Powder Blue Report

News, finance, politics, sports, and fun from the west coast

Monday, January 30, 2006

John "44%" Campbell Update

It didn't take long for me to have my first big disappointment with John Campbell. It seems that Mr. Campbell is going for the establishment pick for Majority Leader in saying that he will be supporting Rep. Roy Blunt. This is not a good omen. I guess John hasn't been reading about all the stink associated with Jack Abramoff. Instead of endorsing a guy like John Shadegg who will get the party back to its roots a la 1994, he has chosen to be part of the establishment culture that gives a wink and a nod to all the illegal bribing that has been going on. This speaks volumes of the new Congressman. I wonder what his best buddy Hugh Hewitt thinks about this choice? Hugh is on record as part of the center right coalition of bloggers supporting John Shadegg. Still to come from Mr Campbell will be his support for or opposition to President Bush's guest worker program when it comes back from the Senate in the form of an amnesty bill. If he does indeed vote for amnesty, he can be sure he will have primary opposition in the form of an anti illegal immigration candidate.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

OC Blogosphere Update

Today at 11:30am, Jubal of OC Blog will be a guest on Rick Reiff's KOCE show. This should be an interesting interview. His face is going to be in the shadow and his voice digitaly altered. I posted a few weeks ago some thoughts on who I think are the bloggers on OC Blog. Jubal is either Mike Schroeder or John Lewis IMO.

The next story is about The Flashreport and Jon Fleischman. It comes via the San Francisco Chronicle. Jon is a big player in California politics now because he is seen as credible and very fair. I will agree with that for the most part. Jon does have one huge blindspot though. It's obvious to most that Mike Carona has had, let's say some huge "challenges" the last few years in office. Jon works for the Sheriff as a spokesman for him. There have been some negative articles about the Sheriff the last few months and Jon has chosen to put his head in the sand on these. He has not posted any links to these negative artyicles in his Orange County section. I find this very troubling Jon. I give the guy credit for loyalty, but it's obvious Jon. You're compromised on your ability to be credible on this race because of your capacity as a Carona employee.

*******************11:46AM UPDATE*********************

I have to commend KOCE for that really bad shadow they had on Jubal because you could easily tell that Jubal was none other than Matt Cunningham! I was wrong again about it being John Lewis and Mike Schroeder. Matt does work for former State Senator John Lewis, so I was on the right track. Matt, you have created a great blog at OC Blog. Keep up the great work even though you are public now.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

CCIR Meeting Last Night

Last night I went to the monthly meeting of Barbara's Coe's CCIR meeting. I wanted to show my appreciation for the Mayor of Costa Mesa's stand against illegal immigration. Allan Mansoor is a very brave man. I thanked him personally and told that the silent majority of citizens are behind him. He didn't have any prepared remarks and basically spoke from his heart. He told us of his upbringing. His father emigrated from Egypt and his mother from Sweeden(that's a strange combo...I bet he has some interesting stories). They didn't receive any subsidies growing up. Mr. Mansoor then went on to become an OC Sheriff deputy and has been one for the last twelve years. He told us of his frustration trying to get things done in his city of Costa Mesa. He basically got drafted into running three years ago and now he is the Mayor. What a great country we live in! If only Irvine had a mayor like Allan Mansoor. We could only be so lucky.

Jim Gilchrist was also there as were hoards of media following Jim around asking him about his decision to sue the organizers of the Patriot's Day Parade in Laguna Beach. I mean there was tons of media there last night. It was kind of a reunion of sorts for me because I hadn't seen Jim since election night back in December. He sounded great. I don't believe he has made any decisions yet as to what office he may run for, but I do know that he and his team of advisors are going back to Washington DC the second week in February to be there while the Senate is debating the immigration bill. As John & Ken said yesterday on their show, this is going to be a huge battle. Get ready to rumble.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Larry Agran Must Resign

I've been waiting for this moment for a long time. The evidence is clear now that Larry Agran has been stealing elections for the past few cycles. It's the only way he has been able to remain in power in a Republican city like Irvine. R. Scott Moxley of the OC Weekly has all the details here in his expose' of Larry Agran and his corrupt machine. He has been shaking down companies of all forms with business before the city. He has abused his office for personal gain and profit. He must resign or be indicted. Just take your medicine Larry and get ready to spend some time at Club Fed.

OC Weekly Set To Reveal Dark Secret About Larry Agran

I just checked the OC Weekly's homepage and they have a tease about revealing a "very dark secret about Larry Agran" tomorrow. I can only speculate because I am not privy to the story, but if I had to guess, I would say it has something to do with the illegal "Hometown Voterguide". I can't wait. I know Larry is probably burning up the phone lines right now trying to find out himself what is going on.

Another Day....Another Mexico Outrage

Here's a question. What would the President and all relevant defense/intelligence agencies do if they knew one of our so called "allies" was providing roadmaps to others with bad intentions to invade our country? I hope they would do everything in their power to prevent this from happening. I just am at a loss then why the military is not on the border because we know that Mexico is now giving roadmaps of all our supposed weak spots along the border to all of their citizens who want to invade our country. Here is the article

Original "Survivor" Winner Richard Hatch Found Guilty Of Tax Evasion

I thought Richard Hatch was a smart guy, but it turned out that he is not so smart after all. In fact he's pretty stupid for not paying taxes on his Survivor winnings. He was just found guilty today in his home state of Rhode Island. You knew the IRS was probably going to check your returns out if you're a celebrity. What an idiot. Lastly, I guess Mr. Hatch won't have to worry about "dropping the soap" in the slammer. He is a gay man. I'm sure all the Bubbas at whatever Club Fed he is going to are happy right now.

This is great for Survivor the show because now thy're going to receive all kinds of publicity from this trial and it just so happens that a new Survivor, "Exile Island" is set to begin Thursday Feb 2nd.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

The Power Of Bloggers Will Sink Blunt

This is an excellent article by The Hill on the influence that bloggers are having on the race for Majority Leader. It seems that Rep Blunt's strategery to play a four corners offense or a prevent defense to coin some sports analogies is going to in fact prevent him from winning. He is trying to run the clock out, but in the meantime, support for Shadegg and Boehner are growing. I'm not even going to go into the the whole secret ballot procedures because you know that there will be a lot of reps who are going to double cross Mr. Blunt. It always happens in these kind of contested secret leadership elections. I frankly think the race is going come down to whoever comes in second place on the first ballot. If Shadegg can beat Boehner on the first ballot, I think he has an excellent shot to becone ML on the second ballot.

Sen. Tom McClintock Endorses Van Tran

This is absolutely great news. The most well known conservative in the state, Tom McClintock has decided to endorse Van Tran for the 34th SD. This gives Van huge momentum. It also will probably have the effect of making Lynn Daucher fold up her tent and join the likes of Marilyn Brewer & Tom Harmon in political exile.

I knew as early as last Friday that Senator McClintock was going to endorse Van because Van told me personally at the Friday Fountain Valley Chamber event. I'm glad it's official now. This is going to be the marquee legislative race of the state in my opinion along with making sure David Dreier doesn't serve another term.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Kobe Bryant Is Good

I just heard on the radio that Kobe Bryant just lit up the Toronto Raptors for 81 points tonight out at Staples Center. Now I wish I could have seen some of the game. I'll catch Fox Sports West for the 4th quarter replay tomorrow. That is amazing. I gotta give Dr. Buss credit where credit is due. He made the decision to trade a declining skills Shaq O'Neal so that he could spend his money on a young thoroughbred like Kobe. Here's a link to the story

Saturday, January 21, 2006

More OC Pension Folly From The Board Of Supes

Let me make sure I have this straight. The OC BOS accept huge contributions from the local county employee unions. Then they vote for the county to cover a huge unfunded liability in the form of increased pension payments in the future. Now according this OC Register story, The Supes are going to float bonds and go into debt to finance our pension obligations. Did I miss something here? That would be like me or someone else cash advancing our credit cards and then using the proceeds to fund our IRAs. This is absolutely ridiculous. I guess we can now say that the county government is a wholly owned subsidiary of the union bosses. Check please.

Mike Carona Must Go

The LA Times has a great story this morning about all of Sheriff Carona's problems these days. Here is the article. I'm glad that the old school print media is finally writing about all this stuff going with the Sheriff. This guy has completely compromised himself with his conduct in and out of office the last few years. It's time to make a change. This is one of my huge beefs with the county GOP establishment. They read the same stories about the Sheriff as everyone else. They were the ones during the Clinton impeachment leading the charge(rightfully so) for his removal from office because of his conduct. Now though, when one their golden boys has many of the same issues as Clinton did, they have all circled the wagons for Carona. It just makes me sick. How many more stories/indictments do there have be for people in the party hierarchy to say enough is enough.

RNC Votes For Amnesty

Yesterday the RNC had a vote at their winter meeting on a resolution about the immigration bill currently working its way through Congress. Here's another shocker: they voted for President Bush's guest worker/comprehensive/amnesty approach to solving the problem. They just don't get it. Apparently the resolution passed by voice vote after the other non amnesty resolution was pulled from the floor because it lacked the votes. I had heard that one of California's representatives, Barbara Alby was going to support the non amnesty resolution. I hope she did not cave. The Washington Times has a write up about the events of yesterday's meeting here.

Friday, January 20, 2006

Fountain Valley Chamber of Commerce Dinner

Tonight was the Fountain Valley Chamber of Commerce's annual legislative dinner mixer/party. I was invited to attend by a fellow Huntington Beach business associate. He said there would be lots of local politicians there to rub elbows with so who was I to say no. It turned out to be another interesting evening. Here are the people that were there: Van Tran, Dana Rohrabacher, John Moorlach, Jim Righeimer & his wife, Bill Hunt, one of Arnold's spokesholes(can't remember her name), and of course all the Fountain Valley elected officials. Me being the new kid on the block so to speak, I wanted to introduce myself to as many people as possible. I managed to talk to all the local politicians except for Con. Rohrabacher. I wanted to have a little chat w/him about his buddy Jack Abramoff and tell him to stop defending guys like this and start representing your constituents instead. I can say unequivically that blogs like mine, OC Blog, Flashreport and others are having an affect on the way business is done in a big way. Blogs are basically a political futures market. Whenever there is information now that has the potential to change the political conventional wisdom, it is reported on the blogs first usually. That is a very good thing as far I'm concerned. I don't want to have to wait for the morning paper to find out what happened a day and half ago.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

IRC Roundup With Senator Ackerman

I just got back from the Irvine Republican Council meeting tonight with State Senator Dick Ackerman as our guest speaker. I appreciate the fact that Sen. Ackerman took time out of his busy schedule to meet with our conservative grassroots organization. Having said that, I'm afraid I don't really have any other good things to report back to all the conservative grassroots volunteers here in OC or the state. I don't know if it was Sen. Ackerman's laid back personality or the fact that he didn't have very good answers for our questions, but I'm afraid that this state is truly screwed. It's like our republican reps are waving the white flag right now. There was no passion at all from the Senator. The tone of his Sacramento update was basically....we can't do any better right now because we don't have the numbers so let's just enjoy getting rolled everytime on more taxes and spending, etc. He went on to explain why he was supporting Lynn Daucher over Van Tran. He said that they had "op research" that is really going to hurt Van. I asked point blank what was so bad. I mean is the guy a sex offender or something because short of that, I'm just having a real hard time with his reasons why he is doing this. He said that it was policy to not get involved in the 35th SD primary because it's already a GOP seat, but for a targeted seat like the 34th SD, the party wants to try to annoint errr I mean pick a winner before the primary who can win. I just don't understand how you can not endorse a great candidate like Diane Harkey over RINO Tom Harmon, but it's okay to give Lynn Daucher millions of party money even though she doesn't stand for any republican principles. Got it. I asked him about Ms. Daucher attending a NARAL event tonight celebrating the anniversary of the abomination of a decision Roe vs Wade and he said that she did not go. Ah Senator her name is on the guest list. I think Daucher must have got wind of the firestorm this event was creating and convienently spent more time with her family tonight or something. In fact i'm sure Van's consultants will be all over this issue in the very blue collar 34th SD.

So the tone of the meeting was pretty dreery. It then came question and answer period. I asked him why conservatives should be excited about Lynn Daucher....answer, because she is the only one in his opinion that can win. Why not save all that GOP money you're going to blow in the primary trying to prop up a candidate that can't be propped up and let the republican primary voters decide who they want as their standard bearer. I strongly disagree with that strategy and I told him so in no uncertain terms. If I'm wrong about Van having really bad skeletons, I'll apoligize, but I and most other activists are not going to lift a finger for Daucher. Later in some one on one questioning by yours truly, I asked him why the OC Supervisors are so in bed with the unions. His answer was..."I don't know Allan, you'll have to ask them about that". He was basically saying that he was at a loss to explain the direction on the BOS.

Some other items that were discussed was the huge bond issue shortly to come before the voters. That one is such a disastrous idea that I really won't say anything else except JUST VOTE NO on more bonds. He talked about having a cap of 6% of general revenue devoted to bond interest expense. How that will work when we have a recession is obvious. Get ready for more taxes. He also talked some some other budget issues that quite frankly waved the white flag of surrender. He talked about Arnold's political situation right now. He thinks Arnold will win re-election. Do we really want that at this point Dick? He told the story of how he introduced Susan Kennedy to a Senate GOP caucus. She was only supposed to talk for five minutes, but ended up talking for over forty five minutes. He thinks that the hire was bad, but he really likes her personality and thinks this pick is going to work out well for Arnold and the state. I'm sitting there thinking....yeah this is just going to work out great Senator(NOT). He thinks that if Arnold just had a "Karl Rove" type of consultant guiding him that he would be a lot better off politically. In other words, the guy is basically flying by the seat of his pants right now blowing in whatever direction the political winds take him. Failing to plan is planning to fail if you asked me.

I usually like to look at the glass as half full, but after tonight I am convinced there are only a few drops left in the glass. California is not a shining city on a hill anymore to quote the great one and the prospects going forward are bleak. I wish I could say otherwise. I'm out

Sen. Ackerman Tonight At The IRC Meeting

It should be a very interesting meeting tonight at the Irvine Ranch Water District headquarters. State Senator Dick Ackerman is the guest speaker for our Irvine Republican Council. He has a lot to answer for lately. The first of which is his stunning endorsement of RINO par excellence Lynn Daucher over Van Tran for the 34th Senate District seat. Assemblywoman Daucher is in fact attending a "Roe vs Wade Celebration" tonight while the Senator is speaking to us. If that doesn't give a conservative heartburn, nothing else will. Here's the story from OC Blog. I will report back to everyone later tonight to let you know what happened.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

UCLA Students Fight Back

I have to post about this story because it deals directly with my favorite institution of higher learning. That would be UCLA of course. Most people know that I didn't actually attend UCLA. I went to Long Beach St, but I had lots of friends that did go there and I spent quite a lot of quality party time on fraternity row on Gailey Ave. The stories of UCLA profs being extremely liberal are all true and one alum has had enough. Andrew Jones has formed the "Bruin Alumni Assn." for the purpose of outing as many liberal professors as possible. I have a more challenging idea for Andrew. He should try to find all the middle of the road and conservative professors. That would be like finding a needle in a haystack....a very rare occurence indeed. It's a well known fact that almost all UCLA educators are from the far left of the political spectrum. I applaud Andrew for his efforts. Here is his website, UCLA Profs. The goal of the organization is to "out" as many commie professors as possible. Again that shouldn't be to hard as they grow on trees there. So in the spirit of "The Mighty Bruins"(click here to listen), I am going to add a link to his group on my blogroll.

I was also curious to see what Professor Bainbridge had to say about this organization. Here is his take. He is a business professor at UCLA and has a widely read conservative blog. Thanks for the support Prof. Bainbridge.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

First Big Red Flag For OC Housing Prices

I wrote a few months ago about the bull market in housing being over. The first serious warning sign was an article that I just read in the OC Register this morning by Jonathan Lansner. Here's the link. It's not rocket science to know that we are at the top of the market right now. The number of delinquent property tax bills has grown by 15% over last year to 46,000 people in OC. That equals about 5.6% of the population. If people can't make their property tax payments, it ain't going to be long until they can't pay the mortgage either. This is a bad omen for things to come.

Monday, January 16, 2006

The Stars Are Aligning For A Huge Bull Market In Commodities

As most of you, I am licensed series 3 commodities broker. I feel it is my duty to not only inform people on my blog, but tell you about good investment opportunities as well. I have been in this business for almost ten years now. During that time commodities were and still are treated like the proverbial "red headed step child" of the investment world. Most of the people I speak with and interact with have never even thought about investing in commodities or they have heard from a friend "losing their shirt" in commodities. The fact of the matter is that everything moves in cycles in the investment world. Usually those cycles last for about fifteen years on average. Right now we are in a secular bear market in stocks. Real estate is at the top of its cycle. Bonds/interest rates are on their way up which makes them poor investment choices. What's a prudent investor to do? Where should they be putting some of their investment dollars at work?

I come from the Benjamin Graham school of investing. He was the master of "value investing". His book "The Intelligent Investor" is the bible for investing as far as I'm concerned. One of the greatest money managers of all time, Warren Buffet is one of his students. What I'm basically saying is that commodities are extremely undervalued right now. Most people should have some form of raw materials/commodities in their investment portfolio going forward right now. There are a lot of ways to to accomplish that. If anyone is interested in talking some more about this, give me a call at my office this week and we'll talk. The number is (888)959-9955.

A good primer book about the opportunity in commodities right now is "Hot Commodities" by Jim Rogers

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Direct From R Scott Moxley: OC Grand Jury Looking Into Great Park

I'm going to start calling R Scott Moxley of the OC Weekly the "Ice Cream Man". He has scooped the Register and the Times so many times on important OC stories that it is embarassing for them. Here's his latest get about who else but the little dictator of Irvine, Larry Agran. Apparently Larry's work on the Great Pork.... errr Park Board has drawn the eye of the Orange County Grand Jury. I know the wheels of justice turn slow some times, but thank god they've finally started to scrutinize the Great Park shenanigans of Larry and his henchmen. I love the irony of the developing situation. It looks like from Scott's story that Larry has already retained some high powered lawyers to help him. I hope all those ill gotten gains that he has received from the Park are sucked dry by these attorneys. It would be poetic justice indeed.

John Shadegg For Majority Leader

I am very happy to see that momentum is building for John Shadegg of Arizona to become Majority Leader in the House. The guys at Red State have just posted on this also. John is an excellent conservative and most of all, he isn't tainted with corrupt lobbyists so far like Reps. Blunt & Boehner. For the record, I don't know if John Shadegg is squeaky clean, but he beats the stink that the other two have attached to them right now. We need to show the voters that we as a party will not tolerate the corruption that has gone on and will continue to go on if we don't change some rules. So I am happily endorsing Rep. Shadegg for ML.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Irvine Passes "Ethics Ordinance"

It was almost midnight last night when the Irvine City Council passed Larry Agran's so called "ethics ordinance". Here is the article from the OC Register. Unfortunately I didn't get a chance to watch or attend the meeting because I was attending to some business last night myself. From reading the Register article, it sounds like it was classic Larry Agran "wait until midnight" to get to the meaty part of the agenda. This was pure hardball politics plain and simple. Larry has the loyalties and votes from Beth Krom and Sukkee Kang to pass anything he wants. If he proposed an ordinance proclaiming himself the King of Irvine, those two kool-aid drinkers would vote with him on it. So help me though if he tries to pass some sort of day labor center ordinance. I have my own reservations about the way Christina Shea has carried herself lately, but she has a right to make a living as a lobbyist or whatever she wants to do and for Larry to be pulling these kinds of stunts, well lets just say it doesn't surprise me.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

"Mexico Demands U.S. Allow More Immigration"

This is the title to an AP article just out this morning. Click here to read it. I just have to laugh at nonsense like this. I keep harping on it, but whenever you want to get to the root of an issue, especially on illegal immigration, just follow the money. It's simple. Illegal immigrants here in the US send home roughly $16 billion a year to Mexico/Central American countries. It's their second largest source of hard currency besides oil exports. It's no wonder they want unfettered immigration here. They could give a rats ass about their actual citizens. All they care about are those remittances.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Excellent Pat Buchanan Column

This is a must read column from Pat Buchanan. I echo everything that he says in it. The republicans better get religion from this Abramoff/lobbyist scandal because it threatens their modus operandi and majority. I also noticed a Time article yesterday that said Duke Cunningham wore a wire before he plead out. If it helps convict more corrupt members, than I'm all for it.

Friday, January 06, 2006

More On Arnold's Speech Last Night

The more I think about it, the more Arnold grates on me. This guy has done a complete 180 from last year. The speech last night was just abominable. He must have gotten some tutoring from DC republicans. They have been spending like drunken sailors and adding to the national debt at breakneck speed. It makes perfect sense. It's like we have an all new republican party that doesn't care about fiscal discipline and running up debts. There was not one mention of illegal immigration in the speech either. It's like it doesn't exist to him. The bulk of all the new population growth that he was talking about last night is going to come from illegals streaming into the country like we've had for the last twenty years. Why should the good citizens of California be taxed even more for this "infastructure" need that is being driven by the growth of illegal immigration? He has just declared war on the working middle class as far as I'm concerned. I'm going to continue to fight the good fight against bigger government and these reckless policies.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Arnold's In La La Land So Far

Goodbye Arnold. See ya later. I just can't take this guy anymore. The theme for the speech...spend, spend, spend....debt, debt, debt and kill even more jobs by raising the minimum wage by a full dollar. We're not even half way through the speech too, jeez.

Look Out For Inflation, Here It Comes

Inflation has been around ever since the US government went off the gold standard and went exclusively with a fiat currency/monetary system. To prove my point, the purchasing power of a dollar has diminished by 98% since that that year. Anyway, Last November, the Federal Reserve Board quietly announced that it will no longer publish data about M3 which is the true money supply figure. This was astonishing, but not surprising. M3 is the broadest definition of the money supply: It includes coins, currency, checking accounts, money market funds, time deposits and institutional money market accounts. It is one of the best bellwethers for inflation. What does the Fed want to hide? My opinion is that they know that the day of reckoning is finally approaching. They know that hyper-inflation is soon to be at hand so better to try and hide pesky things like money supply figures. The upside to all of this is huge opportunity to make and protect your money with hard assets like gold and silver. I'm going to do a long post about this opportunity later in the week.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Congrats To The Texas Longhorns

I didn't think Texas could do it, but they did. They ripped the national championship from USC's arms right in their own backyard. There's a lot of unhappy OC Trojan fans right about now, including my wife, LOL. I am so happy right now. A hearty congratulations to the Longhorns for being the better team tonight. SC doesn't have anything to hang their head for. They played great too, but they just ran out of time.

I do have some bones to pick with Texas though. Those cheerleader outfits are just....well....so trailer park trashy/ugly/horrifying. What's up with those chaps and that white fringe on their uniforms??? Now the "male" cheerleader outfits according to my wife...look like members of the Village People. The other thing that scared me was that Texas chick directing the band on that ladder. OMG! Baby got back. There's two things SC will always have going for themselves. They have a great band and cute cheerleaders.

Bush Recess Appoints Julie Myers

All I can say to this is WTF Mr. President? In a stunningly brazen move today, President Bush used a recess appointment to fill the slot of assistant secretary of Homeland Security for Immigration and Customs Enforcement with the uber totally unqualified/nepotistic/Michael Brown-like pick of Julie Myers. Here is the Bloomberg article. This pick is wrong on so many levels. The first reason is nepotism. I thought Bush would learn something from the Michael Brown fiasco. Obviously he has not. Mrs Myers is the daughter of former Joint Chiefs Chairman Richard Myers and her husband is the Chief of Staff for Homeland Security Secretary, Michael Chertoff. Anyone else see a problem with this? Secondly, she is totally unqualified for this very important position. She will in charge of securing our borders and enforcing the immigration laws. I guess I thought Mr. Bush would take this choice a little more seriously. The choice itself shows that Bush doesn't want the immigration laws enforced.

Michelle Malkin doesn't like this pick either

Something About A Football Game Today

I heard there is a football game or something today at the Rose Bowl. Oh yeah that's right. It's the national championship game between the University of Spoiled Children and the Texas Longhorns. I'll be rooting for the longhorns, but realistically the Trojans are going to destroy Texas. They have to many weapons on offense. I'll be watching the game though unless it turns into a blowout. Hook em' horns!

Dana Rohrabacher Still Defending Jack Abramoff

I was hipped to this Washington Post article over the past weekend by OC Blog today. Dana was still defending Mr. Abramoff up until this past weekend. To be fair, I don't believe he probably feels the same way today after Mr. Abramoff has copped to multiple counts of bribery and fraud. The fact remains though that Dana said that what Mr. Abramoff has done is nothing different than what happens in DC everyday. Do you care to revise and extend your remarks now Congressman? That's sad. What he's basically admiting is that most members are bought and paid for. I'm shocked that he actually said this. I posted yesterday that I wasn't surprised that this kind of thing goes on. What I am stunned by is that finally the Justice Dept. is starting to crack down a little bit on these lobbyists and corrupt members a la Duke Cunningham. Dana needs to put his bong down and start backing away from this guy as far as possible.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Lobbyist Jack Abramoff To Plead Guilty

Lobbyist Jack Abramoff has decided to plead guilty to several felonies. This story shocks me like not at all. This guy has been whoring around for Indian gaming and other interests for years. It is a bipartisan scandal. If the Democrats think they are going to make hay out of this, I think they are mistaken. Mr. Abramoff has probably cut a deal with the prosecutors to avoid even more jail time in return for him testifying against some members of Congress. Some of the names involved go right to the top of the leadership on both sides. They include Dingy Harry Reid, Tom Delay, Bob Ney, Byron Dorgan, and others. What surprises me most about this scandal is that the fact that the feds actually are pursuing a corruption scandal at all. This kind of stuff is how business is done in DC. If you want to get to the root of a scandal or issue, just "follow the money" as they say.

Monday, January 02, 2006

I'm Back Home Safe

I made it back home from Mammoth yesterday afternoon. It's good thing I made the decision to come home yesterday and not today like I was planning. This storm that is blasting us right now in socal has highway 395 closed as of right now because of multiple avalaches and dangerous highway conditions. I left the town of Bishop where I was staying yesterday morning because I did not want to get stuck like thousands of others are in Mammoth right now.

We had a great time up there even though the weather was crappy from the time we got up there this past Friday through to when we left yesterday. We left my house in Irvine at 3pm Friday. There are two ways to go to Mammoth from the OC. The first way is to go out through the 91 to the 15 through Cajon Pass and catch Hwy 395 in Victorville. The other way is through Los Angeles to catch Hwy 14 through Lancaster/Palmdale. I decided since many people would be driving out to Vegas on Hwy 15 that I would take Hwy 14. I was glad I did. I heard on the radio that Hwy 15 through the Cajon Pass was jammed solid for hours Friday night. It took me two hours to get through LA and to the turnoff for Hwy 14, but I was glad I took that route. I called ahead to my Aunt in Big Bine to tell that we were passing through. She invited us for dinner at their restaurant in Big Pine called Rossi's Steak & Spaghetti. The food is excellent. If you're ever heading up to Mammoth or Bishop on 395, the restaurant is in Big Pine on the east side of the road towards the end of town. Tell them I recommended you. The next morning Saturday, Lynn and I headed up to Mammoth to go skiing. The weather was crappy and instead of the usual snow up there, it was a little to warm and it was more like sleet until we got up to the Main Lodge. All lifts we closed by the time we made it there. They were handing out vouchers to people to ski another day. Oh well. We headed back down to Bishop where we were staying and then left the next morning to come home. We had a great time, but I think we're going back in March during some good weather so we can finally get in some skiing.