Bank safe deposit boxes: Not so “safe?”

This from a local source, quoting a blog:

You might want to reconsider what you keep in your Safety Deposit box at your bank. This note is from a news blog, which I am passing on to you fyi.
“A family member from Irvine, CA (who’s a branch manager at Bank of America) told us two weeks ago that her bank held a “workshop” where the last two days were dedicated to discussing their bank’s new security measures. During these last two days, the workshop included members from the Homeland Security Office who instructed them on how to field calls from customers and what they are to tell them in the event of a national disaster. She said they were told how only agents from Homeland Security (during such an event) would be in charge of opening safe deposit boxes and determining what items would be given to bank customers.At this point they were told that no weapons, cash, gold, or silver will be allowed to leave the bank – only various paperwork will be given to its owners. After discussing the matter with them at length, she and the other employees were then told not to discuss the subject with anyone.”
Read the entire article at:   http://bellaciao.org/en/article.php3?id_article=10012

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Published in: on January 6, 2009 at 2:01 pm  Comments (1)  

America is trying to operate on a failed business model

The financial crisis currently facing the USA is just a pimple to what our children and grandchildren are facing.  The video linked below, IOUSA, is a prophetic message for the 21st century:

http://www.iousathemovie.com/

Published in: on January 1, 2009 at 9:54 pm  Comments (1)  

US POSTAL SERVICE: ONE OF THE NATION’S BIGGEST POLLUTERS?

If you used the now-closed downtown Vicksburg Post Office for your postal services, you have first-hand knowledge of the effect on your (or your business’s) finances, on your time, and on the additional pollution of the environment caused by the necessary use of a vehicle to travel to the Pemberton PO. This is not merely a Vicksburg/Warren County phenomenon, however. Similar closures are occurring nationwide as the USPS attempts to cope with reduced need for its services, and competition from other reliable and efficient delivery services. Locally, many  neighborhood drop boxes have been removed, so that most city and county residents and businesses who must use the services of the local PO now have no choice but to take the time to drive to the Pemberton location, fight the traffic on Pemberton Boulevard, wait in line until a clerk is free, then return to home or work.

Thousands if not millions of trips via vehicles to centralized post offices are required every day all across the country. The amounts of fuel burned, and the tons of carbon dioxide and sulphur and nitrogen compounds emitted from exhausts, are enormous. Indirectly, perhaps, the USPS is one of the nation’s largest polluters, and a significant contributor to waste and inefficiency.

Your comments and suggestions are welcome.

The Greatest Depression

Audio file. This expert thinks there is little time left to prepare. You may want to take action now…

http://www.howestreet.com/index.php?pl=/goldradio/index.php/mediaplayer/1065

Published in: on December 25, 2008 at 10:59 am  Leave a Comment  

Your taxes paying for non-city deadbeats

The Vicksburg Post reported Tuesday that county supervisors are paying delinquent customer garbage pickup bills with your tax dollars. You can read the article here:

http://www.vicksburgpost.com/articles/2008/12/02/news/doc49356c11a3892747744522.txt

What’s your reaction?

Published in: on December 6, 2008 at 12:42 pm  Comments (5)  

Will Vicksburg experience much lower utility costs this winter?

Natural gas futures are down to $5.7/mcf today, December 5. Entergy and the City of Vicksburg base their fuel adjustment primarily on what they pay for natural gas. Based on that price, Vicksburg residents should experience significant relief. You can look at historical prices here:

http://www.wtrg.com/daily/ngfhl.gif

Will we see relief? Your opinion is appreciated.

Published in: on December 5, 2008 at 10:50 am  Comments (1)  

Will the US default on its debts?

William Buckler says the possibility exists. Read his commentary here:

http://www.321gold.com/editorials/buckler/buckler112408.html

Published in: on November 24, 2008 at 1:39 pm  Comments (2)  

Our bridge, our dilemma

The Old Highway 80 bridge across the Mississippi River belongs to us – the people of Warren County. An opinion editorial in the Post describes the present situation:

Management of the U.S. 80 Bridge over the Mississippi River remains as murky as the water swirling below.

It shouldn’t be that way.

The old bridge, now used exclusively by Kansas City Southern for its trains and as an attachment point for the cables of assorted utilities, is a public asset. It is owned by the people of Warren County who are being given absolutely no clue as to what’s on the minds of Warren County supervisors or the five members they appoint to the bridge commission.

Last week, for at least the third time in the past seven months, supervisors and commissioners met behind closed doors for well over an hour.

It’s their option to do so, they say, because KCS has threatened to take them to court and state law allows secret sessions when public bodies face “potential litigation.”

“Allows” is a key word here, because nothing in the law requires any of their discussions to be held outside the public’s hearing. If they had any desire to be open and forthright with voters, they could. That’s not the case. Even before and after such sessions, supervisors are coy and evasive in answering questions — and not just about what was said but also the topic being discussed. Their considered position is the less you know the better. It’s their right to have it that way — not even telling you the options being reviewed.

The facts are these:

* Warren County has owned the bridge, built privately and opened in 1930, since the end of World War II.

* From the start, the county’s plan was to use tolls to pay off the purchase price and thereafter to set tolls to pay for operation and maintenance on a break-even basis.

* The vehicular roadbed was closed 10 years ago due to deteriorating concrete. There are no plans for it ever to be reopened to traffic if for no other reason than it is too narrow to meet legal minimums.

* The long-term lease with KCS is a dead letter and has been for years. An earlier agreement by the commission and supervisors to sell the bridge to KCS was revoked by supervisors after public protest. For safety reasons, KCS strongly opposes any plan to allow regular pedestrian traffic on the old roadbed in the form of a park or overlook.

* In 2005, the commission started billing KCS for new, far higher tolls. KCS, for the most part, has continued paying at the old rate as “negotiations” continued.

* Engineering reports say the bridge needs some work, but remains stable for the foreseeable future.

Anything else said about the bridge is speculation.

Why?

Because the Warren County Board of Supervisors has decided that it’s none of your business.

The bridge and its baggage have been kicked around for far too long. Isn’t it time the Board of Supervisors showed a bit of leadership on the issues?

Published in: on November 17, 2008 at 9:53 am  Comments (14)  

Will the USA suffer another depression?

Richard Russell, a very respected publisher of the “Dow Theory Letters,” thinks so. In his snippet, “The Never Ending Search for Gold,” read of his experiences growing up during the last depression.

http://www.321gold.com/editorials/russell/russell111008.html

What’s your opinion?

Published in: on November 9, 2008 at 9:39 am  Leave a Comment  

How would you solve the crisis in America?

Here’s one man’s recommendation, courtesy of “Early to Rise.”

The Great Bailout Stall
By Robert Ringer
Now that the Demopublicans and their media friends have, through the magic of doublespeak, transformed the massive and fraudulent bailout bill into a heroic “economic rescue plan,” most Americans can refocus their couch-potato efforts back on reality TV shows, football, and electronic gadgets. After all, the problem has been resolved, right?
Earth to American taxpayers: Nothing has been resolved! In fact, dishonest and cowardly Congressmen/women have virtually assured us, through their actions, that the financial crisis will get worse – much worse.
Nevertheless, I’ve learned, through experience, that no one can accurately predict the timing of economic events, because everything is controlled by an entity – the government – that has a monopoly on (1) printing “money,” (2) taxing its serfs, and (3) using force against anyone who dares to defy its will.
If you could print your own money, make others give you their money, and use force in the marketplace to achieve your ends, do you think you might be able to prolong the consequences of your actions? You would, of course, eventually fail. But it would be impossible for anyone to predict at what point in time your misdeeds would bring you down.
The most practical solution to America’s financial ills is to face the music- now, rather than later. The major question of our time has not been raised by anyone in the media: Are you prepared to lower your standard of living – even suffer – so your children and grandchildren can enjoy a better standard of living and not have to suffer worse than you?
Put more directly, are you prepared to face the moral and Constitutional reality that you are entitled to absolutely nothing other than the right to pursue your own success and happiness in any way you so choose, so long as you do not commit aggression against others?
In other words, are you prepared to go “cold turkey” in exchange for freedom? I’m sorry to say that my personal take on the pulse of our country is that not many people are willing to give up (a false sense of) security in exchange for freedom. Which is why even the staunchest conservatives in the Republican wing of the Demopublican Party will not name specific government programs they would be willing to eliminate. (Not cut – eliminate.)
When the hopeless, stand-for-nothing J. McBama talks about “letting the marketplace sort things out for the economy,” he is quick to assure voters that the government will, of course, pay unemployment benefits to those “in need,” retrain (as in $$$) people who have lost their jobs, etc., etc., etc.
Message to J. McBama: It’s not the government’s Constitutional role to shore up people who have lost their jobs – nor does it have a moral right to do so. Job loss and job retraining are simply none of the government’s business.
And, contrary to what politicians, the media, and most Americans seem to believe, it’s not the government’s job to “get the economy moving again.” Sorry, but it’s simply not in the Constitution. Economic stability can be created only by allowing the market to take its natural course and rid the economy of synthetically created wealth.
In more blunt terms, what I’m talking about here is a deflationary depression. Make that a massive deflationary depression. As I’ve said so often, we’ve been in an invisible depression for at least 30 years. What I’m advocating is that we ignore the daily lies that come out of Washington and demand that the invisible depression be allowed to reveal itself.
I can already hear some readers saying, “That Ringer is a really bad guy. He lacks compassion.”
Not so. On the contrary, I have a great deal of compassion for the millions of people who are hurting financially. And, quite frankly, it makes me angry when I think about what politicians have done to bring about so much of their pain and suffering.
I know what it’s like to be homeless. I know what it’s like to have your gas and electricity shut off. I know what it’s like to be without a car. I know what it’s like to eat cold, canned soup for dinner. But I’ll tell you this: The only way I ever improved my bad situation was to look in the mirror, face the reality that suffering was going to be an integral part of my life until I could turn things around on my own, and work my tail off – sometimes 18 to 20 hours a day. I never applied for welfare and I never asked anyone to retrain me. I lowered my standard of living… I suffered… and I worked hard.
Now I’m going to share a somewhat gross analogy with you to help make my point that the only viable solution to America’s financial demise is to allow the invisible depression to become visible as quickly as possible.
Many years ago, before modern medicine had come up with more humane procedures for dealing with hemorrhoids, I suffered through a period of extreme discomfort. Over the course of about a year, I visited two proctologists, but nixed letting them put me under the knife. Instead, they gave me a variety of salves and ointments to deaden the pain. As a result, I had “invisible” hemorrhoids. They were still there, of course, but by applying medication, I could pretend they weren’t. What a marvelous delusion.
Finally, it got to the point where salves and ointments could no longer bail me out. In desperation, I went to a third doctor – one who’d been touted in a newspaper article as “the best in his field.” After a cozy little examination, he said to me: “I’ll give it to you straight. Your problem will never get better on its own. The only way to get rid of it is through surgery.”
I was in such pain that, without even thinking about it, I blurted out, “When can you do it?”
“Tomorrow,” he said. “It’s my day in surgery.”
Without giving myself the opportunity to mull over it (and probably put it off), I impulsively said, “Okay.”
Out of respect to your sensibilities, I won’t give you the gory post-operation details. Let it just suffice to say that, for the first few days, I regretted having been so impulsive. But soon I started to get progressively better. And within a month, the entire experience was nothing but a bad dream – and I was pain-free. I had survived the medical equivalent of a deflationary depression by getting it over with.
Now, I ask you to help spread the word – friend by friend, neighbor by neighbor, coworker by coworker – that what America needs is a hemorrhoid operation, not more bailouts. That means a lot of pain and suffering for all of us. And, make no mistake about it, we deserve it for having allowed our elected officials to turn the Constitution upside-down and dupe us into believing that we are obliged to answer to them rather than the other way around.
The time has come for us to tell the politicians that we don’t want any more economic salves and ointments. The only way for things to get better is for government to get out of the way and stop making things worse. I say: My fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for yourself.

Published in: on October 15, 2008 at 8:09 am  Comments (5)  

America Has Died – To Thunderous Applause

Read this editorial and get mad as hell…

http://market-ticker.denninger.net/archives/608-America-Has-Died-To-Thunderous-Applause.html

Published in: on October 14, 2008 at 8:04 pm  Leave a Comment  

Will the city and Entergy pass along the natural gas savings?

Natural gas is $6.73/mbtu on the open market as of today, 10/14/08. That’s a far cry from the $16 – $18/mbtu level when Entergy began charging its 28% “rate increase,” and when the city raised its “adjustment” to the highest levels in our history. The City of Vicksburg today charges us approximately $19/mbtu, while Entergy bases its fuel adjustment charge for the most part on the price of natural gas. Will the city and Entergy pass along the natural gas savings to us?

Published in: on October 14, 2008 at 9:59 am  Comments (5)  

Gas is $2.52 in Hattiesburg

That’s as of today, 10/14/08. What’s the price in Vicksburg?

Published in: on October 14, 2008 at 9:31 am  Comments (3)  

Is ACORN committing voter fraud?

Portions of the following copied from http://www.cfiflistmanager.org/acorn1be.html.

There’s only ONE way to STOP the apparent massive voter fraud that may be taking place right under your nose.

Simply put, if the voter registration allegations against ACORN are true, that means thousands of fraudulent votes could be cast in pivotal swing states and make a farce of our entire electoral process!

Most everyone has heard the old story about dead people voting in Chicago.

Imagine such a thing happening on a much larger scale. ACORN presently operates in 38 states!

          But there is a simple solution to this potential problem!

Congress must be called back into session IMMEDIATELY and emergency legislation must be passed that simply states that voters must produce a valid state or federal ID at the polls or have their votes counted only provisionally until legitimacy can be verified.

Quite frankly, if past performance is any indication of future results, CRIMINAL INDICTMENTS OR LAWSUITS MAY NOT STOP ACORN!

According to some reports, ACORN, in the past, has actually recruited convicted felons.

The Associated Press recently reported that the Milwaukee ACORN office hired at least seven felons who were convicted of crimes ranging from drug possession to robbery.

According to the Washington Post: “Nevada Secretary of State and Attorney General who alleged in an application for a search warrant that ACORN had hired 59 felons through a work release program as canvassers…” [Emphasis Mine]

ACORN’s Wisconsin political director Carolyn Castore rather matter-of-factly told the Associated Press: “We have a lot of folks with felony records and, frankly, they need jobs.”

          And yes, there is a history of complaints against ACORN.

Michael Gaynor with Canada Free Press recounts an article published in the Wall Street Journal TWO YEARS AGO:

“These are recent complaints, but ACORN’s history is riddled with criminal activity. During the last major election, the Wall Street Journal did a story about ACORN. Four ACORN workers had been indicted by a federal grand jury for submitting false voter registration forms to the Kansas City, Missouri, election board; other ACORN workers were convicted in Wisconsin and Colorado and investigations, at the time the article was written, were under way in Ohio, Tennessee and Pennsylvania.”

          Gaynor also writes of more recent indictments and investigations:

“Last year, The Seattle Times reported the biggest voter-registration fraud scheme in Washington history. Three ACORN employees pleaded guilty, and four more were charged for filling out and submitting more than 1,800 fictitious voter-registration cards during a 2006 registration drive in King and Pierce counties.’ (Keith Ervin, ‘Three plead guilty in fake voter scheme,’ 10-30-2007)”

“This year, an ACORN employee in West Reading, PA, was sentenced for up to 23 months in prison for identity theft and tampering with records. A second ACORN worker pleaded not guilty to the same charges and is free on $10,000 bail.

“There are also examples of indictments this year, such as the four ACORN employees in Kansas City charged with identity theft and filing false registrations during the 2006 election and the Reynoldsburg fellow indicted on two felony counts of illegal voting and false registration, after being registered by ACORN to vote in two separate counties. And there are current investigations into ACORN for voter fraud all over the map…” [Emphasis Mine]

Ask yourself the following (assuming these most recent allegations are credible), if criminal indictments have not deterred ACORN in the past, why should the prospect of criminal indictments deter ACORN NOW?

Investors’ Business Daily (IBD) recently made the following suggestion to John McCain:

“McCain would be wise to start preparing a challenge to voter registration rolls should he lose the race in a close contest. He’d be crazy not to contest the results in light of these events.”

With all due respect to IBD, the only “craziness” would be to wait. This is NOT a Republican vs. Democrat or Liberal vs. Conservative issue.

IF ACORN has already violated our system of government and IF they plan to continue violating our system through election day with impunity, closing the barn doors after the horses have gone is not a sound strategy.

          Some of our elected officials are starting to talk tough but again, talk is cheap.

According to Politico.com, House Minority Leader John Boehner is already talking about cutting off federal funding to ACORN.

          But his proposed actions fall short of the mark.

“Election cycle after election cycle, this organization has been at the forefront of breaking the law in order to promote their left-wing agenda. All the while, they have been the recipients of millions of dollars of federal funding through various federal programs and third-party groups. House Republicans took a stand recently to cut off funding to an ACORN slush fund created by their allies in the House Majority, but now more must be done.”

“All federal funding to ACORN must be stopped. The ACORN slush fund must be disbanded. Sources of federal funding through the Department of Housing and Urban Development or any other agency must be stopped. Contracting for services between candidates for federal office and ACORN, as Senator Obama has done, must end. Now that the taxpayers own Fannie Mae, any funding from Fannie Mae’s nonprofit foundation to ACORN must stop.

“ACORN spent decades promoting the housing policies that brought America’s economy to the brink, and similarly over the years has committed fraud on our system of elections, making American voters question the fairness and accuracy of the exercise of their most fundamental right under the Constitution. Now it is time to cut off ACORN before it grows even more destructive.”

          No Congressman Boehner!

Now is not the time to just cut off funding (frankly, that should have happened years ago).

          NOW is the time to protect our electoral process!

Boehner does however, bring up a valid point. Your tax dollars ARE STILL going to ACORN. You’re actually paying them just as surely as if you wrote the check yourself!

Yes, we should cut off ALL funding to ACORN NOW as Boehner states. Yes, we should have Congressional investigations. And yes, if the allegations are true, we shouldn’t stop with ACORNheads should roll in Congress as well!

Published in: on October 13, 2008 at 5:35 pm  Comments (5)  

Vicksburg and its two (2) airports

Mayor Leyens is spending many of our tax dollars, plus many dollars from a federal grant, in an effort to make the local airport “luxurious.” Our taxes also fund the Vicksburg-Tallulah Regional Airport at Mound, Louisiana. The local airport had been “abandoned” by previous administrations who deemed the new (1993) VTR airport as necessary and desirable, and sufficient to serve Vicksburg and Warren County. So, why are we funding two airports? Wasn’t the danger imposed by the tall stack at the Baxter Wilson power plant the reason behind “abandoning” the local airport and building the VTR airport? Who will make use of the local airport? Who will use the VTR airport? Will the money spent on the local airport result in a return to the citizens of the city and county? If not, why upgrade the local airport at all? Is pressure from local businessmen behind the decision? Your opinions are appreciated.

Published in: on October 11, 2008 at 6:35 pm  Comments (11)