HOPE & CHANGE:. . .Obama Style???

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-04-2001
HOPE & CHANGE:. . .Obama Style???
Mon, 07-26-2010 - 2:53pm

From The Sunday Telegraph:

Axe falls on NHS services
NHS bosses have drawn up secret plans for sweeping cuts to services, with restrictions on the most basic treatments for the sick and injured.


iVillage Member
Registered: 04-04-2001
Fri, 08-27-2010 - 2:36pm
SPIN METER: What Biden didn't mention on stimulus

By GARANCE BURKE (AP) – 10 hours ago

FRESNO, Calif. — Vice President Joe Biden said this week that the Obama administration "hit the accelerator" toward spending $5 billion under the economic stimulus law to weatherize people's homes, create thousands of jobs, help consumers save money and put the nation on track for energy independence.

Yet the weatherization program the vice president highlighted in his visit Thursday to New Hampshire is widely considered among the least organized spending projects under the $814 billion economic stimulus law and has regularly been targeted for criticism of its slow progress by auditors and outsiders. Biden didn't hint much at its troubles.

Nearly 18 months since it started, the stimulus weatherization program has experienced spending delays, inefficiencies and mismanagement. In Biden's home state of Delaware, the entire program has been suspended since May, and last month federal auditors identified possible fraud.


In his visit to Manchester, N.H., Biden said the program already had retrofitted 200,000 homes and would meet its ambitious goals of nearly 600,000 homes by March 2012.

He called it "one of our signature programs" under the stimulus law, saying that "thousands of construction workers across the country are now on the job making energy-saving home improvements that will save working families hundreds of dollars a year on their utility bills."

What Biden failed to mention:

_In Alaska, the program has yet to retrofit one home.

_In Texas, auditors found the private contractor earning the most in stimulus money did shoddy work on 60 percent of the houses it was hired to weatherize.

_In California, a contracting company paid nearly $3 million to caulk low-income residents' homes didn't train two dozen of its employees, the state's inspector general found last week.

Just months ago, at the one-year anniversary of the stimulus law, the Energy Department's inspector general complained in a report about "little progress" weatherizing homes and said the government's best efforts "appeared not to have significantly increased the tempo of actual units weatherized across the nation."

Government rules about how to run the complex program, including how much to pay contractors and how to protect historic homes, were among early hurdles. There were further, unexpected delays as the money flowed from Washington to the states and later to local nonprofits that hired contractors. The recession itself, and state hiring freezes, compounded the problems.

Why would politicians tout a federal spending program with so many challenges? Democratic officials in Washington say they are eager this election year to promote stimulus spending in "bite-sized" pieces. Democrats said polling suggests that voters are more likely to support their record if they can see tangible benefits of the spending, such as winter weatherization programs or smoother roads.

For months, President Barack Obama and his Cabinet have visited businesses and programs that directly benefited from Washington's efforts to point out specific, local projects that make the enormous program more real for people.

In Delaware, where Biden served as a U.S. senator for 36 years, the tangible benefits of weatherization are hard to find. The program is suspended, and last month federal officials released an audit that found lax oversight, conflicts of interest and possible fraud. The results of the audit were first reported by The News Journal of Wilmington, Del.

Contractors reportedly were paid for insulating attics they barely visited. Companies earned the same amount whether they installed high-quality or low-quality equipment. One resident who didn't qualify for the program's income levels got a boiler installed just the same, the Energy Department audit concluded.

"There was a feeling we should get out there and start doing this work and get the contractors trained," Delaware's health and social services secretary, Rita Landgraf, said. She asked the state attorney general, Biden's eldest son, Beau, to investigate. "We didn't have a strong program in place beforehand, and when we ramped it up under the stimulus it crumbled."

Biden acknowledged the effort's slow start as he visited a New Hampshire home being insulated for winter. Assistant Energy Secretary Cathy Zoi said 34 states have now reached their federal targets, a big improvement, and said the job creation figures would keep climbing.

Still, just last week, California Inspector General Laura Chick grew so concerned about one contractor's accounting practices that she recommended the company stop work because auditors couldn't understand how much money had been spent. State officials said problems at Campesinos Unidos Inc. are being corrected.

"This program has flaws, problems and issues and it needs to be rethought," Chick said. "If it were to go forward exactly as it is today, I would be screaming bloody murder."

Biden touted the program's successes at the home of Lynn Dumont, a single mother of two who said she looks forward to seeing her heating bills lowered. But, in an awkward moment, he didn't exactly win her ringing endorsement.

While she said she was thrilled to have the vice president over, when asked whether she voted for him, there was a long pause.

"Did I vote for him?" she said. "I'd rather not say."

Associated Press writers Philip Elliott in Washington and Holly Ramer in Manchester, N.H., contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-14-2010
Fri, 08-27-2010 - 3:48pm
Amazing isn't it? If you want to find fraud and corruption, all one has to do is look at a governmnet program.
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-15-2009
Fri, 09-03-2010 - 4:34pm


Corporate loving Republicans??

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-15-2009
Sat, 09-04-2010 - 11:01am

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-15-2009
Sun, 09-05-2010 - 10:50am

MSN News is reporting that a Pakistani minister wants Barack Obama to offer Eid prayers at Ground Zero in New York and become the "Amir-ul-Momineen" or Caliph of Muslims.

Minister of State for Industries Ayatullah Durrani, who belongs to the ruling Pakistan People's Party, said the upcoming Eid-ul-Fitr festival, expected to be observed on September 11, would be a "golden opportunity" for Obama to offer Eid prayers and declare himself the leader of all Muslims.

"In this way, all the problems of the Muslim world would be solved," Durrani told The Nation newspaper.

Durrani, a former member of the Pakistan Ideological Council, contended that the Muslim world is in "dire need" of a Caliph and occupying this distinguished slot would provide Obama "exemplary titles" like "Mullah Barack Hussain Obama" or "Allama Obama."

He said: "The time is approaching fast.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-18-2008
Sun, 09-05-2010 - 2:28pm

Jeffrey T. Kuhner, who advocated for the impeachment of President Obama in The Washington Times, is a known foreigner, a Canadian, who taught for years at McGill University, the liberal hotbed located in his hometown of Montreal, until he was able to infiltrate the U.S. in 2000.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-10-2006
Mon, 09-06-2010 - 12:24am




iVillage Member
Registered: 10-01-2004
Mon, 09-06-2010 - 10:12am
How about:
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-25-2006
Mon, 09-06-2010 - 11:18am

You're right. We have no obligation to anyone unrelated to us. Or to anyone who speaks a different language, is a different color or drives a beater. The choice is ours.

Do you know how much you paid (and will pay) in taxes for this? Was that your choice? Is that kind of gov't spending acceptable to you?


We all have to pay taxes for things we do not support. Get over it!



iVillage Member
Registered: 07-15-2010
Mon, 09-06-2010 - 2:15pm

Well said. I often wonder just how much comfort someone is willing to pay for when it's coming out of their own family's pocket? Perhaps we should have limits on outlay for excessive lifesaving measures demanded at the end of ones normal expected lifespan. Of course they can get it if they want to but maybe only if their family members agree to take it out of their own future "kitty" of health care allotment or social security benefits.

Or maybe we should have limit and if you feel you need to exceed that then have some insurance to cover the excess. As long as it's someone else who is footing the bill things will never change or be fixed.

>>Luck is what you call it when preparation meets opportunity<<

>>Luck is what you call it when preparation meets opportunity<<