Thursday, February 24, 2011

The 2012 Enigma Why Should We Care?

Enigmatic as it may be the year 2012 certainly has been sensationalized. This has happened at the movie theater, on the History Channel, I have even heard of Mayan prophecies, and prophecies from Web Spiders, to the lost book of Nostradamus.

The conspiracies surrounding 2012 are everywhere, and they are more pervasive and disconcerting than the Y2k Computer bug could have ever dreamed. There is no shortage of paranoia when it comes to 2012, especially those wealthy elite who are creating an esoteric real estate market of under ground shelters. Companies like Bechtel are thriving with a shovel and a tunnel boring machine. The frenzy and paranoia is endless and the mad rush to be prepared for this epoch Mayan dooms day has become an industry on to itself.

Of all the theories none amuse me more than the Nibiru/ Planet X theory. This tall tale comes from the Ancient Sumerian texts that read more like an episode of Star Gate SG9 than a credible archaeological record. The mad rush to doomsday preparation is only exaggerated by the fact that no one can accurately predict the future, nor can we guarantee that there are undiscovered planetoids, comets, asteroids, or near earth objects that threaten Earth.

Looking back we must never forget the lesson of Schumaker Levy, the largest planetary impact of a space based asteroid. No real scientists disagrees that the potential for an asteroid or impact on the earth from a space object is impossible, as a matter of fact we are warned that the possibility is real and they have even named Apothis Earth's greatest future threat.

None of these, however are Nibiru, nor are any expected to arrive in the year 2012, so why all the hype? Personally I think there is much mis-information out there and those who have inordinate amounts of money are not inconvenienced by having the insurance policy of an underground shelter.

These people, perceived as eccentric by some are in-fact concerned about some real issues. Of all the 2012 conspiracies out there there are two that are very hard to dismiss. The one that I find most alarming is the current solar cycle that we are experiencing right now. The Sun, our Sun, is entering a period of intense activity and as many who study the Earth are aware, our planets magnetosphere is what protects life from harmful solar radiation.

The Earth's magnetosphere has been acting erratically and the magnetic poles have been moving erratically. These issues are particularly of concern to scientists because a weakening of the magnetosphere is very problematic when the sun is abnormally active. The CME's or coronal mass ejections have the ability to destroy satellites and wreak havoc on Earths ungrounded electrical grid. This is a real threat and one was recorded in the late 1,800's that destroyed the telegraph telephone system that existed then.

This threat combined with the decline of the Global economy, and the Austerity measures we see on T.V. make it increasingly evident that capitalism world wide has been compromised to rampant fraud and the induced indebtedness of every nation by the worlds largest criminal financiers.

Under current estimates, the U.S. and Europe will experience a currency collapse under the weight of these economic problems within the next few years. The solutions to the worlds debt may be the rebirth of the entire world economy, and end to the American economic customs and traditions we now hold dear.

The key decision makers have already amped up the rancour on the instability of global financial instruments, and the worlds middle and lower classes are en-masse letting their voices be heard during this transformation process that seems clearly underway.

While I personally cannot predict the future, I can see clearly and evidently that paper denominated assets, such Pension funds, dollars, 401k's etc. are in jeopardy of being fatally devalued. Americas protests are in large part over union issues, collective bargaining rights and balancing budgets all these are on the heels of the Federal government who itself is monetizing debt as the nations bond sales increasingly produce disappointment.

There is a clear recipe for a rebirth of the entire global economic picture that we have come to know. Those who are aware, educated and prepared for this transformation will fare well while those who are sceptical disbelievers may soon realize the Apocalypse of 2012 was little more than a cruel financial joke played on the worlds working class.    

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Taxes... They Are All Going Up... A Little

Milford's real estate taxes are going up a little only $106.00 for the average homeowner, state taxes well they are going up just a little when we include the increase in the sales tax, gas tax, and the  increased income tax. The average person in our state will have to pay an additional $750.00 a year. Federal taxes, well they are still working on that but we did see a glimpse of their plans, these include new health insurance taxes and carbon taxes.

To make matters more interesting there are thousands of homeowners who live in Milford that are part of Condo Associations, and yes those fees are also sadly going up with all else.

Thus far it would appear that the cost of food and clothing is going up along with the price of gas. Borders bookstore announced it is going into bankruptcy and will be closing its store at the Milford Mall. Connecticut's state unions are being forced into very large concessions and local governments like ours in Milford are still struggling to balance their budget.

The trend is very clear, the government wants more money from the taxpayers, employers cannot keep up and are laying people off or closing stores and more and more people are relying on help from the government.

Energy assistance, unemployment extensions, food stamps, housing assistance, health care for economically disadvantaged kids, and of course transportation assistance as we have seen in the past. These programs included "cash for clunkers," "Home buyers Credits," "cash infusions to big banks" and who can forget the millions of foreclosures and the latest government program "Keeping Americas Homes Affordable Act."

The disconnect between government, at all levels, and the reality that has become the Greatest Recession America has ever seen is crystal clear. The national debt is growing at a staggering pace and is expected to top 15 Trillion by years end, entire states are bankrupt, and municipalities are expected to go into default on government bonds issued under the "Renew America Act."

For the lucky few out there who have lots of savings, you may weather the storm and be able to see the light at the end of the tunnel. While no one knows where the "end of the tunnel" is, there are some out there who already see the the light.

Wall Street for some odd reason seems to defy Main Street, this is because as Main Street continues to struggle Wall Street continues to prosper. The index is up nearly 20% since last year but few on Main Street feel that recovery. Why you must be thinking? Over and over again the answer is clear and that is that Americas stock markets represent international companies with international business models. 

Many of the companies represented on Wall Street  are international companies. They do business in emerging and developed markets around the world and have unbridled access to liquid money and investment lending that ordinary Americans do not.

Most people who look at America for investing are immediately concerned with the extensive regulations on business that include employer mandates, environmental regulations, high energy costs, taxes, and according to our President our "D" rated infrastructure that must support their manufacturing operations. What governments fail to realize is that increases in taxes, along with the creation of new laws and regulations can dramatically alter the commercial and economic landscape of a community.

This problem is further exaggerated by treaties such as NAFTA, GATT, EPP, ETC.. these treaties make it possible for our nations corporations to shop every government in the world for economic opportunity and to gain an advantage over their competitors.

This is why so many former U.S. based companies have abandoned America. Our global manufacturing is more often than not conducted in nations that pay very low wages, have little to no regulation, low environmental standards and provide a welcome package for those who boost the quality of life of the once destitute people who lived in those host nations.

The issue of taxes, big government, and jobs will persist so long as we live in a bifurcated world where all levels of government tax without regard to the other. The notion of small tax increases is fine until those small increases, combined with others create an environment inhospitable to conduct business. The bankruptcy of Borders books this week is perhaps a reminder that things need to change if we are to stem the tide of economic decline in America and our state.

I hope those of you who read this today are able to make those decisions that ordinary job seekers cannot make for themselves, those decisions must be aimed at rebuilding the U.S. manufacturing base through tariffs and policies that help rather than hurt American wages and jobs. 

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Milford Independent Party Meets

An open Meeting of the Milford Independent Party will be held this month. Come one come all, and all are welcome as are all Independents and Independent Minded people who desire a better community. We will be meeting Wednesday the 23rd of Feb. at Cabo in Milford at 7:15P.M.

On the agenda is your questions, your ideas, and the re-election of officers. As it stands we have no official candidate for Mayor yet, nor any other local municipal races. Those of you interested in running for office will recieve the full support of the Milford Independent Party.

Hope to see you all at the meeting on Wednesday.


Saturday, February 5, 2011

Recap In Politics Around Milford

The Snow still persists, having broken all records and for the first time in recent memory bull dozers are out doing snow removal. This year the kids missed Eight Days of School and as a result their April vacation is expected to be very short. This is provided that no more cancellations occur between now and then.

The snow also took its toll on Milford's crumbling schools, the Board of Education has been addressing these 100M repair costs on and off for years but last week the debate abruptly shifted when the East Shore Middle School Roof was is in danger of collapsing due to the weight of the heavy snow. The kids were all relocated to Foran H.S. where they are expected to remain until the safety of East Shore is guaranteed.

The Mayor, as usual, is proposing his Eighth Consecutive Tax Increase and using his traditional argument that it only amounts to a few hundred dollars more per home owner in Milford. Since the Mayor began using this argument eight years ago homeowners have seen their taxes incrementally rise to several thousands of dollars per year and over 2,500 homes have been foreclosed on or sold as a direct result of taxation and the cost associated with living in CT.

According to The housing situation in Milford continues to remain shaky as several new Foreclosures have entered the market this week further challenging the "Grand List" and driving up the towns Mill Rate. This rate is expected to change dramatically when the Assessor completes their re-evaluations (not done since the top of the market) and the new figures are entered next year.

The biggest property devaluators  continue to be the Middletown Power line project. There are apx. 1,000 homes impacted by those lines. The new towers replaced the shorter wooden towers that looked very similar to the telephone poles on the street. The new towers are a residential hardship,  they are solid steel towers barreling over 135 Feet in the Air. Those homes that once blended with nature and low lying utilities are now permanently marred with industrial high voltage lines and equipment. Many of these homeowners are already engaged in a class action lawsuit against those who built them.

In other news this week, The Town Planning and Zoning Department has erupted in controversy over a leadership crisis involving the selection of a chairman. This disruption inconvenienced and costs local businesses money in lost time over several days. The P&Z was abrubtly suspended when 5 members of the board walked out of the meeting while the public was waiting for permit approvals. However it did not stop them from issuing citations against every small business up and down the Post RD and New Haven Ave.

Complaints from businesses were mostly related to signage and the desire of those business owners to maintain marketing freedom to obtain customers in a challenged economy. The City of Milford insists that all funds and moneys due the city must be paid, proper permit paperwork must be filled out, and inspectors must be satisfied. This applies to all signs even if its a "weekly special," "flag" or "Temporary Promotion."

The City of Milford aggressively enforces its regulations against local small businesses and through its enforcement actions expresses its acrimony toward them.  Last year was a typical reminder,  that was the year a private collection agency was hired and deputized with authoritative power to collect business taxes the city tax collector and Mayor claimed were "under reported."

The national economy, inflation and the continuing growth of social programs has been especially beneficial to Milford as the Federal aid has increased in the last Three years to our city residents who are increasing becoming dependent on public aid or just leaving the city.

On a final word thus far there are no official announcements for any candidates running for Mayor in 2011.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Snow Collapses Commercial Building In Milford

Emergency crews said the workers of the multi-unit commercial building at 282 Woodmont Road escaped serious injury, but two were transported to the hospital for unknown injuries.

"They were able to actually crawl through the rubble and debris and get out on their own," said Milford Fire Capt. Christopher Zak.

While it appears all workers are accounted for, police were bringing in K-9 units from the state's Urban Search and Rescue Task Force to enter the building and make sure no one was left behind. It was later determined the dogs might not be necessary as all occupants seem to be accounted for -- and the building rife with chemicals might prove too hazardous for the highly trained dogs.

In addition to local police and fire units, the state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is on the scene and taking over the incident command since the building contains chemicals such as cyanide and sulphuric acid, according to emergency officials. It is believed there were approximately 3,000 gallons of chemicals inside one of the machine shops that occupied the space.

The presence of the chemicals complicates the cleanup process, according to DEP Emergency Response Coordinator Ken LeClerc. Crews will have to carefully lift the roof off tomorrow and then enter the debris with hazmat suits. The DEP will be aided by Clean Harbors Environmental Services, which retains a location across the street from the collapsed building.

The dangers of the cleanup cannot be understated, particularly when it comes to sulphuric acid, according to LeClerc. "It'll burn right through you," he said.

The cleanup will also be conducted with care so as to prevent any further damage to the millions of dollars worth of antique and exotic car parts that were inside Carbon County Chrome. The state of the three 1950-era Chevrolet Corvettes that were inside remains unknown. The names of all four business have not been released, but another is Miller Marine Canvas.

While the cause of the collapse remains under investigation, Zak said it appears that the flat wooden roof on the structure gave out under the weight of the dense snow and ice that continues to pile up across the region.

"If one section (of the building) falls, it'll fail catastrophically," he said.

When the building collapsed, a resident who was nearby came to the rescue and used a backhoe to move snow around an area so the gas company could shut off the gas supply to the building. The gas leak has since been contained, officials said, but nearby businesses were evacuated as a precaution.

Meanwhile, Zak urged homeowners and business owners to heed calls to clear roofs of snow and ice, to prevent such an incident from occurring again.

"Hopefully this is the last," Zak said.