Archive for September, 2007
September 30th, 2007 | Comments Off | Posted in » In the News..., KC Chiefs, My Life / Family
Well, some of you may be expecting a bit of commentary about today’s Kansas City Chiefs victory over the Chargers… in San Diego of all places. Suffice it to say, I didn’t give it much of a chance of happening, yet it did… the passing game was good today, and the defense held up when it was needed most. A 30-16 win… the Chiefs, now in a tie for the division lead… who’d have thought?
A funny thing happened though… as excited as I was by the big win, I was more interested in something else today… St. Joe Serve. Somehow, football just doesn’t seem that important when you’re helping to meet the real needs of real people. More to come on that later.
September 29th, 2007 | 1 Comment | Posted in » In the News...
So… Hillary wants to give every child born in the U.S. $5000?
Can you say $20,000,000,000 in new taxes?
You’ve gotta be kidding me… we want to tax people so that we can give away money to every child born… so they can use it for whatever?
Now, don’t get me wrong… I’d love a nice handout for all of my kids… it sounds great. But what’s the cost? If the purpose is education (as stated in the article), isn’t there a better way? How about setting aside money for need-based scholarship programs? Oh wait… we already do that…
Here’s some numbers.
The census also counted nearly 300,000,000 people (299,398,485, if you believe they can count that accurately).
So… based on the above, we have 92,297,510 tax-paying households (this excludes those that pay nothing, of course) that will need to provide $20 billion dollars in additional tax money for the government to give $5,000 to 4 million children. That works out to be $216.69 in new tax liability for each household that pays federal taxes. Each year (assuming the program would stay in place, that births don’t change, and that the annual benefit remains the same). $216.69 in new tax liability… almost $20 / month… so we can provide a nice fat check to everyone who has a child?
Talk about your government handouts… in 18 years (when those kids would be able to withdraw it), that $5,000 would be worth quite a bit, even at modest interest rates. At 5%, it would work out to $12,224.11. At higher interest rates, it works out to more, of course… at 7%, it’s $17,460.84… at 9%, $24,926.24. I’m guessing the odds of that money being able to be invested in stocks is pretty slim, though, so you can probably throw the 7% and 9% figures out the window.
Anyway, yes… it sounds very nice… assuming it doesn’t disappear before the child turns 18.
But what’s the purpose? If education, why not a financial aid assistance program (again, we do that already)? How about encouraging families to set aside for their own kids needs? Don’t we already have a child tax credit from which families could set aside funds?
It’s not that hard to accumulate a pretty good chunk of change for your kids’ education, especially assuming you take some of that $1,000 annual tax credit and set it aside.
Over 18 years, even a $20 per month savings plan works out to quite a bit of money. At 5% interest, it’s $6984.04. At 6% interest, it’s $7747.06. Couple that kind of savings with a Pell grant or other federal aid and a bit of hard work on the students’ part (working part-time to pay for school, perhaps?), and suddenly, like magic… kids have a big kick start to help them obtain higher education.
Anyway, you tell me which makes more sense… American tax-paying households paying our federal government an additional $216 annually so we can give $5,000 to every child born in the U.S. today, in hopes they’ll use it for education 18 years down the road… or paying nothing additional annually, educating parents to set aside from existing tax credits for their child’s future, and filling in the gaps from existing federal aid programs?
Of course, what this really boils down to is personal responsibility… are we going to exercise that value or not?
Politicians like Hillary know it’s not a popular message to tell people to look out for their own financial needs… it doesn’t tickle the ears anything like “Uncle Sam is coming to the rescue with… FREE MONEY!” A lot of Americans don’t want to think or hear about it… it’s so much easier to blow our money on whatever we see fit, and then hold out our hands expecting the government to fill them again.
Which brings us back to topic. Hillary wants to give you $5,000 for each child you have. John Stickley would say, set aside some of your own money and teach your kids personal financial responsibility.
Who would you vote for?
September 28th, 2007 | 3 Comments | Posted in » My Life / Family, Pictures
I think the title is self-explanatory… your grill might be too hot if…
it looks like this.
Yes, last night, I nearly had a disaster at my house… a grease fire in my grill. At one point, the temperature gauge read more than 900 degrees. Given that the melting point of aluminum is over 1200 degrees, I’m assuming it was hotter than that. Obviously, these pictures were taken after it was under control and cool again.
What’s the chance that Char-Broil will send me a new grill?
September 27th, 2007 | Comments Off | Posted in » Devotions / Bible Studies, Pictures
I am definitely not a morning person… when I wake up each morning at 6:00 (or earlier), my back usually hurts, I’ve usually dreamt such vivid dreams that I feel I’ve hardly slept at all… I usually just want to shut the alarm clock off, roll over, and go back to sleep. The routine of another day just doesn’t appeal to me at all… at least not nearly as much as another couple hours of rest. Dawn, even with its glorious light and beauty, often seems a dark, dreary, and somewhat dreadful thing.
What, you feel that way often too?
It seems it’s not an uncommon feeling… one we really need to shake.
Every day is a gift from God… every moment an opportunity to serve Him and experience His goodness and grace. Should we not be more like the psalmist, wanting to wake the dawn with our praises?
8Awake, my soul!
Awake, harp and lyre!
I will awaken the dawn.
9I will praise you, O Lord, among the nations;
I will sing of you among the peoples.
10For great is your love, reaching to the heavens;
your faithfulness reaches to the skies.
11Be exalted, O God, above the heavens;
let your glory be over all the earth.
God is indeed worthy of our praise, honor, and worship… He alone provides grace sufficient to forgive our sin… He alone hears our prayers… He alone answers in miraculous ways. He alone has created all things, and His glory is evident in His handiwork.
1Praise awaits you, O God, in Zion;
to you our vows will be fulfilled.
2O you who hear prayer,
to you all men will come.
3When we were overwhelmed by sins,
you forgave our transgressions.
4Blessed are those you choose
and bring near to live in your courts!
We are filled with the good things of your house,
of your holy temple.
5You answer us with awesome deeds of righteousness,
O God our Savior,
the hope of all the ends of the earth
and of the farthest seas,
6who formed the mountains by your power,
having armed yourself with strength,
7who stilled the roaring of the seas,
the roaring of their waves,
and the turmoil of the nations.
8Those living far away fear your wonders;
where morning dawns and evening fades
you call forth songs of joy.
September 23rd, 2007 | 1 Comment | Posted in » In the News..., KC Chiefs
Well, my beloved Kansas City Chiefs managed to pull out a victory today versus the Minnesota Vikings, bringing their record to 1-2, tied with the San Diego Chargers, amazingly enough.
Let’s just say today’s win was a lesson in winning ugly… the running game was absolutely stuffed (imagine that, when opposing teams continue to put 8 or 9 defenders on the line of scrimmage), and Chiefs offensive coaches didn’t catch on until the third quarter that it might be a good idea to pull out the downfield passing game (against one of the worst pass defenses in the league). Thankfully, it wasn’t too late… stretching the field with the pass saved the day. Tony Gonzales looked great with 7 catches for 97 yards, and Dwayne Bowe continues to improve, hauling in his second TD of the season (and the Chiefs second offensive TD) on a jumpball situation in the corner of the endzone. Their performance gives hope for the rest of the year… I can’t wait to see what happens once Eddie Kennison re-enters the lineup and we have a triple threat in the passing game for the first time in a while.
It still could be a long season, of course… I haven’t seen much tendency for Chiefs coaches to open things up, so 13-10 games may become the norm. If that’s the case, even the wins could be tough to watch. I never thought I’d say it, but I’m longing for the days of Dick Vermeil again. How nice was it to have an offense that could seemingly score at will? No matter how far behind we fell, it always seemed there was still hope for a victory.
The play of the game? Neither of Jared Allen’s sacks… not the Jared Allen forced fumble… not even Dwayne Bowe’s touchdown catch. The play of the game belongs to KC Wolf, who assisted security personnel in tackling a drunk fan on the field. Great form… great pursuit… I’m thinking he needs to join the Chiefs defense!
Anyway… the next three weeks will be interesting… San Diego on the road (which, realistically, you can pretty much write off as a loss), then Jacksonville and Cincinnati at home. With the Raiders up after that, we could be anything from 4-3 to 2-5 going into the bye week. I’m hoping the former, but only time will tell.
September 21st, 2007 | Comments Off | Posted in » Baptist Issues, Worth Reading
Every church needs at least one person like Ms. Grace.
September 16th, 2007 | 9 Comments | Posted in » In the News..., KC Chiefs
It’s week 2 of the NFL season, and time for episode 2 of “It Could be a Long Season”… my beloved Kansas City Chiefs lost a tough one to the Chicago Bears.
Problem 1? Complete lack of offensive creativity. When you’ve got an offensive line coach serving as offensive coordinator, and a head coach that absolutely loves 10-7 and 13-10 ballgames… I guess this is what you get. Here’s example one of our incredibly creative play-calling:
The first drive, play-by-play? Run, run, pass… run, run, pass… run, run, pass… punt. The next four drives? Three and out… a total of six three and outs for the game. We wait until it’s almost too late to start throwing the ball down the field… only twice in the first half, on the touchdown drive (coincidence? I think not.).
Problem 2? Horrific special teams play. On kickoff returns, the Chiefs managed to get the ball to the 18, 19, 31, 17, and 27 yard lines. And kick coverage? Well. Let’s just say this… Devin Hester, 73 yard punt return… touchdown. Devin Hester, 30 yard punt return to the Chiefs 19 (resulting in a Bears FG). Devin Hester, 97 yard kickoff return… touchdown (thankfully called back by penalty!).
All said, I only saw a couple redeeming plays for special teams the entire game… great coverage on the opening kickoff of the second half, holding Hester to a 10 yard return to the 17, and a very nice 45 yard FG from newly acquired kicker, Dave Rayner. (Of course, to temper that, he did have a 48 yarder blocked.)
Problem 3? Missed opportunities. When the Chiefs finallly got creative, we ran a flea-flicker for a TOUCHDOWN… only to see it called back by an illegal shift penalty. When we’re in sure FG position late in the game, Huard makes a poor throw to the endzone and has it intercepted. Late in the game, we’re moving downfield under BRODIE, BRODIE! … and Michael Bennett fumbles.
It’s hard enough to beat a team like Chicago, but to help them out by blowing opportunities? It’s nearly impossible.
I will note that there were a few highlights… Dwayne Bowe made one heck of a catch on the touchdown (robbing Tony Gonzalez of tying the NFL record for TDs by tight ends). Dave Rayner did drill a 45 yarder. And Brodie? He made four consecutive nice throws at the end. Too bad he didn’t get a chance to continue the drive.
Anyway… as with last week, there’s still hope for this to be a good day. Denver’s in trouble in OT at home versus the Raiders. Yes… the Raiders! Unbelievable.