About Me

In writing the "About Me" portion of this blog I thought about the purpose of the blog - namely, preventing the growth of Socialism & stopping the Death Of Democracy in the American Republic & returning her to the "liberty to abundance" stage of our history. One word descriptions of people's philosophies or purposes are quite often inadequate. I feel that I am "liberal" meaning that I am broad minded, independent, generous, hospitable, & magnanimous. Under these terms "liberal" is a perfectly good word that has been corrupted over the years to mean the person is a left-winger or as Mark Levin more accurately wrote in his book "Liberty & Tyranny" a "statist" - someone looking for government or state control of society. I am certainly not that & have dedicated the blog to fighting this. I believe that I find what I am when I consider whether or not I am a "conservative" & specifically when I ask what is it that I am trying to conserve? It is the libertarian principles that America was founded upon & originally followed. That is the Return To Excellence that this blog is named for & is all about.

Friday, August 28, 2009

BO's Healthcare Reform Team Leaders

Below is a message from a mid-west member of our group describing the leaders of BO's healthcare reform team.  The only thing I can add is from James L. Hardeman who writes "it is ironic that BO criticizes doctors when he belongs to two groups that have probably escalated healthcare costs more than any others; lawyers & smokers."
Let me get this straight----
Obama's health care plan will be
written by a committee whose head says he doesn't understand it,
passed by a Congress that hasn't read it,
signed by a president who smokes,
funded by a treasury chief who did not pay his taxes,
overseen by a surgeon general who is obese, and
financed by a country that is nearly broke.
What possibly could go wrong?

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Another Enemy Of America Unmasked

To get a good idea of what we are facing to hold on to the America we grew up in below are two real life accounts in NJ of what is happening @ town hall meetings throughout the country. We hear about Acorn & MoveOn on the news but they come vividly to life below. The first account (my comment in red) is from a member of our group who is a FairTax NJ District Director & the second is from another FairTax supporter. Both messages pertain to town hall meetings held by Congressman Frank Pallone of District #6. Neither writer is from District #6 but went to the meetings to support the FairTax District Director of District #6. Pallone is graded "F" by the National Taxpayers Union with a rating of voting in favor of the taxpayer 7% of the time. Pallone is just another enemy of America holding public office that has been clearly unmasked by the town hall meetings this August.

---Report From Pallone Town Hall Meeting---

John O'Rourke and I attended Frank Pallone's Town hall meeting in Red Bank this evening. Well over one thousand people attended, (2 sessions were held). We handed out some FairTax brochures and papers etc. Several people came up to me and made the comment that they loved "The FairTax" but it will never pass.

I took that as a positive in the sense that name recognition appears to be taking hold. I explained that I believe it will come to pass when we get rid of the current crop of office holders. I add that it will pass in five minutes when everyone knows about it & helps spread the word to their elected representatives.

The meetings main topic of course was the Health Care bill. All I can say is that if NJ's politicians are all the caliber of Pallone, we are in serious trouble. How this man was elected to Congress is a mystery.

It just reaffirmed my belief that we have got to work at having a candidate run in every district.


Bravo! I went to his Piscataway town hall which was loaded with bused in Acorn and Moveon.org supporters who dominated the front rows and the questions. FairTax doesn't have a chance with this guy in office. He was caught on tape speaking with his allies, getting tipped off about the rest of us. It is interesting to watch and will make you mad. If interested, go to conservative blogger for a video.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Get Involved - The World Is Run By The Few Who Do

Below is Carol's letter re healthcare reform that was sent to both NJ Senators with a copy to her Congressman. 
As any one who is breathing knows the healthcare reform debate is intensifying & the Democrats may be forced to vote in some healthcare reform plan by a simple Senate majority vote (after it passes the House) thereby ignoring their rules for debate & cloture. 
If healthcare reform is important to you & especially if you think your views may be in the majority with those who want to preserve America's independence from the socialist onslaught of the few who are in power I suggest that you do not remain silent but rather follow Carol's example & let your opinion be heard.  Just let me know if you need any contact information re who to write to or call.

Dear Senator Menendez (& Lautenberg),


This letter is to ask you to vote NO for any of the current health care reform bills being considered in the Senate or in the House that may come to the Senate.  I ask you to do this for the following reasons:


1.      The 47 million people reported to be without health care insurance really number  about 8 to 14 million people after you subtract the people who can afford to buy insurance but CHOOSE not to; people eligible for Medicare but have not signed on; people who are in our country illegally and not eligible for the benefits of legal citizens.  My question is why not address those 8 to 14 million needy Americans instead of changing 1/6th of the US economy?

2.      The U.S. Constitution does not state that the Federal Government provide health care for its citizens.  In fact the 10th Amendment says specifically "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."

3.      This new entitlement would further plunge the U.S. into more unsustainable debt.  Currently Social Security and Medicare entitlements are running out of money - even the President acknowledged this to be so this past week at his town hall meetings.  How can we take on more debt?


Please concentrate on these 3 remedies that will enhance citizens' ability to secure affordable health care.


1.      Allow citizens to buy health care insurance policies tailored to meet their needs that they can buy across state lines.  This will increase competition among insurance companies which the Democrat leadership says is so important to affordable health care.

2.      Support health insurance reform plans that allow the individual to determine what kind of insurance they need.  For example, why should I have to pay for an insurance policy that covers pregnancy – I am 59!  Why should a 20 year old buy an insurance policy that pays for a colonoscopy or bone density tests?

3.      Become a co-sponsor of the FairTax, S-296.  Among its many benefits the FairTax will eliminate all tax loopholes and will allow employees to receive their entire paychecks free of federal taxes thereby allowing people to keep more of what they earn to spend as they choose.


The United States is a country founded on the principles of limited government, self-responsibility, and free markets.  Please promote these 3 principles in the legislation you support and then you will allow all Americans to have a better life because they themselves will be enabled to make it so.


Friday, August 21, 2009

Reports Show Government Schools Plague Americans All Through Their Lives

Many of you know that ACT, founded in 1959 as American College Testing, just finished their report for 2009 graduating high school seniors.  Each year, ACT releases both national and state-specific reports on the most recent graduating senior high school class. These reports assess the level of student college readiness based on aggregate score results of the ACT college admission and placement exam.
This year's report found that only 23% of high school graduates are prepared for college level courses in all four of the core topics - English, Reading, Mathematics, & Science.  The statistics from the report mean that only 23% of the students have a 75% chance of earning a "C" or better in entry level college courses in these four topics.
Now I have found that many colleges are dumbing down possibly because the incoming freshman are so poorly educated.
Carol & I have a relationship with several higher education firms - one of which is ACTA - American Council Of Trustees & Alumni.  ACTA constantly & tirelessly evaluates & reports the level of excellence, or lack thereof, in American Universities.
Here is a portion of an AP piece re some of ACTA's recent work:
".....Nor do the top U.S. News universities fare well on a new report card by the American Council of Trustees and Alumni, an academic group whose causes include stronger general education requirements in traditional subjects like history, literature and the hard sciences.
In a report card released Wednesday looking at 100 leading colleges, ACTA gave an "F" to nine of the U.S. News top 20 national universities, while awarding "A"s to five schools: West Point, Texas A&M, University of Texas, University of Arkansas and City University of New York-Brooklyn College.
ACTA said it found almost 90 percent of the leading schools fail to require a survey course in American government or history. Just two — the University of Alaska-Fairbanks and West Point — require economics. Meanwhile, the report card not-so-gently mocks courses that are allowed to count for core requirements — offerings like Wesleyan University's "Physics for Future Presidents" and Stanford's "Ki ho'alu: The New Renaissance of a Hawaiian Musical Tradition."
The average cost for the five schools that require six core subjects and thus received an A: $5,400.  The average cost for those receiving an "F" for no such requirements: $37,700."
To complete this woeful picture a recent report from TD Ameritrade concluded that 75% of Americans are not financially prepared for retirement.  I know there is a time lag between when people take high school tests & when they retire but the above 23% & 75% numbers from the above two reports add up pretty conclusively to me that the problem with government schools plague the majority of us all through our lives.


Monday, August 17, 2009

Reagan Wisdom From 1961

On Friday night's O'Reilly Factor Laura Ingraham showed a clip of President Reagan speaking against socialized medicine in 1961, as follows:
"One of the traditional methods of imposing statism or socialism on a people has been by way of medicine. It's very easy to disguise a medical program as a humanitarian project." 
This is the very deceit we are facing today.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

You Are Really All Alone In This

Responses to Tuesday's message entitled "Healthcare Concerns That Deserve An Answer" brought many heated comments - mostly concentrating on listing more problems with the current healthcare system.  A sampling of the variety of these responses is below. 
I hope we can switch the dialog from one of stating problems to one of backing the solution - the basis of which is for people to take responsibility for their own expenses for routine healthcare coupled with a high deductible insurance policy that can be bought across state lines for catastrophic events - deductible determined by each person based on their own assessment of their financial condition. 
It is everyone's right to determine what is important to them & many people today have prioritized by choosing having a cell phone & wearing designer clothes over even thinking about the need for a healthcare plan.  These types of people who walk around with no healthcare insurance but say that healthcare is a universal right really mean that it is their right for someone else to provide it for them. 
It is important for us all to realize, no matter how unfair it may seem, that we are really all alone in this.  The insurance companies are interested in making money by controlling expenses, the politicians in getting reelected by promising something unsustainable, & many doctors practice defensive medicine driving up medical costs for fear of being sued.  The sooner we realize that we ourselves have to control who we deal with directly re medical matters the better off we will be.
I urge everyone to get behind the above solution given on www.returntoexcellence.blogspot.com in the recent posting on the left hand side entitled "The Solution To America's Healthcare Problems."  In this regard John Mackey, Co-Founder & CEO of Whole Foods, wrote an op-ed in the WSJ on Wednesday that mirrored about 80% of this piece.  Mr. Mackey debunked the idea of Universal Healthcare by pointing our correctly that all countries that have such a system don't provide the kind of service many Americans envision by the term but rather operate by government bureaucrats telling citizens what healthcare treatments they are eligible to receive & when they can receive them.  
We must change the healthcare system to something sustainable & that was the purpose of my writing the above mentioned piece - using both the Whole Foods & Safeway plans as examples of similar self-responsible ideas we have a chance to get off the employer-based healthcare system to one of a consumer-base.  If you go to a town hall meeting or contact your elected reps during this healthcare dominant congressional recess (& I don't know why you wouldn't with all that is @ stake) it is more helpful to present a positive solution than merely angrily & cynically complain as though you had nothing to do with the solution yourself. 
---Response #1---
Keep up the good work. It takes time.  I have to give you credit for all the work and research you did for the article.
People in general want something for nothing, or close to it.
---Response #2 - right out of the piece on the blog---

Two thougths:

1. Whatever happened to paying the doctor directly, and just carrying insurance for catastrophic illness and hospitalization? Years ago, my family doctor ACTUALLY treated the entire family - gave me my vaccinations, my mom prenatal care, delivered babies, treated my grandparents, etc. There was only ONE dr for the whole family, so he really knew what was going on with all of us, it was all in context. There was no special pediatrician, ob/gyn, geriatric care, etc. They only sent you to a specialist if you needed surgery for a slipped disk or were in an accident and needed emergency surgery, or had cancer, things like that. And we payed him per visit. HIM. not an insurance company. no paperwork to fuss with, so his overhead was limited to office rental and malpractice insurance (the premiums on which, due to frivolous lawsuits, drove him to retire before he was ready). What was wrong with that system? NOTHING. And that system is GONE, except for the handful of doctors who have had enough of the insurance companies dictating their practice and will only accept direct payment, no insurance at all.

2. Why do we need to burden employers, especially small employers, with the requirement to provide health care insurance? Younger employees, we are certain from our own personal experience and that of our employees, would rather have the money we spend on premiums in their paycheck than the insurance policy. Most of the companies we've worked for, if we were to opt out of the insurance plan, it did not translate to an increased paycheck, so we were essentially were forced to accept their health insurance plan.

Why can't individuals buy insurance ...or not? Just give me my darn paycheck, I"LL make the decision whether or not to buy insurance and which plan I want if I do.

Same thing with payroll taxes, -- why does the company have to pay it? Let companies pay their employees and let them worry about their tax bill. But that's another argument for another day.

PS Looking forward to meeting you and hearing you speak in Perth Amboy 9/5/09.

---Response #3---

I sent this to my doc and asked for his thoughts.  I also told him to guess which comment was mine

---Response #4---

Isn't tort reform done on a state level?  Missouri has had tort reform.  We have lost our insurance, or have been notified by the company that they are terminating health care as a benefit to employees.  Other than finding another job right now My children are not old enough to secure a job and get their own health care.  For everyone who opposes affordable access to health care, could someone tell me what we are supposed to do now?  I just had a daughter who was taken to the ER for a terrible kidney infection, and we had to have home health care come to our house and give her IV antibiotics.  You would not even want to know what the amount of the bill we just received for that service.  Yet, what do I do - let my daughter die from sepsis because her kidney infection went untreated?  This is really awful, and I cannot believe for being as wealthy as this country is, we are one of the worst as far as health care.  Even health care professionals are leaving here to go to India where they can practice new and innovative procedures and treatments - here, the insurance companies won't pay for them!  Sorry to go on, but I am at my wits end and really, if Gary got a job offer in another country, I'd gladly go there.
---Response #5---
Most people who lose their homes due to illness do so because they become so ill that working is no longer an option. Hospitals, doctors med/surg supply companies charge 300% more when billing an insurance company then they do when billing private pay. If you go for an upper GI, the hospital will bill the insurance company for several tests (not performed) related to GI problems. The largest population that depletes our medical resources and cost us the most are illegals. No questions asked and nowhere to send a bill. All of the above can be managed without universal health care.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Healthcare Concerns That Deserve An Answer

In response to several private communications with people in our e-mail club who have expressed frustration & concern with our healthcare system please click on www.returntoexcellence.blogspot.com & go to the left hand side.  I have posted my promised write-up entitled "The Solution To America's Healthcare Problems" directly below "Death Of Democracy."
The write-up on the blog addresses all of the points below from members of our group (who are fighting back) & gives a solution that I encourage everyone to get behind @ townhall meetings & beyond: 
---Comment #1---
This is the 21st century & the number one reason for personal bankruptcy is medical bills. 
---Comment #2---
Tort reform has to be a big part of it - and that is off the table according to BO.  The threat of a suit has caused the doc's to require more involved and more expensive tests.  I know mine wanted me to take a stress test.  So I did it.  It was a 'nuclear' stress test.  It cost nearly $3000. It came back normal.  I read my doc the riot act.  I told him I thought the stress test was jumping on a treadmill and elevating the BP with the electrodes hooked up. He said that was the usual case (and the cost for that was around $400), however he wanted to make sure 'all the bases were covered' and 'my responsibility to you is to provide the best care possible'.  I asked him why we didn't start with the $400 one, and then if something came up, then go with the biggie.  He kind of hemmed and hawed around.  He then said that I should do this every year.  I told him to stick it where the sun don't shine.  The best I would do is the $400 test every 5 years.
Unfortunately most people will not say that.  They will rationalize that the insurance or Medicare or John Q. will pick up the tab.
May be a crash and burn is an option.....
---Comment #3---
I'm on the fence right now.  We were just informed by Gary's employer that they are considering cancelling our hospitalization provided to employees due to rising costs.  This was after we were notified by the company that they were reviewing our claims to see if they "exceeded normal expectations" for a family of 5.  I have not been to the doctor in 4 years, and the only time we use our insurance is for our children and Gary's healthcare which is 1 visit per year.  I am not a proponent of socialized medicine, however, somehow we do have to get a grip on the control the insurance companies have over our healthcare.  I recently spoke with a friend of mine who is an internist, who stated to me that the insurance company control is going to destroy our healthcare.  I am in the process of investigating possibilities for us to secure health insurnace if the company does rescind that benefit, and I must say, the rates I am getting quoted so far will literally make my paycheck evaporate.  And I don't work part time, I work full time making quite a modest salary.  Right now our healthcare system rewards those who  abuse it, rather than encouraging preventive care.  Additionally, we are paying ridiculous prices for our prescriptions.  My father and a couple of his friends recently went up to Canada to secure their prescription medications at a price they could actually afford.
Oh, and with a family history of colon cancer, in my father who is my poster child for cancer survival (coming up on 25 year colon cancer survivor), I was recently refused for a screening colonoscopy, stating I have to wait until I am over 50 - even though I have a first degree relative who had colon cancer under the age of 50 (45).  So, the insurance company would rather pay for a colon resection ($50K+)  versus the cost of a colonoscopy (under $5K)?
There has to be help somewhere.  We are all paying for the uninsured, in more ways than one.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Dropping The Statist Label In A Heartbeat

Many of you know that Neal Boortz was elected to the National Radio Fall Of Fame in a landslide - undoubtedly thanks @ least in part to the thousands of FairTax supporter's votes including many from our group. Neal will be inducted into the Hall on November 7 in Chicago.

Past inductees include Jack Benny, Red Skelton, Bob Hope, Paul Harvey, Eve Arden, Gene Autry, Eddie Cantor, Dick Clark, Bing Crosby, Benny Goodman, Jimmy Durante, Gale Gordon, Groucho Marx, David Sarnoff, Kate Smith, Bob Steele, Lowell Thomas, Edward R. Murrow, & Wolfman Jack.

This is a tremendous feather in our cap to have the main national radio voice for the FairTax as well as the co-author of the two FairTax books in the Hall Of Fame.

Below is an article by Robert S. Siegel re Neal's Show yesterday that is right out of some conversations I have had recently about the enemies of the FairTax. Mr. Siegel correctly identifies FairTax enemies as politicians in both parties who are entrenched in maintaining their self-enrichment interests @ our expense as well as many voters who have become so government dependent that they have developed a wealth-envy mentality that just wants to punish any success -especially those accomplishments that they would never undertake themselves.

More & more of our elected reps have turned to government as the answer to every problem & have thrown any responsibility to the taxpayer out the window. A check of the latest National Taxpayers Union's grades & percent favorable ratings re spending & consideration for the taxpayer for the worst senators in states where we have members in our group include Casey (Pa) & Webb (Va) - both "F" @ 3% favorable, Lautenberg (NJ) & Menendez (NJ) - both "F" @ 2% favorable, Durbin (Il) - "F" @ 4% favorable, Dodd CT) - "F" @ 4% favorable, Lieberman (CT) - "F" @ 6% favorable, & VP Biden - "F" @ 2% favorable, & Secretary of State Clinton - "F" @ 4% favorable while the VP & Hillary were in the Senate in 2008. BO did not get a Senate score because he missed so many votes - he was graded "F" @ 6% favorable in 2007. Contrast these grades & ratings with those of Jim DeMint of SC who is graded "A" @ 96 % favorable.

Mr. Siegel's asks @ the end of his piece how do you convince politicians & voters who favor government solutions that the FairTax is a good thing. I don't know about wealth-envying voters but I do know about any politician - namely, show them an overwhelming grass roots movement in favor of the FairTax & they will drop the Statist label in a heartbeat.

Fair Tax

by Robert S. Siegel on August 6, 2009

Radio talk show host Neal Boortz is spending his 11 o'clock hour (EST) talking about the FairTax, for which he has written a couple of books. This is probably going to be a good discussion for everybody that is concerned about the tax system, regardless of their view of the Fair Tax.

My question for Boortz has always been about how to persuade voters that the FairTax is a good thing. The FairTax, would in theory, take away the government's ability to use the tax code to reward or punish behaviors that the government sees fit to encourage or discourage. For example, there is a lot of talk today about taxing soft drinks as a policy for reducing obesity. I believe that this type of policy would be very difficult if not impossible under the Fair Tax.

Many voters, and certainly the vast majority of politicians, favor the government's ability to apply rewards and punishments via tax policy, meaning they oppose the FairTax for major policy reasons not related to revenue collection or equity of tax law. And no, this is not by any stretch of the imagination something only liberals or Democrats enjoy. Both parties love it.

How do you convince voters and politicians that approve of this type of policy making that the FairTax is a good thing?

Monday, August 3, 2009

Fighting America's Biggest Enemy

Just when it looked like we were going to be safe until after Labor Day the House Energy & Commerce Committee rushed to pass a Universal Healthcare bill just hours before the August recess began on Friday proving again the old axiom that your money is not safe while Congress is in session. Although BO did not get what he wanted - namely having the over $1 trillion 1,018 page healthcare reform bill passed in its entirety before the August recess - this last minute action by this committee does give him the most modest face-saving possible & keeps the door open for the issue's return in September.

Cap & Trade had already been put off until the fall & the union Card Check bill has no legs until 2010 so Universal Healthcare has emerged as BO's #1 issue. All three are ruinous for America's continued prosperity.

Most elected reps are not planning on having formal town hall meetings during the August recess but this should not stop you from letting your voice be heard if any of these issues are important to you. The treacherous speed with which the Statists had been moving all of the aforementioned bills toward becoming law has stalled somewhat. We can expect BO & the Democrat leadership to come back after the recess with a strong push to get as much as possible passed.

In an earlier message I provided links for the telephone #s of every member of the House & Senate & mentioned that it would be a good idea to keep the numbers handy because we would need them again. Click here for the link for the House & here for the link for the Senate. I have confirmed that any call to these Washington numbers on the links would result in the Member getting our messages - this is especially true if there is an overwhelming theme to the calls like stop Universal Healthcare in its tracks.

Carol recently told me in horror that America's biggest enemy has been elected President. If this & the progress made recently in stalling these bills does not make you want to fight I don't know what will.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Responses - An Inspirational Meeting

My sincere thanks to everyone who responded to the subject message re the FairTax meeting my mother-in-law organized & paid for out of her own pocket.  Below are just some of the responses I received that I am truly grateful for.
You never know what will develop from such events.  One woman in attendance who has great interest in the FairTax has eleven children & plans to pass the word on to every one of them.  Naturally I will help her in every way I can.  She also took the FairTax DVD & is going to pass it around.
The easy part of all this was mine in giving the seminar.  My mother-in-law did the real work as all of you who organize such events know.
1.  Amen, my friend. God bless your lovely Mother, always. She sets a fine example.  During the Lonegan campaign I had seniors (60+, so I'm including some of the older "Boomers" in this) tell me "I'm retired" or "I'm on my way out" as an excuse not to be politically interested or involved - even when I reminded them this is for the sake of their beloved grandchildren.  There is hope, and it resides with ALL of us, not just our children. God bless your Mom for showing us.
2.  Well, good for her, you and Carol. It proves you are never too old to make a difference.  Thanks for sharing that and God bless,
3.  Great looking group! Yes, inspirational...she is to be applauded for her enthusiasm and spirit after all she has been through.
4.  Congratulations on what appears to have been a super meeting and kudos to your mother-in-law!!!
5.  Your mother-in-law seems to be a very strong person - having two life threatening operations.  She has many more years to live.
6.  You are a very good Son-in-Law.  Glad to hear Carol's mom is doing well.  Great photo
7.  God bless her and great job, Doug.