JeanValJean comments

Posted in: Panasonic to exit plasma TV display business See in context

Love my plasma tv. Smoothest image, no pixellation whatsoever.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan considers tax on digital music, books bought online from abroad See in context

" there are SOME things you can order. Many things you cannot; namely TV shows, music, movies, and game software."

Oh, you mean like the ones that arrive at my doorstep on a near-weekly basis(except for crap tv shows and gamesoft which I don't buy anyway)?

Some things, such as electrical appliances, soaps, chemicals, are restricted by import regulations. Much of my wardrobe is bought from abroad as well as a long list of other goods.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Obama, Congress search for way out as pressure rises in fiscal stalemate See in context

"… if the ACA goes into full effect and it turns out to be the disaster that some predicted then I'm all for modifying or rescinding it."

That's akin to using a rearview mirror to guide your way forward. NO ONE was allowed to read the monstrosity before voting ( much less actual deliberation by the whole of Congress) on it, and even then it barely passed and strictly on partisan vote, completely one-sided. That is a very clear recipe for failure before even getting off the ground.

Best solution is to not be under the Obamacare blunder umbrella.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: Australian police storm Hells Angels' hideouts See in context

Mad Max, now non-fiction.

Those HA gang members likely get their guns & ammo the same way they get the drugs, black market.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Obama, Congress search for way out as pressure rises in fiscal stalemate See in context

@laguna, There contradictory data from BLS reported by Bloomberg:

" Bureau of Labor Statistics data compiled by Bloomberg News and published this week don’t answer the jobs question, but they do indicate that California is losing ground in a related category: the number of business establishments. There were 1.3 million businesses in California at the end of 2012, 5.2 percent fewer than in the previous year (that’s about 73,000 fewer). To put that in perspective, Massachusetts lost 5,200 businesses, the second-highest amount, and Kansas had 3.1 percent fewer businesses in 2012 than in 2011, the second-highest loss rate. Nebraska added businesses at 11.9 percent, the fastest rate. Because BLS releases the data on a lag, the end of 2012 is the latest date for which numbers are available." superlib, It's pretty obvious the battle over ACA is NOT over. Bear in mind that laws very often get modified or rescinded.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Posted in: Obama, Congress search for way out as pressure rises in fiscal stalemate See in context

Superlib, to remind you again, I'm INDEPENDENT, very liberal, and fiscally conservative. Yes, I did read that but had been thinking that all along. The way ACA is currently enacted, it caters to Obamas cronies, and cronyism is despicable.

A while back there was a good article on CNN Money(a shock) about Cash Payment for medical services.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

Posted in: Apple planning iPad updates See in context

Let's hope they add a microSD card slot with full accessibility like othe tablet makers already do.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan considers tax on digital music, books bought online from abroad See in context

@smith, there are lots of people who order from overseas with no problem and at large savings.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Posted in: Obama, Congress search for way out as pressure rises in fiscal stalemate See in context

Here's a suggestion:


It’s that simple. The message is: If ObamaCare is so good for the people, then let everyone have it.

Right now. This instant.

The poor, the rich, the big unions, the big corporations, the politically connected, the lawyers, the lobbyists, and of course, Congress, too. Everyone means everyone.

“Everyone” must specifically include Senators, Congressmen, their staffs, Obama himself, Michelle, Sasha and Malia. It’s everyone in the rowboat, or no one.

And NO subsidy for publicly employed workers.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

Posted in: With Obama out, other leaders take APEC main stage See in context

The empty chair indeed.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan has emerged from 'crossroads' of economic stagnation: Abe See in context

Crossroads is the wrong analogy; It's been stuck in a roundabout, and it still is, only the tires are balding and the tank is running low. Not to mention who's at the wheel.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: People playing it safe with their money See in context

" My 35 year loan on my 50,000,000 yen mortgage is only 1.12% fixed, and that was with only 5,000,000 down"

Which bank?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: People playing it safe with their money See in context

" Japanese don't buy used houses because they are built to last only 10 years."

Absolute nonsense. Most people prefer to buy new houses as a matter of pride and the general disdain of most things "used". My friend just bought a pre-owned 10-y.o. house at a substantial discount for that very reason. All it needed was a little touch-up and minor improvements.

Definitely true that people by-and-large are becoming more frugal, however. Just go to a flea market to see people bargaining.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Posted in: Shots fired into Akasaka office building See in context

"… and many firearms have been found to have been modified airsoft weapons."

Magnus, I'd like to see your source for this statement. Not saying it isn't true, just would like to see evidence.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Republicans see shutdown fight shift away from 'Obamacare' See in context

On Thursday Mark Levin cited several Congressional sources who have told him that Obama has no intention of negotiating with Congress on the debt, which is just under $17 trillion, the highest in U.S. history. When unfunded liabilities such as Social Security and Medicare are added in, the real debt is over $125 trillion -- a figure so astronomically high that the country has no hope of ever paying it back. Uncontrolled spending has led the nation to this point.

According to Levin, Congressional sources say that Obama does not want any limits on his spending ability, in spite of the fact that the Constitution specifically gives Congress the power to control spending. Further, the use of the 14th Amendment to bypass Congress has never been done before. Thus, such an act would be an entirely new "interpretation" of the 14th Amendment and would raise a plethora of Constitutional issues concerning separation of powers.

The 14th Amendment is written in several main sections, one of which deals with debts incurred by the federal government. Nowhere does the Amendment give a president the power to raise the debt ceiling. Nowhere does the Amendment mandate that overall federal spending be increased at the whim of a president, or anyone else in government, not even Congress.

The only mandate contained in the 14th Amendment regarding the national debt is that if the government runs out of money, the interest and principal on Treasury Notes, Bills, and Bonds, must be paid first before money is spent on anything else.

This means, simply, that the federal government must first make payments on the national debt before it funds anything else. Nothing is stated concerning raising the debt ceiling and borrowing more money, and certainly not spending more money in the middle of a debt crisis.

Thus, the use of the 14th Amendment to excuse such actions on Obama's part would be illegal and an impeachable offense. Yet he is being urged, according to Levin, to break the law by advisers inside and outside of government, such as Bill Clinton, Dick Durbin, Nancy Pelosi, liberal law professors, and members of liberal think tanks.

If that advice via Clinton is followed, it may just be a legitimate way for Slick Willy to get the "amateur" ousted. Go for it, then.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Republicans see shutdown fight shift away from 'Obamacare' See in context

Article I, Section 8, Clause 2 says that the Congress has the power to borrow money on the credit of the United States. Notice, however, that it is "Congress" that has that authority. . . which brings us back to the 14th Amendment.

Article 1, Section 1 grants all legislative powers to Congress. Article I, Section 7 grants the authority to originate bills for raising revenue solely to the House of Representatives. Article I, Section 8, Clause 2 gives the power to borrow money to the Congress.

The liberal democrats claim that the "validity of the public debt. . . shall not be questioned," even by Congress, and they are trying to use the 14th Amendment to support that claim. The original intent of that provision, and the authorities granted by the Constitution in other sections, says otherwise.

This is, as always, an attempt by the statists to grab more power, even if they have to lie, and twist the Constitution, to do so.

Personally, I think the debt ceiling is a ridiculous concept. If the federal government only spent our money in a Constitutional manner, federal spending would only be about 5% of the GDP. In the late 1800s, it was between three and four percent of the GDP. Then, a limit wouldn't be necessary, because the spending would be within reason, and constitutionality.

Giving the President carte blanche on federal spending is not the way to go, based on the Constitution, and common sense. Spending is the problem, not revenue. The question is, when will we, and our representatives, take a queue from the Constitution, and demand that our money be spent in only a Constitutional manner?

Madverts, please refrain from employing such a derogatory attitude.

The US is able to service her debts, so far, but the real problem is spending. There hasn't been a budget approved since before 2008. And the debt has ballooned, doubled in size since then as well. Do you really deny that? Time to smell the coffee, my friend.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Republicans see shutdown fight shift away from 'Obamacare' See in context

Pssssst madverts, raising the debt ceiling only enables more profligate spending.

Laguna, " Now is not the time to deal with this." Neither was last year, nor the years before? It's an endless game of kick-the-can. Re:Sen Obama's quote, that excuse doesn't fly. One of those flip-flops pols are infamous for.

What you're seeing is the result of decades of bad economic policy a la Keynes.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Republicans see shutdown fight shift away from 'Obamacare' See in context

Then-Senator Barack Obama's exact words regarding the desire by the Bush administration to raise the debt limit in 2006 were, ". . . raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can’t pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government’s reckless fiscal policies. … Increasing America’s debt weakens us domestically and internationally. Leadership means that 'the buck stops here.' Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better."

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Republicans see shutdown fight shift away from 'Obamacare' See in context

The 14th Amendment's fourth clause must be taken within the historical context in which it was written. It's woefully ignorant to do otherwise.

Some on the left say that this gives the President the authority to raise the debt ceiling on his own(as Clinton also thought to empower himself). Or, put another way, that it means that congressional debt ceilings are unconstitutional. But that’s a rather bizarre interpretation. Nobody questions that Congress controls appropriations, and that the President cannot spend without Congress. So it follows that if Congress says “no more spending” (or “no more borrowing”) that the President cannot borrow or spend more.

The idea that the President could ignore Congress and authorize trillions of dollars of new borrowing for the country is ridiculous.

But the 14th amendment does have a role to play in the national debt debate. Rather than meaning that the President can ignore Congress’ statutory borrowing limits, what it means is that if Congress doesn’t raise the debt ceiling the President cannot, by law, default.

That’s been the oft-issued threat from the left about the debt ceiling. If it’s not raised America will default. In fact, “default” is exactly the term used in the media to describe the August 2nd,2011 line-in-the-sand drawn by the Obama administration.

But per the 14th amendment, the national debt cannot be questioned. So if Congress does not raise the debt ceiling, the President must continue to make payments on the national debt drawing funds from other areas of spending if need be.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Posted in: Aso worried U.S. gov't shutdown damage will spread See in context


" We have to fix it but the politicians cannot do it in fear of losing elections."

I agree. That's the trap of socialist policies enacted by populists.

Likewise, the monetary easing(fiat currency "printing") creates an a drug-addiction-like dependency on the markets. Notice how if the FED so much as whispers actual tapering, the market drops until the media spinmasters soothe the investors' fears. But it's just more candy-coating. Eventually it'll have to stop,

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Posted in: 'Abenomics' wins praise, but tough work lies ahead See in context

The big well-connected corporations and construction industry cronies are/will benefit, but it's the people who have just begun to pay. When the reality of the tax hike hits, that's when it's going to really hurt. But don't worry, there will probably be bailouts for those too big to fail. The rest will be crushed. I'm not going to stick around for the coming collapse.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Posted in: Official: Woman killed in Washington chase was delusional See in context

The tale being spun is indeed fantastical, and only loosely based on the truth, which since she was summarily executed we'll never know. MiniTru hard at work spinning this yarn.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Posted in: Republicans rip into White House in counterattack See in context

The partisan argument is pointlessly futile. Call them all Dembumblicans or Repugnocrats if you like but the problem is the reckless spending by both.

Raising the debt ceiling allows the government to pay bills it already racked up.

But it clears the way for the government to keep passing in-the-red budgets, and in due time bump up against the newly raised debt ceiling once more. In other words, raising the credit limit practically guarantees the country will max out the credit card again.

And while the 2013 projected deficit is thankfully under $1 trillion for the first time since 2008, it is still higher than it was at any point during the George W. Bush administration, when Democrats complained about unsustainable deficits.

Both are equally guilty.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Posted in: Thieves grab Hermes bags worth Y40 mil from Ginza store See in context

The store is certainly insured against theft.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Republicans rip into White House in counterattack See in context

In negotiation basics, the ONE thing not to do is issue the precondition that the issue at hand is non-negotiable. "My way or the Highway" is not negotiation but dictation.

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

Posted in: Japan sales tax hike 'welcome first step': Lagarde See in context

Ms Lagarde is more than welcome to donate 10% of her wealth to the Govt of Japan as her own first step.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Posted in: Miley Cyrus in tit-for-tat exchange with Sinead O'Connor See in context

" Miley Cyrus in tit-for-tat exchange…"

Kinda cheeky headline, but then again it IS under Entertainment.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Motive remains mystery over woman killed in U.S. Capitol drama See in context

Maybe she wanted to speak to the baby-daddy. Of course, it would have been easier to find out her reasoning(rational or not) had she not been peppered with bullets first. Trigger-happy cops to the rescue.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Posted in: College student posts shoplifting photos on Twitter See in context

" new avenues for teh stupid."


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Posted in: Frozen by shutdown, U.S. warns of 'catastrophic' default See in context

When the can( federal debt ) gets kicked down the road for decades and allowed to metastasize to such obscene dimensions, there comes a time when you run out of road.

Scaling back real spending is very long overdue.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

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