Sunday, October 26, 2008

Pumpkaween Time!

Thought you all would like to see some pumpkins that a friend and I painted for Halloween. The pictures aren't the best since they're from my cell phone but enjoy anyways :-)

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Bend Over And No... K-Y Won't Be Provided!

I love freedom of speech. I hate insurance companies. And that led to a lovely combination when I wrote my check out for my annual condo insurance policy about two minutes ago. You see my policy went up nearly 14% from last year. Why is that you ask? I'm wondering the same thing.

All I've done is give these scum bags my money for the last 3 years to cover the inside contents (drywall and everything within my condo) in case of a catastrophic loss. All I've received for the last 3 years in return is absolutely nothing! Except for an increase in what I owe them for the services that they never provide. And I'm sure if they had to provide their services they'd raise holy hell not to provide them siting some ridiculous reason like because the GDP of Russia has increased in the last year due to increase in petro dollars that they can no longer cover my losses as listed in our agreed upon contract.

So instead of listing just the policy number of my "insurance" policy in the memo line of the check I just wrote I took the liberty of adding "INSURANCE SCAM CHARGE" in front of it. Now I know that that will make no difference in my renewal fee but at least it relieves some pent up anger for the largest scam artist industry in the entire world - insurance companies.

I think I'll go watch Sportscenter and be happy now :)

Running a Productive Democracy

It's not hard folks. I don't know if I'll ever live to see the day that a democratic process is run correctly. All you have to do is look at the big picture and follow the money. That's what it comes down to. Who's really in charge and who pays the bills. That should be the citizens but unfortunately it isn't. Here's the very simple steps for success in a democratic process:

1) Ban all forms of lobbying and special interest groups. Make them illegal. If any politician of any kind (federal, state, or local) is found to collect even 1 penny from them then their career in politics is immediately over. No second chances!

2) Make it MANDATORY for all governments (federal, state, and local) to balance their budget on a yearly basis and abide by this in the strictest of form. The state and local governments are already responsible for doing this. Time for the feds to buck up. Government should not be allowed to run on a Chinese credit card. If you can't fund a program you can't have the program!

3) Get rid of political parties. No Democrats or Republicans or Green Party or Reform Party. The only choice that is given to anyone when registering is to be an independent and to put forth your stance on each issue as you believe is correct. Your constituents will decide from there if they want you to represent them.

4) Get rid of the electoral college. Every single vote should count. Reform the voting process into a run off format. Instead of picking one candidate that you like you rank them - for example from 1 to 5 or whatever the case may be.

5) Politicians get paid based on their productivity and performance. By this I mean if you show up to work and vote on all bills then you get paid in full. If you go the extra effort and develop legislation that passes into law you get a reward "bonus" for that effort. We also need to base all elected public official's salary based on performance. We could use a variety of tools to gage their pay including the economic success of their nation/state/locality along with approval ratings from the citizens. The better the results in these categories the better their pay is. If the normal citizen doesn't show up to their job or if they produce poor performance results then that often leads to no bonuses or little to no raise or even worse termination. The same thing should go for our elected public officials.

6) A bill consists of one issue and one issue only. No pork barrel add ons. And every bill is made 100% transparent to the media and the citizens in a timely fashion (at least 2 weeks) before the floor vote is conducted. This gives all of us an opportunity if we so choose to speak up when we either like or don't like what we see and flood our representative's office with calls with that feedback.

You see it's not hard. With these simple yet strict rules a democratic government can flourish and be extremely beneficial to the citizens that it serves. My name is Dustin and I approve this message ;-)