre Wood aren't just movie stars: Since A.A. Milne introduced the world to Christopher Robin's animal buddies with his 1926 book Winnie-the-Pooh, the characters have appeared on chinaware, baby bibs, vitamin bottles, and much, much more. In 2004, the characters came in second in a Forbes list of the top-earning fictional characters—just a hair behind Mickey Mouse and company—with a $5.6 billion annual income.

How did Pooh, Piglet, Eeyore, et al transform from introspective children's literary characters to brand ambassadors for everything from paper dolls to bandages?

Check out the timeline for the answer ...

Scanners at the ready

When you have a large number of documents that need to be scanned, it can be time consuming, especially depending on the quality of the equipment you are using to scan. It's why many people and businesses turn to services like document scanning for their needs. A company that does this as a service typically has higher quality (which means faster) equipment and it frees up the employee hours needed to stand or sit there at a scanner.

Gay marriage has always been an ideal niche for liberaltarians

At least according to New York Magazine:

Gay marriage has always been an ideal niche for liberaltarians. After all, it's the states, not the feds, that are the ones deciding whether it should be legal, a question that feeds into libertarians' federalist affinities. And when you strip away the cultural and identity politics, gay marriage is really just a fight about whether the government should be allowed to regulate personal liberty. On that, again, libertarians side with liberals.

Yes -- and no. The actual Libertarian Party position on marriage:

Monday, April 13, 2009

Libertarians applaud steps toward marriage equality

America’s third largest party wants government out of marriage entirely

WASHINGTON – America’s third largest party Monday praised officials in Iowa, Vermont and the District of Columbia for taking recent steps toward marriage equality, and urged legislators in all states to scrap government licensing, taxation and regulation of marriage.

“The government’s power to define marriage has historically been used as a tool to retaliate against minority groups, and the right to marry is the newest frontier of civil rights. Libertarians everywhere applaud this advancement of civil rights, but warn the only way to guarantee true marriage equality is to get government out of the question entirely,” said Catherine Sumner, LBGT policy advisor for the Libertarian National Committee.

Friday, June 24, 2011

On Afghanistan ...

Libertarian Party Chair Mark Hinkle responded to President Obama's June 22 speech with the following comments today:
"President Obama's speech was disappointing, but not surprising. The withdrawals he announced are painfully inadequate. Obama's withdrawals, even if they are carried out as he described, will still leave about 70,000 American troops in Afghanistan, probably for years to come. The president is commander-in-chief of the military. He has the power to end the war now, and withdraw all American troops, and that's what he should do.
"The U.S. has no business fighting a war in Afghanistan. Nearly three years ago, our Libertarian National Committee adopted a resolution calling for the withdrawal of our armed forces from Afghanistan. We are saddened and angry that there are now more troops there than ever.
"Obama talked about 'ending the war responsibly.' I think the word 'responsibly' is a weaselly escape hatch in case Obama doesn't want to withdraw more troops later. He will just say, 'That would be irresponsible -- I need to keep the war going strong.'
"This war causes the Afghan people to justifiably feel a greater hatred toward America. It makes American taxpayers poorer. And it emboldens other would-be aggressors, who can point to American intervention in Afghanistan whenever they feel like doing the same elsewhere.
"There are two big winners from the continuation of this war: Our military-industrial complex, which seems to have the president in its back pocket, and the Afghan government, which continues to enjoy tremendous benefits at the expense of the American taxpayer.
"If anything, Republican reactions to the president's speech were even more ridiculous than the speech itself. Republican Senator John McCain fretted that this withdrawal was not 'modest' enough. Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, feeling the need to criticize Obama despite the fact that they basically agree on everything, complained of an 'arbitrary timetable.' Republican House Speaker John Boehner worried about losing our 'gains' in Afghanistan. All these comments show an inability to comprehend an intelligent, modest foreign policy, as well as a serious lack of respect for American taxpayers."
The Libertarian Party platform includes the following:
3.3 International Affairs
American foreign policy should seek an America at peace with the world. Our foreign policy should emphasize defense against attack from abroad and enhance the likelihood of peace by avoiding foreign entanglements. We would end the current U.S. government policy of foreign intervention, including military and economic aid. We recognize the right of all people to resist tyranny and defend themselves and their rights. We condemn the use of force, and especially the use of terrorism, against the innocent, regardless of whether such acts are committed by governments or by political or revolutionary groups.
For more information, or to arrange an interview, call LP Executive Director Wes Benedict at 202-333-0008 ext. 222.
The LP is America's third-largest political party, founded in 1971. The Libertarian Party stands for free markets, civil liberties, and peace. You can find more information on the Libertarian Party at our website.

Sunday, June 05, 2011

Terms of indearment

No, I didn't spell "endearment" incorrectly, I'm referencing the "in" part of insurance. Where if you aren't "in the know" when it comes to definitions, I recommend reading term life insurance explained to get a clear idea of the differences between the types of life insurance which will help you decide what type of insurance is best for you. There are many times when a term life plan is the best choice for consumers.

Paul one of the FFC speakers

As Republican presidential candidates lined up to speak at the recent Faith & Freedom Coalition event, Ron Paul was one of the speakers who generated some attention. Stephanie Samuel reported on Paul's comments. One part:

Samuel's thinking, he noted, was astute advice for then and now. Paul maintained that by demanding the American government to provide assistance for broken families, job creation and more, its citizens have essentially appointed a king over themselves.

Paul echoed the U.S. Constitution in his call for limited government.

"We have, as a people, lost our confidence and our understanding of what true liberty is all about and where it comes from," he summed. "It doesn't come from the government. Our liberties come from our Creator."

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Approved HGH products average hundreds per dose

According to the FDA the cost of approved HGH products is high, averaging several hundred dollars per dose. It is because of this high cost, HGH drugs have been counterfeited and unapproved HGH products are offered for sale to U.S. consumers. Some companies promote compounded HGH for anti-aging purposes. It is sold as a "fountain of youth" in longevity clinics and to build body mass, weight loss, increase libido, and gain stamina. Consumers should know that the FDA does not approve the use of HGH for these "cures."

Consumers are also advised to be careful of HGH products imported into the U.S. from other countries. All of these facts in addition to reading product reviews at places like should be taken into consideration before taking any supplement product. As well as the standard advice to talk to your health professional first.

A different take on Pawlenty at Cato

This piece from the Washington Post gives a bit of a different take on the meeting at the Cato Institute. The audience questions are not really referenced in great detail.

Pawlenty also had little to say about the Republican plan to overhaul Medicare, which some GOP leaders are blaming for the party’s loss of a special congressional election Tuesday in a heavily Republican district in Upstate New York. Asked what he thought of the Ryan plan in the wake of Tuesday’s results, Pawlenty credited Ryan for a “courageous” plan but said he would put out his own, different proposal soon.

Pawlenty's lack of plenty in answers

David Weigel's piece on some of the answers provided by presidential contender Tim Pawlenty is a recommended read. One part:

In the wake of NY-26, what did Pawlenty make of the Ryan plan? This elicited the safe, smart, tapioca answer that Pawlenty's been giving for weeks.
"In general," he said, "I think the direction of it is positive, but I'm going to have my own plan."
Issue, dodged. Pawlenty pointed into the crowd again.
"We'll take the guy in the purple tie," he said. "That's a Vikings color!"
Unfortunately, the wearer of Vikings colors worked for the Marijuana Policy Project, who asked Pawlenty how he could be taken seriously on health care since he had opposed "my group" on medical pot.
"What was it?" asked Pawlenty? "Marijuana? Yeah. Well... I stood with law enforcement issue on this issue... we just have a respectful difference on this issue."
End of audience questions.

He should have kept answering questions, rather than create the impression that drugs are a key issue or that he will avoid tough questions on the Ryan plan ...

Sunday, May 22, 2011

From the quote gallery

A government which robs Peter to pay Paul, can always count on the support of Paul. – George Bernard Shaw
America needs fewer laws, not more prisons. – James Bovard
War is just one more big government program. – Joseph Sobran
Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide. – John Adams (1814)
They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. – Benjamin Franklin
One of the greatest delusions in the world is the hope that the evils in this world are to be cured by legislation. – Thomas B. Reed (1886)
If you are not free to choose wrongly and irresponsibly, you are not free at all. – Jacob Hornberger (1995)
Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys. – P.J. O'Rourke
The more corrupt the state, the more it legislates. – Tacitus
Government is not reason; it is not eloquence; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master. – George Washington
No man's life, liberty, or property are safe while the legislature is in session. – Mark Twain (1866)
There is no worse tyranny than to force a man to pay for what he does not want merely because you think it would be good for him. – Robert Heinlein
The true danger is when Liberty is nibbled away, for expedients. – Edmund Burke (1899)
Peace, commerce and honest friendship with all nations; entangling alliances with none. – Thomas Jefferson
The triumph of persuasion over force is the sign of a civilized society. – Mark Skousen
A wise and frugal government which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government. – Thomas Jefferson (1801)

Ripped? Really?

While I love the concept of a free market place, there are times when I come across the name of a product and it makes me laugh. I admire the creativity, but I still laugh. Take testoripped as an example. It's clearly designed from the name to increase testosterone, to make you ... "ripped" as in having muscles. The visual derived from the name immediately creates the vision of a muscled Adonis ... Which goes to show you in marketing? The name really does matter ...

Bock touchstone on Libertarian Issues

Libertarian columnist Alan Bock has died at age 67.

Bock wrote four published books: Ecology Action Guide (1970) and The Gospel Life of Hank Williams (1976), Ambush at Ruby Ridge (1995) and Waiting to Inhale: The Politics of Medical Marijuana (2000). He attended UCLA as a National Merit Scholar and majored in political science and journalism.

He died early Wednesday morning at his home in Lake Elsinore, from cancer. He was a senior editorial writer and columnist for the Register’s Opinion section from 1980 to 2011.

So you wear a uniform?

While some would say the uniform for a blogger is pajamas, which to be honest is probably my usual attire when I am able to work from home, many of you have to wear some sort of uniform as a part of your employment. A favorite brand for many is cherokee workwear, it's marketed for it's price and it's durability. They have a variety of uniform items, including the popular scrub wear.

Libertarian Party builds big war chest for 2012

WASHINGTON - In its most recent FEC report, for the period ending March 31, 2011, the Libertarian Party reported $284,882.95 in cash with $0 in debt. At the same point four years ago, the party reported $21,962.37 in cash with $31,589.74 in debt.
Libertarian Party Chair Mark Hinkle said, "Four years ago, we were $10,000 in the red. Now we're almost $300,000 in the black. That's a big step forward for the LP, and should help us a lot going into the 2012 campaign.
"If our candidates, volunteers, and donors keep it up, 2012 may be one of the biggest years ever for the Libertarian Party.

Holiday marketing already?

Believe it or not, now begins the time of year where some companies start marketing items for the holidays. Things like Christmas Cards will start to appear in various online advertising to get people to consider picking out their designs and ordering their cards early. It can create some savings to order during the "off-season" ... As long as you remember where you put the cards when it comes time to send them. Given the increase of "Christmas in July" parties for those who want more than one Christmas, you have time to order those invitations as well.

Libertarianism versus Statism

Jacob G. Hornberger's piece is a recommended read and for those of you wanting to read something older and slightly similar? Collectivism vs Individualism may interest you as well.

From the recent piece:

What makes libertarians different from liberals and conservatives is that, although we too have been born and raised within the statist box, we have broken free of it, in an intellectual and moral sense. Moreover, unlike liberals and conservatives, we recognize that statism isn’t freedom at all. It’s the opposite of freedom. Genuine freedom, libertarians contend, entails a dismantling of the statist box in which we all live.

From the older piece:

Collectivism is defined as the theory and practice that makes some sort of group rather than the individual the fundamental unit of political, social, and economic concern. In theory, collectivists insist that the claims of groups, associations, or the state must normally supersede the claims of individuals." -- Stephen Grabill and Gregory M. A. Gronbacher

Individualism is at once an ethical-psychological concept and an ethical-political one. As an ethical-psychological concept, individualism holds that a human being should think and judge independently, respecting nothing more than the sovereignty of his or her mind; thus, it is intimately connected with the concept of autonomy. As an ethical-political concept, individualism upholds the supremacy of individual rights ..." -- Nathaniel Branden

Paul says he would have opposed 1964 Civil Rights Act

Ron Paul making headlines again:
MSNBC anchor Chris Matthews pressed Paul during a TV appearance on whether he would have voted against the '64 law, a landmark piece of legislation that took strides toward ending segregation.

"Yeah, but I wouldn't vote against getting rid of the Jim Crow laws," Paul said. He explained that he would have opposed the Civil Rights Act "because of the property rights element, not because they got rid of the Jim Crow laws."

It's not a new position from some in the Libertarian party:

"This gimmick, it's off the wall when you say I'm for property rights and for states rights, and therefore I'm a racist," said the Texas congressman. "That's just outlandish."

Paul appealed to the free market, and argued that if a business owner were to post signs declaring segregation in his or her business, people wouldn't patronize it.

"For you to imply that a property rights person is endorsing that stuff, you don't understand that there would be zero signs up today saying something like that," he said. "And if they did they would be an idiot and out of business."

That written, there are quite a few postings out there labeling Paul as a racist for this position. He really had two choices, support his free market theory and have some label him a racist or say he would have supported it and then be called a hypocrite for not believing his stance on the free market ...

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Need gift ideas for the guy in your life

Not sure what to get for one of the men in your life? Whether it's a son, brother, husband or father, it's easy to find the perfect gift when you look at these Sport Gift Ideas for Men -- you'll find a vast number of gifts to select from. If sports is not something your guy is into? There are lots of other gift ideas out there, with just a little bit if time and a computer connection, all things are possible.

Libertarian and abortion

Ron Paul says being anti-abortion is a Libertarian stance based in faith

That's not how the Libertarian Party addresses abortion:

1.4 Abortion

Recognizing that abortion is a sensitive issue and that people can hold good-faith views on all sides, we believe that government should be kept out of the matter, leaving the question to each person for their conscientious consideration.