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Hi, This is Wayne. This is my site, my stuff, my blog, blahblahblah. The site itself is powered by WordPress and the Scary Little theme. I thought it was cool, and I still do.

July
13
2011
8:09 am
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Sen. Barack Obama’s Floor Speech, March 20, 2006 –

“The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can’t pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government’s reckless fiscal policies.  Increasing America’s debt weakens us domestically and internationally.  Leadership means that “the buck stops here.” Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better.”

Source link.

Question of the day: what’s the point of a debt LIMIT if it can just be raised each time the people who spend our money want to spend more?  Shouldn’t increasing the debt limit be put to a vote for all the taxpayers?  Isn’t it our money?

(This is a continuation of the previous post, but a little shorter.)

I just got an email from Barack Obama* saying how bad Wall Street is, and that he’s not going to stop until the government does something about it.  He said that it “cannot wait” and people are getting rich while middle class struggle to pay their bills.  Then he asks you to stand with him against Wall Street.

I can only imagine what the government is going to do about it.  The same people who ran Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac; the same people who run Social Security; the same people who run huge bureaucratic, lobbyist-driven, secretive, “no incentive for reduced costs” government organizations is now going to step in and take care of the free market.

So.  The government’s already in charge of oversight, investigations, and alleged wrong-doings throughout every industry in the nation.  Recently, the government has taken ownership or large stakes in all sorts of industries.  To my way of thinking, they’ve just gotten in the business, and now they have a lot of inconvenient competitors.  Competitors whom the government can oversee, investigate and allege wrong-doing.

When an entity can tax people to get its revenue, there is absolutely no incentive whatsoever for that entity to reduce costs.   Think about it – if you had unlimited funds, wouldn’t you spend more?   The people involved with government are incented, rather, to be “on the take.”  The officiating, dealings and back-door agreements are all tainted by financial and political greed, and that’s on both sides of the political aisle.

It is by capitalistic principles that the system is self-balancing, and everyone becomes truly equal.  In fact, I don’t understand why minorities (women, blacks, gay, immigrants, whatever the grouping) don’t embrace Capitalism more.  Who loves you more than Capitalism?  Who else gives you unlimited potential, constrained only by your own ability, drive and value to others?  Politicians promise you things so you think *they* love you.

Capitalism, on the other hand, has always delivered on its promises, and doesn’t give a darn what your color is.  Capitalism is the closest economic system to nature as you can find, and you dash in a little compassion here, a little protection there, and bam, you’re done.  Equality.  Let Charity, Church and Goodwill take care of anyone else who can’t make it on their own.  You’ll find the recipients a lot better off, too – how grateful is the single mother waiting in line to get a check at a cold hard brick building where people are paid to distribute them free money?  Do you think she wants to change her habits?  Compare that to the mother who gets fed by loving volunteers who give from their own table and with their own hearts.  when people receive charity, their more likely to return the favor later, AND they feel incented to do so!

But instead of Capitalism, we now have a minuscule percentage of the people (about 500 out of 300,000,000) making lofty decisions, shuffling money, inserting laws, dictating what companies can pay their CEO’s, investigating this, legislating that, and tying up company’s resources unnecessarily.  And to what end, you may ask?  Control.  It all comes down to control.

The poem in my last post talked about how the government came and took certain kinds of neighbors, but the author sat by because it wasn’t directly affecting him at the time.

I submit a new version, updated for our current times:

THEY CAME FIRST for the rich,
and I didn’t speak up because they promised to redistribute some of it to me.

THEN THEY CAME for the Insurance Companies,
and I didn’t speak up because they promised me lower premiums.

THEN THEY CAME for the Automobile Makers,
and I didn’t speak up because they promised me a cheaper car.

THEN THEY CAME for the Banks,
and I didn’t speak up because they promised me the bankers wouldn’t get rich any more.

THEN THEY CAME for the Health Care industry,
and I didn’t speak up because they promised me free health care.

THEN THEY CAME for the Student Loans,
and I didn’t speak up because they promised me I could get my loan easier.

THEN THEY CAME for the Wall Street Bankers,
and I didn’t speak up because they promised me “my equitable share.”

THEN THEY CAME for me,
and by that time, I had no job, no car, no money, no credit, no doctor and no-one I could trust to speak up for me.

And everything I was promised never showed up.

Most of those stanzas happened in about a year, folks.  One. Year.

Yup, we got about 3 months left.

Real Change is coming.

* this is not about Obama.  It’s about all government who thinks they know what’s good for you better than you do, while they themselves are subject to the same temptations, corruption and greed as all humans.  Remember, “A government big enough to give you everything you want is a government big enough to take from you everything you have” – Gerald Ford, 12 August 1974.

I know some of you will think me too critical of the President, especially since he hasn’t even finished his first year in office.  But I will take a little time on ye Olde Blog of Whall to point out some things I think important enough to mention.

First off, this isn’t just a “he lied! look at him lying!” or typical partisan finger-pointing at politicians.  All politicians lie.  It’s inexcusable, but there hasn’t been one that I know of that can refute it.  Some lie more than others, perhaps, and others may be over-zealous in their accusations of “lie”.   For example, if they promise to work towards something, and it doesn’t happen, I don’t consider that a lie.

Actually, I want to point out how Obama told the truth. 

Back in 2007, Obama signed the Oath of Presidential Transparency indicating that if he’s elected, he’ll issue an executive order during his first month in office instructing the entire executive branch to put into practice the Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006, a Google-like search tool will allow you to see how your tax dollars are being spent on federal contracts, grants and earmarks. (here’s his signed oath).  That Act was signed into law by Bush but hadn’t been followed as much as it should.

As such, I could find no such Executive Order signed by Obama.  I did find an undated memo… looks like a press release, though.  Maybe that’s good enough.  There is one about Ethics and stuff, and it’s neat – it says appointees in Executive branch vow not to take gifts from Lobbyists, for example. 

All good stuff, but where’s the transparency?

Early on, Obama promised open government, and talks about policy being open.

This is awesome stuff, but where’s the transparency?

Then there was the whole promise of Health Care Reform Legislation and talks all being out in the open, with hearings broadcast on C-Span, talks available on the Internet, and definitely, whatever may come, definitely NOT behind closed doors.

It all sounds great, but where’s the transparency?

Obama also promised that legislation would be put out on the Internet for at least 5 days for public review before being voted on, and then he later promised it would be out for 3 days, and there have been a few times where bills were voted on the day they were made available.  However, to be fair, I can’t fault Obama for this – he never should have made that promise, because he can’t be held accountable.  It’s not his decision to call a vote or make legislation available.

Either way, it’s all very nice, but where’s the transparency?

I believe I finally found it.  It’s at the airport!

Thank you Obama for bringing transparency to us all!

I tweet a lot.

A lot.

facebook-wall

Because I have Twitter cross-posted with Facebook, this means my “wall” (or as I like to call it, my “whall”) fills up quickly.  For those who don’t know about “cross-posting”, just know that it’s basic integration betwen social networking systems.  It’s a way for the different social mediums to work together, like Twitter, Facebook, Utterli, ping.fm and a hundred others, so that none of them hog you all to themselves.  In fact, the more a social medium shares (ie, cross-posts) with others mediums, the more likely people are to use it as their primary interface.

It’s like love.  The more you share, the more you have.

Or fire.

Anyway, I’ve gotten a couple of comments a few times from my Facebook friends that I’ve spammed up their news feed, or that my status updates have hogged up their home page.  For that, I apologize.

I’m not likely to reduce my twittering, however.  So, I’d like Facebook to listen up and see if they can come up with a way to solve this.  I have two ideas in this area:

@replies should be a comment, not it’s own update

When I put in “@username” in a status update, I’d like facebook to make my a reply in that person’s status update, if they also have a Facebook account integrated with Twitter.  It takes up so much less real estate and helps promote that person’s facebook page as much as, if not more than, my own.

If they don’t have a Facebook account, then maybe they could just make it look like the following example, but instead of “status” say “tweet” and have it link to the actual tweet. 

      facebook-comment

Threads should be recognized and put into comments

This is very similar to the first one, but is different enough.  If I do a status update, then someone replies to me on Twitter, then I reply to that reply, I want Facebook to figure that out and put BOTH updates as comments on my original status update. 

Even if the other person isn’t on Facebook.

Yes, I know facebook would have to go searching for the tweet.  But computers are good and fast.

For example, I might have the following conversation on twitter (shown in reverse chronological order here)

   tweet-example

In Facebook, this would typically turn into five (5) different status updates with my picture and everything. (actually, it appears as though maybe it’s not doing that anymore – is Facebook blocking @replies as status updates now?).

Instead, I’d rather it show up like a threaded conversation. 

   facebook-2

I see that there’s a facebook app called “Selective Twitter” that allows you to add a hashtag (#fb) to tweets to determine whether or not to actually update facebook.  I think that’s a good first step, but I’ve noticed tools such as TweetDeck (my desktop and iPhone tool of choice) allowing me to specify, per tweet, if I want to update facebook as well.

Once my ideas are implemented, hopefully I can be nominated for the Nobel Peace prize.  I could use the $1.4 million dollars.  Oh wait, the government normally taxes at least 50% of all “winnings” so I guess the prize isn’t that high. I know the prize is tax exempt in Hungary and several other nations, but I don’t know if it’s tax exempt in the US.  Anyone know?

May
11
2009
12:01 am
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This blog is pretty much perfect.

It’s funny and smart and free of the vulgarity that you’ll see at lesser blogs.

There are few things I could think of that I could say or do that would add to the awesomeness that is Whall.Org.  I had to dig deep to find anything lacking, a need that has yet to be met by Wayne.

And then I found it…

The readers of Whall.Org are begging for MORE OBAMA!

Now, to be fair, I’m sure Wayne would have answered your cries for MORE OBAMA – but he’s on vacation.  So I, as his friend and fellow blogger, have taken it upon myself to answer your cries and fill the void.

Dear Whall readers, I give you funny and smart and free of vulgarity – and MORE OBAMA:

Get Adobe Flash player

Heck, I’ll even give you TWO PARTS:

Get Adobe Flash player

You’re welcome.

Thanx to Dave2, I now know how to Trek Myself.

But what fun would that be? Instead, let’s make it a little controversial.  oh, AND fun.  Never forget the fun, especially if you can rile up a few people.

See if you can guess who this first one is

Here’s another one I made. Can you spot the speech?

hmm, I wonder if the colorful skin gives it away.

Here’s the next in the series, where Jaden gets in on the fun (please do not call Child Protective Services).

And one last one simply because I couldn’t help myself

(btw, I made all of these external links because when you embed them, they auto-play.  Last thing I want on my blog is auto-play sound.  Well, maybe not THE last, but it’s in the bottom 10,000 things).

I had mentioned that I’ll be mostly staying away from politics on my blog.  But that doesn’t mean we can’t have whallitics!

But first, a tip of the hat to Dawg for introducing me to Toonlet.  I decided to take this mornings political tweetfest between Dave2 and I and make it fun, enlightening, and easy to read, even for kids!

I figure it’s like this – Dave2 can draw.  Like, awesome-like.  It’s like he’s an artist or something.  So I have to use technology to even the field.  It actually comes out pretty fair – he has the artistic talent, and I have the brains.

(yes, I know it’s hard to read when it’s resized to fit my blog – so click on it to read it in it’s glory.  In fact, you can just click on the first one to launch the clip in another browser, and just click on the arrow on the right to go to the next frames)

Ain’t nobody can argue with “So’s your face.”

HA! You thought I was gonna be all political and stuff today, likely in response to a few recent stimuli, like the Federal Nationwide Gun Registration Bill that Obama will surely let sail through, or Obama’s first Press Conference where he actually admitted “I am the Eternal” (I frequently find the first four words of a sentence tell enough of the story, don’t you?).

Oh, no.  You won’t see ME stoop to such tactics to get in cheap shots or jabs.  I’m not going to mention any of it!  I made myself a promise not to be so political on ye olde blog of whall and by gum, I’m gonna keep it!  I’ll keep my political voicings to my twitter account and the occasional redirective comment here or there.  

Tonight, I get to see my all-time favorite band YES in concert in Dallas, TX at the House of Blues:

YES.  YES.  YES.

And the best part of it is — I get to do the Meet and Greet!  I actually get to go to a little after-show party, spend a little quality time with the band, meet them, and get a photo taken with them!  This is almost a dream come true!

The only “meh” part of the whole deal is that Jon Anderson is not touring with them at this time due to health reasons.  Jon – my thoughts and prayers are with you and your recovery!  Your music has meant so much to me for much of my life.

Maybe Jon’s absence is what made the Meet and Greet package so affordable.  The guy in the middle is some singer from a YES tribute band.  And the young guy in the back right is Rick Wakeman’s son, Oliver Wakeman.  So, while it’s not the ideal YES tour (Union and ABWH came very close to that), I’ll take what I can get before we all get too old to do anything about it.

Because I’m steering so clear of the political bent, I won’t even mention that some of the group performed on the Mike Huckabee show on FOX.  

What a dream come true for that tribute band guy, eh?  I mean, I sing along with every single YES song there is, on every single album ever released.  I can even hit all the notes.  But if *I* were in a tribute band, and *I* was picked to go on tour with the ACTUAL BAND… man.  What a rush.

I can’t wait for tonight.  I hope everything goes well because today I heard that last night’s show in Houston was postponed due to a medical emergency.

So, enough about me and YES.  What do YOU think of me and YES?

Update: MAJOR BUMMER: I just got an email from TicketMaster:

Hello, this is Ticketmaster Customer Service with an important alert for your upcoming event. Yes scheduled at House of Blues Dallas on Tuesday February 10, 2009, at 7:00pm, has been postponed. The new date is to be announced.

I was just gonna get in the car to drive up to Dallas, too.  I guess that’s a good thing… I mean, I’d rather know before I head out, but still.  As I tweeted, I’m crying Tears of Topographic Oceans.

January
20
2009
10:48 am
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Today, an African American man will move from his private residence into a much larger and infinitely more expensive one owned not by him but by the taxpayers. A vast lawn, a perimeter fence and many well trained security specialists will insulate him from the rest of us but the mere fact that this man will be residing in this house should make us all stop and count our blessings – because it proves that we live in a nation where anything is possible.

Many believed this day would never come. Most of us hoped and prayed that it would, but few of us actually believed we would live to see it. Racism is an ugly thing in all of it’s forms and there is little doubt that if this man had moved into this house fifteen years ago, there would have been a great outcry – possibly even rioting in the streets. Today, we can all be both grateful and proud that no such mayhem will take place when this man takes up residency in this house.

This man, moving into this house at this time in our nation’s history is much more than a simple change of addresses for him – it is proof of a change in our attitude as a nation. It is an amends of sorts – the righting of a great wrong. It is a symbol of our growth, and of our willingness to “judge a man, not by the color of his skin but by the content of his character.”

There can be little doubt now that the vast majority of us truly believe that this man has earned both his place in history and his new address. His time in this house will not be easy – it will be fraught with danger and he will face many challenges. I am sure there will be many times when he asks himself how in the world he ended up here and like all who have gone before him, the experience will age him greatly.

But I for one will not waste an ounce of worry for his sake – because in every way a man can, he asked for this. His whole life for the past fifteen years appears to have been inexorably leading this man toward this house. It is highly probable that in the past, despite all of his actions, racism would have kept this man out of this house. Today, I thank the lord above that I am an American and that I live in a nation where wrongs are righted, where justice matters and where truly anything is possible.

Oh, wait.  Did you think I was describing someone else?

Sorry.

Sincere and heart-felt congratulations to Barack Obama and the 62 million voters who made him President-Elect Tuesday night. The long, hard-fought and sometimes nasty battle won’t be missed by many and we knew that no matter which side won, there would be millions of Americans just a bit more than slightly upset come Wednesday morning.  

President-Elect Obama 

I’m actually doing a little dance in my heart for the incredible hurdle that’s been passed with making, on record and forever more, the color of one’s skin a non-issue when it comes to the highest elected office.  It’s been said that the end of racism comes when a black candidate runs for President and no-one notices. I’ll add to that –  Affirmative Action is but a bandaid, the removal of which indicates the last step of healing.   There may always be a scar, but the scar reminds us of past mistakes and helps us to not repeat them.

With regards to the outcome of the 2008 Presidential Election, however, most of my initial gut reactions might make some of those 62 million hate me.  Or dislike me.  Or question me at the least.  Most of the time, I don’t care about these things, especially when dealing with a core belief.  However, this time, I’m going to take the opportunity to learn a lesson in life about keeping one’s mouth shut.  At least, I’m going to try.

So instead of writing what’s on my mind, I’ll turn it to the constructive side.  If you’re wondering if I can be constructive and positive when it comes to Obama winning the Presidency, all I have to say about that is

Yesterday I wrote a comment on an NPR blog entry asking people to write their “Dear President Obama” letters. Here it is for your edification:

Dear President Obama.

Congratulations on your new role, the highest office known to America. The people have spoken, and with their majority voice they decisively sang out “we want you.” I know I don’t have to tell you anything about how important you are right now.

You spoke of unity and oneness in your acceptance speech. My only request is to keep that promise – do not further divide the country. I implore you to *please* prove your critics wrong by solidly and unequivocally avoiding these actions:

– Taking away our guns
– Taxing us into oblivion
– Spending us into the grave
– Buying votes with more services
– Instituting Financial Racial Reparations
– Taking from earners and giving to the lazy
– Appointing Ayers to *any* Gov’t role
– Removing “In God We Trust” from money
– Changing the Pledge of Allegiance
– Outlawing the Bible
– Call for UN Forces to be stationed on American Soil
– Renounce your Oath of Presidential Transparency
– Declare Martial Law within 1st 100 days of term

Please do not misunderstand. I personally do not expect that you will do these things. But if you could publicly sign, vow, and promise that you would never, EVER do any of the above (which seems easy to me), I bet you’d win over a TON of Republicans and Independents.

If we can agree to the above list, we’ll get along just fine.

Sincerely,

J. Wayne Hall
Austin, TX

I thought about my list a little longer and wanted to go a step further.

I want to pose a friendly challenge to Obama supporters.  I’m wondering how far your faith in him goes.  Could he do *anything* and you’d still like him?  Are you Kool-Aid drinkers, or intelligent informed deciders?  Are you an Obamabot, or are you just a regular every-day voter who has an opinion?

How big of a blank check did you just hand Obama?

Or, put another way, what, if anything, could Obama do to lose your support?

Yeah, that’s the better question.  Is there ANYthing Obama could do, now that he’s won the Presidency, that would make you think “Hmm, he shouldn’t be doing that.”  

Would anything scare you?

So I present to you, in poll format, a list of things for you to choose that says “yes, if he did this, that doesn’t seem right.”

What could Obama do that would make him lose favor in your eyes?

View Results

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Personally? I’d feel better if everyone agreed that all of these items need to be checked.  But if you differ in opinion, voice it here.  

Or if I missed an item, let me know.

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