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Archive for January 19th, 2011


From the press release:
To honor the life and legacy of President Ronald Reagan, the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation is sponsoring a week of events and programming to celebrate a leader who inspired freedom and changed the world. The week includes the first in a four-part series of Academic Symposia with major Universities across the United States on the “Lessons and Legacy” of President Reagan, a Concert for America, the official birthday celebration for President Reagan, and the grand opening of the Reagan Museum renovation.

“It was important to all of us at the Reagan Foundation to create a monumental series of events befitting of a man who brought so much to America and the world,” said John Heubusch, executive director of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation. “The centennial celebration is about more than just one day and one man.  It’s a year-long historic occasion for people to remember an extraordinary man who restored pride in America and spread freedom throughout the world.” 

The week-long series of events begin February 1 and 2, 2011 with the first of four academic conferences –at the University of Southern California and Reagan Library which will focus on key aspects of the Reagan Presidency.  Additional symposia will occur throughout 2011 with the University of Virginia (Feb 10-11), University of Notre Dame (March 3), and the US Naval Academy (October 19). Keynote speakers at these include Tom Brokaw, Peggy Noonan, Brian Mulroney, Ed Meese, Mitch Daniels, and more.

On February 5, the Reagan Foundation will sponsor A Concert for America – A Tribute to Ronald Reagan.  The concert is comprised of live music and in-person and video tributes from world leaders and prominent individuals whose lives were impacted by the legacy of President Reagan.  The evening’s lineup includes The Beach Boys, Lonestar, Lee Greenwood, Fred Thompson, Jerry West, and video tributes from George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush.

The president’s 61st anniversary of his 39th birthday on February 6, 2011 will be celebrated with an F-18 flyover from jets off the U.S.S. Ronald Reagan, musical performances by Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith, and the official wreath laying on behalf of the president of the United States with Mrs. Ronald Reagan.

The week will conclude with the official opening of the newly renovated Reagan Museum which integrates hundreds of artifacts with dozens of interactive displays.  These new galleries capture the character and legacy of Ronald Reagan – his policy, his patriotic spirit, and his inspired leadership.

 “As President Reagan would have wanted it, no taxpayer dollars are being spent on any centennial activities,” John Heubusch continued.  “All events and initiatives will be funded by private donations collected through the Reagan Foundation.”

President Reagan’s centennial year is rounded out with statue unveilings and celebrations in his honor around the world, from Washington DC at the Reagan Airport, to Grovesnor Square in London, and across central and Eastern Europe from Prague to Budapest where President Reagan’s vision of freedom left an indelible mark on the world. 

I will be over at the Reagan Library in Simi Valley which is a short drive for me as much time as I possibly can the weekend of the February 4th through the 7th. I will take my Bloggie and try to video and interview as many political folks as I can.

I, especially like Air Force One and will take video and photos of the new Reagan Library displays that will open for the public on Monday, the 7th. Newt Gingrich will be signing books that day and I will get some video of that event as well.

Reagan Library

President Ronald Reagan’s Air Force One in 2007. Photo by Flap


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The California Budget and proposed internet tax collections/projections

It’s BACKKKKKK – the Amazon Tax.
Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner is making another run at forcing major online retailers, including Amazon, to collect sales tax on California purchases.

Skinner, a Berkeley Democrat, said the bill could generate between $250 million and $500 million for the state. Proponents are hoping that a new governor and some major corporate firepower, including Amazon rival Barnes & Noble, will help the legislation succeed where it failed before.

Former Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger was adamant in his opposition the past two years, arguing that the bill would cost the jobs of “affiliates” in California who earn income by generating sales for Amazon and other companies. He vetoed previous legislation and blocked online tax proposals during budget talks.

Gov. Jerry Brown, a Democrat, has not yet stated a position on the bill. It is not part of his plan to bridge a $25.4 billion deficit.

Democrats say they can pass the bill with a majority vote because it changes the collection mechanism for a tax Californians are already supposed to pay.

Amazon and other online retailers for years have defended their no-tax policy by relying on a 1992 Supreme Court decision, Quill Corp. v. North Dakota, which determined that an out-of-state retailer without a substantial presence in a state does not have to collect sales taxes. Skinner’s bill seeks to force online retailers to collect tax so long as they maintain a presence in California through their affiliates.

Skinner contends that online businesses take away jobs from brick-and-mortar retailers in California. She says online purchases also deprive the state and local governments of tax revenues.

Oh really?

Among the most misguided of proposals coming out of the Democrat caucus is Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner’s Amazon tax legislation, reintroduced just yesterday, that would illegally require out-of-state businesses to collect California’s highest-in-the-nation sales tax. Make no mistake, this new tax, commonly referred to as the “Amazon tax,” is a guaranteed job killer that wouldn’t even make a dent in California’s budget deficit.

Perennial attempts to pass this job-killing tax on e-commerce have been rightfully rejected in California and elsewhere. Aside from failing to address the real problem – overspending – and adding to the state’s 12% unemployment rate, an unconstitutional Amazon tax wouldn’t do squat to close the state deficit, estimated at $26.4 billion over the next 18 months.

And, then, there are the California affiliates who sell amazon products – like me. Amazon will likely pull the ads right off my blog like they threaten to do in Illinois.

So, let’s see what will the Amazon Law do:

1. Raise no real revenue for the State of California – ask Rhode Island, North Carolina and Colorado about their ZERO tax revenue

2. Kill amazon affiliate jobs in California and take some $$$ from ol’ Flap

3. Involve California in a costly lawsuit regarding the constitutionality of charging online taxes to a company that does not have a physical presence in a state

As ATR has repeatedly explained to state legislators, Amazon taxes hurt small ad businesses and do nothing to fill state coffers. Rather, it has been demonstrated time and again that retailers will simply terminate contracts with advertisers in states that stupidly enact an Amazon tax to avoid creating a “nexus” and, therefore, being forced to collect this unconstitutional tax.

In 2009, 25,000 individuals and small businesses in California earned $1.6 billion from online advertising, paying $124 million in state income tax (plus employment tax, business tax, property tax, sales tax, etc). That is a revenue stream that will dry up if Skinner’s legislation passes.

It gets worse. Not only is the tax harmful to employers, the state of California could face a burdensome and costly lawsuit if Skinner’s legislation were to pass.

Thanks Barnes and Noble for trying to screw your competitors. I understand business is business but using California State Law to screw me, just cost you a customer. Here are some of the other miscreants who are helping the Berkeley Democrat pass this piece of excrement.

  • Gene De Felice, Vice President and General Counsel, Barnes and Noble
  • Bill Dombrowski, President & CEO, California Retailers Association
  • Felicia Strati, Owner, Felicia Strati Boutique
  • Susan Tiesing, Owner, Tres Chic Boutique
  • Alzada Knickerbocker, Owner, Avid Reader, Davis, CA
  • Dennis Smith, Secretary-Treasurer, California Federation of Teachers
  • Chuck Shaw, Northern California State Director, International Council of Shopping
  • Centers and representing the California Business Properties Association
  • Lenny Goldberg representing Northern California Independent Booksellers Association
  • Teachers, public safety officers, and community leaders

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In a bipartisan vote, the GOP controlled House voted to repeal the Obama Health Care Reform Law.
House Republicans passed a bill to repeal President Barack Obama’s health care plan Wednesday, taking their first major step toward rolling back the massive overhaul that has dominated the American political landscape for almost two years.

The vote was 245 to 189, and unanimous GOP support gave the vote the same partisan feel of the March vote to pass the law, underscoring once again the hardened political lines of the health care debate. Only three Democrats backed the repeal, a smaller number than Republicans had once predicted.

But, hey, there are three more Democrats who voted for repeal than there were Republicans who voted for the law. There were NO Republicans who voted for the adoption of ObamaCare.

Next, the bill will head to the U.S. Senate, where Democrat Senate Majority Leader Nevada Senator Harry Reid has vowed to not take up the bill. Even if the bill is considered and approved in the U.S. Senate, it is an absolute certainty that President Obama will veto the measure.

The American people voted to replace the majority Congressional Democrats last November because in part because of ObamaCare. The Democratic Party and President Obama OWN it.

ObamaCare will likely NEVER progress any further and WILL be repealed when the GOP regains the White House in either 2012 or 2016.


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Looks like Utah voters who threw out GOP senator Bob Bennett last November are in the mood to do the same to Utah GOP Senator Orrin Hatch.
A new Utah Policy poll shows Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, could be fighting off Republicans and Democrats in 2012.

University of Utah political scientist Tim Chambless says Hatch will fight an uphill battle because of age, health and distrust of incumbents.

“There is a possibility that Senator Hatch, the incumbent, would be challenged from within his own party and would be vulnerable to the same fate as Senator Bob Bennett,” Chambless said.

When Hatch is put up against possible Republican challengers he falls behind both former governor John Huntsman, Jr. and Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah:

    * 48 percent support Huntsman, who hasn’t said what his plans are for the 2012 election
    * 23 percent support Chaffetz, who has hinted he might run
    * 21 percent support Hatch, who says he’s definitely running again
    * 7 percent said they favor someone else
    * 1 percent said they don’t know

Orrin Hatch who sometimes leans to the left, better shore up his right flank and do some fence mending with the Tea Party folks in Utah or he will be OUT in 2012.

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