Monday, August 31, 2009

From Miami Heat To The Heat Of Battle

It isn't often we hear about a professional athlete who's off-court behavior is worthy of emulating, so when we do, it should be celebrated as widely as possible. The official website of the NBA published this story about former Miami Heat forward Tim James today. Here is an athlete you can use as a positive role model for your kids:
Tim James apologized for being late. A rough day at work, said the Miami Heat's 1999 first-round draft pick. Vehicles broke down, problems flared up, and he simply fell behind.
"It happens," James said. "Even here."
Even here -- on the front line of the Iraq war.
A former NBA player who often wondered about his true calling, Tim James is now a U.S. Army soldier, a transformation that even many of the people closest to him never saw coming.
"I got my degree, lived the life I was able, have my freedom and became a professional athlete," James said last week from Iraq. "I'm the example of the American dream."
"I think of myself as a patriot," James said. "I wanted to give back to a country that gave so much to me."

He never questioned if he was making the right decision.

"I have no doubts," James said. "I have no regrets. Not one bit."

Tim James was a good basketball player. He is a man of exceptional character and a genuine patriot. Thank you for your service, Spc. James. May God bless you and bring you home safe.

Spotting The Symptoms Of Swine Flu

The media has been fostering a lot of hype and hysteria over the H1N1, or Swine Flu, virus recently. In an attempt to calm your fear and bring you the latest and best information, I have located the following visual image of an infected person. If you wake up looking like this, please stay home from work!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Thursday, August 27, 2009

H.R. 3501: The Fido Deduction?

Regular Crumb Crunchers will remember my frequent praise of Michigan Congressman Thaddeus McCotter (R-11) for his principled stand on issues such as taxes, freedom, the Constitution, the SwindleUs Bill and the bailout of Wall Street. He was on such a roll....

On July 31, 2009, unnoticed in the midst of heated debate about health care 'reform' and the onset of the House's August recess, Rep. McCotter introduced H.R. 3501, the Humanity and Pets Partnered through the Years, or HAPPY, Act. I won't even address the silliness of federal legislation being dubbed The Happy Act. It's the bill's purpose that sent me searching for a pooper scooper.

H.R. 3501 would amend the Federal Tax Code to create a deduction for pet care expenses. I kid you not. Here's the actual bill language as posted at Thomas, the Library of Congress site:

H. R. 3501

To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to allow a deduction for pet care expenses.


July 31, 2009

Mr. MCCOTTER introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Ways and Means


To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to allow a deduction for pet care expenses.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,


    This Act may be cited as the `Humanity and Pets Partnered Through the Years (HAPPY) Act'.


    The Congress finds the following:

      (1) According to the 2007-2008 National Pet Owners Survey, 63 percent of United States households own a pet.

      (2) The Human-Animal Bond has been shown to have positive effects upon people's emotional and physical well-being.


    (a) In General- Part VII of subchapter B of chapter 1 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (relating to additional itemized deductions for individuals) is amended by redesignating section 224 as section 225 and by inserting after section 223 the following new section:


    `(a) Allowance of Deduction- In the case of an individual, there shall be allowed as a deduction for the taxable year an amount equal to the qualified pet care expenses of the taxpayer during the taxable year for any qualified pet of the taxpayer.

    `(b) Maximum Deduction- The amount allowable as a deduction under subsection (a) to the taxpayer for any taxable year shall not exceed $3,500.

    `(c) Qualified Pet Care Expenses- For purposes of this section, the term `qualified pet care expenses' means amounts paid in connection with providing care (including veterinary care) for a qualified pet other than any expense in connection with the acquisition of the qualified pet.

    `(d) Qualified Pet- For purposes of this section--

      `(1) QUALIFIED PET- The term `qualified pet' means a legally owned, domesticated, live animal.

      `(2) EXCEPTIONS- Such term does not include any animal--

        `(A) used for research or owned or utilized in conjunction with a trade or business, or

        `(B) with respect to which the taxpayer has claimed a deduction under section 162 or 213 in any of the preceding 3 taxable years.'.

    (b) Clerical Amendment- The table of sections for part VII of subchapter B of chapter 1 of such Code is amended by striking the last item and inserting the following new items:

      `Sec. 224. Pet care expenses.

      `Sec. 225. Cross reference.'.

    (c) Effective Date- The amendments made by this section shall apply to taxable years beginning after December 31, 2009.
Now, I love my dogs and their care can get pricey, but this is beyond ridiculous. Do our elected officials really have nothing more important to concern themselves with? Here's a novel idea: If you can't afford to care for a pet, don't get one!

Thaddeus, when you're right, I'm with you all the way... but if you leave a steaming pile on the House agenda, I'm gonna have to rub your nose in it.

NOTE: About 10:15 this morning, I called Congressman McCotter's Washington office for comment but the appropriate legislative aide was unavailable. A very nice young woman took my contact information and promised my call would be returned. I'll post an update as soon as that happens.

Thursday Morning Jazz Interlude

Nicole Henry, 'Fly Me To The Moon'

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Breaking News: Has Leon Panetta Resigned?

Our friends at have received 'credible' reports that CIA Director Leon Panetta has resigned.
I’m hearing a very credible rumor that Leon Panetta has dispatched a resignation letter to Barack Obama on vacation.

Panetta is said to be extremely angry about the possible prosecution of CIA officers doing their job and has decided to resign in protest.

The rumor is unconfirmed, but given the sourcing I think it is safe to treat it credibly.
Very interesting. Stay tuned, Crumb Crunchers.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Old Time Gospel Sunday

The song is new, but the message is timeless....

Newsboys, 'In Christ Alone'

"In Christ Alone"
Words and Music by Keith Getty & Stuart Townend
Copyright © 2001 Kingsway Thankyou Music

In Christ alone my hope is found;
He is my light, my strength, my song;
This cornerstone, this solid ground,
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm.
What heights of love, what depths of peace,
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease!
My comforter, my all in all—
Here in the love of Christ I stand.

In Christ alone, Who took on flesh,
Fullness of God in helpless babe!
This gift of love and righteousness,
Scorned by the ones He came to save.
Till on that cross as Jesus died,
The wrath of God was satisfied;
For ev'ry sin on Him was laid—
Here in the death of Christ I live.

There in the ground His body lay,
Light of the world by darkness slain;
Then bursting forth in glorious day,
Up from the grave He rose again!
And as He stands in victory,
Sin's curse has lost its grip on me;
For I am His and He is mine—
Bought with the precious blood of Christ.

No guilt in life, no fear in death—
This is the pow'r of Christ in me;
From life's first cry to final breath,
Jesus commands my destiny.
No pow'r of hell, no scheme of man,
Can ever pluck me from His hand;
Till He returns or calls me home—
Here in the pow'r of Christ I'll stand.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Henry & Rush On Health Care Reform

This summarizes it all rather well:
Obama's health care plan will be written by a committee whose chairman says he doesn't understand it, passed by a Congress that hasn't read it and whose members will be exempt from it, signed by a president who is a closet smoker, funded by a treasury chief who did not pay his taxes, overseen by a surgeon general who is obese, forced on people who don't want it and financed by a country that is nearly broke. What could possibly go wrong?

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Wise Guy: Thomas Sowell

Dr. Thomas Sowell is without question one of the wisest guys alive, as evidenced by his thoughts on some of the most controversial issues of the day:

"Capitalism knows only one color: that color is green; all else is necessarily subservient to it, hence, race, gender and ethnicity cannot be considered within it."
"If you have always believed that everyone should play by the same rules and be judged by the same standards, that would have gotten you labeled a radical 60 years ago, a liberal 30 years ago and a racist today."
Health Care:
"It is amazing that people who think we cannot afford to pay for doctors, hospitals, and medication somehow think that we can afford to pay for doctors, hospitals, medication and a government bureaucracy to administer it."
"Socialism in general has a record of failure so blatant that only an intellectual could ignore or evade it."
"The next time some academics tell you how important diversity is, ask how many Republicans there are in their sociology department."
Global Warming:
"Would you bet your paycheck on a weather forecast for tomorrow? If not, then why should this country bet billions on global warming predictions that have even less foundation?"
Dr. Sowell has authored dozens of books on economics, social policy, education, race and cultural issues. He is also a prolific author of essays, columns and op-ed pieces. Look for him in all the 'right' places.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Friday, August 14, 2009

Will You Take This Treat From Barack Obama?

Opie is a very smart Canine American. It's too bad more Americans of the human variety don't refuse 'treats' from Barry.

Hat tip: The World According To Me

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Massachusetts & Oregon: Government-Run Health Care Run Amok

The Independence Institute has produced these two short, funny videos to explain some of the inherent problems with government-run health care systems. They didn't have far to look; we have shining examples of failure on both coasts.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Has Your Employer Joined Obamacare?

Here are the top 10 ways to tell if your employer has switched you to Obama's health care plan....

(10) Your annual breast exam is done at Hooters.

(9) Directions to your doctor's office include "Take a left when you enter the trailer park."

(8) The tongue depressors taste faintly of Fudgesicles.

(7) The only proctologist in the plan is "Gus" from Roto-Rooter.

(6) The only item listed under Preventive Care Coverage is "an apple a day..."

(5) Your primary care physician is wearing the pants you gave to Goodwill last month.

(4) "The patient is responsible for 200% of out-of-network charges," is not a typographical error.

(3) The only expense covered 100% is "embalming".

(2) Your Prozac comes in different colors with little M's on them.


(1) You ask for Viagra and they give you a Popsicle stick and duct tape.

Hat tip: WiseWomenWill

Thursday, August 6, 2009

West Michigan Welcomes Senator Carl Levin

Our friends in the Grand Rapids area put together a little welcome wagon committee for Senator Carl 'Lenin' Levin over the weekend. Check out the story and photos over at Great job guys! Thanks to Kevin for the heads-up on this one.

Thursday Morning Jazz Interlude

Sade, 'Smooth Operator'

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Tea Party Signs, Slogans & Graphics

UPDATE: There is now a separate site dedicated to free-use Tea Party signs and slogans!  Visit Tea Party Signs to see them all.

I've noticed that many of the visitors to this blog are looking for Tea Party signs, slogans and photos. I have lots of that content here, but it has been posted separately and isn't necessarily easy to find. Since (thankfully) the 'Tea Party movement' shows no sign of slowing down, I expect the traffic to continue. So.

I have added a gadget to the left side bar, just under the Archive, which will run a continuous loop of all my photos from all the Michigan Tea Parties I have attended. There are some very creative and copy-worthy ideas here; feel free to use them yourself and pass them on.

Some of the graphics are my original designs; you can find them reproduced on T-shirts, hats and buttons in my Zazzle gallery. I can also do custom designs for your Tea Party events; just drop me a note over at Zazzle.

Remember, Crumb Crunchers: Drink tea, but do not drink the kool-aid!