Saturday, May 31, 2008

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BY Terry Bankert 5/31/08 You are invited to join me at Face Book ___________________________
Full article at
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call in 10:00 am to 11:00 am Saturday 5/31/11 , call in 1-810-235-1970

1. 400 children hurt by Texas Government

2 .Obama always the gentleman

3. Oil how high will it go

Child support;
Post-judgment order denying the plaintiff-mother's request to increase child support;
Whether the trial court should have imputed income to the defendant-father; MCL 552.605(2); Ghidotti v. Barber; Reed v. Reed;
Whether the trial court erred in its earnings calculations;

Stallworth v. Stallworth Court: Michigan Court of Appeals (Unpublished) Case Name: McDowell v. McDowell Kalamazoo Circuit Court 02-007446-DM e-Journal Number: 39454 Judge(s): Per Curiam - O'Connell, Hoekstra, and Smolenski

The court affirmed the trial court's post-judgment order denying the plaintiff-mother's request to increase child support. The Court agreed with the trial court she did not establish the defendant-father was hiding large amounts of income and holding the trial court did not err in declining to impute greater income to defendant.

The court noted "there was no evidence presented regarding four of the seven elements courts look to in determining whether to impute income" - defendant's educational level, -whether he had any mental or physical disabilities, - the presence of children in his home and its impact on the parties' earnings, -and the availability of employment in his area.

The evidence showed defendant's prior employment experience was as a floor installer and a trucker. His social security statement showed taxable social security earnings from 1985 through 2003 and indicated the highest annual incomes he earned were $20,582 in 1998 and $28,812 in 1999. While plaintiff contended defendant earned $75,000 in the first 18 weeks of 2004 and admitted it at a referee hearing, the record did not support this claim. Plaintiff also asserted amended 1099s showed he and his new wife pocketed about $90,000 "under the table" and all of those funds should be imputed to defendant. Amended 1099s were issued to defendant and his new wife for 2004, which increased non-employee compensation to them by about $90,000.

However, plaintiff provided no cite to the record to support defendant hid or lied about the $90,000 and the court found no support for this in the record. Defendant and his new wife filed amended 2004 tax returns taking into account the amended 1099s. Their joint amended return stated an adjusted gross income of $36,780, taxable income of $14,690, and a net profit of $13,074 to defendant from the business.

The court concluded the $40,000 and $30,000 incomes imputed to defendant were in line with the figures he reported for the original FOC custody and parenting time evaluation, reflecting what he had earned as a floor installer since 1999. Affirmed.

CHILD SUPPORT GENERALY FROM THE MICHIGAN CHILD SUPPORT GUIDELINES In determining the contributions to support that divorced parents must make, the trial court must generally follow the formula developed by the Friend of the Court Bureau. MCL 552.605(2); Berger v Berger, 277 Mich App 700, 724; ___ NW2d ___ (2008).

A COURT MAY ENTER AN ORDER OUTSIDE THE GUIDELINES A court may deviate from the support formula only if application of the formula would be unjust or inappropriate. MCL 552.605(2); Ghidotti v Barber, 459 Mich 189, 196; 568 NW2d 883 (1998).

IF YOU VOLUNTARILY REDUCE YOUR INCOME YOUR CHILD SUPPORT COULD BE SET BASED ON YOUR HIGHER INCOME When assessing a parent’s ability to pay support, the trial court is not limited to consideration of a parent’s actual income, Reed v Reed, 265 Mich App 131, 163; 693 NW2d 825 (2005), rather, it may consider the parent’s voluntarily unexercised ability to earn. Ghidotti, supra at 198.

FACTORS THE COURT USES TO DETERMINE IMPUTED INCOME When evaluating whether there is an unexercised ability to earn, the following factors must be considered:

1) Prior employment experience;

2) education level;

3) physical and mental disabilities;

4) the presence of children of the marriage in the party’s home and its impact on the earnings of the parties;

5) availability of employment in the local geographical area;

6) the prevailing wage rates in the local geographical area;

7) special skills and training; or whether there is any evidence that the party in question is able to earn the imputed income. [Ghidotti v Barber, 459 Mich 189, 199; 586 NW2d 883 (1998), quoting Michigan Child Support Formula Manual, Tenth Rev, p 8.]

[The case above was prepared for media presentation, with changes. Only rely on the full case linked above after consulting counsel.]

EVENT: GCYD General Membership meeting Date: Saturday May 31, 2008 Time: 12:00 pm - 2:00 pm Repeats: This event repeats every month on the last Saturday until Wednesday December 31, 2008. Location: Firkin & Fox Pub Street: 1341 S Center Rd City State Zip: Burton, MI 48509 Phone: (810) 743-9530 Notes: This is located inside the Walli's East resturaunt.

Posted here by Terry Bankert ... 5/31/08
(If you like this article please forward to your friends, if not just keep it to yourself.)
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Friday, May 30, 2008

400 children harmed by the Texas government.

GOOD MORNING FLINT! BY Terry Bankert 5/29/08
You are invited to join me at Face Book ___________________________
Full article at
Flint Talk __________________________
Great information from caring people in Michigan USA

REFLECTIONS: The State actors we rely on to protect children can harm them. To read more from the perspective of parents caught up in child protective proceeding see:[trb]

400 LITTLE LIVES SHATTERED! The Texas Supreme Court ruled Thursday that more than 400 children taken from a polygamist sect's ranch nearly two months ago should be returned to their parents, saying child welfare officials overstepped their authority.[d] The decision was issued in response to an appeal by the state Child Protective Services (CPS) of the April ruling of Austin's Third Court of Appeals against state custody of the children from a Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS) ranch. The appellate court had ruled that evidence was inadequate to prove that the children were in danger of sexual abuse. [A] When a Texas court ruled last week that state child welfare authorities were wrong to seize more than 440 children from a polygamist sect, it certainly wasn't the first case in which welfare officials were accused of overstepping their bounds. Sadly, it probably also won't be the last, either.[t]

THIS CASE IS ABOUT RELIGIOUS DISCRIMINATION AND THE HYPOCRISY IN AMERICAN GOVERNMENT Just hours before the ruling, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a friend-of-the-court brief siding with the FLDS mothers, expressing concern that Texas was targeting a religious culture. A Dallas child-abuse lawyer filed her own brief supporting Texas.[des] The results of DNA testing to determine family relationships are also expected back today or next week, the Texas Attorney General's Office said. A criminal investigation remains under way, with Tom Green County prosecutors saying they are considering a number of options — including a bigamy prosecution. Jessop called it a "war on religion."[DES]

CPS WORKERS WITH TOO MUCH POWER, TO LITTLE ACCOUNTABILITY MAKE BAD CALL The court affirmed an appeals court decision last week that said Child Protective Services failed to show an immediate danger to the children living on the Yearning For Zion Ranch.[d]

A MICHIGAN EXAMPLE OF CPS ABUSE ON A FAMILY..DO NOT THINK THIS CANNOT HAPPEN TO YOU! The Texas case brought to mind an incident in April in which a man temporarily lost custody of his son for buying him a lemonade at a baseball game.[T] Maybe you've heard this one. If not, the incident involved a University of Michigan professor of archaeology who was watching a Detroit Tigers game with his 7-year-old son when the boy asked for something to drink.[T] The professor, Christopher Ratte, went to a concession stand and asked for a lemonade. He received a product known as Mike's Hard Lemonade, which contains alcohol.[T] Ratte said he didn't know he'd purchased what amounted to a mixed drink, and there's been no evidence to suggest he was lying. Seems he spends more time reading books and visiting archaeological sites overseas than watching TV commercials touting alcoholic beverages.[T] But after Ratte gave the drink to his son, a security guard saw the boy drinking it and called the police.[T] This is where the story gets particularly disturbing. Because even though a police officer who interviewed Ratte thought the professor made an honest mistake, the welfare system kicked into gear and common sense went out the window.[T] Following protocol, the officer's supervisor insisted that the case be turned over to Child Protective Services. The welfare authorities who were assigned to the case took custody of the boy even though they apparently agreed with the police officer that Ratte didn't do anything intentionally wrong.[T] Again, it was a matter of protocol. But it led to a series of events that included the boy being taken away from his parents for a day and a half, then being allowed to go back home only on condition that Ratte stay somewhere else. Finally, after about three days, the family was reunited.[T] Granted, Ratte made a mistake. But was his error so terrible that he had to face the awful possibility of losing his child over it? Seems like few people in the system thought so, but the system itself wasn't able to draw a distinction between an accident and an intentional case of harming a minor.[T]

THE JUDGE WAS WRONG, HOW DID THAT HAPPEN..... The Texas Supreme Court ruled 6-3 that it was an abuse of judicial discretion to take hundreds of children in what has become the nation's largest-ever child custody case.[des]

A CALVARY OF LAWYERS TO THE RESCUE...GO BROTHERS AND SISTERS, GOOD JOB! Lawyers for dozens of FLDS mothers challenged the court's decision. The 3rd Court of Appeals sided with the mothers, saying that the state failed to show the children were in immediate danger and ordered them to be returned to their mothers immediately. Texas child welfare officials appealed, saying the children were in danger of abuse in a culture that groomed little girls to become child brides and boys would grow up to become sexual perpetrators.[DES]

CHILDREN TO BE RETURNED, WHAT HARM TO THE CHILDREN HAS BEEN CAUSED BY THE STATE The ruling directs a lower-court judge to reverse her decision putting the children into foster case. The appeals court ordered the children returned to the parents, but it's not clear when that will happen.[d] "End this nightmare and end this torture that they're putting these families through," he said Thursday. "These children have suffered enough at the hands of the state of Texas. It is time for the children to come home."[DES] "There has been a catastrophic, physical and emotional trauma to these families, permanent damage that will be left on them for a lifetime. Two wrongs do not make a right and this court has an ability to load these children up and return them to the families and I can assure you we can figure out who mothers and fathers are," said the FLDS member.[W] "One of the clear messages from the court is that CPS has got to stop treating these people as a crowd," he said. "The clear message from the court is it's time for these kids to go home now."[DES] A polygamist sect elder says parents are excited about a state Supreme Court decision today but will remain apprehensive until they get their children back.[K]

ONE PROBLEM IN CHILD PROTECTIVE PROCEEDINGS (cps)IS THAT CHILDREN ARE TAKEN TOO QUICKLY In its ruling, the high court said that state law gave the lower court broad authority to protect children "short of separating them from their parents and placing them in foster care," including removing the alleged perpetrators from the home and preventing the removal of a child from the jurisdiction of the investigating agency[DES] CPS is a bureaucracy filled with over worked undertrained poorly supervised good people who on occasions such as this do harm to children. What can be learned here? We should look at the protocols in all states are we taking children too quickly from the home? Yes is my answer. Does our system of child helper on occasion become child harmerS? Yes. Has American given too much unchecked power to the agents of a state government who some times are private contract worker? Yes is my answer.[trb]

Posted here by Terry Bankert ... 5/29/08
(If you like this article please forward to your friends, if not just keep it to yourself.)
Family Mediation and Divorce Practice.
Join my political party of preference,
Join me in creating a new voice in The Michigan Democratic Party, become a Precinct Delegate. You are invited to join me at Face Book
—WHERE DID THIS STUFF COME FROM-- [DES] Deseret News,5143,700230321,00.html [d] Detroit Free Press [T] Topeka Capitol Journal [W] WBKO [K] WKDBC [TRB] Comments of Terry Bankert to include CAP headlines [A] AHN 58170

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Thursday, May 29, 2008


GOOD MORNING FLINT! BY Terry Bankert 5/28/08
You are invited to join me at Face Book ___________________________
Full article at
Flint Talk __________________________
Great information from caring people in Michigan USA

REFLECTIONS. Its time to seal the nomination. Every day Clinton looks less acceptable as vice president, much less as president. Brewer of the MDP should resign and Levins hand slapped. The public wanted an election where votes meant something. That has been violated by Mark Brewer. It cannot be corrected by backroom manipulation. We are beyond that in this new age. We want a President with dignity, character and integrity. We expect the political parties to act in the same manner.... and Savanaugh GA was a great trip, lots to said for Urban Planning.[trb]

MRS. CLINTON JUST DO THE RIGHT THING! With the nomination in sight, Barack Obama is willing to give rival Hillary Rodham Clinton the lion's share of the delegates from Florida and Michigan but is stopping short of her demand to fully recognize the two renegade states.[AP] Compromise may be the order of the day but character and integrity will win the general election, the nation and world is watching.[trb]

SKELETONS FOR CLINTON Mrs. Clinton was accompanied by a skeleton crew of aides and a diminished press corps Wednesday as she continued to tour some of the remotest parts of America. After a tourist stop at Mount Rushmore, she drove nearly three hours across the desolate Badlands to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation and made her delectability argument to a somewhat bewildered crowd of about 250 people outside the Little Wound School. [n]Clinton’s proud bow beam of months ago is a fragile fading light heading to the far horizon.

MANNED ONLY BY THE REMENANTS OF THE BLACK PEARL[trb] What's important: 'Integrity'[DN] But at least some rules committee members say potential general-election damage does not trouble them. [DN] In the mix are honorable democrats. Its about character said Gleason to Newman in the Hustler.[trb] "I'm not particularly concerned about that," responds Mary Fuller Clark, a New Hampshire state senator on the committee, and one of her state's many defenders of its first-in-the-nation primary. "What's important for us is to maintain the integrity of the process." [DN] Ultimately, however, the committee's adherence to rules may fall to political necessity. [DN] We will watch. This cross roads of leadership will raise some while others fail.[trb]

HOW EMBARRASSING FOR MICHIGAN, JUST WHO ARE THE MEMBERS OF THESE COMMITTEES The Democratic National Committee is trying to work out a compromise to the long-running dispute over Michigan and Florida. In violation of party rules, the two states held primaries in January and were stripped of their delegates. The DNC's Rules and Bylaws panel meets Saturday.[AP] The voters want accountability and punishment TO THOSE WHO play backroom politics with their vote.We want the head of Brewer and his Florida counterpart for their acts of arrogant disobedience.[trb] Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's prospects of persuading Democratic officials to override party rules and recognize all delegates selected in the Florida and Michigan primaries suffered a setback yesterday after lawyers for the party ruled that no more than half of those delegations could be legally recognized. [w]Mrs Clinton respect the rules and accept defeat with dignity.[trb]

WHEN THE RULES ARE INTENTIONALLY VIOLATED THERE ARE SANCTIONS, ASK A KID! You cannot violate the rules of the process and then expect to get forgiven for it," Dean said.[c] Howard Dean DNC Democratic National Committee The DNC could decide to send half the delegates to the convention, uncertain is which half. Another option is to seat all the delegates with half a vote. Then the issue is how those votes should be split between Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama.[AP]

30 TROLLS EMERGE TO PLUNDER Thirty Democratic Party officials -- mostly obscure party operatives -- will gather in a Washington hotel conference room this weekend to consider disputed convention delegates from Michigan and Florida, the most closely watched group of people yet to weigh in on the close Democratic presidential campaign. [DN] The voters do not understand the special ownership rights a party has in the nomination process. To them this is an American election. They are unhappy.[trb] The little-known panel meets Saturday to determine, for now at least, the fates of the Michigan and Florida delegations -- and, by extension, the votes of nearly 600,000 Michiganians and 1.75 million Floridians who participated in Democratic primaries in January.[DN] With Saturday's meeting the most significant date remaining on the nominating calendar, it will focus intense attention on a group with few, if any, household names. The 30-member Rules & Bylaws Committee is a mix of attorneys, political operatives, elected officials and union chiefs. [DN] The DNC's Rules and Bylaws Committee is scheduled to meet Saturday to make a final determination on Florida and Michigan, which would have collectively awarded 368 convention delegates. But in the memo, party lawyers determined that full restoration, as sought by Clinton, would violate DNC rules, although it did note a loophole that would allow her to carry the challenge to the first day of the Democratic National Convention in late August. [w] The Democratic Party is likely to meet rule-breaking Florida and Michigan halfway when it comes to seating their delegates at the national convention, two members of the rules committee said Wednesday.[c]

WE ARE DISTRACTED WITH THIS MESS, JUST WHEN OBAMA SHOULD BE ON OUR SHOULDERS MARCHING TO VICTORY. JUST WHOSE FAULT IS THIS. Whatever decision is made during a party meeting Saturday delays a resolution of the Democratic contest, just as Obama is within reach of the 2,026 delegates needed to win the nomination.[AP]

WHY ARE THERE NOW DIFFERENT RULES, WHAT BACKROOM EVIL IS A WORK? "Our magic number could increase kind of at the 11th hour here," Obama campaign manager David Plouffe said Wednesday. He told reporters: "If it's raised a little bit based on the Rules Committee, we'll have to go get some more superdelegates. But at some point we're the nominee."[AP] Plouffe said the campaign is not stockpiling superdelegates to roll out en masse, as many political observers have speculated. "We announce superdelegates as they commit to us," he said. But he said mid-next week would be "a natural time" for those who have not picked sides to finally break. [w] Obama is already acting like a general-election candidate. He spent the past three days in New Mexico, Nevada and Colorado -- three states that held Democratic caucuses months ago but that are expected to be swing states in November. [w]

CLINTON THE PISSED OFF SOCCER MOM WANTS IT HER WAY, RULES OR NO RULES. Its all about her, not us![trb] Clinton has been pushing for the Democratic National Committee to seat all 368 delegates from Florida and Michigan. She won both contests — after all the candidates agreed not to campaign in either state and Obama wasn't on the Michigan ballot.[AP] Speaking to reporters on a morning conference call, senior adviser Harold Ickes refused to rule out a legal challenge if the committee does not rule in Clinton's favor. "That's a bridge to cross when we come to that particular stream," he said. [w]

THE VOTERS OF MICHIGAN SHOULD BE ANGRY AT THE DEMOCRATIC LEADERS THAT CAUSED THE DNC RULE VIOLATION. WHO COULD THAT BE? Clinton strategist Harold Ickes is one of the 30 members of the committee, and he said he'll be encouraging them to base their decisions on the January primaries. "We are urging 100 percent of the delegations be seated and that each delegate have a full vote," Ickes said.[AP]

RULES COMMITTEE IS NOT CONCERNED WITH RULES JUST POWER, WHAT A MESSAGE TO OUR KIDS That's an unlikely outcome as even Clinton aides have privately acknowledged they lack the votes on the committee to restore all the delegates. Thirteen of the members are publicly committed to Clinton, eight have endorsed Obama and nine are undeclared.[AP]

ITS NOT FAIR TO SEAT THEM AT ALL "We don't think it's fair to seat them fully because we both lived by these rules and pledged to abide by them," Plouffe said. "We're willing to give some delegates here, which I don't think should be sneezed at."[AP] As a result, Mrs. Clinton would appear to need all the more superdelegates to swing her way if she has any remaining hope for the nomination.[w] To that end, she stepped up her appeal Wednesday to superdelegates, the Democratic officeholders and party officials who could ultimately decide the nomination. In a letter, she argued that she would be a stronger nominee than Mr. Obama against Senator John McCain in the fall.[w]

THE WORLD IS WATCHING, JUST WHAT IS THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY ALL ABOUT? "Regardless of what side people are on, Obama or Clinton, they have a larger perspective, and that's the integrity of the Democratic Party," said Mame Reiley, a Virginia political consultant and Clinton supporter who is on the panel. "And I think we're going to approach it that way." [DN] Committee members interviewed by The Associated Press have expressed little interest in the option of seating all the delegates. And the DNC staff wrote in an analysis sent to members this week that the rules call for the two states to lose at least half their delegates at a minimum for voting too early.[AP]

CLINTON PLANS TO CAUSE A RIOT/PROTEST AT THE RULES MEETING David Plouffe, Mr. Obama’s campaign manager, said the Obama camp had advised against rallies, despite calls on the Internet for counterprotests. Mr. Plouffe said the campaign did not want to contribute to a chaotic scene, which, he said, would not serve the interests of party unity.[n] Clinton is staging a rear guard action, for what purpose. Its time to hear the ____ lady sing,[trb]

OBAMA PLEAS FOR DIGNITY The Obama campaign was dismissive of efforts by the Clinton campaign to have supporters demonstrate outside the rules meeting.[c] Clinton supporters, including a group including at least several dozen Michiganders, plan to rally in a park near the hotel.[f] "We're not going to turn this thing into a circus," former Democratic Party Chairman David Wilhelm said[c]

THERE IS NO EASY WAY OUT, AND IF ATTEMPTED THE PARTY WILL LOSE THE RESPECT OF THE WORLD The analysis said there are two options to include half the delegations — either allow half the number of delegates from each state into the convention or allow the full delegations to attend, but give them each half a vote. The analysis cautions that there are no easy ways to distribute the delegates, especially in Michigan where Clinton won 55 percent of the vote and 40 percent went to "uncommitted."[AP]

A VOTE OF 500,000 MICHIGAN DEMOCRATS LOST TO THE TAMMANY LIKE BICKERING OF THE BACK ROOM! If the Florida and Michigan delegations get half their votes back, the number needed to secure the nomination would grow to 2,118. There are myriad ways the committee could then divide the delegates between the two candidates.[AP]

THE VOTERS KNOW THEIR SACRED VOTE IS BEING PLAYED LIKE A CHIT IN TEXAS HOLDUM If, for example, the "uncommitted" vote in Michigan was awarded to Obama but the half-delegates were otherwise awarded according to the primaries, Obama would need an additional 26 delegates to clinch the nomination.[AP]

WHEN EVER THE ELITES MAKE A PROCESS OBSCURE THE LITTLE GUY IS GETTING SCREWED If the pledged delegates are divided evenly between the two candidates, Obama would need an additional nine delegates to clinch. The number still increases because of uncommitted superdelegates from the two states.[AP]

OBAMA PLAYED BY THE RULES CLINTON IS NOT. IT’S A MEASURE OF CHARACTER. Plouffe said seating the full delegations according to the January votes is not fair or acceptable to the campaign, especially since he wouldn't get any delegates out of Michigan. Democrats in the two states are not asking for that resolution either.[AP] Judge Richard Lazzara sided with the DNC, saying political parties have the right to make their own rules.[c]

LIKE BUGS UNDER A ROCK THESE COMMITTEE MEMBERS NEED THE LIGHT OF DAY TO DO THE RIGHT THING Florida Democratic officials said they were open to getting half their vote — but they would like the full delegation to be seated. Allan Katz, who serves on the Rules and Bylaws Committee, said he thinks the committee is leaning toward giving Florida half its delegates, but some members have told him they don't believe Florida shouldn't get any delegates.[AP]

500,000 MICHIGAN VOTERS SEE THEIR VOTES SQUANDERED BY THE MICHIGAN DEMOCRATIC PARTY GENERALLY AND IT'S CHAIRPERSON MARK BREWER SPECIFICALLY. JUSTICE IS DEMANDED "It's just very difficult to categorize. You have a lot of people who look at this differently," said Katz, who supports Obama and can't vote on the Florida measure because he's from the state.[AP]

HAPPY DAYS Jon Ausman, a DNC member who raised the challenge that's before the committee Saturday, said he'd be happy if the committee gave them half votes.[AP]

WEASELS AT WORK "It's just a question of whether we can get them all eventually," Ausman said. "It's not like Florida hasn't felt the punishment. The bottom line is we certainly have taken it on the chin."[AP]

BREWER GOT MICHIGAN INTO THIS MESS ! WHY? TO DELIVER MICHIGAN TO CLINTON BY THE BACK DOOR AND HE GOT CAUGHT BY THE RISE OF OBAMA. NOW HE HAS A SOLUTION? Michigan Democratic Party Chairman Mark Brewer, who is on the Rules and Bylaws Committee, said he won't support a plan that would give half delegates for Florida. He's presenting a plan that would split Michigan's pledged delegates 69 for Clinton and 59 for Obama, although he can't vote on it.[AP]

DEAR MARK, RESIGNATION IS A VIABLE OPTION TO RESTORE THE TRUST OF 500,000 CITIZENS IN THE MDP! He said he didn't know what the rules committee might do and will just make his best case possible.[AP]

BREWER SHOULD STEP ASIDE FOR THE GOOD OF THE ORDER INSTEAD OF WHINING LIKE A CHILD "You can come up with all of legalistic reasons not to do our proposal ... (but) we've been punished enough," he said. "We haven't had candidate visits for nearly a year, up until recently. Continuing to punish us could cause us to lose Michigan in the fall." [AP]

Posted here by Terry Bankert ... 5/29/08
(If you like this article please forward to your friends, if not just keep it to yourself.)
Family Mediation and Divorce Practice.
Join my political party of preference,
Join me in creating a new voice in The Michigan Democratic Party, become a Precinct Delegate. You are invited to join me at Face Book
—where did this stuff come from--
[AP] AP [TRB] Comments of Terry Bankert to include CAP headlines
[w] Washington Post
[n] The New York Times
[c] CNN [f] Detroit Free Press
[dn] The Detroit news


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Tuesday, May 20, 2008



“One of the biggest challenges our country faces is our addiction to oil.”[N] Oil is up by almost 30 per cent this year alone. That's not the fault of greedy energy companies, or that other current favorite, unscrupulous speculators. It is a simple fact of economic life in a world economy that is, in effect, experiencing a new industrial revolution among half its population.[T2] ________________________
GOOD MORNING FLINT! BY Terry Bankert 5/21/08
You are invited to join me at Face Book ___________________________
Full article at
Flint Talk _________________________
Great information from caring people in Michigan USA

REFLECTIONS;Watching our economic decline reminds me of watching the decline of a parent. You don’t notice many of the little adjustments made then one day the end is at hand. I feel the same way about our middle class. Possibly its going away. We do not notice the little adjustment but one day the end is near, gas is $10 a gallon, food cost quadrupled, we cannot afford houses, our kids cannot afford an education, the rich are richer and the poor are poorer and the poor are now a larger group because we are in it. Its happening ....unless we act united as a country with strong leadership.,kiss your life style good bye. Will you be able to explain to your grandchildren why you did nothing to protest what is happening, today. Count me in for the battle how about you.? [trb]

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU, HAPP..... Saudi Arabia celebrates 75 years of its national oil company in era of record energy prices[i] Saudi Arabia on Tuesday marked the 75th anniversary of its national oil company, once a joint operation with the Americans, but gave no sign of acquiescing to a U.S. request to increase its oil output.[I]

OIL TO HIT $150 BARREL Oil today rose to a new high of $129 a barrel and prices are set to hit $150 this year as concern grew over Opec’s consistent refusal to lift supplies to counter growing demand. [t] Boone Pickens, a hedge fund manager, said today that oil will reach $150 a barrel in 2008, echoing a forecast released by Goldman Sachs last week that predicted prices will hit $141 in the second half of the year. [t]

SO SWEET BUT GOES DOWN SO BITTER In New York, the price of light sweet crude for June delivery touched $129.31 per barrel before falling back to $128.95. In London, Brent crude also reached a new record at $127.49. [t]Credit Suisse increased its forecast for US crude in 2008 from $91 a barrel to $120 while Societe Generale also raised its expectations for 2008 by $14 a barrel to $115. [t]

A MONOPOLY WILL NOT RAISE PRODUCTION, NOW YOU CAN’T AFFORD TO DRIVE? It emerged yesterday that Opec, the 13 country cartel that produces 40 per cent of the world’s oil, would not increase production prior to a meeting in September despite rising demand for fuel, especially from crisis hit regions such as China. [t] Last week, Saudi Arabia, a key member of Opec, pledged to increase oil production by 300,000 barrels a day following a plea to raise supply by US President, George W. Bush.[t] Oil prices are heading to almost $140 a barrel in the next eight years, according to futures contracts on the New York Mercantile Exchange, on concern that growth in supply may fail to keep pace with rising demand. [b]

$200 A BARREL, YOU WILL WALK TO WORK OR RIDE A HORSE. Arjun N. Murti remembers the pain of the oil shocks of the 1970s. But he is bracing for something far worse now: He foresees a “super spike” — a price surge that will soon drive crude oil to $200 a barrel.[N]

THE FREE MARKET SUPPLY AND DEMAND MODELS DO NOT WORK WITH AN UNREGULATED MONOPOLY. It is a staple of all political debate in the US now that the American dependence on oil has led to staggeringly bad policy for decades towards the big oil producers. It has forced the US into bed with some unsavoury characters and has been the constant factor behind repeated and often baleful US interventions in the Middle East. [T2]

BUSH WENT BEGGING, ENDED UP JUST____IN THE WIND. In economic terms, there's a not very polite term for what the President was doing which describes the futility and discomfort of performing a certain bodily function into a countervailing breeze. [t2]

THE FINGER IS A POLITICAL GESTURE But Mr Bush - an oilman after oil - knows this, too. His efforts were more of a political gesture than a meaningful policy initiative. [t2] In political terms, inexorably rising oil prices are starting to generate something approaching panic in America. The Republicans, already battered by the weak economy and the seemingly intractable Iraq war, are ripe targets for yet more opprobrium for failing to rein-in oil companies as they heartlessly exploit the poor Americans who find themselves unable to drive their five-litre engined cars very far this summer. [t2]

THEY JUST CANNOT BE TOO RICH...... Saudi Arabia announced yesterday that current oil production was enough to meet market requirements and that producing countries could increase capacity if there were "actual additional" energy needs[i]Al-Naimi briefed the ministers at the meeting on the "kingdom's view that the currently produced quantities meet all needs of the market and that the production capacity can meet any real additional energy needs," the statement said, according to the official press agency.[I]

WE SET THE PRICES WE GET THE PROFIT However, Chakib Khelil, president of Opec, said he did not expect output to be increased, adding that "current prices are not based on supply and demand." Oil prices have surged by more than a quarter since the start of 2008, when they struck $100 a barrel for the first time. [t]

INFLATION ...HOW UGLY CAN IT GET.... Rising oil prices and the subsequent rise in household energy bills have contributed to rising inflation which is currently 3 per cent, above the Government's 2 per cent target, and are set to increase further. [t] In the US, concern about inflation escalated when it emerged that producer prices, excluding food and fuel, rose at the fastest rate in 17 years, sending the Dow Jones industrial average plunging by 180.7 points to 12,847.5. [t]

SHORT TERM WE NEED NEW OIL SOURCE, LONG TERM WE NEED NEW ALTERNATIVE SOURCES OF ENERGY, OR INVADE THE OIL PRODUCING COUNTRIES, OR BOTH, WHAT DO YOU SUGGEST? Oil giants such as Exxon Mobil Corp., Royal Dutch Shell Plc, BP Plc, Chevron Corp., Total SA and ConocoPhillips will spend a record $98.7 billion this year on exploration and production, more than quadruple the amount eight years ago. The supplies they tap from non-OPEC countries will only meet about 20 percent of world demand growth over the next four years. [B] The struggle to find oil coincides with a boom in demand from places like China and the Middle East, where it will rise 4.9 percent this year, making up for a drop in demand from North America and Europe, the International Energy Agency said in a report May 13. It cut its forecast for global demand for a fourth month. [B] Mr. Murti, who has a bit of a green streak, is not bothered much by the prospect of even higher oil prices, figuring it might finally prompt America to become more energy efficient.[n]

ECONOMIST MAKE LAWYERS LOOK GOOD Mr. Murti falls into the camp of oil analysts who believe that supply is likely to remain tight because of geopolitical factors. These analysts predict higher prices because production is declining in non-OPEC countries like Britain, Norway and Mexico. The analysts who predict lower prices say there are supplies of oil that the bullish analysts are missing. “This year will be a year in which supply will be put into the market by stealth by OPEC and by countries we call black-hole countries,” said Edward L. Morse, chief energy economist at Lehman Brothers. China is one example, he said. [N] But while oil and gas prices have been rising for a while now, Americans have only just begun to reduce gasoline consumption, so their efforts to conserve have not dragged down oil prices. [N] “The fact that the U.S. gasoline demand can be down and that the U.S. gasoline consumer is no longer driving world oil prices is a monumental event,” Mr. Murti says. He spends most of his time talking to money managers and analysts, many of whom keep asking him if oil prices will stay high if speculators abandon the market, and says he applauds investors for driving up oil prices, since that will spur investment in alternative sources of energy. [N] High prices, he says, “send a message to consumers that you should try your best to buy fuel-efficient cars or otherwise conserve on energy.” Washington should create tax incentives to encourage people to buy hybrid cars and develop more nuclear energy, he said. [N] Of course, if lawmakers heed his advice, oil analysts like him might one day be a thing of the past. That’s fine with Mr. Murti. [N]

WE WILL SHRINK EVERY DAY "Another day, another record crude oil price. It's like that movie "Groundhog Day," in which the same thing keeps happening over and over again to Bill Murray. [I] "Doesn't it seem like every day we wake up lately the news is blasting about record energy prices and a weaker dollar? So where will it end, and how high can prices go? [I] "... I think the answers are that crude can and will go much higher and that this summer could be an extremely painful reality check for U.S. consumers, myself included." [I] Kerr says his "near-term target" for oil is $140.[I] Core producer prices rose a higher-than-expected 0.4 per cent in April, or 3 per cent compared to last year, the fastest rise since 1991. [t]


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—where did this stuff come from—
[t] Times online [b] Bloomberg
[H] International Herald Tribune
[w] The Wall Street Journal
[a] Arab News [t2] Times OnLine
[TRB] Comments of Terry Bankert to include CAP headlines
[N] The New York Times

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Robert Pedersen was devastated three years ago when a divorce judge said he could see his two children only a few days a month. [d]

BY Terry Bankert 5/20/08
You are invited to join me at Face Book ___________________________
Full article at
Flint Talk __________________________
Great information from caring people in Michigan USA

REFLECTIONS; Most custody decisions ,the most important decision of the case, are made in the first two weeks of the divorce with little testimony.The female presumption is real and activley entered as a custody order. These early hearings often involve a referee not a judge or a mediation specialaist. The temporary order becomes a final order more often than not.

GOOD MEN MUST STAND UP AND FIGHT FOR JOINT CUSTODY WHILE WOMEN HAVE IT HANDED TO THEM.[trb] The Michigan Child Custody Act 1970 MCL 722.21 et seq establishes the criteria and procedures for resolving child custody disputes. The Family Division of the circuit court has exclusive jurisdiction over this act. MCL 600.1021 (1)(g).[trb]

95% OF ALL CASES ARE NOT TRIED, BLAME THE LAWYERS ALSO... Pedersen's divorce agreement now includes long weekends, a Wednesday overnight visit and half of summers, holidays and spring breaks with his children. It's almost enough time to make him feel that he can provide an equal amount of parenting to his kids. [d]

CHILD CUSTODY ACT; Under the Child Custody Act, the court may award custody to one or more of the parties involved or to third parties and provide for a childs support, provide for reasonable parenting or grand parenting time , modify or amend its judgements or orders until a child attains the age of 18 (19.5 if still in school)[trb]

PRIMARY CARE IS A STATE OF MIND AND THE REALITY OF A NORMAL FAMILIES DIVISION OF DUTIES WHILE TO TOGETHER BUT THAT ALL CHANGES AT DIVORCE. WHY ARE GOOD DADS PUNISHED FOR JUST DOING THE RIGHT THING. Michigan law recommends that custody decisions be based on which parent has been the primary care giver unless it can be shown that another arrangement is more appropriate, but Pedersen and other noncustodial parents are fighting to modify the law so joint physical custody becomes the norm. They view equal parenting access as a civil rights issue, but opponents say equal time isn't always best for children [d]

NEW DIVORCE ACTIONS In new divorce actions the parents have been jointly responsible for the children in the family is often characterized as “ no custodial environment” which is simply not true. A court cannot enter a new custody order or amend a n new one without first determining if there is a custodial environment.MCL 722.21. Why is this important? Because if the custodial environment is joint mom will have a great burden to take that away from dad. If the there is not a recognized environment mom has a lower burden and dad is punished for having been a good provider leaving the affairs of the home to mom.[trb]

STUPID DECISIONS; "With the pain of a divorce, a lot of stupid decisions are made initially as far as the kids go," said Pedersen, who plans to ride his bike from Lansing to Washington, D.C., this summer to raise awareness of the issue. "There are different contributions that Mom and Dad make to a child, and kids need both of them." [d]

GENDER BIAS Noncustodial fathers think gender bias plays a role in these decisions and reduces them to visitors who pay child support. Children need both parents equally, they say. [d]

LIFE IS FULL OF GOOD PEOPLE WITH THE BEST OF INTENTIONS DOING EVIL But many custodial parents, family law attorneys and domestic violence activists oppose making joint custody mandatory. [d] They say every family is different, and 50-50 custody doesn't work in every situation. [d] It becomes especially difficult when parents live in different school districts or one of them doesn't want joint custody. Another factor is that mandating joint custody can sometimes disrupt a child's stability. [D]

JOINT CUSTODY; The Child Custody Act provides for joint custody MCL 722.27. Joint custody means (a) That the child shall reside alternatively for specific periods with each of the parents.(b) That the parents shall share decision-making authority as to the important decisions affecting the welfare of the child.[trb]

YOU HAVE A RIGHT TO BE TOLD; In a custody the parents must be advised of joint custody.MCL 722.26a. At the request of either party, the court must consider joint custody and it must state on the reasons for granting or denying the request. MCL 722.26a. However, the fact the court must consider an award of joint custody does not mean there is a presumption in favor of it. Wellman v Wellman, 203 Mich App 277, 512 NW2d 68 (1994)

A PARROT SPEAKS "When a child's whole world is changing, we want to keep as much stable in their lives as we can," said Karen Sendelbach, chair of the Family Law Section of the State Bar of Michigan. [d]

TRADITIONAL ARGUMENT DREAMED UP BY ATTORNEYS AND BOUGHT INTO BY DECISION MAKERS Other opponents say noncustodial parents sometimes want joint custody simply to even the score with their ex-partner or to reduce their child support obligation. A noncustodial parent's support payments can drop by as much as 40 percent if the child stays overnight 128 times or more each year. [d]

JUST ABOUT ANYBODY CAN BECOME A LEADER NOW DAYS "The 50-50 custody split is more about people not wanting to feel the other parent has won," said Kent Weichmann, chair of the Legislative Committee of the Family Law Section. [d] "It has nothing to do with the relationship with the child. It's more about who's winning. It also has to do with paying less child support." [d]MORON More dads join movement

RICH HOLLYWOOD SPACE CADETS TO THE RESCUE.... But supporters say this issue is not ever going to go away, especially as more fathers join the movement, including movie stars Alec Baldwin and Denzel Washington. [d] oh boy two actors to the rescue...[trb]

FATHERS CIVIL RIGHTS "It's a civil rights movement that is coming into its own," said David L. Levy, CEO of the Children's Rights Council, based outside Washington, D.C. [d] As the Archbishop of York, John Sentamu, argued in a speech to the House of Lords: "Is it not self-evident that the welfare and needs of a child are enhanced and met when there is a father present?" [G] 1.

FATHERS RIGHT TO BE A PARENT "It goes to the core of the right of a human being: the right to be a parent to your child, and of the children to be part of your life." [d]

FATHERS UNFAIRLY TARGETED BY BUREAUCRATS, POLICE AND MEDIA The "Ohio Council for Fathers Rights" says it wants to sue for libel and character defamation. Local 12's Angela Ingram spoke with the group that says some parents are unfairly targeted. [12] 1. The group says this list doesn't make a distinction between people who really don't make any effort to pay a dime of child support and parents who have fallen on hard times. The list seems to go on... and on. They are names of men and women who owe back child support, and now, they're on the sheriff's website. But, it's the label "deadbeat" that a parental rights group says amounts to libel.[12]

CHILD CUSTODY, A BATTLEGROUND Next to child support, child custody is perhaps the most heated issue between parents when they split up and try to restructure their lives with their children. [d]

MOST CASES ARE NOT BASED UPON FRIEND OF THE COURT RECOMMENDATIONS Michigan hasn't kept reports on custody arrangements for several years, but the latest information, in 2003, shows that the Friend of the Court recommended physical custody of the children for mothers in 68 percent of the 14,470 cases that year, while fathers were recommended 12 percent of the time. Joint custody was recommended in 2,717 cases -- about 18 percent. [d] According to the Federal Statistics Office, joint parental responsibility was pursued in 15 per cent of divorce cases in 2000 - when it was first introduced, and in 30 per cent of settlements in 2006. 1. For the co-parenting association, this figure is far too low, as "a child needs both parents".[S] The organization wants joint parenthood and forced mediation to become normal practice so that children's rights are properly respected.[S]

NATIONAL JOINT CUSTODY MOVEMENT While noncustodial mothers are also part of the joint custody movement, it is spearheaded primarily by fathers and appears to be gaining momentum nationally. [d]

INTERNATIONAL JOINT CUSTODY MOVEMENT Joint parental responsibility for children should become the norm for couples that divorce or separate, say Swiss campaigners.[S] Members of the newly formed Swiss Co-parenting Association held a demonstration in the capital, Bern, on Saturday to highlight the current situation, which they claim causes "undue suffering to children".[S]

MICHIGAN IN THE BOTTOM HALF OF STATES THAT PROTECT FATHERS More than 25 states have laws regarding joint custody that are much stronger than Michigan's, Levy said. [d]

JOINT CUSTODY SHOULD BE PRESUMED Since the 1990s, Michigan fathers have been trying to get the laws changed to force the courts to immediately presume equal joint custody. [d]

NEW LAW UNDER CONSIDERATION IN MICHIGAN A hearing was recently held on the fourth bill introduced in the Michigan Legislature, but it was not voted out of the House Judiciary Committee. It includes an exception for unfit parents. [d]

PETITION, CLASS ACTION AND ACTIVE FATHERS In between the four pieces of legislation, the fathers launched a failed petition drive to put the ballot before voters and also were unsuccessful in a class action lawsuit in federal court.[d] Moms' groups eclipsed [d]

DADS ACTIVE IN MICHIGAN Michigan dads say their effort is growing -- four new state organizations support the issue, and their ranks have grown from 5,000 to 20,000 people, said Lake Orion resident Jim Semerad, one of the leaders in Michigan's movement. [d]

GRASS ROOTS The growth appears to be eclipsing grass-roots groups headed by custodial mothers. The Association for the Enforcement of Child Support, a national group, was founded in Toledo in 1984 by activist Geraldine Jensen. She had a base in Ann Arbor for two years, before her 2004 retirement, which galvanized a number of Metro Detroit activists. [d] The organization is now headquartered in Cleveland, has become more virtual and is less visible in Michigan. [d

MOM’S LEADER DISRESPECTS DADS ACES executive director Debbie Klein is not concerned about Michigan fathers' activism. [d] They have always had more time and money to lobby lawmakers, while mothers tend to devote their time to raising the children, she said. [d]

MOM ENCOURAGED TO START FIGHTS SO THERE IS NO JOINT CUSTODY? Joint custody simply cannot work for everyone, Klein said, because some couples are never going to be able to get along. [d] And it's the conflict between the parents in broken families that is most devastating to children, not the actual divorce. [d] "It puts the children in a horrible situation," Klein said. "That's what custody should always be about; it should always be about what's best for the children." [d] 'It's the right thing to do'[d] Many fathers say it's best for children to be with both parents and that they will keep fighting until the law changes in Michigan.[d] "It's the right thing to do," Semerad said.[d] It's also why Pedersen, 36, is training every morning for his 758-mile bike trek in August with five other fathers to spread the word about what they think should be the law of the land. [d] "Kids do best with shared parenting, as long as it doesn't disrupt the school schedule and the parents are fit and willing," Pedersen said. [d] Mediation 1. Fifty per cent of cases of separation or divorce are conflictive and 25 per cent of cases are very conflictive, said Robinson.[S] "Through mediation, instead of working on a loser-winner basis, the mediation would aim to address each parent's positive elements which they can build on," he added.[S] Under the current regime, courts in French-speaking Switzerland seem more supportive of joint parental responsibility than their German-speaking counterparts.[S] In cantons Geneva, Neuch√Ętel and Vaud, this solution has been pursued in around 40-50 per cent of cases, while it ranges from zero to 15 per cent in majority German-speaking regions.[S] "Judges are slow to take up the new laws," said Robinson to partly explain the differences.[S] He also pointed the finger at the legal profession: "There are powerful lobbies working on behalf of lawyers in national and cantonal parliaments that don't want mediation to take off as it would take away their business."[S]

Posted here by Terry Bankert ...
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[d] Detroit News
[12] Local 12
[trb] Comments of Terry Bankert to include CAP headlines



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Sunday, May 18, 2008


During boom in crop prices, lawmakers harvest subsidies [m]

GOOD MORNING FLINT! BY Terry Bankert 5/19/08
You are invited to join me at Face Book ___________________________
Full article at Flint Talk __________________________


Farm subsidies have long been America's largest corporate welfare program. Rather than help small, struggling family farmers, the majority of subsidies go to commercial farmers, who report an average income of $200,000 and a net worth of nearly $2 million. [m]

THESE PROGRESSIVES THAT CLAIM TO BE THE MORAL COMPASS FOR AMERICAN DEMOCRATS ARE TALKING OUT OF BOTH SIDES OF THEIR MOUTHS. IT WILL TAKE A LIBERAL TO SET THIS RIGHT Let's hear no more from Democrats that they're on the side of the poor and opposed to big business. The farm bill passed by Congress loaded $40 billion onto nutrition programs for the poor to the benefit of America's wealthy farmers.[b]

INTERNATIONAL ACADEMIC KNOW OUR LEADERS FOR THE HYPOCRITES THEY ARE For instance, Pradeep Mehta, secretary-general of the center for international trade, economics and the environment of CUTS International, an independent research institute based in India, said that if Americans slimmed down to the weight of middle-class Indians, ''many hungry people in sub-Saharan Africa would find food on their plates.'' [s] He added,... that the money spent in the United States on liposuction to get rid of fat from excess consumption could be funneled to feed famine victims, whose anger has taken them to the streets on many continents. [s]

BUSH HAS NEVER GOT IT RIGHT, HE NEVER WILL HE, IS INCAPABLE. Mehta's comments may sound like the macroeconomic equivalent of ''so's your old man,'' but they reflect genuine outrage - and ballooning criticism - toward the United States in particular, over recent remarks by President Bush. [s]

THE SENATE TO THE RESCUE...RUN FOR COVER... The Senate voted overwhelmingly on Thursday to approve a five-year, $307 billion farm bill, sending it to President Bush for what is expected to be his futile veto.[n]

THE AMERICAN MIDDLE CLASS IS LOSING ITS STANDARD OF LIVING, WHEN THEY FIND OUT THEY WILL BE REALLY PISSED AND MAY JUST GET OFF THE COUCH AND VOTE EVERYBODY OUT OF OFFICE. With food prices soaring, it takes some gall to force Americans to pay billions of dollars to millionaire agribusinesses. Yet that's what the latest farm bill would do.[m]

GOOD FOOD PRICES GOING UP, WE WILL EAT MORE BAD FOOD AND GET FATTER We don't have to remind the people of the Seacoast and Lakes Regions of New Hampshire and southern Maine of the soaring cost of food. They see it each day they go to the market. Democrats running for election and re-election to Congress are trying to get consumers to swallow the meal that they are the ones who are trying to reduce food prices. How, by tossing subsidies at corn growers who sell their crops for the manufacture of ethanol, increasing the cost of what is sold in stores and what is grown for animal feed?[b]

FOOD BILL TO BE EATEN UP BY WHITE HOUSE A year in the making, the Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008 is on its way to the White House, ballyhooed by most, booed by a few.[th]

CONGRESS CAN OVERRIDE, BUT THEY HAVE BEEN BOUGHT AND PAID FOR The bill passed by wide margins -- 318-106 in the U.S. House on Wednesday, followed Thursday by a Senate confirmation of 81-15. As a result, Senate Ag Committee Chairman Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, is confident he has the votes to override an Oval Office veto, should President Bush carry out his threat to rebuff what he has labeled as "bloated, earmark-laden" legislation. Harkin said he hopes it will not come to that.[th]

THE MIDDLE CLASS IS DYING AND FARM INCOME UP 56%, UNDER THE REPUBLICANS Since the last farm bill was enacted in 2002, the five crops that receive the lion's share of farm subsidies have also enjoyed massive price increases: cotton (105 percent price increase), soybeans (164 percent), corn (169 percent), wheat (256 percent) and rice (281 percent). For consumers, these price increases have caused financial pain domestically and near-riots abroad. For farmers, it's a sunnier story: Total net farm income has leaped 56 percent in just two years, and helped bring the average farm household's income to a record $89,434, and its net worth to $838,875.[m]

WHAT A DUMB POLICY During this crop-price boom, continuing to subsidize farmers makes as much sense as paying Apple to make another generation of iPods. [m]

IF AT FIRST YOU DO NOT SUCCEED , TRY ,TRY AGAIN Yet instead of cutting, Congress' answer is to harvest even more farm subsidies. The latest version would increase payment rates for more than a dozen crops and increase conservation subsidies. Although the same farmers already receive massive annual subsidies, plus taxpayer-funded crop insurance, Congress would also layer a new permanent disaster aid program. Expect Congress to declare an emergency any week that it rains - or doesn't rain.[m]

BUSH LOOKING AT CONDIMENTS, HARKIN THE FULL MENU "To date, (Bush) has focused on a handful of elements in this vast bill that he disagrees with," Harkin said after the Senate vote. "I urge him to look at the bill as a whole, and to see the many critical investments and reforms in this bill that have won support from both parties, from every region of the country and from rural and urban members of Congress alike."[th]

HARKIN BROUGHT EVERYBODY TO THE DINNER TABLE Harkin said he began nearly a year ago by going to each Ag Committee member to determine what that lawmaker wanted included. By the time the initial bill got to committee for consideration, it took less than two days to get to unanimous approval.[th]

PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES ARE DUCKING THIS ISSUE, THEY KNOW ITS WRONG BUT TOOK TOO MUCH FARM LOBBY MONEY With the exception of Rep. Ron Kind,D-Wis., all members of the tri-state congressional delegation who were present for the vote supported the bill. Illinois Sen. Barack Obama, with the Senate's other presidential candidates, New York Democrat Hillary Clinton and Arizona Republican John McCain, were not on hand.[th] Kind has consistently criticized the effort's shortcomings in subsidy reform.[th]

NEXT TO THE CORN SUBSIDY JUST DOWN THE AISLE FROM THE SOYBEAN LOTTERY, THAT WHERE THE BEEF IS “Where’s the beef?” asked Representative Ron Kind, Democrat of Wisconsin, standing in the House floor next to a poster showing sharp increases in commodity prices — 126 percent for wheat, 57 percent for soybeans, 45 percent for corn. “Where’s the real reform?” he said. [n] The Office of Management and Budget was right - the $35 billion in subsidies and price supports authorized by the bill are not needed. ) Wheat now sells for 87 percent above its five-year average price. Soybeans are up 70 percent; corn 94 percent. As long as Congress keeps its biofuel mandates, prices are not going to recede.[b]

REPUBLICANS SAY AGAIN...BUSH WHO.... The willingness of so many Republicans to break with the White House reflected both the strong support for the bill and a growing alarm among many lawmakers about their election prospects in November. [n] Mr. Bush himself made a similar political calculation in 2002, ultimately deciding to sign the farm bill that year even though he had strongly opposed it. A senior official at the time said the White House had concluded it would be “political suicide” in the midterm elections to veto the bill that year. [n]

THE WORLD IS ON THE VERGE OF FOOD RIOTS AND STARVATION AND WE ARE PAYING MILLIONAIRE FARMERS ...NOT TO GROW... "Commodity prices are through the roof and yet we are still funneling billions of dollars to farm households making up to $2.5 million a year in profit," Kind said. "My colleagues and the president should reject these sham reforms, and demand a farm bill that helps only the family farmers who need it and is worth the confidence of the American taxpayer."[th] Both Harkin and Iowa's senior senator, Republican Chuck Grassley, who worked on the funding as ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee, supported greater cuts in subsidy payments throughout the process, but met strong resistance from lawmakers representing sugar-producing areas. Without their support, the bill would not have had the votes needed to get other reforms accomplished.[th]

THE LONGER THE SPEECH THE BIGGER THE LIE... In a lengthy statement explaining the bill's provisions Grassley delivered on the Senate floor, he said he regretted the bill didn't go far enough in payment limitations and its failure to include a ban on packer ownership of livestock.[th] President Bush called on Congress to end farm subsidies for families earning more than $200,000 annually. Instead, Congress decided that married couples with less than $1.5 million in annual net farm income should be barred from one farm subsidy program - but still allowed to collect from all the rest. This is what passes for reform. [m]

CORPORATE FARMERS EXPLOIT LOOP HOLES...WHODATHUNK... And for the vast majority of farmers and agribusiness that remain eligible for farm subsidies, bigger checks await. Agribusinesses have long exploited loopholes to evade the $150,000 annual limit on marketing loan subsidies, including dividing themselves into dozens of separate legal entities and collecting subsidies for each one.[m]

WHEN WILL YOU GET ANGRY, NOT BEING ABLE TO AFFORD FOOD, GAS IN YOUR CAR OR BOTH.... Food prices are setting records. But the five-year bill increases price supports on almost every crop it deals with (rice and cotton are the exceptions). It brings additional crops like chickpeas under subsidy, and its transfer of more wealth to the wealthy is an outrage. (Farmers, now less than 0.7 percent of the population, are in the top 2 percent of income distribution.)[m]

SMALLER CAPS FOR THE WELL DRESSED FARMER But, noting the $2.5 million adjusted gross income cap on non-farmers will be reduced to a $500,000 cap, Grassley concluded, "I do plan to vote for this bill because the payment limits are better than current law, and the investments we are making in rural America and nutrition are essential."[th]

SUPPORT MEANS THEY GAVE HIM MONEY Harkin said this is the seventh farm bill he's worked on during his tenure in Congress and he has "never seen support from so many groups."[th]

WITH FOOD STAMPS IN THE BILL WE ARE SUPPOSED TO LIKE IT WHEN THE FARMERS RIP OFF OUR COUNTRY....NOT Key to the support is the bill's provisions that include major funding for food stamp and nutrition programs advocated by numerous faith organizations, conservation initiatives and protection of a "safety net" for farmers' income.[th]

WE SHOULD WORRY WHEN ALL THE FARM ORGANIZATIONS SUPPORT THE SAME LEGISLATION The five-year bill enjoys the support of all major farm organizations and Mark Salvador, national policy adviser for the Iowa Farm Bureau Federation, said his group is no exception.[th] Although the legislation is universally known as the farm bill, it actually directs far more money to feeding the poor than it does to helping farmers — about $209 billion for nutrition programs like food stamps, according to the Congressional Budget Office, compared with $35 billion for agricultural commodity programs. ]n]

10 BILLION IN NEW SPENDING TO A COUPLE OF DIRT FARMERS.... Overall, the farm bill is officially listed as adding $10 billion in new spending over the decade. But that ignores the blatant gimmicks - such as shifting costs just outside the 10-year window, and unrealistically assuming all increases will suddenly be repealed in four years - that could add more than $10 billion to the cost. Congressional Democrats who loudly denounced budget deficits are now prepared to bypass anti-deficit rules for this bloated bill. [m]

WAIT ITS NOW 25 BILLION...WENT UP ALREADY Thus, farm subsidies will continue costing taxpayers at least $25 billion annually. And for what purpose? Subsidies don't solve farmer poverty because they go to profitable agribusinesses. They don't preserve family farms because agribusinesses use their subsidies to buy them out. They are no longer designed to stabilize crop prices. [m]

HERES THE REAL STORY, CORPORATE AMERICA NEEDS FUEL MORE THAT WE NEED FOOD...REALLY! What Congressmen are in your wallet.....[trb] Nor do they promote cheap food, as ethanol policies are raising prices steeply. These programs lack any coherent rationale. Instead, they cost billions in taxes and higher supermarket prices. They harm the environment by encouraging over-planting. By undermining America's trade negotiations, subsidies raise consumer prices and restrict U.S. exports. Cotton subsidies undercut impoverished African farmers desperately trying to make a living. They contribute to obesity and rising health care costs by subsidizing corn and soy (from which sugars and fats are derived) rather than healthier fruits and vegetables.[m] Instead of blaming India and other developing nations for the rise in food prices, Americans should rethink their energy policy - and go on a diet. [s]at has been the response, basically, of a growing number of politicians, economists and academics in Europe, Asia and Africa, who are angry at statements by top U.S. officials that the rising prosperity in India and China is to blame for food inflation. [s] In her speech, Ms. Pelosi praised the bill and said the increase on food stamps alone was reason to support it. She said that while more change would be needed, the bill made important improvements to farm policy. [n] Yea... like not ripping us off.[trb] “With this legislation we will help families facing high food prices,” she said. [n] In Congress, one hand washes the other. There’s a $10 billion increase in food stamp authorizations and big increases for conservation programs (which account for most of the $298 billion authorized). That gets the urban members and much of the environmental lobby on board.[b] It’s a shame Obama has been mostly silent about this monstrosity of old politics[b] "This is a good bill," Salvador said. "We need to help people in this country eat; at the same time, we're glad to have a safety net."[th] Debbie cakes for the people and b steak for the farmers.[trb] Farm subsidies don't produce food, but they do produce votes. Despite its economic incoherence, the farm agreement is overwhelmingly popular in a Congress that has mastered the art of distributing tax dollars to favored industries. Although Bush has pledged to veto the farm bill, Congress has stubbornly pledged to override the veto. [m] Is it any wonder why Washington is so unpopular these days? [m]

LOOK INTO A MIRROR AND SAY SLOWLY, I AM MAD AS HELL AND I AM NOT GOING TO TAKE IT ANY MORE... NOW GO DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT... The public will never insist on any new sort of politics that Barack Obama keeps talking about without constant spotlighting of the flaws of the old politics. (Of course, it would have helped if Bush had vetoed the 2002 farm bill.)[b]

Posted here by Terry Bankert ... (If you like this article please forward to your friends, if not just keep it to yourself.)
Family Mediation and Divorce Practice.
Join my political party of preference, Join me in creating a new voice in The Michigan Democratic Party, become a Precinct Delegate.

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[N] The New York Times [th] TH online[m]
[m] Mercury News
[b] The Boston Herald
[s] Salt Lake Tribune

[TRB]\ Comments of Terry Bankert to include CAP headlines. 55922/14000

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Friday, May 16, 2008



***this is the live podcast- ****
GOOD MORNING FLINT! BY Terry Bankert 5/17/08 early edition
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Saturday May 3rd Pod cast: Check out for more Good Morning Flint videos!!
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Todays special Guest will be Mrs. Francis Gildrest. She will talk about her term as President of the Flint MI Chapter of the NAACP, the Policy Summit and her candidacy as register of deeds.

10 AM POD CAST"LIBERAL AND LIVE" call in 10:00 am to 11:00 am Saturday 5/18/11 1-810-235-1970 Topics



05/14/08 RUNNING OUT OF Gas and wide!


05/16/08 Rove the resident evil,

Terry Bankert is on the air, Flint Talk Radio Saturday morning at 10:00- 10:30 AM LIVE. Call his cell phone directly at 1-810-235-1970 or through Talk Shoe (724) 444-7444 enter the show/call ID: 18053# then enter 1# and you are on the air. Flint Talk radio will show the re-broadcasts later immediately after the show.

Flint Talk Radio archive of shows done live.


May 17th 2008 Mott Community College

11:00 am until 1:30 PM Panel Discussion,
Dr.Paul Rozycki, Mott Community College
EDUCATION Mr. Eugene Rutledge
ENTREPRENEURSHIP Samuel Cox McDonald Restaurant owner
JUDICIAL Judge Geoffrey Neithercuit
LAW ENFORCEMENT Gary Hagler MEDIA Tony Dearing Jim Bleicher
Lunch Provided $25 Ticket information 742-8622 ----

Posted here by Terry Bankert ...
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REFLECTIONS: George Bush, Karl Rove, Dick Cheney and a host of other beltway republican predators have miked this country dry of its reputation and wealth. We have been stolen from and sold out.The REPUBLICAN LABEL must be held in distain, Bush, Cheny , Rove and others prosecuted and their cheerleaders .Limbaugh, O'Rieley and the entire FOX organization repudiated and ignored.[trb] Former White House aide Karl Rove missed a House committee's Monday deadline to agree to testify in an inquiry into prosecutions by the Bush administration, but the two sides continue to trade letters.[m]

BUSH HAD BRAINS BUT NOW A LACK THEREOF Republican political strategist Karl Christian Rove, best known as President George W. Bush's top advisor, earned him the nickname "Bush's Brain." [CDM]

CONYERS DECLARES A BOOTY CALL,...Just off the House floor today, the Crypt overheard House Judiciary Chairman John Conyers tell two other people: "We're closing in on Rove. Someone's got to kick his ass." [c]

ROVE AND CHENEY ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR EVERYTHING WRONG WITH THIS COUNTRY ... with Carl Rove and Dick Cheney pulling the strings on this puppet,[ GEORGE BUSH] we have an astronomical debt, illegal wiretapping, suspension of habeas corpus and ever expanding presidential power. [mw]

KARL WHO, MARX, ROVE, OH HECK WHATS THE DIFFERENCE Karl Christian Rove (born December 25, 1950) was Deputy Chief of Staff to President George W. Bush until his resignation on 31 August 2007. He has headed the Office of Political Affairs, the Office of Public Liaison, and the White House Office of Strategic Initiatives. Since leaving the White House, Rove has worked as a political analyst and contributor for Fox News, Newsweek, and the Wall Street Journal. For most of his career prior to his employment at the White House, Rove was a political consultant almost exclusively for Republican candidates. Rove's election campaign clients have included George W. Bush (2000 and 2004 presidential elections, 1994 and 1998 Texas gubernatorial elections), Senator John Ashcroft (1994 U.S. Senate election), Bill Clements (1986 Texas gubernatorial election), Senator John Cornyn (2001 U.S. Senate election), Governor Rick Perry (1990 Texas Agriculture Commission election), and Phil Gramm (1982 U.S. House and 1984 U.S. Senate elections).[W]

ROVE HOLDS AMERICA IN CONTEMPT, CONYERS WILL HOLD HIM SO... Asked a few minutes later for a more official explanation, Conyers told us that Rove has a week to appear before his committee. If he doesn't, said Conyers, "We'll do what any self-respecting committee would do. We'd hold him in contempt. Either that or go and have him arrested." [c] Conyers said the committee wants Rove to testify about his role in the imprisonment of former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman, among other things. [c] The committee wants Rove to testify about his role in the prosecution of ex-Gov. Don Siegelman (D-AL), but Rove has refused to appear for a hearing, instead offering to speak privately with staff off the record. He modified that offer to testify by letter.[t] Siegelman was convicted of corruption in 2006 but was released from prison on bond in March following an appeals court ruling. The court said Siegelman's appeal raised questions that could result in a new trial or acquittal.[m]

ROVE TO CONYERS, I’LL JUST WRITE YOU A LETTER, BABY CAKES... But Conyers says that's a no-go. If Rove is willing to create a record with a letter, he argues, then there's no reason why he shouldn't be willing to sit down with staff for an on-the-record interview. Conyers says the committee is prepared to offer "other possible accommodations, such as providing a list of initial questions that may be asked," but there must be a live interview and a transcript. Conyers again mentions the possibility of a subpoena should talks break down. [t] So now the ball is in Rove's court.[t]

WE WANT YOU, WE NEED YOU...... "We want him for so many things, it's hard to keep track," Conyers said.[c] The Kansas Democratic Party greeted Rove's arrival by distributing a release that noted McCain's comment in February on CNN in which he said, "...any information or advice and counsel (Rove) can give us, I'd be glad to have."[p]

ASSUMPTION: ALL POLITICIANS ARE GUILTY OF SOMETHING, BUT YOU PROSECUTED THE DEMOCRATS MORE OFTEN, ....BAD BOY! The committee is investigating claims the Justice Department has prosecuted Democratic public officials more often than it has prosecuted Republican officials. A committee report issued last month said there's evidence that Washington officials, likely including Rove, influenced the decision to bring charges against Siegelman.[m]

WE ARE EITHER PREDATOR OR PREY, THIS VICTEM MUST BE PREY! Former Democratic Governor of Alabama Don Siegelman[79] was convicted in 2006 of bribery, conspiracy and mail fraud. However, some people have suggested that he was a victim of politically-directed trial led by Karl Rove. Siegelman, who very narrowly lost re-election in 2002 to Republican Representative Bob Riley, was considered by Republicans as the most serious opponent for Riley in 2006 election, because of his popularity and record as Governor (Siegelman was defeated in the Democratic primary by Lieutenant Governor Lucy Baxley, who went on to lose to Riley by a wide margin in November). Siegelman was convicted of accepting $500,000 from Richard M. Scrushy, then the chief executive of the HealthSouth Corporation, in return for appointing Mr. Scrushy to the state hospital licensing board. Siegelman is currently serving a seven-year sentence in a federal penitentiary.

COURT MANIPULATION, ONE TOUGH HOMBRE There are rumors that the U. S. Department of Justice and Rove, as chief GOP political strategist, manipulated the court and the prosecution of Siegelman to destroy him politically.[80][W]

OH, THEN THERE IS THAT LEAK THING... There have been some worlds-colliding moments. For example, a May 5 article in Newsweek detailed secondhand accusations that Mr. Rove had discussed a plan to force out the federal prosecutor who was investigating him and others in the C.I.A. leak case. It included a denial from Mr. Rove’s lawyer and no comment from Mr. Rove.[n]

TALK TO ME BABY TALK TO ME But the committee has been stymied in its attempts to force current and former White House officials to testify. Congressional subpoenas were issued for former White House Counsel Harriet Miers and White House Chief of Staff Joshua Bolten, but the administration rejected the subpoenas, saying they violated executive privilege.[m]

ROVE AND THE REPUBLICAN LABEL FALL TOGETHER I've been daydreaming lately about the Democrats ramping up their investigations as a campaign tactic. What better way to define the Republican brand and frame the narrative for November? It looks like my dreams might finally be coming true.[i]

BUSH TO PROTECT ROVE... JUST LIKE AN INFANT CAN PROTECT HIS DADDY ...Rove is caught in a larger battle between the White House and Congress over whether top administration officials can be compelled to testify -- a battle that ultimately will be decided by the courts.[m]

Posted here by Terry Bankert ... 5/16/08 Family Mediation and Divorce Practice.
Join my political party of preference,
You are invited to join me at Face Book
Link here for a re broadcast OF THE 5/3/08 GOOD MORNING FLINT ON FLINT TALK RADIO FLINT TALK POD CAST LIBERAL AND LIVE To watch the live show on Saturday at 10 am Flint Talk Radio archive of shows done live. FLINT TALK RADIO WHICH INCLUDES THE SATURDAY MORNING WFLT 1420 AM SHOW. The 5/10/08 lost the video so it is available only here

[c] [I] The Impolitic

[t] TPM

[m] Montgomery Advertiser

[p] Prim Buzz [n] The New York Times

[TRB] Comments of Terry Bankert to include CAP headlines

[mw] The Brighton Standard Blade]

[w] Wikipedia

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