General Motors Predicts First Profitable Year Since 2004

General Motors predicts first profitable year since 2004The largest American automaker has predicted that it will enjoy its first profitable year since 2004.

According to the Christian Science Monitor, General Motors (GM) announced on Nov. 9 that it recorded a $2 billion profit for the third quarter, which is up 50 percent from the company's second quarter figures. Ford posted a $1.7 billion profit in the third quarter, while Chrysler reported a net loss of $84 million.

GM, which is set to begin trading its stock publicly on Nov. 18, has accrued $4.2 billion in year-to-date earnings after taxes and interest. A year after filing for bankruptcy, GM's third quarter results are expected to help the company pay back the Federal government, which approved $17.4 billion in emergency bailout funds for automakers in 2008.

In former President George W. Bush's memoirs Decision Points, he defends his decision to sign the bailout by saying he "had to safeguard American workers and families."

"I told Barack Obama that I wouldn't let the automakers fail," wrote Bush, quoted by The Detroit News. "I won't dump this mess on him."

Bush blames the auto industry's near collapse on decades of poor management, which was slow to recognize changes in the market. The former commander-in-chief said that lackluster leadership led GM, Ford and Chrysler to be "outcompeted" by foreign manufacturers.

Staying Warm

Winter is just around the corner, and that should be a reminder to all that staying warm in an emergency situation is a key to survival.

People stay warm by generating and retaining heat and/or gaining it from an outside source. Heat is lost through radiation, conduction, convection and evaporation.

Proper clothing is essential to minimizing the effects of heat loss. Most thick outer garments, such as heavy coats or layers of lighter-weight clothing, minimize radiation loss. Radiant barriers constructed of shiny material and sandwiched with nonconductive layers will reflect body heat inward.

Conduction can be prevented by separating two extremes — the cold air outside from the warm air near your body — with an insulative layer. Most coats, natural and synthetic, offer resistance to conduction through air pockets in the insulation.

Convection transfers heat via air currents. Convection is experienced when one opens his jacket, allowing the heated air from the body to escape through the opening.

Heat loss also occurs when water evaporates. Our bodies continually give off moisture in the form of perspiration. If our clothes become damp with perspiration or from another source, evaporation quickly removes heat from our bodies.

In an emergency situation, try not to work so hard your clothes become wet with perspiration. Remove layers and work more slowly.

If it’s raining, avoid the chore that would put you in the rain, if possible, or don a raincoat or poncho and do all you can to avoid getting wet.

Finally, starting a fire can help both physically and emotionally. Keep some strike-anywhere matches in a waterproof container, or be sure you have some other fire starter handy. Good choices are butane lighters, flint and steel, 9-volt battery and steel wool or a magnesium fire starter.

It’s also a good idea to have some type of tinder in a waterproof container. Cotton impregnated with petroleum jelly and kept in a 35-mm film canister is a great tool.

Source: Emergency Essentials’ Tips For Preparedness, edited by Larry Barkdull.

The Lucky Man

The opening lines of Keith Koffler’s recent effort in Politico just missed the mark:

“President Barack Obama, fresh from his drubbing in the 2010 midterms, is trying to revive his fortunes by pursuing a path toward the middle.”

At least he got the “drubbing” part right. But Obama is about as likely to steer toward the so-called “middle” as Paul Krugman is to admit that Obamacare will require death panels. (Oops. Spoke too soon.)

Koffler’s piece, entitled “Freudian Slips May Haunt Obama” is actually a marginally astute examination of Barack Obama — Unplugged, and the routinely unfortunate circumstances he creates for his liberal accomplices through unscripted revelations of his true nature.

Koffler actually does a bit of a soft-shoe on Obama’s tendency toward verbal diarrhea. But his recounting of the lowlights of Obama’s lamentable tenure in the White House does spell out in black and white this revelation:

He may be shrewd, even clever; but Barack Obama is no more intellectually supercharged than Joe Biden’s hair plugs.

For all the port-side travelers who took such delight in mocking the brainpower of George W. Bush, chew on this: Obama is far from brilliant. He’s a manufactured genius, a fictional savior, cut from whole cloth. He’s a talking haircut, a speech-making savant. The liberally reviled Bush is a Jeffersonian polymath compared to this mendacious marionette.

Despite the best efforts of Obama’s handlers, his occasional ventures off script have not only required a universal liberal whitewash, they’ve also given us an unedited glimpse at the real Barack Obama.

This is the Alinsky-ite babbler who thinks that his political opponents are “enemies” whom he exhorts his liberal acolytes to fear far more than the illegal aliens, Islamofacists and outright communists he works so hard to appease.

He’s the lout who derides his fellow Americans who “cling to their guns and religion.” Of course, only reactionary psychopaths openly celebrate that pesky Bill of Rights.

He’s the “shovel-ready” leftist shaman who’s obviously as familiar with hard work as Charlie Rangel is with Jenny Craig.

During the 2008 Presidential campaign, he encountered Samuel Joseph “Joe the Plumber” Wurzelbacher, to whom he proclaimed:

“I think when you spread the wealth around…it’s good for everybody.”

That’s Das Kapital for Dummies. Liberals reacted to the exchange by crucifying Wurzelbacker. Few noted that the economic battle of wits between Joe and Barack was like the New York Giants squaring off with the local junior high school… cheerleaders.

I could continue to recount examples of tragicomic ineptitude which has become the stock in trade for Obama, but I have to take the President’s advice and find a seat in “the back of the bus” with my “Slurpee.”

Koffler notes what he calls Obama’s “cool opaqueness” and suggested he might be an “elitist.” Obama is not opaque, he’s vacuous. Whether he’s calling the majority of Arizonans racist — and ratting them out to the United Nations like a 5-year-old tattling to mommy — or bowing down to some America-hating tin-pot, his actions suggest a nearly comprehensive lack of awareness.

And he’s no elitist. His gourmet meals with Oprah, plush sojourns to the Subcontinent and endless tee times may make us yearn for Bush’s brush-clearing misadventures; but his lavish lifestyle in the face of economic hard times for his constituents suggests he’s an elitist wannabe.

The Kennedys are elitists. Having personally trod the perfectly manicured grounds of their palatial Hyannis Port homestead, I can assure you that — despite their “people of the people” act — the Kennedys only allow folks like Obama through the gates to re-line the tennis courts and fish campaign volunteers out from under the bridge at Edgartown. Overtly public displays of excess are so gauche.

Let’s be honest; if Jack Ryan had kept his hands to himself (or been a Democrat, where that sort of behavior amongst Senators is acceptable), Obama would probably be helping ACORN teach Chi-town hookers how to qualify for Clintoncare.

Obama is part Chauncey Gardner in Being There — unintentionally blessed by incredible serendipity; and part Tom Grunick in Broadcast News — a creepy savant, able to regurgitate impressive talking points without seeming comprehension of their depth or consequence. He can mime emotional reaction, but only in the rote manner employed by Asperger’s sufferers.

But the White House is not a back lot at one of Obama’s Hollywood pals’ studios. And our national plight, clearly beyond the meager capabilities of our Commander-in-Chief, is no cinematic epic. Sadly, at the end of the Obama version of Being There, the clueless hero doesn’t walk on water — he falls in.

And we all drown.

Joint Efforts Raise Awareness To Help Prevent Urinary Tract Infections

Joint efforts raise awareness to help prevent urinary tract infectionsThe National Kidney Foundation (NKF) and the Cranberry Marketing Committee recently announced that they will combine their efforts to raise awareness about the dangers of urinary tract infections (UTI) and how this condition can be prevented.

About 8.3 million visits to the doctor are attributed to UTIs each year, according to the National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse (NKUDIC). Women are more likely than men to develop this problem, as nearly one in five women will develop a UTI in their lifetime.

The joint effort, called "Partnership in Education," involves the launch of an informational website which features an online health quiz and a blog where individuals can post their questions, in which doctors will respond.

The partnership also spreads awareness about the benefits of cranberry products, such as juice or supplements. Previous research has shown that cranberries contain a certain compound that may help to prevent UTIs.

John Davis, CEO of the NKF, said that increasing access to information about this health risk is important because "UTIs occur in the bladder, but if not treated promptly, they can spread to the kidneys, causing a more serious infection."

The NKUDIC reports that 20 percent of women who get a UTI will at some point develop another one.

Supreme Court Declines To Review Constitutionality Of Obamacare

Supreme Court declines to review constitutionality of ObamaCareThe Supreme Court has ruled that it will not review the healthcare reform law that was approved by Congress and signed by President Barack Obama earlier this year.

The nation's highest court on Nov. 8 declined to hear the first constitutional challenge to the healthcare reform legislation, according to media reports. The lawsuit, which was brought by a California conservative group, challenges the government's power to require citizens to obtain healthcare coverage or face financial penalties.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which was signed into law by the President in March 2010, was recently rejected by voters in Arizona and Oklahoma, who approved amendments to prohibit aspects of Obamacare. Virginia, Idaho, Georgia, Louisiana and Missouri have also passed The Freedom of Choice in Health Care Act, which prohibits any law from requiring individuals to have insurance coverage.

According to Reuters, some health policy experts predict that the healthcare law could be unrecognizable within a year. During a panel discussion on Nov. 5 at the Harvard School of Public Health, Douglas Holtz-Eakin, a former advisor to Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) and current president of the policy institute American Action Forum, said that conservatives in Congress will dismantle the bill through the discretionary spending process.

"It will slow down the implementation and put it on a timetable to be solved in the 2012 elections," said Holtz-Eakin, quoted by the news provider.

Bipartisan Commission Recommends Multi-Trillion Deficit-Reduction Plan

Bipartisan commission recommends multi- trillion deficit reduction planThe co-chairs of President Barack Obama's National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform have released a preliminary proposal to reduce the national deficit by $4 trillion over the next decade.

According to CNN, three quarters of the cuts would be achieved through spending reduction beginning in 2012, while the rest would be accrued through tax revenue. The report from Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson proposes significant cuts to the defense budget, including a freeze on noncombat military pay at 2011 levels for three years and a reduction in pay to overseas bases by one-third.

In response to the report, the Aerospace Industries Association said the cuts in defense resources will compromise America's security efforts. The group added that history provides examples that cuts in defense spending were followed by the rise of threats that the U.S. was unable to meet.

Outside of the defense cuts, the proposal recommends eliminating 250,000 contractors, saving $18.4 billion, and freezing Federal pay for three years, saving $15.1 billion. In addition, the report aims to alter Social Security by lessening benefits for wealthier recipients and raising the retirement age to 68 by 2050.

The report recommends capping Federal health spending to the rate of economic growth plus 1 percent, which would limit growth of Medicaid and other health insurance subsidies.

While the the commission's framework has garnered criticism from some organizations, it has been praised by the Concord Coalition, a non-partisan advocate of fiscal responsibility.

"Bowles and Simpson have delivered a valuable and sobering fiscal reality check," said Concord Coalition executive director Robert Bixby. "Their recommendations put aside partisan rhetoric and get at the essential trade-offs we need to confront among spending, taxes and debt." 

The Adoption Of The Articles Of Confederation

It was 233 years ago this week that our original 13 colonies took a huge step toward nationhood. On Nov. 15, 1777, the Continental Congress adopted the Articles of Confederation. The articles vested the conduct of war and foreign policy in a Federal government, but left everything else to the States.

The Articles of Confederation were modeled after the Swiss Confederation that had been established more than four centuries earlier. On Nov. 15, 1315, the Swiss defeated the powerful Austrian empire in the Battle of Morgarten, when the men of Schwyz (a Swiss canton) lured the Austrians into the mountains and ambushed them in a pass.

The men of Schwyz killed 1,500 Austrian troops, drove hundreds more into Lake Lucerne and put the rest to flight. The country’s inhabitants were so grateful they changed the name of their nation from Helvetia to Switzerland. The country has remained free, independent and faithful to its own Articles of Confederation for nearly 700 years.

Our own Articles of Confederation did not survive nearly as long. Too many Federalists objected to the almost total lack of power the articles gave the central government. Demands for a new Constitutional convention began almost at once.

We know what happened next. Some people still say it was a mistake.

–Chip Wood

Fighting TSA Thugocracy

There is growing resistance to the Transportation Security Administration’s airport porn show /grope fest, where TSA agents give airline passengers a choice of being irradiated while having nude photographs taken or being sexually assaulted in order to fly. And there are a few signs Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano may be backing down in the face of the growing resistance.

Already, talks are underway with pilots unions over pilot screening, and the TSA has decided that children under 12 should not receive the pat down.

But this is not enough, and airline passengers need to continue fighting the totalitarian thugocracy that is the TSA. For an example of how the TSA works, watch the video of Meg McLain, or go here to learn what happened to John Tyner, who is now being investigated by the TSA for refusing to be scanned or groped.

National Opt-Out Day is scheduled for Nov. 24, and travelers are being encouraged to declare they opt of the naked body scanners and submit to the enhanced pat down. This will muck up the system and allow the traveling public to see how innocent Americans are treated by TSA goons. But this should only be the beginning.

We encourage anyone going through airport security to record the experience. Video and audio of the TSA thugs at work is one of the best tools we have against the growing totalitarianism. And if you do make a recording, please send it to freedomwatch@personalliberty.com. We’ll post any we receive on the site, and we guarantee your anonymity.

Airports actually have the right to their own opt-out. The 2001 law that created the TSA gave airports the right to opt out of the TSA program in favor of private screeners after a two-year period. Representative John Mica (R-Fla.), who will chair the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure in the new Congress, reminds airports they have that choice.

It’s time for Americans to remind the airports, the airlines and the government that the choice actually belongs to the American people — and we choose freedom.

 

The Tea Party May Save Us Yet

There has been a huge sigh of relief in the corridors of Calgary’s oil towers following the Republican victory in the mid-term election. The GOP win assures much-needed changes in the Federal government’s energy policy; changes that will benefit American consumers as well as Canadian petroleum producers.

It seems certain that climate change legislation in the United States is dead for at least the next two years, and hopefully forever. That is good news for Alberta’s oil sands industry, which has been facing an uphill battle against Greens inside the old Democrat-controlled Congress.

"I think the playing field for Canadian energy will be a lot more level now,” said Republican David Wilkins, the Bush administration’s last ambassador to Ottawa.

Former Canadian diplomat Colin Robertson agrees and says that while special interest groups will still keep up their lobbying efforts against oil sands, climate change legislation is DOA. That closes the casket on what could have become a border levy on Alberta’s oil sands.

A Fresh Look For Oil Sands
While Canadians may hate guns and embrace universal healthcare, many are happy about the Tea Party’s influence. This is true of Canadian petroleum executives who understood the threat of ousted Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.). They realize that the 112th Congress will have a far more balanced approach to petroleum. Incited by President Barack Obama, Democrats had been making “clean energy” their mantra.

Finally, some sanity is restored. There is a growing realization that wind and solar power are incredibly expensive and are without significant infrastructure, and an understanding that neither will make a noticable dent in America’s energy appetite before the end of this decade.

This truth didn’t seem to faze House Democrats who wanted a national renewable-electricity standard. They were blissfully ignorant of a fundamental truth — that Green energy is more pie in the sky than it is juice on the grid.

Democrats also misunderstood America’s growing dependence on Arab oil. Consider the Obama drilling moratorium in the Gulf of Mexico following the Deepwater Horizon disaster. Neither he nor House Democrats seem to comprehend that oil from the Gulf of Mexico was helping the U.S. reduce oil imports. And while the largely untested Bakken formation of the Dakotas and Montana is promising, it was Gulf Coast production that was making the difference.

Stopping The Greens Before It’s Too Late
A more conservative Congress can take immediate steps to re-establish offshore oil drilling and open up oil exploration in Alaska. This cannot happen too soon, as America faces an immense energy crisis — one that the Obama administration has recklessly ignored.

The GOP gets it, especially the conservative wing of the Party, which understands that fossil fuels are and will remain essential to America’s national security. Oil will account for more than 90 percent of U.S. transportation energy and more than two-thirds of U.S. electricity through the end of this decade. The newly elected conservatives promise to be an enormous improvement over the previous Congress, which was focused on strengthening the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007; an act which Obama reinforced last year with stimulus money.

What most Americans don’t realize is what folly taxpayer’s money was being spent on. There is a hidden clause in the Energy Independence and Security Act which was signed into law in 2007. It is found within Section 526.

According to that section, all Federal agencies — with the exception of NASA — are prohibited from purchasing carbon-intensive unconventional fuels:

“No Federal agency shall enter into a contract for procurement of an alternative or synthetic fuel, including a fuel produced from non-conventional petroleum sources, for any mobility-related use, other than for research or testing, unless the contract specifies that the life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions associated with the production and combustion of the fuel supplied under the contract must, on an ongoing basis, be less than or equal to such emissions from the equivalent conventional fuel produced from conventional petroleum sources.”

The U.S. military could not get its fuel from Alberta’s oil sands and instead had to rely on oil from nations like Saudi Arabia and Venezuela, two countries renowned for their grassroots hatred of the U.S.

Last month, Energy & Capital pointed out what an obstacle this is, because America’s military is the world’s single largest purchaser of crude oil. Most anyone outside the Democratic Party will take Alberta over Arabia.

That is because most people have some common sense. They understand that having a strategic supply of oil next door in a democratic nation that shares a common language and core values is a good thing. But “most people” does not include Pelosi or Obama.

An Early Thanksgiving
Thank Heaven for the GOP’s victory. Without it, Obama would have been free to sign a climate bill that would have targeted Canada’s oil sands industry. Instead, Obama has been forced to admit that his hopes to put a price on the cost of carbon dioxide emissions — which he and the Greens blame for global warming — will be put on hold for at least the next two years. If you drive a car or heat your home you have to say: Hallelujah and pass the petroleum!

As you know, most Republicans campaigned against a so-called Cap-and-Trade bill that would have put a ceiling on U.S. climate pollution. We have a President that made “Going Green” a priority right after socialized medicine. Obama’s Cap-and-Trade bill was in fact passed by the House, but stalled in the Senate because it was rightfully branded harmful to the U.S. economy by conservatives and others who were not corrupt or feebleminded.

Energy Injustice Derailed
Obama has not given up on saving the environment. The President said he will push for more piecemeal incentives for developing alternative energies that could help the U.S. reduce its “carbon footprint.”

The Greens may get their way if Obama continues forward with his economic policies. A recession turned depression would certainly reduce America’s carbon footprint. It might even make the most radical of the Greens happy.

If you think I exaggerate, consider KAIROS, a coalition of half a dozen large liberal church groups in Canada that includes the United Church, some Catholics, Mennonites and Quakers. They have a staff of more than 20 and an annual budget that exceeds $4 million. Their largest project is called Energy Justice.

According to their Web site: “KAIROS is in the midst of Re-Energize: Time For A Carbon Sabbath, a three-year campaign for personal, community, and political change.”

You might think that Canadian Christian groups might be worried about the lack of democracy or even women’s rights in big Arab oil-exporting countries, some of which are known to finance terror groups like al-Qaida. Instead KAIROS, which unbelievably gets $1.5 million per year from the Canadian Federal government, has set its sights on something it considers far more evil: Alberta’s oil sands.

What is most frightening is that environmental groups like KAIROS have plenty of allies, including Obama, Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.).

Liberty For All
And while many Canadians decry American conservative policies, Canada, too, is reaping the rewards of the conservative revolution spreading within the U.S. Canada is like American liberals who oppose handguns yet sleep better at night knowing that criminals are wary of breaking into their homes because at least a few of the neighbors are packing pistols.

Both Canada and the U.S. need Alberta’s oil sands. Canada has roughly 180 billion barrels of proven oil reserves, second only to Saudi Arabia. More than 95 percent of these reserves are oil sands deposits in Alberta. In the past decade, Canada’s oil production has steadily risen as new oil sands have come on-stream to replace aging, mature fields. This has been fortuitous to the United States, whose own aging fields have been in drastic decline. That the previous Congress thwarted this marriage of necessity borders on treason.

Next week I will be giving thanks with my family that there is new hope with the new Congress; hope sparked by the conservative ideals of the Tea Party, which are arresting the energy idiocy that is Obama and his Democrats.

Yours for real wealth and good health,

John Myers
Myers’ Energy and Gold Report

Tea Party-Backed O’Donnell Says Her Senate Loss Was Result Of ‘Republican Cannibalism’

Tea Party-backed O'Donnell says her Senate loss was result of 'Republican cannibalism'The Tea Party notched dozens of key wins in the midterm elections despite losses by some of the movement's most high-profile candidates.

In Senate races, Republicans Christine O'Donnell of Delaware, Sharron Angle of Nevada and Ken Buck of Colorado were trumped by Democratic opponents. Moreover, GOP Senate candidate Joe Miller is believed to be trailing incumbent Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), but The Wall Street Journal reports that write-in ballots are still being counted and the winner may not be announced until Nov. 29.

In a gubernatorial race that garnered a lot of national attention, Andrew Cuomo (D-N.Y.) defeated Carl Paladino, who was supported by the Tea Party.

During a Nov. 3 interview on CNN, O'Donnell blamed her loss on insufficient support from the GOP, which she called "Republican cannibalism." She claimed that Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas) and political strategist Karl Rove were reluctant to support her candidacy, which she believes cost her a victory.

According to CBS News, the candidacies of O'Donnell and Angle may have prevented Republicans from gaining control of the Senate. The news provider suggests that the moderate politicians who were defeated by O'Donnell and Angle in September's primary election would have fared better in the general election.