Thursday, December 11, 2008

A Little Fiber in My Diet!

The upgrade is complete! The office's internet connection went from a business class cable connection:

To a dedicated fiber connection:

Time to fire-up those game and Bittorrent servers!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

That didn't take long!

So much for Obama not wanting to take your guns. He hasn't even taken office yet, and he has already set his "gun control" agenda. Surprise surprise, it is EXACTLY what I was screaming from the mountain-tops... Which is NOT a good thing!
Senator Barack Obama's presidential campaign slogan, "the audacity of hope," should have instead been "the audacity of deceit." After months of telling the American people that he supports the Second Amendment, and only hours after being declared the president-elect, the Obama transition team website announced an agenda taken straight from the anti-gun lobby--four initiatives designed to ban guns and drive law-abiding firearm manufacturers and dealers out of business:
A few people told me they were voting for Obama because they cared about more than just the Second Ammendment. Fair enough, but with this sort of "gun control" agenda and the reinstatement of the Fairness Doctrine not far behind, the first and second ammendments will be taken care of... How many are left?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Friday, October 31, 2008

Energy Independence

McCain's Energy Plan in a Nutshell:

- More (of our own) oil
- Nuclear
- Solar
- Wind
- Tidal
- (Clean) Coal
- Natural Gas

Obama's Energy Plan in a Nutshell:

- Solar
- Wind
- Ummm...

Some would argue that Obama and Biden have mentioned (clean) coal. They have. They want to help other countries (China, India, etc) develop clean coal technologies, but for us they say "there is really no such thing as clean coal".

To me, coal is the second most important natural resource, right behind oil. Why? Because it is not only our most plentiful natural resource, it is also responsible for 80% of the electricity generated in my state (Ohio). The numbers are similar for most of the midwest, but Ohio and Pennsylvania rely on coal more than most.

Nuclear power is the cleanest, cheapest energy we have. They've been doing it for years safely with technology that is 30+ years old. Obama doesn't like it (neither do the other people in his party), though... Because you have to have a "safe" way to store the waste. I agree. Everyone agrees. The issue is that the definition of "safe" differs on each side of the aisle.

So let's just not do anything! Great plan! (Sarcasm!)

Having long-term goals for energy independence is nice, but we also need something to bridge the gap in the short-term until we get to where we want/need to be. Drilling for more oil is one way to help. Hell, increasing production of ANY of our OWN resources is a help, regardless of what it is.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Latest Toys

All those who know me know that I am into guns. I have been for most of my adult life, and I hate to think of the amount of money I've wasted... err... invested in them over the years. I always have a few "projects" going and, last week, two of those projects were finally completed.

Savage 10FCP HS Precision

This gun started out as a completely stock Savage 10FCP. I ordered it in .308 Winchester with a 24" barrel, the upgraded HS Precision stock and the new detachable box magazine. Before I even took it out to shoot it, I dropped it off at my gunsmith for some work. Before it was all said and done, he...

- Skim bedded the action
- Installed a Sharp Shooter Supply recoil lug
- Installed a Sharp Shooter Supply "tactical" bolt handle
- Recrowned and threaded the muzzle
- Indexed the Primary Weapons System FSC30 (flash-suppressing compensator)
- Bedded the Farrell Industries scope base
- Mounted and lapped the Tactical Precision Systems TSR "W" scope rings
- Mounted and bore-sighted the Pride Fowler RR800-2 scope

So far I've had limited time to shoot the thing so, to date, it's only had 60 rounds of (cheap surplus) M80 ball ammo through it for barrel break-in. Once the barrel is sufficiently worn-in, I'll break out the (expensive) match ammo and see what it can do. So far, though, I am really impressed.

Ruger 10/22

The Ruger 10/22 is one of those guns that everyone should own AT LEAST one of. For some reason, I had fought the urge to get one for a long time. Unfortunately, while my Savage project was off at the gunsmith for 6 weeks, I succumbed to the urge for a new project and "impulse bought" a little 10/22 carbine. Not one to leave anything stock, I quickly began ordering parts. Before I was done, not much of the original, factory rifle remained. I added...

- Volquartsen trigger group
- Tuffer Buffer
- Hogue stock
- Hi-DesertDog 16" spiral-fluted, threaded bull barrel
- Tactical Precision Systems TSR "W" scope rings
- Pride Fowler RR22LR6X40-2 scope

The first trip to the range with this little monster got boring quick. It consistently puts all bullets through the same ragged hole at 25 yards. At 50 yards it is more of the same, albeit a slightly larger ragged hole.

Now that those two things are finished it is time to move on to the next project. As it happens, I just happen to have one in mind. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The latest addition to the family!

I'd like to introduce the latest addition to the Schmidt family, a Jack Russell Terrier named "Ryder". She was born on July 3rd and became a member of the family last weekend!

We've been thinking about getting a small dog for a while, but we decided that if we got a small dog, it had to be a big dog at heart. So far she is acclimating well to the new digs, and she is already letting the big dogs know what's what.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Bleeding Black and Gold!

I haven't taken the time to lavish MASSIVE* praise on my favorite soccer team for a while, so I figured it was about time.

If you notice the (single) table to the right, you will see that the beloved Black-n-Gold are sitting all alone at #1! With 22 games played by ALL teams in the league, there is no "game-in-hand" funkiness going on. The Crew have the best record overall, and league lead is their lead to lose.

Our next game is against the #2 Revolution, at home, on Saturday. We'll be without a few key players who got called-up for National Team duties, but the Revs are pretty beat-up as well. Their whole attacking roster seems to be out with injury save the "too-tight-of-a-jersey-wearing-wrapping-his-thumb-for-apparently-no-reason" Taylor Twellman. We all know that TT is a dangerous player who can change games, but can he do it on his own? And can he do it against the MASSIVELY MASSIVENESS that is the Crew?

It may be a bit premature, but I'm really feeling the Supporters' Shield this year. Making the playoffs will be nice after three consecutive years of missing them, but the Shield would be icing on the cake for what is turning out to be one of the best Crew seasons in recent (and not-so-recent) history.

* "MASSIVE" is an inside joke for Crew fans.

Friday, August 29, 2008

He just doesn't get it!

I'll admit, I watched the entire Obama speech last night and, man, can that guy give a speech. He sure knows how to say what people want to hear. If he wasn't such a freaking Socialist, I might actually consider voting for him.

Before you start in on me about how moderate his platform is now, I'm not looking at what he is saying now. I'm basing my opinion on his extreme left voting record in his short stint as a U.S. Senator and an Illinois Senator. Every liberal to run for office moves to the middle at election time. A blonde can dye her hair black, but she is still a blonde.

While I don't consider myself a single issue voter, there are a few issues that I hold near-and-dear to my heart, one of which (go figure) is the Second Ammendment. Here is what Obama said in his speech regarding the 2A:
"The reality of gun ownership may be different for hunters in rural Ohio than they are for those plagued by gang violence in Cleveland, but don't tell me we can't uphold the Second Amendment while keeping AK-47s out of the hands of criminals."

When are these people going to learn... The Second Ammendment has absolutely NOTHING TO DO WITH HUNTING!

He won't take guns from hunters, but then again, hunters don't need those nasty semi-automatic pistols and rifles anyway. (SARCASM!)

We already have laws and regulations to keep "AK-47s out of the hands of criminals". We just need to enforce those laws and crack down on the criminals, not the guns or lawful gun owners.

Friday, June 27, 2008

It was a win! Sort of...

I have to say, yesterday's ruling on the DC vs Heller case was a win for the Second Ammendment, but I can't help but feel that it was a bit hollow. A 5-4 decision is technically a win, but it still means that 4 of the 9 most influential people in our government still just don't get it.

The purpose of the Supreme Court is to scrutinize the lower courts' rulings to make sure they fit with the framework set forth in the Constitution, not legislate from the bench based on political leanings. Still, we seem to get a lot of decisions that are obviously split on the party lines. That really scares me, and it should scare you too.

The next President of the United States is probably going to have the opportunity to appoint one (or more) Justices to the Supreme Court. One more left-leaning Justice would've made yesterday a completely different day for millions of gun owning Americans... Think about it.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Today is the day!

The DC vs Heller decision should be coming down in about 29 minutes! For those not familiar, this is arguably the biggest Second Ammendment case ever to come before the Supreme Court. I've been following it pretty closely, and I'm pretty confident that the SCOTUS is going to overturn the DC handgun ban. That's good but, depending on how wide or narrow the ruling is, this could be HUGE for gun owners. From my perspective, the decision could be good, or REALLY good.

I guess we'll see in about half an hour.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

The old "flip-flop" trick, eh?

It was only a matter of time before the Democrats started setting their sights on McCain and his, um, "policy reversals". The latest accusation is that he is no longer "for the environment", because he is "for drilling for more oil". They are saying that is a "flip-flop", but I say...


Anyone who knows me knows that I am not a big fan of Mr. McCain (but I like Obama even less), but come on! Why does drilling for oil automatically equate to ruining the environment? We have the technology to drill for oil without disturbing the surroundings much at all. Rest assured, we (the USA) will be infinitely more careful with the OCS drilling than the other countries Cuba is leasing rights to. We can't drill within 125 miles of the Florida coast because of some whacky environmental policy, but China, Vietnam, et al will be drilling 60 miles off the same Florida coastline before long. Umm. Yeah. They'll be a lot more careful to preserve the fragile marine eco-systems than we will.


Thursday, June 12, 2008


It probably seems like I went AWOL again recently. I've been really busy around the house and with work, so it hasn't left much time for blogging. A lot has been happening in the world while I've been AFK, though. Where do I begin?

My beloved Crew has been backsliding. They've been on a 4 game winless streak (3 losses, 1 tie), 5 if you count the Open Cup loss to Chicago last night (penalty kick in extra time). Now I've been following MLS for a while now, and at this point in the season a lot of teams start falling apart due to injury. The Crew is no exception, as they are currently missing quite a few starters. If they can get healthy for the back end of the year, they could still easily make the playoffs.

So... I built a deck last weekend. I've been meaning to do it for quite a while and I finally got around to it. Sydney's birthday is coming-up in a couple of weeks and we really need the outdoor space for people to be. We've got a HUGE patio already, but the deck will allow us to accomodate even more people in the yard. Maybe I'll post a picture or two when it is actually finished. Then again, I keep wondering if I really need steps or not :-)

On a firearm related note: Our illustrious Governor signed Ohio's "Castle Doctrine" (aka "Defense of Habitation Law") into law the other day. Basically, what that means...
A Castle Doctrine (also known as a Castle Law or a Defense of Habitation
Law) is an
American legal concept derived from English Common Law,
which designates one's place of residence (or, in some states, any place
legally occupied, such as one's car or place of work) as a place in which
one enjoys protection from illegal trespassing and violent attack. It then
goes on to give a person the legal right to use deadly force to defend that
place (his/her "castle"), and/or any other innocent persons legally inside
it, from violent attack or an intrusion which may lead to violent attack. In
a legal context, therefore, use of deadly force which actually results in
death may be defended as
justifiable homicide under the Castle Doctrine.

The bill also included some tweaks to our existing concealed-carry regulations which were sorely needed and long overdue. It's kind of strange to have a Democrat Governor who is so pro-gun. Not that I'm complaining or anything!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Thundercloud's Ironman "Oscar"

As pet owners, we all realize that eventually we are going to lose our animals. Unfortunately, that doesn't stop us from spending years getting attached to them and when we do lose them, it is one of the greatest pains we can suffer.

For those of you who don't know, Marlo is a professional dog trainer. We have always had dogs. In fact, dogs are the reason we met and started dating. Our dogs play a pretty major role in our lives. They are our constant companions. Our confidants. They love us unconditionally, no matter our standing in life.

Almost twleve years ago, we went to look at a 7-week-old Boxer puppy. He was a cute little guy, brindle and white and shaped a little like a barrel with legs. I knew that he was going to be my best buddy the moment I saw him, and we took him home an hour later. That's when Thundercloud's Ironman, or "Oscar" as we called him, became part of our family. And I was right... He quickly became my best buddy.

For most of his life Oscar had issues with his health. He was allergic to almost everything. Food allergies and seasonal allergies plagued the poor guy and the allergies led to ear infections which in-turn led to a lot of head shaking and, eventually, three surgeries for ear hematomas. Oscar was also prone, as a lot of Boxers are, to tumors and lumps. He went under the knife multiple times to have things removed, and we often joked that it was a good thing we bought him and not some other family. I mean, who else would invest the time, money and love into such a veterinary cash-cow?

We did, and we never thought twice about it. In return we were rewarded with 12 years with a great dog. Maybe the best dog we'll ever have.

Early this morning, at about 1:30am, Oscar woke us up with his restless panting. Something was obviously wrong, so I carried (all 86lbs of him) to the car and rushed him to the 24-hour emergency vet. Apparently a tumor on his liver had ruptured and was causing some massive internal bleeding. We really only had one choice.

At 2:30am, we gave our old guy a peaceful, dignified and loving end to a life that has been filled, and that has filled us with love for almost twelve years.

Rest in peace, old-timer. We'll miss you.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Time to get back to "real life"

And another week's worth of unplugged bliss has come to an end, and now it's time to get back to the real world. If not for my Blackberry, I would've been completely isolated from life as I know it for the duration of my annual fishing expedition. I took my laptop with me, but I never felt the urge to even take it out of the bag. Now that is a real vacation!

We caught a ton of Bluegill, Crappie, Bass (Largemouth and Spotted) and Northern Pike but we failed to boat any Smallmouth Bass or Walleye, two species that we were looking forward to catching.

The lake (Diamond Lake in Cassopolis, Michigan) was excellent and my father-in-law couldn't get over how clear the water was. Seeing the bottom in water 15 feet deep is strange for someone used to fishing in the muddy, man-made lakes of central Ohio where you're lucky to see the bottom in 1 foot of water.

This year's "fish-of-the-week" goes to my father-in-law who boated (with the help of my expert net and hook removal skills) this spectacular 36" Northern Pike.

Friday, May 16, 2008

And so it begins

All of my clients seem to be chugging along without issue and I'm not getting much at all done today. I might as well get started on my vacation a little early then!

Time to go home, gas-up the truck and boat (That's gonna hurt!), mow my lawn and pack all my gear. Woo!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

DOH! Go Crew!

I can't believe I posted to my blog and didn't mention my beloved Black-n-Gold! The hardest working team in Major League Soccer is, well, working hard! Seven weeks of the season have passed, and the Crew is currently (still) sitting on top of the leaderboard, both in the Eastern Conference and over-all. If this isn't the best start to a season that the Crew has ever had, it has GOT to be damned close!

Other than the best record in MLS (6-1-0), the Crew also has two players in the race for the Golden Boot (Robbie Rogers with 5 goals and Alejandro Moreno with 4 goals and 3 assists) and two players who have received MLS' "Player of the Week" status (Guillermo Barros Schelotto in Week 3 and Robbie Rogers in Week 7).

So the question remains... Who are these guys, and what the hell have they done with the Crew of old?!

So I'm a slacker...

I must admit that I've been slacking on the 'ol Blog here. No new posts in almost two weeks? WTF is up with that?!

I've got a bunch of stuff going on around here these days. I leave for my annual spring fishing trip/vacation on Saturday. With my own boat this year, it is sure to be more fun than previous years. Crowding into a rented boat that is always too small and poorly outfitted makes for a long week.

I've been trying to get ahead on some work projects in an effort to minimize the number of phone calls and/or emails that I'll get while on vacation this year. Last year I only made it until lunch time on the first day before receiving my first call. I'm hoping I can beat that record this time around.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Iron Man!

As a happy coincidence, this year my birthday happened to fall on opening night of the new "Iron Man" movie. I am a pretty big comic book/graphic novel movie geek so this is going to be a pretty big summer for me (Iron Man, Hulk, etc), but I was especially psyched about this particular movie.

After dinner with the family, my wife, daughter and I headed to the theater. We got to the theater at 7:40pm for the 8:15pm show, but it was sold-out... So we went to the (packed to the gills) 7:45pm show instead. I have to say, I never like to get to the movies that late, and we ended-up with some of the crappiest seats in the place.

But anyway, how was the movie?

It was excellent!

I was originally unsure about Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark but after seeing the movie, I don't think they could've picked anyone else to play the role. He captured the arrogance and angst of Tony Stark perfectly.

The special effects were very well done. The acting was well done. The story and plot lines were also well thought out... Plenty of "origin", a decent villan, just enough closure for the movie to stand on its own and, of course, they left it open for "Iron Man 2".

I've been really impressed with the "Spider-man" franchise, and I really think "Iron Man" could prove to be every bit as good. But I know what a lot of us are thinking right now...

Avengers anyone?

Tuesday, April 29, 2008


It's been a while since I last posted anything here, and a lot has been going on.

I picked-up my new boat this weekend and proceeded to spend the entire weekend on the water. The weather ended-up being perfect for boating/fishing, and I have the nasty sunburn to prove it. I think I'm going to dig the whole boat thing, though. However, it does look like I'll need to do a little "accessorizing" before we head-out to Michigan for the annual fishing trip. Gadgets. Gotta have the gadgets.

After another hard-fought win at home (the first home game I've missed this year) my beloved Crew is uncontested atop the single-table standings in MLS! This is the best start the team has had in the last four seasons, and things are looking bright for the Black-n-Gold. The influx of new talent this year, combined with the solid core of returning players looks to be a winning combination. Let's just hope they can continue to win, build confidence and AT LEAST make the play-offs this year.

This Friday (May 2nd) is my birthday. I'll be 36 this year, but I don't feel a day over 40. We'll probably do the normal birthday celebration... Marlo, Sydney, the in-laws and I will probably go out to dinner at the eating establishment of my choosing, and then I'm thinking about catching a screening of Iron Man. I'm such a comic book movie geek!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Welcome to Ohio

I once read that Ohio is ranked in the top-five states in the nation for the LEAST number of sunny days per year. As I sit here looking out the window at another dreary, overcast, rainy horizon, I would have to agree. Don't get me wrong, though. Ohio does have its good points... But it may take me a few minutes to think of them.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The Boat Bug: Part 2

It looks like I'm picking-up my new (2007) Tracker Pro Guide V-17 SC on Friday! I should have that 90 horsepower Mercury churning-up the water by Saturday! Woohoo!
Oh man... What have I done?! I guess since the Harley is paid-off I still only have one "toy" payment, so it's all good. Right? ;-)

Monday, April 21, 2008

The Boat Bug: Part 1

I like to fish. I have for years. While living (on a lake) in Northern Indiana I fished almost every day. It was easy. I could just walk outside and fish from the bank, put the row-boat (no motors allowed on the lake I lived on) in or, for that matter, call up a buddy with a boat. It seems like everyone I knew in Indiana had a boat of some sort.

Since moving here to Columbus it has become much more difficult to go fishing. There are plenty of lakes, but I don't know anyone with a (fishing) boat and renting one is a gigantic hassle. Bank fishing prospects are plentiful, but not very rewarding. So I've been relegated to a one-week-a-year fishing trip with my father-in-law and some other family members (and still renting a boat).

This past Saturday was a typical, miserable Ohio spring day. Just enough cloud cover and rain to kill any hopes of seeing the sun and squash any plans for outdoor activities while still being nice enough outside to make you NOT want to be inside. Days like this have a tendency to get me in trouble, and I found myself cruising to a couple different marinas to look at boats.

After much tire-kicking I finally decided which one I'd get, you know, IF I was to actually get one. A Tracker Pro Guide V-17 SC would be the perfect boat for me... If I was actually buying one.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Top 'o the Table!

The MLS single table standings chart to the right doesn't reflect it yet, but my beloved Crew are currently #1 in the East, and #1 overall after a great road win (2-1) over D.C. United last night! There are still plenty of Week 4 games to be played tomorrow, but for the time being the Black-and-Gold is numero uno!

Last night's game wasn't as much of a barn-burner as last week's win over Chivas, but there was some solid play on our side. Moreno is a bulldog, and he is finally getting his chance to shine now that he has the right bunch of guys behind him. He was the most fouled player in MLS last year for good reason... The man is NOT afraid to mix it up.

One of the most inspiring performances of the night came from Frankie Hejduk. He played like a man on fire, and on both ends of the field. Hard tackles combined with some great runs were reminiscent of the Frankie of old. Welcome back Frankie. We missed you!

Gaven and Roberts were pretty quiet last night, but they both turned in very good performances as well. They really worked their asses off, playing the entire game from end-line to end-line. While neither had a goal, both were responsible for multiple corner kick opportunities and some stellar defending. These guys are two of the best young midfielders in the game, and when they hit their stride the league is in for a surprise.

The back line was solid last night. Moffat and Carroll are starting to gel and it really shows in their play. Moffat in particular had a great personal effort leading to the own-goal that ended-up being the game winner.

Padula is starting to settle in to his role, and his steady nerves and great service are going to be key this year. Plus, he looks like a left-footed Frankie Hejduk which can't be a bad thing.

Some have criticized O'Rourke's performance in the central defender position, but I was pretty impressed with him last night. He had a few akward touches, but he also did some GREAT defending. With more experience, and with Chad Marshall (who also had an awesome game) by his side, I think we are well on our way to the solid defense that we were in such need of last year.

And Schelotto... What can you say about this guy? His touch is amazing and his vision is almost mythical.

I don't want to jinx it this early in the season, but this is the stuff play-off teams are made of.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Ohio's "Castle Doctrine" Passes Senate Unanimously!


Now if we can get it past the House, our illustrious Governor can sign it into law!

Putting the "Hooz" in "HoozYerMama"

A few people have asked where I came up with the name “hoozyermama” (“HoozYerMama”, actually) so I guess I'll address that.

A long time ago (in 1997) a computer game was released that would change the face of gaming as we then knew it. Quake II, building on the foundation of its predecessor, presented the computer gaming crowd with the most spectacular online multi-player experience ever seen. Online death-match and cooperative team oriented mods spawned vast communities of rabid gamers. I am almost ashamed to admit that I fell victim to the Quake II mania myself. Capture-the-Flag was my deal, and I played so much that it almost got me divorced. But I digress.

Back in those days, every self-respecting clan (No. Not THAT clan! Quake II teams were called “clans”.) member had to have a cool handle. At the time I was living in Indiana and so I played on the “Hoosier” angle with “HoozYer”. The “Mama” part was just a whimsical add-on that made for entertaining in-game commentary. “LittleJimmy was just fragged by HoozYerMama” just had a nice ring to it.

My nick was eventually shortened to just "Hooz", and it just stuck, even through all these years.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Another day, another big-freaking-wad-of-dollars!

Another tax day has come and gone, and I find myself with a large, smoldering hole in my wallet yet again. I pay all of the normal Federal, state and local (city) taxes but, being self-employed, I also get dinged by the illustrious "self-employment tax".

Everyone pays FICA (Social Security). I've got no problem with that. Well... I do. But that is a whole other issue.

For anyone who works for someone else, their FICA bill gets split in half. You pay half and your employer pays half. For those of us who work for ourselves though, there is no employer to cover half the tab. Instead, we pay the entire thing (15.3% to be exact) ourselves. Nifty, huh? Just think about what you could do with another 7.65% of your annual income in your pocket, especially as a self-employed small business owner.

Man. I just can't wait until we get a Democrat in the oval office who will let those pesky "Bush Tax Cuts" expire! You know, the tax cuts he gave to "the rich"! Yeah! And we need to raise taxes some more so we can cover our new socialized medicine, finance the world via the "Global Poverty Act", fight global warming and expand our social services even more!

For those of you lefties who read that last paragraph and got all excited... It was SARCASM!

Since I'm kind of on the subject of the "Bush Tax Cuts", maybe someone can explain to me how they are considered tax cuts "for the wealthy". Let's break-down some of this tax data, shall we? Let's compare actual tax for a few different income ranges for both 1999 (Clinton) and 2008 (Bush).
  • Single, making $30,000
    1999 Tax: $8,400
    2008 Tax: $4,500
  • Single, making $50,000
    1999 Tax: $14,000
    2008 Tax: $12,500
  • Single, making $75,000
    1999 Tax: $23,250
    2008 Tax: $18,750
  • Married, making $60,000
    1999 Tax: $16,800
    2008 Tax: $9,000
  • Married, making $75,000
    1999 Tax: $21,000
    2008 Tax: $18,750
  • Married, making $125,000
    1999 Tax: $38,750
    2008 Tax: $31,250

A monkey could see that the Bush tax cuts were not just "for the wealthy", they were for everyone, at every income level. If you pay special attention, you'll also notice that the discounts get smaller as the incomes get bigger. Go figure. The "wealthy" actually get LESS of a break than the "poor" under Bush's plan. Huh.

Yeah. Those tax cuts are evil. We should do away with them ASAP! (More sarcasm!)

Monday, April 14, 2008

Cold + Rain + Chivas USA = Crew Win!

Sydney and I braved the cold and rain on Saturday night to go watch our team play, and we were not disappointed. It was probably one of the most exciting soccer matches I've seen in a long time. This week saw the hardest-working-team in Major League Soccer up against Chivas USA, a team that the Crew has never beaten at home... Ever.

The final tally was 4-3 in favor of the Black and Gold. The score in itself doesn't tell the whole story, though. There were two send-offs in the second half (both for Chivas USA) and the play was "spirited" to say the least.

The Crew won the season (and home) opener two weeks ago against Toronto FC (which we also attended), and then proceeded to suffer a loss on the road against the New York Red Bulls last week. This win keeps them in the top of the pack in the East, but can they keep it up? The season is still young, so only time will tell.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Sad Day in Hilliard

Earlier today my wife called to let me know that there was an accident at my daughter’s former elementary school. Apparently a dump truck failed to stop for a crossing guard and a couple of students in the crosswalk directly in front of the school. The crossing guard attempted to push one child out of the way of the truck and was hit, as was the child.

The guard, Diane Sharp was treated by paramedics on the scene before being air-lifted to the OSU Medical Center where she later died of her injuries. The child she was trying to save is also in the hospital, but he is reportedly “doing well”.

I live less than a mile from where this happened, and I drive through that exact same area every day. I’ve seen people fly through there during school hours, but usually there is a patrol car sitting there waiting to greet them. Evidently the cop wasn’t there this morning, and the dump truck driver said he was driving slow but “didn’t see them”. He must not have been paying much attention, though. You know… Bright yellow vest, big red stop sign and all…

Indentured Servitude: Nanny State Style!

Ohio State Representative Sandra Williams (Democrat... Go figure!) has introduced a bill (HB519) that would require Ohio parents to "volunteer" at their children's school at least 13 hours per school year. While that seems well-intentioned on the surface, the fine print is what interests me.

You see, if the parent(s) don't hit their 13 hours of "volunteer time" for the school year:
(F) Not later than the thirtieth day of June of each school year, the superintendent of each school district shall report to the department of education the name and address of each parent who, in that school year, did not complete the requirements of division (B) of this section. The department shall impose a fine of one hundred dollars on each parent reported under this division who does not show good cause as to why the parent was unable to complete the requirements. The department shall send the parent written notification of the fine. The notification shall inform the parent of the following:

So... If you don't put in enough "volunteer time" at your kid's school, you get fined $100. Don't worry, though. If you blow-off the fine the State will just deduct it from your income tax return!

Umm. What?!

While I am a firm believer that today's parents need to be more involved in their children's lives both in and out of school, having the government mandate it smells an awful lot like socialism to me.

First Blog Post

I have been blogging on my own sites for about 9 years now, but recent upgrades to my personal webserver have broken the CMS ("Blog") functionality. Since I am entirely too lazy to fix the functionality on my personal site, I decided it might be time to give this free blog thing a shot.

Maybe this will inspire me to keep things more up-to-date.

Friday, January 25, 2008


My main issue with the Democrats (ALL the Democrats) is the pervasive "tax and spend" mentality.

Sure their social programs sound all warm and fuzzy. Who wouldn't want free healthcare? But the fact is that WE will have to PAY for that "free" healthcare, and we'll be paying it through higher taxes. But, we won't just be paying for our OWN healthcare (like most of us already do now), we'll be paying for all of the healthcare for all those people who make too little to pay taxes. Don't kid yourself... That $135 billion healthcare plan is eventually going to come out of our (YOUR) pocket.

If you're a gun owner and a supporter of the second ammendment you, by default, can't endorse ANY of the Democrat candidates. They ALL have a history of gun-grabbing. Half the Republicans are just as bad, but that's another issue.

The Democrats' stance on the redistribution of wealth (higher corporate taxes, or "take from the rich", and more social programs and/or hand-outs, or "give to the poor") is straight out of the socialist manifesto. Hillary Clinton's comments in the last few days regarding "more governmental control and regulation of the markets" is just downright SCARY! But hey, it worked for Stalin, it could work for us, right?!

On the subject of economy, I just can't wrap my head around how handing out more welfare checks creates more jobs. Isn't it just common sense that if it was cheaper for businesses to operate and expand in our country, more businesses might operate and expand in our country? Maybe some of the jobs that left our shores could/would actually RETURN to our shores. More investment in business leads to economic growth. Cuts in corporate taxes will have the single biggest impact on our economy. Period.

As for environmental issues, I think everyone on both sides of the aisle are waking-up to the fact that something needs to be done. The fundemental differences between the Democrats and Republicans on the issue of global warming is not that it is happening, but how fast it is happening and how much of it we are responsible for (or how much we can actually change). Personally, I'm not convinced that the sky is falling, but I do think we should be good stewards and start making changes. I'm a fan of clean coal, I'm a fan of nuclear power, I'm a fan of alternative fuel and I'm all for energy independance... Damn... I sound like the Republican candidates in last night's debate!

No matter what you think about how or why we are in Iraq, the fact is that we ARE there now. Right or wrong, we started it. I think we need to finish what we started, but we also need to "win" in the process. Wholesale withdrawl of our troops before it's "done" will leave Iraq in worse shape than when this mess started, it'll leave Al-Queda in better shape then when this mess started, and we (The U.S.A.) will be the ones who suffer in the long run.

For lack of time and energy, and for the sake of my blood pressure, I won't go into the subject of immigration right now.

As for the Republican candidates... The jury is still out on who is going to get my vote (I really liked Fred Thompson). They all have moments of brilliance, but yet there is something about each one that just rubs me the wrong way. I'll save that for another post, though.