Imran Awan, Former Aide to Diana DeGette Arrested

The mainstream media was quick to forget about the strange case of Democrat Congressional aide Imran Awan.

But, this story needs to see the light of day.

Read Philip Giraldi’s recent article below:

I wrote an article on the strange case of Imran Awan about two months ago. To summarize it briefly, Awan, his two brothers and wife, naturalized U.S. citizens born in Pakistan living in the Washington DC area, found employment as IT administrators in the House of Representatives working for as many as 80 Democratic Party congressmen. Even though they may have had little actual training in IT, they insinuated themselves into the system and were paid in excess of $5 million over the course of ten years, chief-of-staff level pay, while frequently not even showing up for work. They even brought into the arrangement a frequent no-show Pakistani friend whose prior work history consisted of getting recently fired by McDonald’s.

Along the way, their security files were never reviewed. They were involved in bankruptcies, bank fraud and other criminal activity, but their troublesome behavior was never noticed. They were on bad terms with their father and step-mother, which including forging a document to cheat their step-mother of an insurance payment and even holding her “captive” so she could not see their dying father. Their father even changed his last name to dissociate himself from them.

Imran Awan, the leader of the group, worked particularly for Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, who was, at the time, also the Chairman of the Democratic National Committee. Though he had no clearance and was not supposed to work with classified material, he and his family obtained password access to congressional files and Imran himself was able to enter Wasserman-Schultz’s own personal iPad computer which linked to the server used by the Democratic National Committee.

Read the rest on UNZ: http://www.unz.com/pgiraldi/more-on-imran-awan/

Political Violence in the Age of Personal Technology

June 14th’s shooting of Rep. Steve Scalise has quickly faded into the past in the age of near-instant news cycles.

Yet, anyone concerned with the future of our state, our country, and our civilization should pay attention to the uptick of violence being used as a political tool.

The United States is no stranger to political violence.

Since our founding, we have seen rebellions, assassinations, riots, political insurrections, and even a war of secession.

Yet, in the 21st-century, recent technological developments have changed the nature of political violence:

Cell phones, the Internet, and the Personal Technology Revolution (PTR)

With nearly every American, from pre-teen to senior citizen, having a cellphone with them 24 hours a day, we have never been more connected.

The general trend of increasing access to information is having a tremendous impact on potential political activists.

As witnessed from the Wikileaks publications, government leaks and the now ever-present threat of computer hackers, previously restricted and private information is finding its way into the public domain.

Foreign Policy even went so far as to call the 2010 Tunisian Revolution, “The First Wikileaks Revolution.”

As Julian Assange, Anonymous and Edward Snowden become cult heroes to disaffected youth, we can only expect a growth in cyber-activism.

We can expect this cyber-activism to be more ideological based, as polarization increases and new extremes develop on both the Left and the Right.

PTR leading to increasing political polarization

Whether it is Facebook’s newsfeed algorithm or Google leading search results to specific “ideological agreeable” websites, our human tendency is to search out and promote what we agree with and avoid what we don’t agree with.

The social media experience for most Americans is being constantly bombarded with content that you “Like” and rarely if ever seeing anything you don’t like.

On my newsfeed, for example, I only see posts calling Democrats evil, warning of the soon-to-come Islamic invasion of America or highlighting the crimes of illegal aliens.

Of course, my newsfeed is tailored to my own preferences, interests, and friends, but, as technology and content continue to develop, a very narrow spectrum of political thought emerges for each of us.

This is true of those of us on the right and those on the left.

What this causes is a feedback loop that leads people to only experience a spectrum of political thought that reinforces previously held beliefs.

To put it simply, if someone only listens to “Alex Jones” type content, they will begin to see the world through the viewpoint of “Alex Jones.”

Over time, this may lead the social media user to believe that “their” narrow spectrum of political thought is shared by the majority, and that all others are in the minority.

This may also convince some that the use of violence is justified because they are constantly being exposed to information that reinforces that viewpoint.That’s why, as the PTR continues, I believe we will see increasing political violence.

That’s what happened to James Hodgkinson, Timothy McVeigh, and countless others.

That’s why, as the PTR continues, I believe we will see increasing political violence.

I hope I am wrong.

Why You Should Reconsider Donating to Your Alma Mater

How unaccountable SJW bureaucrats are stealing your donation and using it to subvert America.

Let’s face it, most of us are proud of our universities.

We made friends and memories there. We learned life lessons, overcame challenges, and got started on the path to our careers. And we were definitely better than those losers at X State down the highway or across town.

Sadly, many of the universities we remember no longer exist.

Sure, there are institutions that still bear their names and relentless alumni associations that still manage to hit you up for donations despite a dozen moves and a decade of overseas oilfield work.

Many of my older friends still loyally donate to their Alma Maters every year. They do so to repay the schools for the success they’ve earned in life and to help a new generation of professionals afford college.

These are noble intentions and I am thankful for the generosity of older alumni who helped me afford college.

Tragically, this stream of generosity is being hijacked by SJWs in university administrations and shockingly little alumni money goes to the purported causes.

SJW bureaucrats got their fingers in the cookie jar and are using the money to build their politically correct empires and safe spaces.

The goal of these parasites is to build an empire in their image.

They do this by finding a problem, such as incorrect gender pronouns or insufficient superficial diversity. Then the parasites prescribe a cumbersome “solution” to this problem. Speech codes, safe spaces, LGBQWTF counselors, microaggression hotlines, and other so called so called “solutions” are a parasite’s wet dream.

The solutions implemented by the SJW parasites serve two functions:

  1. They make work that allows the parasite to hire underlings. This allows the parasite to immediately reproduce itself and fill the administration with more SJWs.
  2. This allows the parasite to control student conduct and force a politically correct environment where conservatives and moderates can be punished for wrong-think.

Any donations to a general fund or endowment will support the parasites.

Administrators do not want to reduce costs to students (though they will claim otherwise). Any money that slips past them and goes to scholarships can’t be used for empire building. The school’s budget and therefore their empire size is bigger if they spend the donation and make the students take out loans.

Any money that slips past them and goes to scholarships can’t be used for “empire building.” The school’s budget and therefore their empire size is bigger if they spend the donation and make the students take out loans.

I’ve seen administrators try to “steal” a multimillion dollar donation that was earmarked for a particular cause and try to spend it on pet projects. The donation was pulled because the donor was paying attention (and is a tough multinational businessman).

Throughout the whole scandal, the administrators maintained that they could spend the money however they wanted in spite of any stipulations by the donor.

Friends from other colleges have disavowed their Alma Maters over scholarship money going to unnecessary building.

The parasites will expand to consume all available money. And they will do everything they can to force SJW approved discrimination on everyone at a school.

The bigger the parasite empire, the worse the discrimination and repression.

Donations that aren’t carefully controlled WILL go to aggrandizing the parasitic empire and oppressing conservatives.

Before you donate, make sure you the school you remember still exists. If it still exists, then make sure you can verify the destination of your donation.

If the SJWs will try to steal an earmarked multimillion dollar donation from a tough businessman, they won’t think twice about diverting a $500 donation from someone they don’t know to fear.

The Deplorable Doctoral Candidate is an engineer, climate skeptic, entrepreneur, critic of academia, and occasional blogger. You can follow him on Twitter: https://twitter.com/DepPhDcandidate

The Importance of Meal Planning and the Proper Use of a Grocery Shopping List

The Cost of Eating Out

Image Source: Flickr Tax Credits

 

As a nation, we eat out between four to five times per week on average. This equates to 18 times in an average month.

When compared to preparing meals at home, there is a lot of money involve here. The average cost of having a meal at home is under $2.00 per person. (LINK)

On average, Americans would save over $36 per week by preparing meals at home.

Health issues are also a concern with eating out. The average calories in a main course at a restaurant come in at around 1,900 and salt intake around 2,300 mg. (LINK)

That is a whole days worth of food for an average adult. If you continue this practice of overeating, you could develop health issues.

How Grocery Stores Create Impulse Buys

Many retailers bring in consultants and even psychologists to design store layouts to sway customers into making poor spending decisions. (LINK)

They set up displays in the front of the store to get you into the frame of mind to shop. Then as you walk farther into the store you smell the scents from the bakery department or the deli.

They position staples like milk or eggs in the back of the store so you have to pass by the canned goods and boxed goods to get to them. The check outs are in the front of the store so you have to pass by those items again to pay for your purchases.

A definitive shopping list and a set of blinders on your eyes can help you avoid these temptations.

Creating a Grocery Shopping List

A good rule of thumb is to make a menu for at least a week at a time, longer if you can. I suggest you list this menu in the upper right hand corner of your list, with all the needed ingredients and side dishes down the left side of your paper, so as not to forget a needed item.

Also list some snacks and desserts to prevent unplanned shopping trips. To be successful you must stick to this list. You will find you do not waste food, it is all accounted for in your menu.

General Tips For Saving Money on Foods

Develop a good coupon program and check these after you have made your list. Digital coupons are getting very prevalent but remember these are usually loss leaders, just there to get you into the store and possibly buy impulse items.

Usually store brands or generic items are less expensive than brand names, but not always. Position of store brands and generics are usually lower than eye level. Consider Target with their “Cartwheel” app offers and other discounts if these are convenient. Stock up when staples or meats are a really great offer.

Buy a freezer if you can for the meats and frozen items. Make home cooking fun and when you can, make enough for a 2nd or 3rd meal, leftovers are super easy to prepare with hardly any clean up.

In Conclusion

When you prepare your own meals, you know who cooked them and with practice and research you can make you dishes taste better then restaurant food.

Keep the money in your pocket and enjoy meals you make yourself.

The Theory and Implementation Of Float and the Value of Credit Card Use

Editor’s Note: This column is designed to provide food for thought and should not used to replace financial advice from a qualified expert. Colorado Citizen Press Does Not offer financial advice.

The Concept of Float

A basic definition of Float is making a purchase first, and have the expense later.

In an Economic class I attended at Colorado State University (CSU) in the 70s, float was discussed as the time it takes for a check written to a merchant to actually hit your checking account.

I know very few people that write checks anymore, but the theory of float still works with credit cards.

Using most credit cards allows you a float time with no interest to pay for a purchase, usually 30 days from the statement date.

Unfortunately, nearly half of millennials do not use credit cards like this. (According to George Washington University)

What are they doing wrong?

Nearly half of millennials only pay the minimum payments on their credit cards.

Yet, from the same study, 74% claim they are good at dealing with day to day financial matters.

Using credit cards with float in mind should mean that you have a mindset and the ability to pay that charge off when due or you need to find a way to defer or delay the credit card interest.

Credit-Cards

The Value Of Credit Card Use

Using credit responsibly can have a positive affect on your credit score. This can open the doors for low interest loans and favorable credit decisions in the future.

Many credit cards offer cash back options or other perks like airline miles or discounts at hotels.

Fraudulent charges on your credit cards, if disputed in a reasonable time, usually will result in no financial obligation to the real card holder.

Some credit cards offer free extended warranties with a purchase with their card.

Some cards will allow you to have deferred or delayed interest on major purchases.

With most credit cards you can now track your purchases online.

In Conclusion

Credit card use can be clean, convenient and safe.

However, if not controlled it can wreck havoc on your financial situation.

Once you get to the point where you can pay off your balances every month, or even just pay the minimum due on time to a deferred or delayed billing charge, don’t look back.

It should become an obsession with you.

Pay off most cards and find one that pays you back with something you like, either cash or some kind of reward, and one that you feel comfortable with.

Bottom Line Boomer has lived in Colorado for 40 years and has been a lifelong student of personal finance. His goal is to help provide a much needed education on personal finance for today’s world.

The Republican Party Deserve Better Than Another Darryl Glenn

The 2016 Elections

“Winning isn’t everything; it’s the only thing” is a quote long attributed to UCLA football coach Henry Russell “Red” Sanders, and the 2016 elections proved just that.

In 2016, Donald Trump pulled off one of the greatest political upsets of all time.  

With him be brought the type of campaign and marketing that make P.T. Barnum and Teddy Roosevelt look soft-spoken.  

At the same time Mike Coffman stared the political grim reaper in the eye and once again survived November unscathed.  

Regardless of how you feel about Trump or Coffman, they showed that hard work wins elections.

Yet in a year of political ups and downs, Darryl Glenn started at the bottom and got nowhere.

Where Donald Trump flew to battleground states and argued for his vision of America, Mike Coffman hit the streets talking to voters and winning their votes.

Where even the Senate Republicans fought the good fight and held onto their single-seat majority, Darryl Glenn remained all but invisible.

Now, almost a year later, with Darryl Glenn jumping head-first into the Congressional primary against sitting Representative Doug Lamborn and Owen Hill, it’s important to look back on why Darryl Glenn lost his Senate campaign.

There’s quite about you can say about Darryl Glenn’s loss.  Even now, looking back makes it all seem crazy and cartoon-like.

TV-AD

Darryl Glenn’s Cartoon-like TV Ad

 Did Glenn Lie on the Campaign Trail?

Just mere hours after Glenn handedly won the Republican nomination, the campaign was plague by one gaffe after another as stories about Glenn’s past assault charge started to emerge.

At first Glenn denied he ever went to jail.  

Within 48 hours he changed his story to blame somebody with the same name, then his brother, and the DNC.

It seemed like everybody was to blame but Glenn.  

So it came as no surprised that ultimately he laid blame to his father with a story that just didn’t pass the smell test.

It wasn’t just that his story seemed fishy.  It seems very unlikely that somebody would forget going to jail.

As I was soon to find out, half-truths and the blame game were seemingly the norm for Darryl Glenn.  

After hearing about his announcement this week, I reached out to numerous donor and political consultants around Colorado about Glenn.

Not surprisingly many thought Glenn himself cost Republicans the Senate on the sole issue that Darryl Glenn refused to put in the work and simply couldn’t be trusted.

Fundraising Trouble


One donor stated on a condition of anonymity, “I remember after the primary Darryl Glenn had told Kyle Clark that his fundraising was going well… Darryl told me the exact same thing… then a couple of weeks later the news said the campaign was $200,000 in debt.” The donor continued, “After that Darryl Glenn claimed he forgot about his night in jail and kept changing his position on Trump almost daily… I felt like he was never honest with me.”

That was only one of numerous stories I was told by people who still feel a bad taste in their mouth about Darryl Glenn.  

Who am I to argue with them?  

For months after Cory Gardner won his U.S. Senate seat the RNC was practically foaming at the mouth to take out Michael Bennet.  They went so far as to state it publicly.

Yet after months of being lied to, after dealing with a campaign that refused to make fundraising a priority, the story amongst the political consultants I talked to is that Darryl Glenn is too lazy and too dishonest to work with.

in a game where winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing… in a game where redistricting and the future of Colorado is on the line… in a game where hard work and honesty are valued, Colorado and the Republican Party deserve better than Darryl Glenn.

For the people of the fifth Congressional district, you deserve better as well.

The Process and Necessity of Having an Emergency Fund

This is part of the ongoing series of articles by Bottom Line Boomer. The purpose is to help individuals gain financial knowledge for today’s world.

What is an Emergency Fund?

An Emergency Fund is accessible money to help maintain your financial life when an emergency occurs.

Think of it as your own personal lifestyle insurance.

According to a recent survey, nearly half of American adults say they could not cover a $500 emergency expense.

Such expenses like unexpected medical bills, home or auto repair, a sudden need to travel to visit an ailing friend or relative, or even a job loss would send many Americans into debt!

Without these funds you may be forced to use high interest credit cards, take out loans, borrow from a friend or relative, or even file for bankruptcy.

EmergencyFund

How should I setup an Emergency Fund?

The funds should be accessible as you may need them quickly.

I recommend having more than one fund that you can access.  For immediate and smaller expense situations, you should have actual cash on hand.

This fund will be the smallest but the most accessible.  This should be stored in a fire-proof lock box or a safe.

Once you have actual cash on hand safely stored, move on towards setting up a savings account.

The bulk of the readily available funds should be saved in a savings account, preferably not one that you would see every day.

Other options for very dire situations can be cash value in a life insurance policy, after tax funds in a 401k, ( as long this is not part of your retirement funds), and a home equity line of credit.

My recommended fund value varies from a minimum of $1,000 to 3-6 months living expenses.  I feel 3 months is adequate for most, but your situation may be different.

There are many ways to fund these accounts, but most importantly you should be passionate and make it fun!

Make your weekly savings goal attainable.

Saving just $25 per week will give you $1,300 in only one year!

Cutting some wasteful variable expenses weekly will easily net the $25.

But other ways are to put any tax refunds, bonuses from work and even some extra money from a fun part time job into your Emergency Funds.

In conclusion, an Emergency Fund is the foundation of any financial plan.

To review, start with actual cash on hand in a safe. Then, start a savings account and have a disciplined saving budget.

With these funds in place you will have peace of mind knowing that you will have a bridge over troubled waters and will help you begin to secure your financial future.

Next week we will cover the theory and implementation of float and the value of credit card use.

Bottom Line Boomer has lived in Colorado for 40 years and has been a lifelong student of personal finance. His goal is to help provide a much needed education on personal finance for today’s world.

Never Forget

Slap on the sunscreen and fire up the grill, but let’s not forget what we’re celebrating on July 4th.

241 years ago, less than 3% of our Nation’s men mobilized to take on tyranny, by declaring independence from Great Britain .

The great pain of war would follow, but for these men, and hopefully for you me, the fight to preserve our Natural rights of life, liberty, and property was worth the sacrifice.

It is believed for every twenty able men serving in the war, one lost his life.

Look at what these great men of liberty had to say during that time period:

The preservation of the sacred fire of liberty, and the destiny of the Republican model of Government, are justly considered as deeply, perhaps as finally staked, on the experiment entrusted to the hands of the American people.– George Washington 

My God! How little do my countrymen know what precious blessings they are in possession of, and which no other people on earth enjoy!  – Thomas Jefferson

The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government. – Thomas Jefferson

The question is, not what rights naturally belong to man, but how they may be most equally and effectually guarded in society. – Roger Sherman

So, today as we hang out with family and friends gazing upon the fireworks lighting up the sky, let us use that moment to remember how blessed we are to live in this great land of liberty we call the United States of America.

Then tomorrow let’s get back to work because as Thomas Paine said, “Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom, must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it.

Happy Independence Day from the team at Colorado Citizen Press.

Future

EXCLUSIVE: Interview with the Lowest-rated Legislator (according to the Progressive Left)

On June 26, Colorado’s Progressive Network put out a scorecard for each of Colorado’s 100 State Legislators.

The score is a compilation of ratings from eight (8) Colorado Liberal Groups:

One Colorado,

Conservation Colorado,

Colorado Education Association,

Colorado AFL-CIO,

Women’s Lobby of Colorado,

Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition,

NARAL Pro-Choice Colorado, and

Planned Parenthood Votes Colorado

As expected, most Democrats scored very high and most Republicans scored low – with the most conservative Republicans at the bottom of the barrel.  There are a total of 54 Democrats and 46 Republicans in both the Senate and House chambers.

The rating of 1 to 100 (100 being the best for the liberals) features 36 Democrats getting perfect scores of 100 and all the rest scoring in the 90’s, except one slipping down to 87 (unfortunately due to his role on the Joint Budget Committee).

Only two Republicans managed to get into the 60’s (Sen. Don Coram and Rep. Dan Thurlow) while most of them (21) landed in the teens.

However, four House Republicans (zero Senate Republicans) managed to push their voting records into the single digits.  And one, the lowest score and perhaps the least favorite legislator of Colorado Liberals is Rep. Tim Leonard with only a score of 7.

On June 30th, we met with Rep. Leonard to ask him what he thought about being the legislator with the lowest Progressive score.  

Here’s our exclusive interview:

Citizen Press: Representative Tim Leonard, thank you for speaking with us today.

Rep. Leonard:  Always a pleasure to met with you.

Citizen Press: How does it feel to be the lowest rated legislator according to Colorado’s Liberal Progressives?

Rep. Leonard:  (laughing)  It feels great!  But did you realize our new generation of Progressives are so radical that they don’t even liked to be called “liberals” anymore?  

A low rating from these groups is a requirement for me – and they don’t expect anything else either.  They know me and we pleasantly pass on having to lobby each other.  Good people, but their ideas get hashed about every 50 years or so – just as a second generation is forgetting the conversations of their grandparents.  The Communists/Marxists in Woodrow Wilson’s day and the Communists/Socialists in Kennedy’s Day.  The same ideas are back based around the same theme:  I want more without having to work for it.  This has been our condition since Day One.  Wasn’t that Adam and Eve’s problem?  Having everything and then wanting a little more.

Interview

Rep. Tim Leonard received the lowest rating from Colorado’s Radical Left

So ranking lowest on this scale means I was a staunch defender of our constitutional rights, limited government, and fiscal responsibility.  Which I am.  I don’t get distracted with all the social issues and agenda items of these special interest groups.  So thanks to them for helping me define myself to my constituents.  I hope they blast out that scorecard.

Citizen Press: Were you surprised by any of the ratings?

Rep. Leonard:  Not at all.  This year there were a lot of radical bills put out in the House where the Democrats had the majority.  And since the Democrats are trained, ordered actually, to vote one way, there is a guarantee that those bills will pass out of the House.  The most radical ones, which these groups hand up to their favorite Democrat, pass with only Democrat votes.  It always amazes me though to see how lockstep the Democrats are in voting.  It makes me wonder what principles really form their debates.  Even after the Bernie/Hillary conflicts, I thought there would be more discussion in the Democrat Party on ideas.  Guess not.

Citizen Press: Do you believe that this rating could hurt you during your 2018 reelection campaign?

Rep. Leonard:  Are you kidding me?!  I have to figure out how to make a mailer out of this!

Just look at these organizations.  They are pure activists and lobby groups.  They funnel money from leftist billionaires in New York and California and then shuffle the funds around to each other to make themselves look bigger.  Eight different groups with only three main purposes:  keep abortions legal, plentiful, and subsidized;  create as many special groups that are not heterosexual to give the appearance of something other than the tiny minority they are, and then convey on them special rights to be intolerant to others; and third, divide the rest of the good people of Colorado into more separate groups like women, workers, immigrants etc, so they can make everyone angry at everyone and “fight for our rights!”  Conservatives like me just look at all these groups and call them Americans living in America with the greatest form of government, a Constitutional Republic, and the best economic system, free enterprise.  We are all in this together, so why spew so much division.  Unless it gains them more power in a more powerful government.  Hmmmm.

Whoops, I forgot two groups:  teachers unions and earth worshipers. Now I’m not talking about teachers and conservationists.  I’m talking about the unions that take cuts out of every teacher’s paycheck every month and use it to grow a bigger public education machine by funneling tax money toward themselves.  And I’m talking about environmentalists that view the earth and its resources at a higher value than mankind and our quality of life.  I am not talking about being good stewards of the land, water, animals, and air that we have been given to enjoy and use wisely.  I am talking about those that think the Earth is the deity and Man subservient.  

Did you look at some of the bills these groups thought were so important as to rate them as defining their organization?  These are the bills they think that the average working family in Colorado puts above the freedom to just live their lives without government in their way every time they turn the corner:

The Right to Change your Birth Certificate  — so if you change the gender with which you identify, you can change you birth certificate so your past gender doesn’t haunt you in the future.

Keep funding a children’s survey that asks every personal question imaginable about sexual identity, activity, and homosexuality.  Just reading the survey will make you blush if you don’t live in the world of sexual exaggeration.  I think that’s called lasciviousness.

Or how about the bill to ban counseling to kids under 18 years old to help them work through their hormonal changes.  This bill would have made it illegal to help them with their heterosexuality, but legal to push them into the homosexual behaviors and lifestyle.

These are just some of the bills they rated.  These eight groups think this is what Coloradans “value” over constitutional rights, good choices in public schools, well-maintained roads, and a dependable law enforcement and court system.  Are they crazy?  These groups are so wrapped up in their obsession with acceptance of homosexual behavior and the guilt-free killing of innocent unborn babies, that they think the rest of us are, too.  

Well, news flash:  my votes against these bills and for other bills that they objected to, like the free exercise of religion, are what the voters in my district want.  Sensible, simple, and sound government.  Not radical yelling by radical groups whipping up noise for their own agendas.

Sorry, that was kind of a long answer – I got whipped up there.

Citizen Press:  What do you think about some of the Republicans with high ratings in the 40’s, 50’s and even two in the 60’s?

Rep. Leonard:  These Republicans only hurt the Republican brand.  It’s like owning a coffee shop that starts selling more and more food and drinks.  Pretty soon, when folks ask where a good coffee shop is around here, you don’t even come to mind.  Stick with what you love and get better at it.  Republicans have a knock-out platform:  full of liberty, freedom, individual responsibility, free market solutions, and limited Constitutional government.  I love it and promote it every chance I get.  And that means every bill I vote on, I read; and I ask myself if this new law will make our citizens more free to choose, families more free to raise and educate their kids, and business more able to keep the fruits of their labor.  That’s why I vote No on all the Liberal bills – they just want to expand government into every area of our lives.

Back to our lukewarm Republicans.  If their voters, and us fellow legislators, cannot count on them to vote according to the party platform, then we’d be better off with them switching to the Democrat Party and getting the Dems upset with spoiling their brand.  But at least they would have to fight their party less and could go home feeling good about all the money they gave to every group that walked in the door and how they solved problem after problem with the Big Smart Hand of Government.

Good ideas come from an exchange of thoughts based upon different principles so each side can better understand the view of the other.  Republicans that don’t understand what they should stand for do no service to anyone; they are just reeds blowing in the wind.

Citizen Press: Thank you for discussing the score card, if you have time, we would like to get your input on a few more issues facing Colorado.

Rep. Leonard:  Ok, shoot.

Citizen Press: Where do you think the future of politics in Colorado is going?  Will we see Republicans take back control of the State House?

Rep. Leonard:  I am no political analyst, nor do I have any desire to predict a bigger picture.  And personally, while I see the value in a majority in each chamber, my stomach turns over when the Republicans that got us that majority forget their platform and vote according to another worldview.  I’m a big believer in the End Never Justifies the Means.  When you add that to my knowledge that we have a big God, then anything is possible – all I have to be responsible for is my own words and actions.  God will take care of the rest.

Citizen Press: So you’re not really going to answer my question.  Alright, how about the national political scene.  Does it affect your job here in the State Capitol?

Rep. Leonard:  I just got asked by another newspaper today on my opinion about the health care discussions going on in Washington.  Maybe the media is seeing a growing trend on the affect of Washington’s decision on the common man.  A concept I think is a shame.  We should be so free to live our lives that the chit chat that comes from Washington ought never affect our everyday lives.  Now the President signs an Executive Order on one day, and my health insurance penalty is immediately postponed.  That’s not the way to run a government.  And not the design of our founding fathers.

Ok. Washington.  Yes, I think when Obama was in, the Democrats were emboldened to push their agenda of big government funded with lots of taxes.  The Republican’s heads were spinning playing defense.  A lot of freedoms were lost.  Now the energy is reversed and the Democrats are spinning in defense, except the Republicans are not scrambling to get those liberties back.  That’s the crying shame.  Obamacare needs to be repealed.  Immediately and thoroughly.  The tragedy is that the longer it exists, the tougher it is to transition to a free market system.  Hey, if a thousand businesses in the middle of the desert in Las Vegas can get ten thousand pounds of seafood every day to a hundred thousand happy customers, then the market can figure out how to match doctors and patients without the government.

Washington needs to let us keep our fuel tax revenue so we can build our own roads without their interference.  And they need to stay out of our schools – we don’t need their Common Core program so another round of educrats can get their hands on tax money.  And we certainly don’t need all their interference in welfare!  Among the Feds, the State, and the Counties, we have so many programs that we need programs to manage programs!

Citizen Press: In your opinion, what are the defining issues of the 2018 election season going to be?

Rep. Leonard:  Well I know sanctuary city issues will be coming up because I hear about new Democrat candidates running solely on that issue.  The just don’t get it:  all that regular Coloradans hear when Democrats talk about sanctuary cities is that they want to harbor illegal criminals and give them special rights that the rest of us don’t have.   Meanwhile the liberals work overtime to change the legal vocabulary written in Federal Code, “illegal aliens”, to undocumented immigrants so the audience will sympathize with a foreigner who wants to come to America but just doesn’t have his paperwork together.  That worked for a few years, but pictures of the endless streams of 20-year-old men coming to Europe and leaving their mothers and sisters behind in their war-torn country while they terrorize little Swedish and Belgian towns, is not playing any more.  Folks are waking up that refugees are coming in for a different reasons than their great-grandparents.

Medicaid expansion will have to be dealt with.  With Obamacare pushing 1,400,000 Coloradans into Medicaid, the State is now spending $6,600,000,000 on these folks who are now longer the poorest and most needy among us.  Can anyone honestly say that 1 out of 5 Coloradans is too poor to care for themselves?  For perspective, free public education has been in our state Constitution since its ratification in 1876.  It now cost the state $5.5B to educate 866,000 public school students.  Look how health care welfare has pushed by that in only four years!

It will take some fiscal discipline to handle these issues and I hope we have some Republicans ready to lead and stay together on budget problems.  Minority Leader Patrick Neville has been great along with the rest of the Republican House leadership team.  Maybe a chiropractic adjustment for a few others will help their spine.  I know I will do my job.  And hopefully get a woefully low rating again next year from those wanting to explode our budget.

Citizen Press:  Well, thanks for taking the time today to give our readers an idea of what a non-liberal progressive sounds like…

Rep. Leonard:  Oh, there’s still more where that came from!

Citizen Press:  I’m sure there is, but enough for today.  Thanks for your time.  (And good coffee, by the way.)

Rep. Tim Leonard serves in the State House for Colorado House District 25 representing western Jefferson County.

Personal Finance: A Necessary Education

Finance

As someone who was born in the 1950s, I’ve seen a lot of changes in our society.

Growing up, I heard stories of the Great Depression, then I saw gas shortages and the savings and loan bust, and most recently the dot com bust.

To put it mildly, our finanical world has gone through a lot in my lifetime.

Do today’s youth understand how easy it is to lose everything?

Many of today’s youth have never heard stories of what happened during the Great Depression.

Many of today’s millennials in America are so detached from poverty that they can barely understand it.

I personally knew people who were living in conditions that would shock many of today’s millennials.

That’s why I wasn’t surprised when I read this recent survey on the financial health of Americans.

The Survey: 49% of Americans Live Paycheck to Paycheck

Nearly half of all Americans are living paycheck to paycheck according to a new survey done by GoBankingRates.

Whether it’s a friend, relative or co-worker, we all know someone who is struggling to get by financially.

What’s especially concerning to me is that many (if not most) Millennials and younger Americans have no idea how to budget their monthly income, account for expenses or even understand what they are getting themselves into when they use a credit card.

I’m not alone in thinking that financial knowledge should be included in any person’s education.

I’m hoping to help provide some useful information for America’s youth by writing weekly posts on Colorado Citizen Press.

To start, I want to lay out a basic outline.

So, what are the key fundamentals that people should learn for financial education?

In my opinion, some of the most important steps are:

  1. The process and necessity of having an emergency fund.
  2. The theory and implementation of float and the value of credit card use.
  3. The importance of meal planning and the proper use of a grocery shopping list.
  4. Planning for the future and retirement.
  5. Tips to save money on everyday activities.

I’m going to expand on this in future posts.

I hope you will provide any information you think is important for financial education in the comments below.

Bottom Line Boomer has lived in Colorado for 40 years and has been a lifelong student of personal finance. His goal is to help provide a much needed education on personal finance for today’s world.