25th Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Martin Luther King Jr.
Twenty-five years ago the life and accomplishments of Martin Luther King Jr. were recognized in the law of the land. King was born January 15, 1929. He was murdered by James Earl Ray on April 4, 1968. King is now an iconic figure in American history. His efforts resulted in the advancement of civil rights in the United States and all around the world. King borrowed from India’s Mahatma Gandhi’s use of nonviolent methods to affect social and legal change.
King at the Lincoln Memorial
First and foremost, King was a Christian. Serving as a Baptist minister, King eventually became a civil rights activist. He led the 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott. He helped found the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in 1957 and served as its first president. King led the 1963 March on Washington, where he delivered his now immortal, "I Have a Dream" speech. King offered a stirring vision of a color blind society in America. In 1964, King became the youngest person to receive the Nobel Peace Prize. At the time of his death in 1968, King was an outspoken critic of Lyndon Johnson and called for end of the Vietnam War. Watch a video of King's immortal "I Have a Dream" speech here:


The Job--the true endangered species

From the Westerner - by Marita K. Noon - The Obama administration wants us to believe that they will really focus on jobs and the economy. The announcements and “pro-business” staff members are just window dressing. While no one is looking, they’re continuing the job-killing policies. On December 14, the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) announced that the Dunes Sagebrush Lizard “faces immediate and significant threats due to oil and gas activities and herbicide treatments.” As a result, they propose it be listed as “endangered”under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) which starts the clock for a 60-day public comment period. Hoping no one would notice, the proposal was announced during the throes of the holiday season. We, the public, need to take notice. The Dunes Sagebrush Lizard lives in the Permian Basin’s prime ranching/farming and oil/gas country—encompassing Southeastern New Mexico and West Texas. Both private landowners and industries are “threatened” as working the land might “take” a lizard. Instead they take jobs. If listed, ranching, farming, and drilling will be severely restricted in the region. As we’ve seen with the closing of the Alaska pipeline, the less supply we have, the higher the price. The economy of this entire portion of the country is dependent on ranching/farming and the extractive industries. We are in an economic war. If America is to win, we must put pressure on Washington to listen. At the very least, they must extend the public comment period for the Dunes Sagebrush Lizard—and then we must comment: “Don’t lock up more lands!” Read more

Tax credits, deductions getting second look in legislative session

From the Santa Fe New Mexican.com - by Trip Jennings - New Mexico loses $1.3 billion in revenue each year through the hundreds of credits, exemptions and deductions in the state's tax code. Reduce a tax credit here, eliminate a tax deduction there, and the dollars generated just might help solve New Mexico's budgetary crisis, some state lawmakers are saying. The state is trying to close a projected shortfall of between $200 million and $452 million for the year that starts July 1, and so far the emphasis has been on cost-saving measures. But some lawmakers argue that foraging for unexpected dollars in the tax code is a no-brainer. "Conceptually, a lot of people agree with it. We just have to get the political courage to do it," said Sen. Tim Keller, D-Albuquerque, a supporter. Credits, exemptions and deductions are a fixture of any tax code, and they are everywhere. For example, think of when you buy milk. The purchase isn't taxed in New Mexico because the state exempts food from the gross-receipts tax, a decision that cost the state more than $200 million in tax dollars last year. Read more

Blackwell: Dim Bulbs

Ken Blackwell
Townhall - Why is Paris known as the City of Lights ? Is it because the U.S. Congress banned Thomas Edison’s incandescent light bulbs, so he had to take his invention offshore? Well, not actually. Thomas Edison was an honoree at the 1889 Paris Universal Exposition and he did go up in the Eiffel Tower . The Italian government conferred a knighthood at that event on the man who gave the world a brighter idea.
Thomas Edison
No, Congress in the 1880s would not have been so foolish as to extinguish Edison ’s light bulb. But the liberal Congress in 2007 was so foolish. They passed (and, regrettably, President George W. Bush signed) the BULB Act. That cutesy acronym stood for the Better Use of Light Bulbs Act. By that act, incandescent light bulbs were to have been phased out by 2014. Read full column here:


Fifty Years Ago Eisenhower Warned Us

President Dwight Eisenhower
Townhall - by David Stokes - .....Eisenhower himself actually came up with the idea nearly eighteen months before his second term was over. He called it “one speech he would like very much to make…a ten-minute farewell.” He told this to Malcolm Moos who began making notes. Ultimately, the address underwent nearly thirty drafts, twenty-one of which were unknown until those boxes in the boathouse were found. So—what else did President Eisenhower say on January 17, 1961? It is something that speaks to us today:
“Another factor in maintaining balance involves the element of time. As we peer into society's future, we – you and I, and our government – must avoid the impulse to live only for today, plundering for, for our own ease and convenience, the precious resources of tomorrow. We cannot mortgage the material assets of our grandchildren without asking the loss also of their political and spiritual heritage. We want democracy to survive for all generations to come, not to become the insolvent phantom of tomorrow.”  Read full column here:

Recalling Tim Donaghy

My son became a big NBA basketball fan as he grew up and eventually I decided that the father-son trips we made would include visits to Phoenix for NBA games. As the 2007 NBA season played out, my interest in the NBA became renewed.
Tim Donaghy
However, in the playoffs I slowly began to realize, as a seasoned basketball game broadcaster, that the NBA referee crew working the Suns versus Spurs series should be investigated for criminal activity. Many of the calls made in that 2007 series were so inexplicably bizarre, that there simply could be no other explanation. I swore off the NBA at the end of the 2007 season once and for all. And it came as no surprise later when NBA official Tim Donaghy was found by the FBI to be involved in gambling on NBA games he actually officiated. Donaghy had worked the Suns vs. Spurs series and bet on the Spurs. Amazingly, only Tim Donaghy was charged with a crime. Eventually Donaghy served only eleven months in prison. Donaghy's colleague Scott Foster, who received more than a hundred quick cell phone calls from Donaghy just before and after games somehow managed to escape prosecution.
David Stern
NBA Commissioner David Stern seemed to be nodding and winking at the rest of the evidence of a more widespread problem when he declared Donaghy a "rogue official" acting alone during the press conference that closed the door on the scandal. On Saturday afternoon January 15, 2011 the same tell-tale signs of possible corruption turned up in the Baltimore versus Pittsburgh NFL playoff game. It would take too much space to list all the signs of foul play that should raise serious suspicions about the integrity of officiating in the NFL. Will the NFL investigate? Don’t hold your breath. Read full column here: