Thursday, June 30, 2011

I Love This Picture of a Car's Bumper Stickers in Martha's Vineyard - Priceless

Obama's Real Revenue Problem - From Today's WSJ

Obama's Real Revenue Problem

Tax receipts are low because of the mediocre economic recovery.

President Obama was right about his audacity, if not always the hope. Six months after he agreed to a bipartisan extension of current tax rates, he is now insisting on tax increases as part of the debt-ceiling talks. At his press conference yesterday he repeated this demand, as well as his recent talking point that taxes are lower than they've been in generations. Let's examine that claim because it explains Washington's real revenue problem—slow economic growth.

Mr. Obama has a point that tax receipts are near historic lows, but the cause isn't tax rates that are too low. As the nearby table shows, as recently as 2007 the current tax structure raised 18.5% of GDP in revenue, which is slightly above the modern historical average. Even in 2008, when the economy grew not at all, federal tax receipts still came in at 17.5% of the economy.

Today's revenue problem is the result of the mediocre economic recovery. Tax collections in 2009 fell below 15% of GDP, the lowest level since 1950. But remarkably, tax receipts stayed that low even in the recovery year of 2010. So far this fiscal year tax receipts are growing at a healthy 10% clip, so the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) January estimate of 14.8% of GDP is probably low. We suspect revenues will be closer to 16%, but even that would be the weakest revenue rebound from any recession in 50 years, and far below the average tax take since 1970 of 18.2%.
But what about the liberal claim, repeated constantly, that the Bush tax cuts of 2001 and 2003 caused today's deficits? CBO has shown this to be demonstrably false. On May 12, the budget arm of Congress examined the changes in its baseline projections from 2001 through 2011. In 2001, it had predicted a surplus in 2011 of $889 billion. Instead, it expects a deficit of $1.4 trillion.

What explains that $2.29 trillion budget reversal? Well, the direct revenue loss from the combination of the 2001 and 2003 Bush tax cuts contributed roughly $216 billion, or only about 9.5% of the $2.29 trillion. And keep in mind that even this low figure is based on a static revenue model that assumes almost no gains from faster economic growth.

After the Bush investment tax cuts of 2003, tax revenues were $786 billion higher in 2007 ($2.568 trillion) than they were in 2003 ($1.782 trillion), the biggest four-year increase in U.S. history. So as flawed as it is, the current tax code with a top personal income tax rate of 35% is clearly capable of generating big revenue gains.

CBO's data show that by far the biggest change in its deficit forecast is the spending bonanza, with outlays in 2011 that are $1.135 trillion higher than the budget office estimated a decade ago. One-third of that is higher interest payments on the national debt, notwithstanding record low interest rates. But $523 billion is due to domestic spending increases, including defense, education, Medicaid and the Obama stimulus. Mr. Bush's Medicare drug plan accounts for $53 billion of this unanticipated spending in 2011.

The other big revenue reductions come from the "temporary" tax changes of the Obama stimulus and 2010 bipartisan tax deal. CBO says the December tax deal—which includes the one-year payroll tax cut and the annual fix on the alternative minimum tax—will reduce revenues by $196 billion this year. The temporary speedup in business expensing will cost another $55 billion.

Republicans should stick to their plan of insisting on spending cuts in return for a debt-ceiling vote. Every dollar in lower spending means one less dollar taken from the private economy in borrowing or future tax increases. As for revenues, they will increase when the economy shakes its lethargy caused by Mr. Obama's policies. A tax increase won't help growth—or revenues.

Friday, June 24, 2011

IRS: Revoke Their Tax Exempt Status!!!!!

Media Matters - Criminal Front Group

Gene Making Excuses

I like our AD.  But I am tired of hearing about where BC athletics have come since he took over in 1997.  I am also tired of his excuses as to why we average less than 40,000 for football Saturdays.   Read this and let me know what you think. 

Gene

Monday, June 20, 2011

Consider Donating to this Worthy Cause


CEO4Teens GED Scholarship Donation Letter
A Message from the Head, Tommy Atkinson



This year I am spearheading a new program under the non-profit organization: CEO4Teens (www.ceo4teens.com). This organization was founded in 2007 by my teammate at Boston College, Brooks Dyroff, and his high school friend, Kenny Haisfield.  CEO4Teens aims to help underprivileged teenagers afford an education by providing scholarships to their local academic institutions.  So far, CEO4Teens has awarded 50 scholarships to less fortunate teenagers in Indonesia. These students were able to attend a one-year college, which focused on English and Computer Skills. Upon graduation these students found jobs, which on average, paid five times the amount of their previous income. CEO4Teens is continuing its efforts in Indonesia, but we want to bring the gift of education back home.
Over the next several months I am going to be raising money and awareness in order to fund CEO4Teens’ newest platform: the CEO4Teens GED Program. My goals for this project are to raise at least $10,000 in order to award scholarships to underprivileged young adults in the greater Boston area who want to continue and further their education. These scholarships will be administered through X-Cel education (http://www.x-celeducation.org/), a non-profit organization that CEO4Teens recently partnered with in the spring of 2011. I realize how privileged I am to be attending Boston College, which is why I am passionate about helping other people my age, who are less fortunate, experience the joy of education. In a time where unemployment rates are at an all-time high, I feel that providing educational scholarships will help empower the younger generations, and make significant strides towards solving domestic problems such as poverty, crime, and unemployment.

My goal of raising $10,000 will help me award a diversity of scholarships on behalf of CEO4Teens. What do the students receive with the help of these scholarships?

·         A Platinum scholarship will help one student pay for a full-year of GED prep classes, academic supplies, and the cost of the GED exam. ($1000)
·         A Gold scholarship will help one student pay for a four-month semester of GED prep classes, academic supplies, and the cost of the GED exam. ($500)
·         A Silver scholarship will help one student pay for one month of GED prep classes, and the cost of the GED exam. ($200)
·         A Bronze scholarship will help one student pay for the cost of a GED exam. ($65)

As mentioned, I firmly believe in the power of education. Education will lead to a better quality of life, solve internal problems, and, at the very least, provide opportunities for less fortunate young adults. Together we can make our world a better place by lending a helping hand.
If you would like to contribute please refer to www.ceo4teens.com and follow the online donation link. All donations are greatly appreciated.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

The Boston Championship Run Began When?

The Bruins parade was great. The championship run over the last ten years is unprecedented. As Kathryn Tappen indicated on NESN today, it all began on April 7, 2001 when Kris Kolanos scored an overtime goal and our BC Eagles won their first of 3 National Titles in this decade.

It is always a great day to be an Eagle.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

City of Champions

2001:   Boston College Hockey- This is where is all began.  April 7, 2001 - Albany, NY.
2002:   Patriots
2004:   Patriots
2004:   Red Sox
2005:   Patriots
2007:   Red Sox
2008:   Boston College Hockey
2008:   Celtics
2010:   Boston College Hockey
2011:   Bruins

Saturday, June 11, 2011

More Pelosi - God I Despise Her

More Pelosi Lies

Look What New Album Debuted at #3 in the Billboard 200 Charts

http://www.billboard.com/#/charts/billboard-200

Nickname of Deutsche Bank Towers in Frankfurt

The Deutsche Bank towers, whose nicknames are Soll und Haben, or debit and credit, on the Frankfurt skyline have become a familiar symbol of Deutsche's leading position in the euro zone's most important financial center. The 38- and 40-story skyscrapers opened in 1985 and provide 246,000 square feet of space. The complex was recently renovated to make them more energy efficient. Deutsche sold the towers to one of its own funds in part to raise cash to recoup the renovation costs. Deutsche paid €271 million for the towers in 2007.

Gene DeFilippo Responds To Tennessee Rumors

From BC Media Relations

Boston College Director of Athletics Gene DeFilippo has issued the following statement in response to several media inquiries regarding his interest in the Director of Athletics position at the University of Tennessee:

“While I am a Tennessee graduate (Master's Degree) and love UT and Knoxville, my heart is here at Boston College. I am very fortunate to have the only job I want. Anne and I will remain at BC for many years to come."

Friday, June 10, 2011

BC Finishes Second

http://boston.cbslocal.com/2011/06/09/williams-edges-bc-as-states-most-expensive-college/

Is Gene DeFilippo Heading to Tennessee?

My favorite blogger, Eagle in Atlanta, tweeted this yesterday:

"FWIW Gene D to Tenn has legs. Also interesting the Gene hasn't pulled his name out of consideration."

I do not believe that Gene would leave BC at this point in his career.  I have heard him say on several occasions that he loves Boston College and will retire as an Eagle.  He has had many offers to leave over the years but has not.   His legacy is BC and the improvements in the Athletic Department over his 13+ year tenure will define him.

   

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

From Today's Wall Street Journal - I Agree

Time to Make Professors Teach

My new study suggests a simple way to cut college tuition in half.

 
No sooner do parents proudly watch their children graduate high school than they must begin paying for college. As they write checks for upwards of $40,000 a year, they'll no doubt find themselves complaining loudly about rising college costs—even asking: "Is it worth it?"

It's a legitimate question. As college costs have risen wildly, the benefits of the degree seem less and less clear. Larger numbers of college graduates are taking relatively low-paying and low-skilled jobs.

The good news? There are ways to greatly ease the burden and make college more affordable, according to new data from the University of Texas at Austin.
Naomi Schaefer Riley, author of "The Faculty Lounges," explains how colleges are spending your money.
In a study for the Center for College Affordability and Productivity, Christopher Matgouranis, Jonathan Robe and I concluded that tuition fees at the flagship campus of the University of Texas could be cut by as much as half simply by asking the 80% of faculty with the lowest teaching loads to teach about half as much as the 20% of faculty with the highest loads. The top 20% currently handle 57% of all teaching.

Such a move would require the bulk of the faculty to teach, on average, about 150-160 students a year. For example, a professor might teach one undergraduate survey class for 100 students, two classes for advanced undergraduate students or beginning graduate students with 20-25 students, and an advanced graduate seminar for 10. That would require the professor to be in the classroom for fewer than 200 hours a year—hardly an arduous requirement.

Faculty will likely argue that this would imperil the university's research mission. Nonsense. First of all, at UT Austin, a mere 20% of the faculty garner 99.8% of the external research funding. Second, faculty who follow the work habits of other professional workers—go to work from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and work five days a week for 48 or 49 weeks a year—can handle teaching 200 hours a year while publishing considerable amounts of research. I have done just this for decades as a professor.

Third, much research consists of obscure articles published in even more obscure journals on topics of trivial importance. Mark Bauerlein, a professor of English at Emory University, once estimated that 21,000 articles have been written on Shakespeare since 1980. Wouldn't 5,000 have been enough? Canadian scholar Jeffrey Litwin, looking at 70 leading U.S. universities, concluded the typical cost of writing a journal article is about $72,000. If we professors published somewhat fewer journal articles and did more teaching, we could make college more affordable.

There are other things colleges could do to reduce costs, such as slashing bureaucracies or using buildings more efficiently. But by not extending the contracts of nontenured faculty or by phasing out tenured positions over time, universities could seriously cut labor costs.

The bottom line is that colleges typically spread knowledge about everything under the sun except themselves. It's time to change that. There's no better place to start than by closely examining the work load of those who absorb the lion's share of university budgets.
 
Mr. Vedder is a professor of economics at Ohio University and directs the Center for College Affordability and Productivity.

More Weiner - X Rated Facebook Transcripts

Weiner Facebook Chats

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Tom Brady At Boston College

Brady, teammates make students' day

June, 3, 2011
Jun 3
1:39
PM ET 
 
CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. – Tom Brady approached the small group of students from the Boston College Campus School, and before they could say anything, he reached out his hand.

“Hi, what’s your name?” Brady said, leaning over to greet the youngsters. “I’m Tom.”

Tom Brady
Courtesy Boston College Campus School
Brady’s gesture, which came following the third and final informal Patriots workout at Boston College Friday, had students and teachers at the Boston College Campus School buzzing. Brady posed for photos with the group before walking to the nearby parking garage.

“He was so friendly and down to earth,” said Molly Ceglarski, a native of Bristol, Conn. who teaches at the school. “And handsome, too.”

“He was very excited to meet the kids,” added teacher Megan Beaulieu-Jones, of Vernon, Conn. “The students really enjoyed it and you could see by the smiles on their faces. All the players came out and were giving high-fives.”

The Boston College Campus School, now in its 40th year, is a private publicly funded special education school. Students range from 3 to 21 years old, according to director Don Ricciato. This year, there are 42 students enrolled, from 25 different cities and towns.

Like others who caught word that the Patriots were working out at BC over the last three days, teachers and students hoped to watch Friday. But a heavy security presence kept them on the outside of Alumni Stadium, although they were perfectly positioned for when players exited.

Most players stopped to talk and pose for pictures.

“It was great to see them as real people,” Ceglarski said. “They hung around for a bit with the kids and wanted to know everybody’s name.”

Another Review of the DCFC Boston Concert

Hub fans hail Death Cab

By Jim Sullivan / Music Review
Tuesday, June 7, 2011 -
  
Hottest show in town over the weekend?
It had to be Death Cab for Cutie at the Paradise Sunday. The $35 tickets sold out in a flash when they went on sale in March. To prevent scalping, fans had to pick up their tickets at the box office Sunday night with a valid ID.

There were still lines outside the club while the opening band the Lonely Forest played — it’s the first time the Paradise has handled ticketing this way — but there were 900 pretty darn happy fans inside during Death Cab’s 25-song, nearly two-hour set.

It can be a kick to see a popular band play a small venue several notches size-wise below its status. Death Cab is nearing the end of a buzz-worthy 13-club North American tour, promoting the recent release of “Codes and Keys,” the quartet’s seventh CD. (They return for an Aug. 1 show at Bank of America Pavilion.)
The band’s sound ranges far and wide, and they’re masterful at merging melancholy and celebration. Often, they were a twin-guitar-stoked rock engine, with singer/songwriter Ben Gibbard and guitarist Chris Walla creating big jolts in “Long Division” and “St. Peter’s Cathedral.” They got shoegazey and hypnotic for “The New Year” and “I Will Possess Your Heart.”

During the clanging and propulsive “Doors Unlocked and Open,” bassist Nick Harmer carried the melody, as Gibbard railed against modern isolation. At the other end of the sonic spectrum, Gibbard, with acoustic guitar, sang a gorgeous mid-set ballad, “I Will Follow You Into the Dark.”

Gibbard, who played occasional keyboards (as did Walla), is a big believer in building resonance through repetition. Early, in “We Laugh Indoors,” it was a mantra of “I love you, Guinevere.” Later, in “Underneath the Sycamore,” it was “We are both saved underneath the sycamore.” Death Cab mixed the intimate and the epic.

There’s darkness and doubt in the group’s material, but the six songs played from “Codes and Keys” had more sense of uplift. “Stay Young, Go Dancing,” the first encore, was a song of renewal, pure and simple, with Gibbard singing “Life is sweet in the belly of the beast.” (Note: Between the last CD, “Narrow Stairs,” and this new one, Gibbard married actress Zooey Deschanel.)

The concert had a smart ebb-and-flow quality. It climaxed with “Transatlanticism,” the majestic final song. Gibbard began quietly on piano before the band kicked in, giving it sweep and splendor. Hard-hitting drummer Jason McGerr was outstanding. Gibbard sang about the distance between lovers and soared on the extended coda, “I need you so much closer ... so come on, come on.”

DEATH CAB FOR CUTIE, with THE LONELY FOREST At the Paradise, Sunday night.

The Ultimate Phony

Congressman Weiner

Monday, June 6, 2011

Death Cab for Cutie Last Night In Boston - Great Show!

By Laura McWhorter
My inner college-student had a big weekend. I had a house party, took a couple naps, ate some ramen noodles and (most importantly for our purposes today) saw Death Cab for Cutie live in concert. And while the first three made me feel pathetic and old, that last one still felt just right – the one habit from college that you don’t have to be ashamed of.

Having recently released their 7th studio album, ‘Codes and Keys’, Death Cab is on tour again and for the first leg of the US tour, they’re playing some pretty tiny venues. Paradise Rock Club in Allston, MA holds slightly less than 1000 people and if you were fortunate to get a ticket to this show (no easy feat) then you know how packed it was. They say ‘standing room only’ but there was barely even room for that.

After everyone was finally inside (Will call-only show. Don’t get me started. The lines were insane.), there was a palpable tension running through the crowd. There was still that pre-show buzz but it seemed more anxious. When the lights went out it was as if everyone let out a breath they didn’t know they’d been holding and then…they just went nuts. No nonsense and no messing around, the Washington-based quartet kicked things off with three rapid-fire hits, ‘Your Bruise’, ‘New Year’ and ‘We Laugh Indoors’ with nary a pause in between. The crowd sang along to every word as Ben Gibbard’s boy-next-door voice lead the way through an enormous and varied set. The band played a 25-song set that, even though they’re promoting a new album, spanned their deep catalogue.

If you weren’t already dancing along, Nick Harmer’s bass on ‘Crooked Teeth’ and Jason McGerr’s drums on ‘Long Division’ and ‘Cath’ were sure to reach out and make you. If a band can have a pulse, these guys are it and you could feel it all throughout the venue. While I’m sad that they couldn’t play ‘I Will Possess Your Heart’ in all of it’s eight minute glory, they more than made up for it with gorgeous performances of ‘Grapevine Fires’ and ‘I Will Follow You into the Dark’. I’ve heard a crowd sing along before but never have I heard a crowd actually harmonize with the singers. They took the high to Gibbard’s low and it actually made the understated performance even more perfect.

The rest of the set powered on in perfect sonic fashion with ‘Title Track’, ‘You Are a Tourist’, ‘405’ and ‘Title and Registration’ but the real highlights for me were the last few songs of the set. While it had seemed like Gibbard had finally lulled the crowd into a trance, the opening notes of ‘Soul Meets Body’ and ‘Sound of Settling’ broke them out of it. At choice points they were just as loud as the band and even after the guys walked off the stage they continued their noisy chorus until the band obliged with an encore. ‘Stay Young, Go Dancing’, ‘Styrofoam’ and ‘A Movie Script Ending’ were all well and good (understatement) but I couldn’t wait for what I knew was coming: ‘Transatlanticism’. This song is easily my favorite and a perfect way to end a set – starting slow and building up to a perfect crescendo of that pleading refrain.

Normally when a band has a new album out, their concerts can get real boring real fast. Everyone wants to hear their faves – not just the new stuff. DCFC does a fantastic job and sets the example for how it’s done. I couldn’t have chosen a better setlist and to see them in such a small venue was an incredible treat. In a few hours I’ll be at work, back in the real world, in my 24-year-old life and I’ll be thinking about this show and how for a few hours I got to be a college kid again. It’s good to know for future reference however: who needs a time machine when you have Ben Gibbard?

Europe Trip with BC Students

Having taught the group for the entire academic year,  I had an impression of the 27 kids that I accompanied to Europe.   The following is the top 3 list of students who were quite different than I expected:

1.   James. Unanimous choice.   The kid made quite the impression on the European continent.
2.   Pat.   Pat found a new career as a tour guide in France.
3.   E Bo.   Very engaging to the French people regardless of gender.

Close to cracking the top 3 list:

1. Art
2. Marissa  (wooo hooo).