Florida Governor Crist denies that Flights of Sick Haitians have been stopped…..

Florida Gov. Charlie Crist (R) this weekend fired back at reports that the U.S. military had stopped flying critically ill Haitian earthquake victims to his state.

While The New York Times and other media outlets reported this weekend military leaders had suspended those flights last week, Crist told ABC’s “Good Morning America Weekend” that it was his “understanding” that those transports actually continued. The governor later added he did not have “authority to stop military flights, nor would we want to,” even if the news were true.

“So, it’s all hands on deck here in the Sunshine State,” Crist continued. “We’re welcoming Haitians with open arms and probably done more than any other state and happy to continue to do so.”

Fueling confusion this weekend seems to be a letter Crist wrote to the Department of Health and Human Services last Wednesday. In it, he asked Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to activate the National Disaster Medical System (NDMS) — a program that would distribute “medically ill patients to other states and ensure states are appropriately reimbursed for their services,” he explained in the letter.

Crist at the time stressed the NDMS declaration was essential, given the immense financial pressure the Haitian relief had imposed on his state. He later told ABC that Florida has so far shouldered about $7.1 million of the relief burden, and that hospitals were slowly nearing their capacity.

Crist is doing the right thing by asking for the National Disaster Medical System to be activated……

Update……..Florida Governor Crist appears to be wrong……the flight’s where stopped for 5 days because of logistical problems?……Anyways….they will be resuming shortly.…. Within 12 hours………….

As expected…..Scott Brown comes out as moderate Republican……

I told you so!

The newly elected Senator from Massachusetts, ever mindful of the fact that he has to survive at home in a completely democratic state, has made these facts and policies clear…..

Newly elected Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.) on Sunday signaled he would not serve as his party’s strict, unwavering 41st vote.
While “41” once served as Brown’s campaign mantra — a label synonymous with his opposition to Democrats’ healthcare reform — he seemed to suggest during an interview on Sunday that he would break with the Republicans on key economic and social issues, including abortion and an upcoming spending freeze.“It’s cute now,” Brown told ABC’s “This Week.” “But everyone really is the 41st senator. And what it means is that now there will be full and fair debate. And there will be no more behind closed doors actions.”

“And make no mistake, I am a fiscal conservative,” he added. “And when it comes to issues affecting people’s pockets, and pocketbooks and wallets, I’ll be with the Republicans if they are in fact pushing those initiatives.”

Brown later outlined a few of those specific issues on which he might break with his own party. Notably, he said Sunday he was mostly pro-choice, though he added he would oppose any measure granting federal funds for use on abortions.

The issue “is best handled between a woman and her doctor and her family,” Brown explained, noting Congress had to do more to decrease the frequency of abortions and approve adoption services.

The new senator also signaled he would support the president’s forthcoming plan to offer tax credits to businesses that hire new workers or enlarge paychecks for those they already employ. A number of Republicans have expressed doubts about that proposal, fearing it will not spur the uptick in hiring that Democrats allege.

If the Democrats had to have a seat go Republican…..Scott Brown was the one…..There is going to be some wiggle room there…

Will the Gitmo Five be tried in NYC…or not?……

For the past few days the media has proclaimed that the trials will be moved from the Federal CourtHouse in downtown New York City….This possoble move….as everything since the ‘Scott Brown effectr’ kicked in may have a political side to it……

The Hill…the Paper and website has a piece out today saying the White House STILL wants the trial held in New York…..

If one goes back and carefully checks all the media stories one will find that the United States Department of Justice has not indicated in any way shape or form the trial will actually be moved……

You will see all sorts of quotes…from unnamed sources….but no…..”we will move the trial”….from anyone…..

And I think that’s because the political thing has kicked in at the White House…not Justice……someone in one the meetings on this ….has pushed back and surely said…..’the Mayor of the City of New York doesn’t tell the Federal Government what to do…and when…’

and of course…that’s correct…..and judging by the two links I’ve provided in this piece…..the feelings are divided……

Sure businesses are going to lose money…and downtown New York is gonna be locked down…..but alot of people also want the trials to go on…in the City so that they can see the results ……

My guess is they will probably go somewhere else…..

But you never know…..

The political side might just say…..We’re the government and WE decide where we do this…….

Link……

Link……

Merlin on Tennis 'Superman' Roger Federer…and his Australian Open Win……

Hello Dog !

Swiss Native and Tennis “Superman” Roger Federer has won the Australian Open for a fourth time!.

He also recorded a Record 16th Gran Slam Title. Federer beat Scotland Native Andy Murray in straight Sets 6:3, 6:4, 7:6 (13-11). In the first 2 Sets Federer really demolished Murray playing too aggressive for the Scottish.

In the 3rd Set Federer’s playing Level sunk a little and Murray had his Chances. Murray was up a Break at 5:3 and serving when Federer stormed back. The Set eventually was decided in a very close Tie-Break with Federer winning on his Third Match Point when Murray netted a backhand.

Federer will remain as No 1 for the next few months. Federer’s Main Rival Rafael Nadal will drop to No 4 when new Rankings are published on Monday. Nadal also won’t play for the next month after sustaining an knee injury in his Quarterfinal Match against Murray which eventually forced him to retire.

The new ATP World Tour Rankings coming out tomorrow will be as followed:

1. Roger Federer (Switzerland)  11.350 Points

2. Novak Djokovic (Serbia)  8.310 Points

3. Andy Murray (Great Britain)  7.800 Points

4. Rafael Nadal (Spain)  7.670 Points

Merlin

Congradulations to both of you guys……..

SE on the 2010 Kentucky races……

My Take on the 2010 Kentucky Races

Here’s a rundown of how I think the Kentucky races will go:

US Senate: Incumbent GOP Senator Jim Bunning is retiring. On the GOP side, Secretary of State Trey Grayson, Business Executive Bill Johnson, World War II Veteran Gurley Martin, Physician Rand Paul, Jon Scribner, and former State Superintendent of Public Instruction John Stephenson are in the running. On the Democratic side, Physician James Buckmaster, Attorney General Jack Conway, Lieutenant Governor Dan Mongiardo, former US Customs Agent Darlene Price, and Farmer Maurice Sweeney are in the running. The Independents have unified behind Convenience Store Operator John Long. I expect Paul and Conway to emerge from their Primaries. I expect Paul to defeat Conway 52-48. GOP HOLD.

KY-01: Incumbent GOP Congressman Ed Whitfield is running for re-election. The GOP has unified behind Whitfield. The Democrats have unified Auctioneer Charles Hatchett. I expect Whitfield to bury Hatchett 72-28. GOP HOLD.

KY-02: Incumbent GOP Congressman S. Brett Guthrie is running for re-election. The GOP has unified behind Guthrie. The Democrats have unified behind Home Builder Ed Marksberry. I expect Guthrie to crush Marksberry 70-30. GOP HOLD.

KY-03: Incumbent Democratic Congressman John Yarmuth is running for re-election. The Democrats have unified behind Yarmuth. On the GOP side, Electric Power Plant Worker W. Jerry Durbin, Commercial Real Estate Broker Larry Hausman, Commercial Pilot Todd Lally, Restaurant Franchise Owner Jeff Reetz, and Financial Consultant Brooks Wicker are in the running. I expect Reetz to emerge from the Primary. I expect Yarmuth to prevail 54-46. DEM HOLD.

KY-04: Incumbent GOP Congressman Geoff Davis is running for re-election. The GOP has unified behind Davis. The Democrats have unified behind Disabled Iraq/Afghan War Veteran & Non-Profit Group Executive John Waltz. I expect Davis to prevail 69-31. GOP HOLD.

KY-05: Incumbent GOP Congressman Hal Rogers is running for re-election. The GOP has unified behind Rogers. On the Democratic side, Helicopter Pilot Jim Holbert, Teacher David Holbert, and Attorney Ken Stepp are in the running. I have no idea who will be the Dem nominee, but does it matter? Rogers will crush them like their Third Parties. GOP HOLD.

KY-06: Incumbent Democratic Congressman AB Chandler is running for re-election. The Democrats have unified behind Chandler. On the GOP side, Businessman Perry Barnes, Attorney Andy Barr, John Kemper III, Funeral Director Matt Lockett, George Pendergrass, and retired Businessman Mike Templeman are in the running. I expect Barr to get the nomination, but lose to Chandler 56-44. DEM HOLD.

POSTED BY SE-779

Taxes……..and my wife ain't happy……..

The Dog’s accountant just emailed back the rough draft of the 2009 taxes situation……

The Dog just fell of the chair…….

We owe Federal taxes money….again……

My wife is pissed……We have a vehicle coming off lease…a Chevy Trailblazer…and we will need money to replace the vehicle…

[Sidebar.…..It won’t be another Chevy…..though we’ve had Chevy trucks for the last 20 years….we won’t be going back….I love the Trailblazer, but the gas mileage is killing me….It looks like a Toyota, Honda or even a Hyundai replacement is in it the works…..and we’re trying the Credit Union, if we can…not the bank…..and hopefully not the car dealer’s bank...]

Back to main story……..

While we earned less money and upped our withholding…we still owe the Feds money!

The accountant emailed us…..’Remember when Obama gave you that break on your payroll taxes?’……’Well’, he explained..you gotta give that money back’…….

‘And the tax rate also kinda creeped up a little’…..

So you mean…I asked…even though we made less…we’re paying more?

‘Yep’…….

My wife looked at me and started…….’Why hell are we paying to go to the Moon?’…..I don’t know….I answered……

‘And another thing’… she asked……’why are they stopping the shipping of Haitian’s to Florida hospital’s for surgery?’

I stopped and remembered seeing the headline…I took a gamble……

I’m sure the people in Florida started to realize that there was going to be a lot of people coming for surgery…and while they wanted to do the right thing…..Someone is going to have to pay the bill for all that surgery….And I guess the state of Florida wants the Feds to pay the bill…….

She looked at me…….

Then shook her head…..’You mean WE ARE GOING TO PAY THE BILL……RIGHT?…the Federal tax payers’……

I just shook my head…….

she was right……

Now I lean democratic…..I think that there should be Healthcare for all Americans …my son doesn’t have it because he works a partime job……and believe that those people from Haiti should get medical care……but my wife has a point…..

WHO IS GONNA PAY FOR ALL THIS STUFF?

The president wants to hold the line on his budget…but the military is exempt…….hHe’sflyingin a 35-year-old helicopter why a nine new ones, which are paid for, and are sitting around doing nothing, because they want to spend more money to buy ‘American’ ones…We spend tens of millions of dollar each year on Bullshit studies, while all these other things, that need money, have to wait…..

My wife looked me…..she then shook her head…and walked away…muttering …

……’I guess we ‘ll just have to find the money….  somehow’……

China……the one of the West's biggest trading partners is pissed about the U.S. selling arms to Taiwan……

A handout photograph released on January 30, 2010 shows M60A3 tanks during an exercise in Taiwan on November 7, 2009. The Obama administration notified Congress on January 29 of its first proposed arms sales to Taiwan, a potential $6.4 billion package bound to add to rising U.S.-China strains over trade and cyber security. China warned on Saturday that Washington's announcement of arms sales to Taiwan would badly hurt ties between the two global powers, widening rifts in their far-reaching relationship. Picture taken November 7, 2009.   REUTERS/Taiwan Military News Agency/Handout (TAIWAN - Tags: POLITICS MILITARY) FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS   Original Filename: 2010-01-30T120816Z_01_TAI104_RTRMDNP_3_USA-CHINA-TAIWAN.JPG

China suspended military exchanges with the United States, threatened unprecedented sanctions against American defense companies and warned Saturday that cooperation would suffer after Washington announced $6.4 billion in planned arms sales to Taiwan.

The response to Friday’s U.S. announcement, while not entirely unexpected, was swift and indicated that China plans to put up a greater challenge than usual as it deals with the most sensitive topic in U.S.-China relations.

“This is the strongest reaction we’ve seen so far in recent years,” said Stephanie T. Kleine-Ahlbrandt, northeast Asia project director for the International Crisis Group.

“China is really looking to see what kind of reaction it’s going to receive from Obama on this.”

China’s Defense Ministry said the arms sales to self-governing Taiwan, which the mainland claims as its own, cause “severe harm” to overall U.S.-China cooperation, the state-run Xinhua News Agency reported.

Vice ministerial-level talks on arms control and strategic security were postponed.

The warning comes as the U.S. seeks Beijing’s help on issues including the global financial crisis and nuclear standoffs in North Korea and Iran.

Tensions were already high after recent U.S. comments on Internet freedom and a dispute between Google and China, as well as President Barack Obama‘s plan to meet with Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama this year.

China’s Vice Foreign Minister He Yafei told U.S. Ambassador Jon Huntsman that the sales of Black Hawk helicopters, Patriot Advanced Capability-3 missiles and other weapons to Taiwan would “cause consequences that both sides are unwilling to see,” a ministry statement said.

The Foreign Ministry also threatened sanctions against U.S. companies involved in the arms sales, which hasn’t happened in past sales to Taiwan.

“Our action regarding Taiwan reinforces our commitment to stability in the region,” U.S. State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said Saturday.

“We know China has a different view. Given our broad relationship with China, we will manage this issue as we have in the past.”

This issue is an important one to the Chinese who have never been happy with the American backing of Taiwan……We are sure there will be some saber rattling for  a while about this….But just the United Sates needs China for capital…the Chinese need to maintain relations and economy trade with the United States….Any cut in trade would result in massive unemployment in China which would lead to political and economic instability…….

They will work this out……They have to…….

The 2010 Grammy Awards………..

The 52nd Annual Grammy Awards will held on Sunday, Jan. 31 and the producers are putting the finishing touches on the preparations for the show.

Look for female singers to take center stage as Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift,  Mary J. Blige and Beyonce perform and compete for some of the top awards.

There will also be a special tribute to Michael Jackson featuring “Avatar”-like 3-D footage.

Other acts scheduled to perform include Eminem, Drake, Lil Wayne, the cast of the musical “American Idiot” appearing with Green Day, and Maxwell.

Below, a video previewing the the big night, which Speakeasy will be live-blogging starting at 8 p.m.

Miss Virginia is the New Miss America……..

Miss Virginia Caressa Cameron, a Fredericksburg native, was crowned Miss America at the great annual spectacle in Las Vegas Saturday night.

The 22 year-old sang the “Dreamgirls” ballad “Listen,” rocked a bright-yellow evening gown, and exhorted kids to get off the couch and play outdoors — and did so with just enough spunk and charisma to win a $50,000 scholarship over 52 other women.

It was a big night for the Beltway: Cameron, who won the Miss Virginia title last summer as a representative of the Miss Arlington pageant, was joined in the top 10 by opera-singing AU grad Miss D.C. Jen Corey, who introduced herself on the pageant stage with a little Salahi joke:

“From our nation’s capital, I’m here to tell you that our security here is much tighter than at the White House state dinner!” Corey said.

Cameron emerged as an early favorite, having won a talent prize during preliminary competition this week. But the Virginia Commonwealth University communications major truly broke away from the pack during Saturday night’s interview portion. While the other six finalists gave halting answers, Cameron seemed prepared for the pop-question about what to do about the epidemic of teen obesity.

“Take away the TV, take away the video games, set some standards for our children!” she proclaimed, eyes a-sparkle, avoiding any ums and you-knows. Children, she said, should be encouraged to go outside, “playing imaginary games with sticks in the street like I did when I was little.”

Hey, it’s not doctoral dissertation material. But it’s the kind of upbeat message and perky delivery that resonates at the pageant, still plugging along in its 88th year despite flagging ratings (it lost its network TV berth five years ago and now airs on TLC) and its general cultural eclipsing by reality-TV phenoms like “American Idol.”

Congratulations Cameron…..It’s not just the bathing suit..but the other stuff that goes with it……

People don't really use all the stuff they put in cellphones……..

I don’t feel so lonely after all…….I have flip phone………

And I use it to make phone calls …….

That’s all…….

I don’t use the camera…..I don’t text……I don’t email anybody……

I just the phone to make phone calls…it is just a phone…..right?

Well it turns out that I’m among the norm….not the exception………

The average iPhone or iPod Touch owner uses 5 to 10 apps regularly, according to Flurry, a research firm that studies mobile trends. This despite the surfeit of available apps: some 140,000 and counting.

Last week’s announcement of the Apple iPad, a tablet device that runs iPhone applications and will not be available until March, has already spurred the development of more, including a version of a drawing app called Brushes; Nova, a shooter game; and Apple’s own app called iBooks, which will connect to its new online e-bookstore.

But that doesn’t mean that people will change their habits. Actually, it may just make them feel a tad more overwhelmed. The next generation of gadget users might prove different, but for now it is clear that people prefer fewer choices, and that they gravitate consistently toward the same small number of things that they like. Owners of iPhones are no different from cable TV subscribers with hundreds of channels to choose from who end up watching the same half-dozen.

This is all good…..

Cause I don’t need a iPhone….or  Blackberry…….

I just need a plain ole’ cell phone……..

SE on the political races in Connecticut…..

My Take on the 2010 CT Races

Here’s a rundown of how I think the CT races will go:

Governor: Incumbent GOP Governor Jodi Rell is retiring. On the GOP side, former Congressman Larry DeNardis, Lieutenant Governor Michael Fedele, and former US Ambassador to Ireland Tom Foley are in the running. On the Democratic side, former State House Speaker Jim Amann, former State Representative Juan Figueroa, Simsbury First Selectman Mary Glassman, Businessman Ned Lamont, State Senator Gary LeBeau, Stamford Mayor Dan Malloy, and Rigefield First Selectman Rudy Marconi are in the running. I expect Fedele and Lamont to emerge from their Primaries. I expect Fedele to pick Foley as his running mate and Lamont to pick Amann as his running mate. I expect Lamont/Amann to prevail over Fedele/Foley 52-48. DEM GAIN.

Secretary of State: Incumbent Democratic Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz is running for Attorney General. On the Democratic side, New Haven Alderman Gerry Garcia, Jonathan Harris, State House Majority Leader Denise Merrill, and State Representatives Kevin Roldan and James Spallone are in the running. On the GOP side, former Cheshire Town Registrar of Voters Richard Abbate and Attorney Corey Brinson are in the running. I expect Merrill to emerge from her Primary. I expect Abbate to defeat Brinson 64-36. Merrill will defeat Abbate 60-40. DEM HOLD.

Attorney General: Incumbent Democratic Attorney General Richard Blumenthal is running for the US Senate. On the Democratic side, Secretary of State Susan Bysiewicz and former State Senate Majority Leader George Jepsen are in the running. There are no announced candidates on the GOP side, but potential candidates are State Representatives Bill Hamzy, Themis Klarides, and Arthur O’Neill, Attorney John Pavia, and State Senator Andrew Roraback. I expect Bysiewicz to pummel Jepsen 67-33 and defeat whoever the GOP nominates. DEM HOLD.

State Treasurer: Incumbent Democratic State Treasurer Denise Nappier is running for re-election. The Democrats have unified behind Nappier. The GOP has no announced or potential candidates. DEM HOLD.

State Comptroller: Incumbent Democratic State Comptroller Nancy Wyman is running for re-election. The Democrats have unified behind Wyman. The GOP has no announced or potential candidates. DEM HOLD.

US Senate: Incumbent US Senator Chris Dodd is retiring. On the Democratic side, Software Executive Merrick Alpert, Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, and former Greenwich First Selectman Roger Pearson are in the running. On the GOP side, former Worl Wrestling Entertainment CEO Linda McMahon, former Congressman Rob Simmons, and Euro Pacific Capital President Peter Shiff are in the running. I expect Blumenthal to crush his Primary opposition easily, 80-14-6 over Alpert and Pearson. I also expect Simmons to bodyslam McMahon 49-38. Blumenthal will crush Simmons 69-31. DEM HOLD.

US Congress: Democrats will retain Districts 1 and 3.

CT-02: Incumbent Democratic Congressman Joe Courtney is running for re-election. The Democrats have unified behind Courtney. On the GOP side, Hebron Board of Finance Member Matthew Daly and Homeland Security Consultant Daria Novak are in the running. The Green Party has unified behind Montville School Board Chair G. Scott Deshefy. The Libertarians have unified behind Writer Dan Reale. I expect Daly to emerge from his Primary 71-29 and lose to Courtney 56-41. DEM HOLD.

CT-04: Incumbent Democratic Congressman Jim Himes is running for re-election. The Democrats have unified behind Himes. On the GOP side, State Senator Dan Debicella, Non-Profit Group Executive Director Will Gregory, Businessmen Rob Merkle and Rick Torres, and former State Senator Rob Russo are in the running., I expect Debicella to prevail 50-42-5-2-1 over Gregory, Russo, Merkle, and Torres, and upend Himes 51-49. GOP GAIN.

CT-05: Incumbent Democratic Congressman Chris Murphy is running for re-election. The Democrats have unified behind Murphy. On the GOP side, former Non-Profit Group Executive Director Justin Bernier, State Senator Sam Calguri, Health Care Executive Dan Carter, Businessmen Bill Evans and Mark Greenberg, and Attorney Kie Westby. I expect Calguri to prevail over Bernier 55-39 and upend Murphy 53-47. GOP GAIN.

POSTED BY SE-779

Update:…..we have been told that Daley has dropped out of the CT-02….Novak is said to have backing…But Se calls this Dem hold anyways…..

Update#2..……From SE…..’.You do know the stuff about Daly is stuff generated by the Novak people to gain traction. It’s incorrect. I don’t think my time is needed on a follow-up.’

Merlin on the Florida Governor Race…..No Changes…..

Hello Dog!

There isn’t much Movement in the Florida Governor Race right now. Rasmussen basically confirms the earlier Q-Pac Poll (Q-Pac had McCollum up 41-31) showing McCollum ahead by 11 Points.

Rasmussen Survey

Florida Governor 2010

General Election

Attorney General William “Bill” McCollum (R)  46 %
Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink (D)  35 %
Others  5 %
Undecided  13 %

Job Approvals

President Obama

Approve  42 % (Q-Pac had it at 45 %)
Disapprove  58 % (Q-Pac had it at 49 %)

Governor Charlie Crist (R)

Approve  51 % (Q-Pac had it at 50 %)
Disapprove  47 % (Q-Pac had it at 38 %)

Full Results as always at Rasmussen Reports.com

Note:

Rasmussen to release updated Florida Senate Republican Primary Numbers next week.

Merlin