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Archive for November 2012

Government– Same Turkey Outside, but Who Changed the Stuffing?

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I think that “Government” has been Gutted & Stuffed with Nonprofit/For-profit Alliances.  How about you?


So what does the word “government” mean to you?  

How hard have you thought about it lately?

~ ~ ~ ~

Does it mean something funded by taxes,

managed by people accountable to us

(the people paying for it)

and which only collects those taxes 

for the (essential) services it provides?

Below, the question is posed:

Do you own Government? Or, does Government own you?

Anyone know how to answer this last multiple choice question? Which is truth and which is myth?

 

Words have connotations and associations, but only after examining what they refer to, and seeing that reality in action (in motion — in process) can we understand the reality these words point to.  It takes time and attention.  But first you have to “find the thing!”

You can get to a slice of turkey, probably, in the USA somehow today, and have seen photographs, or even the live birds — but can you say that about government, although you probably interact with several of its body parts (in action, not on a roasting pan) in daily life.

To the extent you (or I) don’t understand who and what “government” is — you, and yours, and your offspring (if any) are very probably, the turkey (dinner, that is)….

Mine already were, which is why I write about these things….My current impression of “government.” (click or hover for more detail than you wanted…)

As I’m looking at it now, …. and have been for years … “(the last vestiges of representative) Government” has been Gutted & Stuffed with Nonprofit/For-profit Alliances.

I have deduced from the data that this is so, prior to finding others who came to the same conclusion, one of whose claims I’m posting and discussion here.

It appears that government has been gutted, and a stuffing mixed with nuts, nonprofits and for-profits (private corporate interests) has been inserted.  It has been baked til done, apparently, and served up, usually when demanding more patriotism or fiscal support, as a true feast of the people.

So many things have literally changed “government.”  Wars, the revision of the financial systems, science and technology, the tax system (enabling for-profit, not for profit status), you name it.  It’s hardly “Federal-State-County-Municipal” and that’s it.  It’s also much more than “three  branches of government in every state, just like in the federal government.”  Good grief, that concept is archaic.

Don’t take just my word for it, I’m just the messenger.  I see this myself, not just experienced, but the follow-up investigation.  I call the primary research.  People far more qualified than I in the very things I was researching (in a narrower application, though, i.e., the family courts) are in agreement, and they should also be heard. The heart of this post today was inspired from a January 2012 piece by Walter Burien (CAFR1.com).  However the lime-green-background intro, and this next quote, is from a January 2011 interview by Catherine Austin Fitts.  Neither of them bears any responsiblity for what I say, or how I interpret their stuff.   I just now good reason, and priorities when I see them.

“Essentially there is no government as many of us think of it.”

It’s beyond time more of us got our thinking caught up to the reality, and found accurate, relevant ways to say what happened, what is, and what that means.  Straight talk, as it were.

(I originally cited this over at “Why Baltimore’s CAFRs are MIA — “Audit Baltimore” Tells Us.”  I am not through posting on Baltimore.  Some of these interim posts simply are laying the table for understanding its issues (and relevance to our issues) better)

Quoted from:”Straight Talk with Catherine Fitts:  We are Victims of a Financial Coup D’Etat” by Adam Taggart, posted January 30, 2011
. . .the members of the Administration have no way of guaranteeing their safety and the safety of their families if they defy orders of those who have the weaponry and power to enforce their will by any means necessary.This means that essentially there is no government as many of us think of it. It also means that the governmental mechanism is quite fractured, with many competing interests that lack an organizing mission. They simply share an organizing imperative to control and concentrate credit and cash flow and to enforce the liquidity of currency and credit that makes the system go.Since WWII, the American economy has been “fiscalized.” By that I mean that {{#1}} most households, state and municipal governments, and local economies have become highly dependent on federal government credit, contracts, subsidies, and other forms of income and {{#2}} are heavily regulated by federal agencies. This widespread dependency on the federal financial mechanism is the basis for extraordinary central control.
….
Ms. Fitts also was quoted (this was an interview) as saying:
The federal financial model is institutional, and its ultimate governance is outside of the government. …the federal government lacks sovereignty.It lacks financial sovereignty– it is financially dependent on the banks that control its depository and slush funds, create the currency through the Federal Reserve and manage the accumulated capital of the same syndicates outside the government.It lacks information sovereignty as its data, information, and payments systems are controlled and operated by private corporations, primarily defense contractors. If we could dig out the true ownership of both banks and defense contractors, my guess is that it would look identical.. . .Between 1998 and 2002, over $4 trillion went missing from the federal government. During the Clinton, Bush, and Obama administrations, the US Treasury has consistently refused to produce audited financial statements, as required by law since 1995, or account for missing funds.This is two decades of financial operations run completely outside of the US Constitution and the law.In short, whether from the centralized private interests that own and control the federal financial mechanism or a large population that is financially dependent on it, the fundamental economics are institutionalized.

There is a chilling quote on this “straight-talk” interview, I am posting at the very bottom today.  For those who don’t know the Fitts story, there are links to the right.

Four things I really appreciate also about Walter Burien’s writings around the Comprehensive Annual Financial Reports and other economic/government matters:

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Written by Let's Get Honest

November 20, 2012 at 5:08 pm

Whither, Oh Father(hood), shall I flee from thy presence? (A Few FAQs).

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Be patient with the Bible quotes– I’m contrasting “faith” which the Bible of course talks about, with “faith-based” which word just ain’t in there, although now it was inserted by US President George W. Bush, an Executive Order marking the beginning of his reign Administration since 2001, and has remained a central feature of federal family and fatherhood policy (even in the “Change” Administration which has followed.  Did that change?  Not much!), despite complete lack of definition even in the corporate world.    What is a “faith-based” corporation? IRS has a few designations, like “religious-exempt” but does corporate law apart from that? I’ve spent a lot of time on various secretary of state sites over the years (2009ff anyhow) — and I’ve yet to see a searchable field called “faith based.” …. Even Taggs.HHS.gov doesn’t have a sortable field:  “faith-based, Yes/No” or even a Grantee Type or Class…

Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships


Psalm 139 speaks in wonder and awe about how no one can flee the presence of God, and how wonderful that is.  For those who have faith (even “as a grain of mustard seed”) it is indeed comforting to contemplate that, “even if I should make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there.”

This is to be a good and comforting quality and leads into a determination to praise:

1<> O LORD, thou hast searched me, and known me.2Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my thought afar off.

3Thou compassest my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways.

4For there is not a word in my tongue, but, lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether.

5Thou hast beset me behind and before, and laid thine hand upon me.

6Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain unto it.

7Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence?

8If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there.

9If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea;

10Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.

11If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover me; even the night shall be light about me.

12Yea, the darkness hideth not from thee; but the night shineth as the day: the darkness and the light are both alike to thee.

13For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb.

14I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.

David was a fugitive from the king and spent a period of time living in caves, and on the run, from his jealous predecessor, Saul.  Generations later, Paul (a.k.e. Saul of Tarsus; no king, but a Pharisee) also fell afoul of religious authorities of his time (after having betrayed his colleagues by converting from persecution followers of Jesus Christ and throwing them in jail, to preaching Christ and being whipped, stoned, thrown in jail (escaped a few times) and in general living like someone with no home.  He wrote in “Romans 8” also movingly about the pervasive love of God in Christ Jesus.  Apparently this was written from prison, or at least house-arrest in Rome.

 35Who shall separate us from the love of Christshall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

36As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.

37Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. 38For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 39Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

In all these things, in other words, there is “the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Paul, as it goes, known as “apostle to the Gentiles” learned the hard way about profiling people by their religious affiliations, and after having caused major suffering, himself, later suffered.

While he did have a lot to say about “faith” strangely, he said nothing at all about “faith-based,” nor did he (as do the Mormons, or the Unification church) apparently believe that the unmarried were per se inferior, or single mothers, “anathema.”  Galatians 5, you can see the word “faith” figures prominently, but in context, it’s referring to a specific thing, apparently: faith came, faith was revealed, it justified, faith in Christ Jesus [in context, including the resurrection from the dead] enables people to become “children of God”

23But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. 24Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith25But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. 26For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus27For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus29And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

In one sense, it could be said the entire Bible is to elicit faith in  a specific gospel and prophecies.

The concept of something being kinda-sorta “faith-based” and as such, deserving of special consideration, is nowhere to be found.  Please see also segment in green, above, especially the third “there is neither” phrase.  Thank you.  The equalizer in this context is “in Christ Jesus.”

“Faith-Based”

I should not have to mention this, except that nowadays, it’s the “faith-based” and  gender-based (fatherhood) program material that there’s nowhere to flee from, the moment anyone enters the Federal room — which we are all pretty much operating in, in this country.  You work a legitimate job, (or business) you have a social security number, you pay towards the central pool, you are participating in producing some of these grant programs.

If perchance you end up on the wrong side of the law, it’s likely you may end up (and much MORE likely if you are male, and of a certain skin color) in some of the places operated by the Federal Bureau of Prisons.  Or contracted out to private corporations.  You may end up in jail.  However, if you are living in a household without a father, and with an independent-minded single mother who fights for custody — or in ignorance of the powers that be, applies for child support, or federal assistance for things like FOOD — you are also possible fodder for the Foster Care System (if it’s not possible to find a father to reconnect you with).  

I have been working hard to understand this and come to the conclusion that the whole system appears to revolve around the letter “F.”  “F” in school is not a passing grade, but “F” in this context is fine, wonderful, friendly, family-oriented, and federally-favorable.

And it seems there is nowhere to flee from its reach either.  I’m saying this on behalf of a number of cases (in different states) where mothers are fighting either to reconnect with children in foster care, or to prevent from losing custody to a criminal whose outreach program included a faith-based fatherhood representative and related funding.

 “F,” must be it is Fun, Fair, and Family-Friendly; and should be Federally Funded.  After all, not one, but TWO, presidents who, amazingly, also were fathers* executively ordered it so.

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Written by Let's Get Honest

November 17, 2012 at 6:58 pm

General Blog Announcement — Check Links, Recent Posts, and/or “Cold,Hard.Fact$”

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I need to take some time off this blogging (as rewarding as it is to learn the information, urgent as the information as it is to get out, and despite how really urgent the times are).

For the past several days, I was of course (and as usual) in learning mode, and happy about this information and insight — but struggling with the presentation.  Kept losing chunks of text or formatting after having worked them into a good appearance.

I am having issues with learning a few new formatting tools (did you notice the two-column boxes with borders yet? ) and what I’m grasping (conceptually) needs a little more support or help as to platform and presentation.  This is resulting in  what I see are increasingly embarrassing posts (as to format).   I think that this format may compromise the very real value of the content — although obviously format and content are related.

And I need a change of pace, for sure.

In addition I am typically having the roller-coaster income situation which some call the “cycle” of family violence (with good reason).  Roughly translated, this means, that the status quo exists until someone (typically the target party or parties) makes a move to change the status quo of extreme control, and barely concealed malevolent hostility.

Someone reaches a tolerance limit (typically the controlled person) and makes a move to change the status quo, or exit the forced through threat association.  Things are then in flux, and at risk (they are being “unfrozen”) and there is the predictable power struggle to make the next “status quo” (frozen) situation WORSE.  It’s basically like wrestling, more than, say, “mixed martial arts.”  The difference is, there is no coach — no empire to force the parties to break their holds when someone is going to be injured.    You don’t get to “tap out” of situations like this once you start fighting back. At all points someone is seeking to assess the other one for future strongholds, vulnerabilities.

The other apparent thrill someone gets is from privately weakening the parties (‘off the radar’) then getting a nice public demonstration of a “win.”  It’s one SICK game, overall, in which there are never two winners — there’s only a vanquished foe, or there is war.  And it’s not a game to one of the participants.  It sometimes appears to be sport for the others.  They get breaks.  We get “marathon training” with unpredictable breaks.  As such, we (those in the ‘target’ situation) do not either get to engage in a normal, socially acceptable work/life balance or build towards that kind of stability– because approaching this stability or independence of movement, angers the others involved.

I’m saying this openly, it’s intergenerational.

It is the incremental and cumulative losses that have to be looked at, and strengths-assessment, stamina, etc.

As with families (intergenerationally), so also to some extent, with countries.

I feel safe to say that we are, overall, at war in this country — and that this war is for a centralized control (increasingly) and it has an “endgame” which, sorry to say, ain’t pretty.  It is waged on many levels which have a coordination that CAN be seen, however the primary capital and resource for this war, obviously has systems of collection — which are coordinated with propaganda.

Some people may last longer than others in this process, but those of us who have been put into repeat sliding downward motion and family disintegration process — which is the courts.

Meanwhile, there are some advocacy groups which simply need to be exposed.

They are endangering women and children, and what’s worse, there’s a level of deceit in their agenda which is beyond belief.  I plan to document and publicize it, knowing several people who have been involved in this, to the detriment (or certainly, not any real, tangible help) of the groups.

No one — but no one — in this situation can afford to ignore economic self-sufficiency & independence.  And the fact is that, in a parent relationship, if one party goes for assistance in the form of welfare, this will precipitate a child support order.

The child support order will pull in the welfare-diversions, fatherhood funding (a few million a pop), and a lot more unforeseen variables when there has been a violent or abusive relationship.  The power base in this scenario is how PRIVATE organizations are able to pull in FEDERAL (state, county, block grant, church and corporate foundation) wealth.

It’s a fault line socio-politico-economic-religious fault line that ain’t going to get fixed in the near future.  Unless someone truly has a “fix” for human nature.  And religion ain’t it — religion is behavior modification in corporate form.

In order to retain this, (or regain it), it sure does help to take a real look at how the many “helping” agencies and nonprofits function, inbetween preaching and training to the rest of us about how to get a job.

Anything below this line is a summary of thoughts, not necessarily in order.  I am pre-occupied these days, not writing effectively and working on a transition to better format — and a few personal transitions as well.  People who know me how to reach me, and I will respond to legitimate questions or comments submitted to the blog.

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Written by Let's Get Honest

November 15, 2012 at 6:50 pm

Are you a Citizen Intermediary? Then read the USA CAFR 2011 & what the GAO Audit thinks of it. (Then relay the message, because MSM won’t!)

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This post is a little rough.  I’ll revisit it in a day or so, wanted to get the links up. It’s pretty much self-serve although I have a few paragraphs of what it’s about.

 

I actually found where the government admits that it doesn’t REALLY intend its financial statements of cumulative net worth ,etc.** for everyone, just internal control, analysts and citizen intermediaries like the news media.

Then in the next breath it also says, it wants every American citizen to know, which must be why they are sinking their (not properly reconciled and monitored) funds into things like federal clearinghouses on marriage, fatherhood, domestic violence, to promote abstinence and expand welfare participation through the child support system, etc. . . . . and not into distributing and publicizing the fact that these (embarrassing, to the USA) reports exist.

And why this a condition of graduating from high school isn’t being able to get on a computer and find the CFR of one’s own high school district (probably a “Unified” school district), and a diagram of local government which is usually in the front of every CAFR.

(**which the GAO disclaims uttering any opinion on anyhow, because there are too many problems with the underlying reports from, oh, ca. 35 federal agencies…)

 

Get used to words like “billions,” “trillions” and “material weaknesses” etc.

USA CAFR 2011, and why the GAO disclaims to Issue an Opinion on it…

Here’s the website for some answers:

http://www.fms.treas.gov/fr/index.html  The CAFR can be seen there, but read the guide first.

Financial Report of the United States Logo  (they mean CAFR here….)

2011 Financial Report of the United States Government

HTML Format, by SectionNew
In order to make this Financial Report of the United States Government more useful and transparent to our readers, we have included HTML versions of each section, which allow readers to navigate through the Report much more quickly and easily, view the source data for the Report’s charts and graphs, and access other related sites and information.

Guide to Understanding the Annual Financial Report of the United States Government Exit FMS Web site

(the first thing the guide tells the reader is that it’s been pre-empted by another guide….  However, it does CLEARLY tell us who the USA feels it’s important to publicize the CAFR to — and only certain “Citizen Intermediaries” are really on the hit list.
This also confirms that media IS provided with copies of this.  They just aren’t talking about it much!
As it starts out:

Preface

The U.S. government is the largest, most diverse, most complex, and arguably the most important entity on earth today. Useful, timely, and reliable financial and performance information is needed to make sound decisions on the current results and future direction of vital federal programs and polices.

The Department of the Treasury, in coordination with the Office of Management and Budget, annually prepares the Financial Report of the United States Government, hereafter referred to as the Consolidated Financial Report (CFR). {{I have been calling them, and states usually do, “CAFRs”}}

The CFR is a general-purpose report of accountability intended internally for members of Congress, federal executives and federal program managers, and externally primarily for citizens and citizen intermediaries who are interested in and have a reasonable understanding of federal government activities and are willing to study the information with reasonable diligence. Citizen intermediaries include members of the news media, analysts, and others who analyze and interpret for the general public the more complex and detailed information in the CFR.

“study the information with reasonable diligence” is fair enough.  Publicizing it first to the News Media — and letting them and others “analyze and interpret” without saying, aloud, in print, and regularly “CFR” or providing the links to it so others willing to exert “reasonable diligence” (like they probably do at their own jobs) — is less than helpful, and no accident.  However, now the word is getting out.

The goal of the CFR, and the subject of this guide, is to make available to every American a comprehensive overview of the federal government’s finances.

I am sure that’s why it’s never mentioned during grades 9-12 (or earlier) by school districts throughout the country that CFRs exist and every school district has one.  But I guess they’re strapped with teaching kids basic math and reading , and convincing them there’s a reason to learn it..

I finally saw Catherine Austin Fitts refer to this in one of her writings; apparently people are so used to dealing with it in government they figure Citizens just automatically know about it!  And yet every CAFR (CFR) normally gives a beautiful flowchart and diagram of government units.  It’s a wonderful source of learning….

As described in the CFR, significant issues regarding the reliability and presentation of the federal government’s financial information still need to be addressed. For example, the Department of Defense’s current financial management problems present a significant impediment to our being able to express any opinion on the federal government’s consolidated financial statements. Also, additional transparency is needed in connection with intragovernmental debt, on-budget deficits, and the large and growing per capita and intergenerational burden associated with the federal government’s growing liabilities and unfunded commitments. At the same time, in its current form, the CFR offers certain valuable insights into the overall financial operations, condition, and financial outlook of the federal government. This information is becoming increasingly more useful as the nation’s accounting and reporting issues are resolved.

Government Accountability Office Report

GAO’s report tells readers whether or not, or to what extent, they can rely on the information provided in the CFS. GAO conducts its audit of the CFS in accordance with U.S. generally accepted government auditing standards, obtains and evaluates evidence, and provides a formal written conclusion on whether the financial statements taken as a whole are presented fairly, in all material respects, in conformity with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles. The MD&A, stewardship, and supplemental information in the CFR are not required to be audited.

The auditor may express an unqualified opinion, a qualified opinion, or an adverse opinion, or disclaim an opinion on the fairness of the financial statements taken as a whole. In an unqualified opinion, the auditor states that the information in the financial statements and accompanying notes is presented fairly, in all material respects, in conformity with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles. A qualified opinion discloses exceptions to an unqualified opinion, such as inadequate disclosures or selected nonconformities with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles. However, in a qualified opinion, the exceptions are not considered material enough to affect the fairness of the statements taken as a whole. Exceptions considered too serious or pervasive to justify a qualified opinion result in an adverse opinion, which states that the financial statements taken as a whole are not presented fairly, in all material respects, in conformity with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles. The circumstances related to such exceptions are also disclosed in the auditor’s report.

A disclaimer of opinion may result when the auditor is unable to obtain sufficient information upon which to base an opinion. The circumstances related to a disclaimer are described in the auditor’s report. For example, GAO disclaimed an opinion on the fiscal year 2004 CFS because of the effects of persistent material weaknesses in the federal government’s internal control and certain accounting and reporting practices that limited the scope of work that could be performed, a major element of which relates to the Department of Defense’s continued inability to undergo an audit of its financial statements.

Yep…

GAO’s report also includes an opinion on whether the federal government had effective internal control over financial reporting and over compliance with laws and regulations. It also reports on any identified significant matters of noncompliance with selected provisions of applicable laws and regulations.

Now that you have a briefer (and the website to find out more about USA itself), I’m re-posting the link to the GAO report for year-end 2011, in which there is a whole lotta “disclaiming of an opinion” going on.
I had, indeed, excerpted paragraphs from this GAO report (chiefly the eyeopening ones) with a view to teaching about the issues in general.  However (mea culpa), that information was lost in refreshed screens, changing where I was accessing the internet, versions — whatever.  Obviously someone would have to issue a disclaimer of opinion on my blogging.
The Part III post (the last one) got off into posting segments from U.S.C. Title 31 (Money and Finance) and Section 331 (reports), which listed 91 different types of trust funds held under a certain section (referenced in the report below — in a footnote, I think it was).
However –here’s the link again, and I really do encourage you to review this here; there is certainly no harm in exposing onesself to the sentences inside.  It’s not that long, just dense.
Pay attention to the Appendixes and bulleted points if too much prose in a row is troublesome.
Veterans’ Day is now over (my time zone) — and if nothing else, for the sake of those in all the wars, and for God’s sake, let’s get a grip on what’s being done by the government we do commerce with.  Remember the example of City of Industry, California from last post — a government inplace is going to vote more authorities and entitites to raise more funds, and sell off the debt.
The words “trillion” and “billion” show put a lot below.  You will see, overall, they are saying, we don’t know, and we don’t know what we don’t know — for these reasons.   Whose future is this?
MOST of all, it’s an answer to the continual raise more revenues, cut more services.  I believe that when we see what’s really out there (and this is ONLY the Federal Government’s statement — not all the kazillion entities under neath, which are themselves also able to invest and earn some ROI on their various projects, which is what FUNDS tend to do) we will be less amenable to extortion.  I hope.

~ ~ C.~ ~

United States Government Accountability Office’s statements about the Executive Branch of the United States Government (including 35 federal entities)

 I want us to see what an auditor’s report has to say on the highest unit of government in the USA, as of 2011, I guess:

US GOVERNMENT ACCOUNTABILITY OFFICE AUDITOR’S REPORT (p.211ff)
United States Government Accountability Office Washington, DC 20548
The President (i.e., President Obama…, i.e., of the United States of America)
The President of the Senate
The Speaker of the House of Representatives

The Secretary of the Treasury, in coordination with the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, is required to annually submit financial statements for the U.S. government to the President and the Congress.  GAO is required to audit these statements.1 **

…….An audit of financial statements and a corporation (or government) is one thing; the financial statements themselves, another.  Just for the record, this is the AUDIT.

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the Department of the Treasury (Treasury) have identified 35 federal entities23 that are significant to the U.S. government’s consolidated financial statements, consisting of the 24 CFO Act agencies, several other federal executive branch agencies, and some government corporations (35 significant entities). Our work was performed in coordination and cooperation with the inspectors general and independent public accountants for these 35 significant entities to achieve our respective audit objectives. Our audit approach regarding the accrual- based consolidated financial statements focused on determining the current status of the material weaknesses that contributed to our disclaimer of opinion on the accrual-based consolidated financial statements and the other material weaknesses affecting internal control that we had reported in our report on the consolidated financial statements for fiscal year 2010.24

We also separately audited the financial statements of certain federal entities and federal agency components including the following:

• We audited and expressed an unqualified opinion on the Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS) fiscal years 2011 and 2010 financial statements.25 In fiscal years 2011 and 2010, IRS collected about $2.4 trillion and $2.3 trillion, respectively, in tax payments and paid about $416 billion and $467 billion, respectively, in refunds to taxpayers. For fiscal year 2011, we continued to report material weaknesses that resulted in ineffective internal control over financial reporting. In addition, we continued to find a significant deficiency in IRS’s internal control over tax refund disbursements, which resulted in the payment of erroneous tax refunds to taxpayers. Our tests of IRS’s compliance in fiscal year 2011 with selected provisions of laws and regulations disclosed one area of noncompliance. We also found that IRS’s financial management systems did not substantially comply with the requirements of FFMIA.

We considered the Department of Defense’s (DOD) assertion in the DOD Agency Financial Report for Fiscal Year 2011 regarding its noncompliant financial systems and lack of reasonable assurance that internal controls over financial reporting were effective. In addition, in the DOD Inspector General’s fiscal year 2011 report on internal control over financial reporting, the Inspector General cited material weaknesses in several areas including (1) property, plant, and equipment; (2) inventory and operating material and supplies; (3) environmental liabilities; (4) intragovernmental eliminations; and (5) material amounts of unsupported accounting entries needed to prepare DOD’s annual consolidated financial statements.

“At $275 Billion, Medicaid was by far the largest part of federal grants to states.  however, even when Medicaid is removed, HHS is still the largest disburser of grants to states” (well, HHS also handles welfare, duh!……)

http://www.gao.gov/assets/650/648792.pdf

What GAO Found

Federal outlays for grants to state and local governments totaled more than $606 billion in fiscal year 2011. Over the last three decades, these grants have consistently been a significant component of federal spending, but the focus of this spending has changed over time. For example, during this period the proportion of federal outlays to state and local governments dedicated to Medicaid grants more than tripled, rising from 2.4 percent of total federal government outlays in 1980 to 7.6 percent in 2011. The increase in federal outlays for Medicaid and other health-related grant programs was offset by an approximately equivalent decrease in grants to state and local governments targeted for other areas such as transportation, education, and regional development.

GAO’s prior work and the work of others have also shown that the number of federal grant programs directed to state and local governments has generally increased over the last three decades. However, definitively determining the number of such grant programs presents difficulties. The lack of consensus on a methodology for how to define and count grant programs and data limitations in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance further complicates this effort.

GAO and federal inspectors general (IG) have previously reported on a variety of management challenges involving federal grants to state and local governments, many of which can be grouped into the following five topic areas:

  • Challenges related to effectively measuring grant performance: A lack of appropriate performance measures and accurate data can limit agencies’ ability to effectively measure grant program performance. This can affect the ability of federal agencies to ensure that grant funds are effectively spent.
  • Uncoordinated grant program creation: Numerous federal grant programs have been created over time without coordinated purposes or scope. This can result in grants management challenges such as unnecessary duplication across grant programs and unnecessary overlap in funding.
  • Need for better collaboration: A lack of collaboration among grant program participants can impede effective grant implementation in areas such as knowledge sharing and defining clear leadership roles.
  • Internal control weaknesses: When internal controls in grants management and oversight are weak, federal grant-making agencies face challenges in achieving program goals and assuring the proper and effective use of federal funds. Effective controls can help to avoid improper grant payments.
  • Lack of agency or recipient capacity: Capacity reflects the organizational, financial, and human capital resources available for the implementation of grant programs. A lack of capacity can adversely impact an agency’s or recipient’s ability to manage and implement grant programs.

Why GAO Did This Study

Grants are a form of federal assistance consisting of payments in cash or in kind for a specified purpose and they represent an important tool for achieving national objectives. They vary greatly, including in the types of programs they fund, the methods they use to allocate funds to recipients, and the amount of discretion they give to the grant recipient on how the funds are spent. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has previously estimated that grants to state and local governments represent roughly 80 percent of all federal grant funding, with the balance going to recipients such as nonprofit organizations, research institutions, or individuals. In a time of fiscal constraint, continuing to support the current scope and breadth of federal grants to state and local governments will be a challenge.

In response to a request, this report (1) provides information regarding the amount of grant funding to state and local governments for fiscal year 2011, how such funding has changed over the last three decades, and difficulties related to identifying the exact number of such grant programs; and (2) identifies selected grants management challenges that have been identified in previous work by GAO and federal IGs over the last several years. Towards this end, GAO analyzed data from OMB and the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance and conducted a review of previous reports from GAO and federal IGs.

What GAO Recommends

GAO is not making any recommendations in this report.

For more information, contact Stanley J. Czerwinski at (202) 512-6806 orczerwinskis@gao.gov or Beryl H. Davis at (202) 512-2623 or davisbh@gao.gov.

Written by Let's Get Honest

November 12, 2012 at 9:58 pm

Courts=Govt=Business,Part III: Stunning 2011 Admissions from the USA GAO to The President and Congress: USA Can’t Really Audit Itself, and DNK where it stands financially.

with one comment

Parts A, B & C below illustrate the situation

A is short.  B is almost funny.  C is the kicker.

Eye-opening Information lies in these Details.

(Hang in there!)

~ ~ A. In their Honor~ ~

Today is Veteran’s Day — honoring men and women who give their lives for freedom and to protect this country, and its ideals, particularly the ideal of freedom and representative government.   They gave (shed their own blood — and others’) — and we can’t give TIME?  And a little heart?Why not honor their sacrifices by making a commitment to better understand the workings, the operational system, of this government? This will be my 501st post of doing so, personally (not including on other blogs).  I saw something seriously wrong– I wanted to find out why, “how can this be?” and tell, the truth.

Is it really possible to evaluate what, really, governs the USA?  

I believe it is.  Freedom has a definition — and debt- whether resulting slavery or long-term indentured servitude, isn’t it.  Nor is ignorance bliss. Deliberate ignorance is more than stupid — it’s dangerous to others.

I would NEVER have undertaken these blogs if I still believed, saw, or experienced our country as free or safe for the innocent, ethical, and those with a work ethic and skills.   But I have come to understand that when entire communities basically don’t understand their own government financial operations (local, regional, and in relationship to federal), this signifies the same communities really do not have a good concept WHO is it, and WHAT, really, does it DO? And, they cannot protect others, or themselves.  It could be, they are unawares building their own future monuments to more debt — which eventually leads to more death, not to life, and not to freedom.

So, this blog is not all patriotic altruism.  It’s self-defense for where I live.

Today’s Google logo.  So? Search things out.  Sit a bit & think about what you Find:



Thinker, small version, bronze, Cantor Foundation

(Rodin was born 11/12/1840.   The Thinker statue was “born” in 1902)….

How interesting:   “The Thinker” was part of a larger Rodin commission, “The Gates of Hell.”   As described from Rodin-web.org:

Although the Purgatorio and Paradiso parts of the Commedia should also be taken into account, most of Rodin’s creation is dedicated to the Inferno. Dante, who is suffering from loss of faith, must descend to the nine circles of sin and punishment and there meet the Devil, before he can climb the Mountain of Purgatory and reach the Heavens of Paradise, where he – guided by his beloved Beatrice – appears before God.

During his cathartic journey through the Inferno, Dante is led by the poet Virgil.

Already in the first year of working on ‘The Gates of Hell’, Rodin modeled the central figure of this great composition: ‘The Thinker‘. As an independent work it became perhaps the best-known sculpture of all time.

Seated on the tympanon of ‘The Gates of Hell’, ‘The Thinker’ watches the whole scene of the Inferno, brooding in contemplation. His athletic body is twisted in tension from his head down to his curled toes, suggesting a tough intellectual struggle. While the right muscular arm supports the pensive head, the left hand is open, as if ready grasp the reality of his vision and to act.”

Maybe not too bad a symbol of the times. A tough intellectual struggle, after loss of faith, but one hand ready to act.


~ ~ B. ~ ~

Industry, California — A Microcosm of the Issue?

Below identifying one of the smallest cities of California (couched in the middle of Los Angeles County, and incorporated, it turns out, for tax reasons, just north of a large section of unincorporated (into a city, that is) land, I’ll explain why the interest.

Here’s a 2007 Almanac of the cities of Los Angeles County.  It took me about 5 minutes to locate this city, which is a pink sliver (oddly shaped) just northeast of Long Beach, along the LA County/Orange County line, cradled by highway “60” (white on green badge) and just north of an expanse of unincorporated land (shown white, here, gray on the other map).

Per WIKIPEDIA:

Industry (also known as City of Industry) is an industrial suburb of Los Angeles in the San Gabriel Valley region of Los Angeles County. Home to over 2,500 businesses and 80,000 jobs,[5] but only 219 residents at the 2010 census—down from 777 residents as of the 2000 United States census—the city is almost entirely industrial. It was incorporated on June 18, 1957 to prevent surrounding cities from annexing industrial land for tax revenue.

The city of Industry had the highest support for Proposition 8 in all of Los Angeles county. The amendment, which banned same sex marriage in California, was supported by a whopping 83% of Industry voters. 17% were opposed. [10]

The few residences in the city either existed before incorporation, are on properties adjacent to either Industry Hills Golf Club, Industry Hills Recreation Center or in a small neighborhood adjacent to City Hall. In addition, there are residents at the El Encanto Healthcare Center, a nursing home owned by the City.[12]

The City of Industry has no business taxes and is primarily funded through retail sales tax from shopping centers located within the city limits, and property tax on parcels within the City. The city has the highest property tax rate in Los Angeles County, at 1.92%.[13] In addition, there is a revenue-generating hillside hotel resort, known as the Pacific Palms Resort (formerly the Industry Hills Sheraton), which is almost completely surrounded by the city of La Puente but actually located in the City of Industry.

The City of Industry is a popular investment area for Chinese businessmen and the city has also emerged as a high-tech import/export center for computer parts, with business links to the Asian marketplace. {{it also, per Wiki, has some famous strip clubs}}.

Interesting!! Parts of it also are a “FOREIGN TRADE ZONE, which offers duty perks; no duty is paid on foreign items til they cross into the United States, at which time, they are lower. “The City of Industry’s Foreign Trade Zone offers a unique opportunity for companies seeking innovative solutions to the many challenges associated with conducting international trade. A Foreign Trade Zone is an area physically located within the United States, but deemed to be outside the U.S. Customs territory.”

Hopefully some of this registered — whoever started and runs this city did so to favor industry, attract foreign industry through a duty-free zone, and originally incorporated it to keep the neighboring cities from grabbing its unincorporated industrial acreage to increase their own revenues.  I wonder who was running the industries at those times.

It is a very few miles from one of the largest ports in the world, the port of Los Angeles.  It is also in a county known for its corruption already (from multiple sources) and being a port, is also a possible conduit of drug trafficking and human trafficking, at least per “Narco Dollars” articles citing the four largest money-laundering states (NY, FL, CA, TX).  This County also appears to be in good part where the entire family court system started.   Yet here’s this infinitesimal “City of Industry” within it.

(City of Los Angeles Controller, “Fiscal Reports” page)  (both CITY & COUNTY CAFRs are now over at “Cold Hard Facts” on the “by-State” CAFR menu//sidebar).

As of 8/21/2012, Mayor Villaigrosa of Los Angeles sent round a memo on “FY2012-13 BUDGET DIRECTIVES AND EXTRAORDINARY SPENDING CONTROLS.   (found simply looking for the CAFR; there are several links on the page; this was one).    That is, all dept. heads except: Airports, Harbor, Water&Power, LACERS (probably the county employee retirement service), and Fire & Police Pensions) demanding their plans to increase revenues and cut services.  There’s a fiscal emergency on!!  “What are you doing to increase revenues and reduce services?”  Suggestions/goals include: things such as reducing by about 8,000 households (see p. 5), under “SANITATION” those who qualified for reduced Solid Waste Disposal (i.e., can you spell “Sewer”?).  (if the image doesn’t show, see link):

This, despite the fact that (I’m browsing the City’s YE2011 CAFR — the City of Los Angeles, not the entire County of Los Angeles…) which states that their assets exceeded liabilities by $20.4 BILLION, of which $13.3 was capital assets (“net of debt”), $5.6 BILLION (restricted on use) leaving only $3.3 BILLION available for business as usual activities.

Pay attention, then!

In 2009 (I see) a book was written, and may be available at libraries “City of Industry:  Genealogies of Power in Southern California”  I found it @ “Project Muse” which requires affiliation with some subscribing institution… Significance:  The person who incorporated City of Industry (in 1957) was on a REGIONAL PLANNING COMMITTEE.

title

Victor Valle

Publication Year: 2009

City of Industry is a stunning expose on the construction of corporate capitalist spaces. Investigating Industry’s archives, including sealed FBI reports, Valle uncovered a series of scandals from the city’s founder James M. Stafford to present day corporate heir Edward Roski Jr., the nation’s biggest industrial developer. While exposing the corruption and corporate greed spawned from the growth of new technology and engineering, Valle reveals the plight of the property-owning servants, especially Latino working-class communities, who have fallen victim to the effects of this tale of corporate greed.

Published by: Rutgers University Press

Chapter 4: Graduation Day

pdf iconDownload PDF (104.2 KB)
pp. 67-80

Jim Stafford’s fi rst year on the planning commission involved organizing the formation of newly incorporated Lakewood, dealing with the accelerating pace of homebuilding in the San Gabriel Valley, and, most importantly, executing Herbert Legg’s idea of reserving portions of the adjoining La Puente…

read more

Chapter 5: “We Don’t Like the Dirty Deal”

pdf iconDownload PDF (134.8 KB)
pp. 81-102

Jane Stafford did not know that her husband had served on Los Angeles County’s regional planning commission until she saw it on a TV newscast that aired in 1967. As she recalled, George Putnam, the fl ashy KTLA Channel 5 reporter known for his rightwing populism, would “all but call him a ‘crook’…

ANYHOW:

“Industry, California” shows neatly how:

#1, once in office, any government (for example, city council) can start voting into place yet more government structures (for purposes of raising money) and,

#2, even if the rest of us know it’s kept “all in the family,” it’s danged hard to do anything about it!

So, how then could people who don’t act like that (which takes intent to expand, strategy to defraud, and sustained, long-term actions towards that goal) get justice from their own government when there is no balance of power between those who need the justice, and those administering it.

Looking up Mr. Dermerjian {{See bottom of last post and how Carl Hermann (Harvard.edu), who’d heard about CAFRs, I believe, from Walter Burien, although the former had been teaching economics, government and history for several years… the existence, and significance, of CAFRs really has been under-reported}} trying to get a response from some California civil servants on “How can we have a major budget deficit when the CAFRs show the exact opposite?”… Mr. Dermerjian being under the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, who would be prosecuting fraud — if there were any intrinsic fraud in hiding one’s assets from the public while cutting services and raising taxes based on “we’re broke.”  Apparently, there wasn’t. . . ..

So, I found a fascinating article on a Los Angeles city called “Industry” which (allegedly) while 50,000 people work their as daytime commuters, apparently only has 219 residents (88 of which voted) but which owns thousands of acres outside the city, has a $288 million ANNUAL budget, and in 2009 (through mail-in ballots only) voted to approve borrowing $500 million for infrastructure improvements. It was discovered that many so-called residents actually lived in churches, invisible (not found) houses, and a factory.

Naturally, this is affecting the neighborhoods, and someone oughter do something about it. So, here’s Mr. Dave Dermerjian giving approximately the same answer he gave to Mr. Herman above (you really should read the article and decide whether to laugh or cry), from the “Whittier Daily News.”

I also see from the diagram that in 2006, the City Council and another authority (an Authority should show up on a CAFR or have its own) created a third entity, a “Joint Powers Authority” (JPA) which morphed into an “Industry Property Housing and Management Authority” owns the property 4 out of the 5 City Council either live in, or rent.

To me, that all sounds like sticking it to the taxpayers or whoever is going to have to pay off that debt, including possibly tenants. Hope the tenants are not as invisible as some of the voters’ homes…. That’s a lot of authorities for what was acc. to the US 2010 census (per article) “the third smallest city in the state.” Seems to me, the real question is who decided to incorporate “Industry” as a city politic at all?

This is PRECISELY why ALL of just (that are at all able to) should develop the habit of seeking out, and at least browsing ALL the CAFRs operational in our state, AND all those operational in the US Government, beyond the obvious. Sorry, but you give some people an acre, and they will take the planet — and boot you off it if you can’t pay rent!

(please View-Zoom-Out to read the fine print).

(example: The City of Industry….)

Investigations into Industry come up Empty

By Ben Baeder, SGVN twitter.com/reporterben Posted: 09/17/2012 07:47:24 PM PDT Updated: 09/18/2012 08:48:29 AM PDT

Since its incorporation in 1957, many have questioned whether Industry really has as many residents as the city claims.

The city’s voter rolls in recent years have included residents who claim to live in churches {{incl. “Hillside Baptist on Azusa Street}}, houses that can’t be found and a factory.

But though small, the city boasts a $248million annual budget and thousands of acres of land holdings in surrounding cities, making some residents of those neighboring communities question who exactly lives and makes decisions in Industry.

The District Attorney’s office as recently as 2009 conducted a review of voters in the city based on complaints of voting registration filings that didn’t add up and allegations that some city officials lived outside the city.

“I can’t say that we absolutely were sure that all the city officials really lived where they said they lived, but I know we didn’t seek criminal charges,”

But no charges were filed.

“I can’t say that we absolutely were sure that all the city officials really lived where they said they lived, but I know we didn’t seek criminal charges,” said Dave Demerjian, the head of the D.A.’s Public Integrity Division.

“There were a lot of strange things.”

And, despite Industry critics who have suggested otherwise, investigators also did not find that city officials voted on matters that enriched them or family members living in their homes – such as approving their seemingly discounted rental agreements.

If they’re not voting on the deals themselves, there’s nothing we can do,” Demerjian said. “We can’t prosecute them for making bad business decisions.”

Those handful of residents who are registered to vote in Industry don’t exercise their power on a regular basis. The city rarely holds City Council elections, though they are scheduled to be held in June every other year. Instead, councilmembers are appointed when seats open up and challengers almost never emerge. The last City Council election took place in 1998 when Dave Winn won 78-10. And, before then, the city held only one election between 1962 and 1994.

For example, Councilman John P. Ferrero, who has served on the council since the early 1970s, was originally appointed to the city council, according to news accounts from the time. The next City Council election is scheduled for June 2013.

Industry also operates a water company that serves hundreds of residents in unincorporated North Whittier.

The city’s trash contractor, Valley Vista Services, handles garbage pickup in several nearby cities and communities. It’s owned by the Perez family, which is headed by three brothers, including Dave Perez, who was mayor of Industry for 11 years until he recently resigned. The family spends thousands of dollars donating to the campaigns of San Gabriel Valley area elected officials, according to campaign-finance records.

The city leases much of its public land to Majestic Realty Co., often at low rates that call for no up-front money.

The company is controlled by Los Angeles billionaire developer Ed Roski.

Roski and his companies donated $48,900 to political campaigns in California during the first six months of 2012. And in the 2010 calendar year, Majestic donated a total of $635,600 to political campaigns.

**

{{SO, PERHAPS THIS HAS SOMETHING TO DO WITH WHY HE’S A BILLIONAIRE, AND/OR HOW HE GOT TO BE ONE?}}

Industry critics, including environmentalists and opponents of a proposed NFL stadium there, have accused the city of cronyism among its leadership and say most of Industry’s residents have familial or financial ties to the city.

Many of those residents live in houses owned by the city or by Industry officials – often at rental prices far below the market rate.

And, along with living in city homes, some elected city officials also make their income from the city. And many have interwoven financial relationships and long roots in the city. . . .



That last is an example of VERY good investigative reporting, thank you Mr. Baeder. It really makes me believe that whoever decided to incorporate “Industry” as a city had some long-term vision, ending up approximately here. I note that in 1947, CAFRs began to be required for states, as the reporting tool of choice, after which it was gradually trickled down to smaller localities; the year 1977 was mentioned. This was engineered by a PRIVATE association of Government Finance Officers (GFOA).

That last is an example of VERY good investigative reporting, thank you Mr. Baeder.  It really makes me believe that whoever decided to incorporate “Industry” as a city had some long-term vision, ending up approximately here.  I note that in 1947, CAFRs began to be required for states, as the reporting tool of choice, after which it was gradually trickled down to smaller localities; the year 1977 was mentioned.  This was engineered by a PRIVATE association of Government Finance Officers (GFOA).

City of Industry still has to produce a “CAFR” — it may be one of the shorter ones around.  Here it is.  I notice they have FOUR blended component units, and ONE discrete one.  I suggest just reading it! It has $545 million extra assets YE 2011.  Not bad for about 12 square miles and only a few real residents!

[PDF] 

City of Industry Financial Statement June 2011

https://www.cityofindustry.org/scripts/dl.php?f=../uploads/files/…

File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat – Quick View
Jun 30, 2011 – Schedule of Long-Term Debt – City of industry only 97 – 103  We have audited the accompanying financial statements of the governmental 

The city, as a city, obviously has its own employees and is showing as a section under “CALPERS” one of the larger investment platforms around in the world….They are small, and so their account is pooled with others, but the employer (the city) has to contribute an estimated 31.7% for 2012-2013.  As a city ? they have a contract with CALPERS.  Keep them $$ coming….

NOW FOR THE FUN PART…

~ ~ C.~ ~

United States Government Accountability Office’s statements about the Executive Branch of the United States Government (including 35 federal entities)

 I want us to see what an auditor’s report has to say on the highest unit of government in the USA, as of 2011, I guess:

US GOVERNMENT ACCOUNTABILITY OFFICE AUDITOR’S REPORT (p.211ff)
United States Government Accountability Office Washington, DC 20548
The President (i.e., President Obama…, i.e., of the United States of America)
The President of the Senate
The Speaker of the House of Representatives

The Secretary of the Treasury, in coordination with the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, is required to annually submit financial statements for the U.S. government to the President and the Congress.  GAO is required to audit these statements.1 **

…….An audit of financial statements and a corporation (or government) is one thing; the financial statements themselves, another.  Just for the record, this is the AUDIT.

Footnote 1 is kinda cute.  A government act of 1994 required that by 1997, the government report on the EXECUTIVE branch of government (financial stuff).  It opted to report on the LEGISLATIVE (who obviously passed that act!) and JUDICIAL as well.  It goes like this:

FN 1. The Government Management Reform Act of 1994 has required such reporting, covering the executive branch of government, beginning with financial statements prepared for fiscal year 1997. 31 U.S.C. 331(e). The federal government has elected to include certain financial information on the legislative and judicial branches in the consolidated financial statements as well.

Anyone ever go through the U.S.C. and know what it is, by “Title” as well as, say (for the religious among us) they can list the 66 books of the Bible by memory, as children are sometimes taught to do, or to quote bible verses by memory?

Maybe it might not be a bad idea.

I didn’t know this by memory, for sure, but Title 31 is about money and finance.  The Department of the Treasury (of the USA, naturally) is supposed to tell us WHASSUP with receipts, expenditures, and fund balances.  Or, it’s supposed to at least tell the Congress — EVERY YEAR!  It goes like this, and makes you think; this is Title 31, section 331, REPORTS:

Please read — notice it’s emphasizing the government’s ability to pay for its operations and liabilities, and how much ASSETS does it hold to liquidate for such liabilities (if necessary), and what is the position of the assets and liabilities.

In short, when this is submitted to the Congress, we (the public, who are providing “receipts” towards all this!) whould be able to know where the USA stands in these matters!

31 USC 331 – Sec. 331. Reports

US Code – Title 31: Money and Finance

 (a) The Secretary of the Treasury shall submit to Congress each year an annual report.

Note:  Section (b) is far below, in also in red font, if I got it right..

The report shall include – (1) a statement of the public receipts and public expenditures for the prior fiscal year;

that’s just ONE year, not cumulative, got it?

(2) estimates of public receipts and public expenditures for the current and next fiscal years;

Forward looking plans, like, let’s call this a BUDGET PROJECTION.

(3) plans for improving and increasing public receipts to provide Congress with information on ways to raise amounts necessary to meet public expenditures;

It doesn’t say “and 75% to 80% above and beyond what’s needed to meet public expenditures, but notice  the emphasis on enabling Congress to INCREASE PUBLIC RECEIPTS.  (Not REDUCE PUBLIC LIABILITIES).

(4) a statement of all contracts for supplies or services made by the Secretary during the prior fiscal year;

This means the SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY (I hope the significance sinks in.  Because we are borrowing money on interest from a private banking system called the Federal Reserve.)

(5) a statement of appropriations expended to pay for miscellaneous claims not otherwise provided for;

(6) a statement on all payments made from the fund under section 3126 of this title for the prior fiscal year; and

(7) estimates of amounts for payment under section 1322(b) of this title. * *

* * *SECTION 1322(b) & (to understand it better) 1321, Viewed:

“(Curiosity killed the cat)” paragraphs..

Most people haven’t heard of CAFRs, or their audits.  Yet the USA GAO Audit here (light-blue background above) is saying (in a footnote) that “an estimate of amounts for payment” UNDER section 1322(b) of USC Title 31 (MONEY, essentially) must be made).

Section 1322(b) is, apparently, a fund/funds where payouts are or might come from, after having sat in a series of trusts under Section 1321.

As it turns out, there are 91 Numbered Trusts under 1321, the last of which is:  Violent Crime Reduction Trust Fund.  And I posted the list below.   Again, we have very little idea, really, what USA, Inc. is doing.  

The large insets of pink-background text (below) are commentary on just one of those 91 trusts, St. Elizabeth’s Hospital (formerly “governmental hospital for the criminally insane).  Among the details, it turns out that ARRA (2009 federal stimulus, a.k.a.  “Recovery” funding) had a specific set-aside, per Janet Napolitano, to convert St. E’s into a headquarters for “Department of Homeland Security.”

Why they would want to do this AFTER “9/11” and the damage to the Pentagon, beats me….

31 USC 1322 – Sec. 1322. Payments of unclaimed trust fund amounts and refund of amounts erroneously deposited

“Curiosity killed the cat” — here’s “section 1322” and surrounding sections, which is a Subchapter on Trust Funds and Refunds:  Guess what — it has to do with money do “Persons whose whereabouts are unknown”

Subchapter II – Trust Funds and Refunds

31 USC 1321 – Sec. 1321. Trust funds

(a) The following are classified as trust funds:

(1) Philippine special fund (customs duties). (2) Philippine special fund (internal revenue). (3) Unclaimed condemnation awards, Department of the Treasury. (4) Naval reservation, Olangapo civil fund. (5) Armed Forces Retirement Home Trust Fund. (6) Return to deported aliens of passage money collected from steamship companies. (7) Vocational rehabilitation, special fund.

(8) Library of Congress gift fund. (9) Library of Congress trust fund, investment account. (10) Library of Congress trust fund, income from investment account. (11) Library of Congress trust fund, permanent loan. (12) Relief and rehabilitation, Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act. (13) Cooperative work, Forest Service. (14) Wages and effects of American seamen, Department of Commerce. (15) Pension money, Saint Elizabeths Hospital. (16) Personal funds of patients, Saint Elizabeths Hospital.

OK — I have to stop for that one.  Ezra Pound was incarcerated there twelve years after WWII after being arrested for treason in Italy.  Anything in the pink-background boxes below is on that topic, plust some….

This NYT article claims he got special treatment, highlight he was anti-Semite and fascist, but notes a LOT about this institution created in 1855.  I recognized it because Pound commissioned ($10/week) Eustace Mullins to study the Federal Reserve, from the Library of Congress, and write it up, which Mullins did. . . ..  For example:

A 1982 NYT Article tells us more about Saint Elizabeth’s Hospital(for the criminally insane)

All the doctors who examined Pound found him sane, according to Government documents that two scholars, acting independently, obtained last year under the Freedom of Information Act.But the documents indicate that the superintendent of the hospital, Dr. Winfred Overholser Sr., chose to treat Pound as insane to protect him from criminal prosecution. Pound Got Special Treatment

The poet was confined at St. Elizabeths from 1946 to 1958 in a large, single room looking out on the Capitol, with his manuscripts and books brought to him from the Library of Congress. He had women visitors, special food and gave lectures in the hospital auditorium. Dr. Overholser died in 1964; Pound died in exile in Italy in 1972, at the age of 87 years.

One of the two researchers, Dr. E. Fuller Torrey, a psychiatrist on the St. Elizabeths staff, wrote last year in Psychology Today magazine, ”The Pound case is one of the earliest and most flagrant examples of the ongoing abuse of psychiatry in the American criminal justice system.”** The other, Prof. Stanley Kutler of the University of Wisconsin, has written a book, ”Political Justice in the Cold War Period,” scheduled for publication later this year.

Less celebrated but constant controversy has filled the 127-year history of the former Government Hospital for the Insane, renamed St. Elizabeths in 1916.

Chronically underfinanced and understaffed, St. Elizabeths has been studied, surveyed and investigated since it was founded by Congress in 1855 through the lobbying of Dorothea Dix, the 19th century reformer of penal and mental institutions. 2,000 Resident Patients

Although the patient population has fallen by nearly half since the 1950’s, there are still about 2,000 in-patients and some 3,000 outpatients. The latter live in the city and return to the facility for treatment and medication by a staff of 125 psychiatrists and 100 psychologists.With nurses, recreation and other counselors and maintenance workers, the hospital staff totals 3,800. It has a budget of $125 million this year. Its well-kept, 320-acre grounds sprawl along both sides of Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue in southeast Washington, a heavily black area remote from tourist byways.

Local newspapers have reported that patients at the hospital, particularly those who are disturbed or senile, have been raped and beaten by other patients, with some deaths resulting. In some of these cases, no criminal charges have ensued. Accreditation Denied in 1975

The institution was denied accreditation in 1975 by the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Hospitals, a status it did not regain until 1979.

The latest Reagan Administration proposal is to shift the hospital’s operation to a private corporation, ending Federal support altogether by 1993.

Dr. Harold Thomas, the hospital’s chief spokesman, had scheduled a news conference for 2 P.M. today, but it was abruptly canceled. ”The higher-ups just decided that we would not have a news conference,” said Tella Keter, an aide to Dr. Thomas, ”Somebody above us decided they wanted us to have an official stance of ‘no comment,’ and that’s what we have.” A written statement was promised for Wednesday.

_ _ _ _ __ _ _

*[This Dr Torrey got a 1999 book out of it, and is talking about the collaboration of the psychologists & psychiatrists to keep a sane man, and Hitler/Mussolini supporter, safe.  In other words, not mistreatment of the inmates, but collusion to coverup treason]

April 18, 1958 (“History.com” on this day in history)
Federal Court Decides to Release Pound
Pound was born in Hailey, Idaho, and grew up in a suburb near Philadelphia, where his father worked at the U.S. Mint. He attended the University of Pennsylvania, where he met William Carlos Williams and had a romance with Hilda Doolittle, later known as the poet H.D. He earned a master’s degree in languages from the University of Pennsylvania in 1906.

He took a job teaching at Wabash College in Indiana but lost it after six months, having been accused of hosting a woman in his room overnight. In 1908, Pound moved to London, where he taught and published reviews. While working as secretary to William Butler Yeats, he met the daughter of one of Yeats’ friends, Dorothy Shakespear, who he married in 1914. The couple later had a child.

During this time, he wrote important works of literary criticism, spelling out the rules for new forms of poetry. He championed young writers such as William Carlos Williams, H.D., T.S. Eliot, James Joyce, Robert Frost, Ernest Hemingway, and Marianne Moore. He also began writing his own poems, including his 116 Cantos, which combined his memories, feelings, impressions, and fragments of literature… In 1920, Pound and his family moved to Paris, where he fell in love with violinist Olga Rudge, with whom he also had child. In 1925, he and his wife moved to Rapallo, Italy. Pound spent the summers with Rudge in Venice until World War II broke out; Rudge then joined Pound and his wife in Rapallo.

Pound strongly supported Benito Mussolini, believing that art flourishes under strong leaders. He worked actively against the Allies until the end of the war, when he was arrested by U.S. forces and held for weeks in an open cage in a prison camp near Pisa. The experience broke his mental health,** although he produced one of his most beautiful works, the Pisan Cantos, there. When he was returned to the U.S., he was ruled unfit to stand trial and held at St. Elizabeth’s for 13 years. While in prison, his Pisan Cantos (1948) won an award from the Library of Congress. Poets and authors rallied around him and finally gained his release in 1958. He returned to Italy, where he lived until his death in 1972


(from a 1948 literary visitor)…He had been saying that he had gone to London to learn from Yeats how to write poetry, Yeats knowing more about it than anyone else …He was writing three books, he said, when he was taken, and he has just remembered recently what the third one was. (The worst thing in the cage, of which he spoke to me now for the first time, was having no work to do: he was used to thinking from two to four at night, then writing it out when he got up in the morning; and instead there was the sun on him and he trying to read Mencius in it—the FOUR BOOKS which as D. had told me and now he does, he grabbed up as the partigiani took him off.)…[[and yes, he was anti-semite; this piece says he got it from “suburban Philadelphia,” repented at the end, and had been unaware of the death-camps (?)]]


Just a bit more on this St. E’z / Ezra Pound topic

  • April 25, 2009 from “Dept of Homeland Security Watch” quotes Secretary Janet Napolitano having said “We will be headquartered in what is currently St. Elizabeth’s Hospital, which is going to be totally renovated and really converted into a lovely campus with money that was contained in the stimulus bill Congress just passed (i.e. ARRA)…”
  • Eustace Mullins book says Pound was kept six months (not a few weeks) in that (Allies) camp in Pisa before being brought home and committed.  The poet spent MOST of his life outside the United States, tried to keep it out of the war.
  • Almost none of the literary reviews mentioned Eustace Mullins’ “The SECRETS OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE.” which very well may have been one of the most important pieces to have come out of those years…  and important to understand.

ANYHOW, interesting concept, the TRUST that represents this hospital then.


So, WHAT OTHER TRUSTS ARE HELD BY OUR GOVERNMENT, PER U.S.C. TITLE 31, SECTION 1321? Continuing the list (up to #91 we go…)

(17) National Park Service, donations. (18) Purchase of lands, national parks, donations. (19) Extension of winter-feed facilities of game animals of Yellowstone National Park, donations. (20) Indian moneys, proceeds of labor, agencies, schools, and so forth. (21) Funds of Federal prisoners. (22) Commissary funds, Federal prisons. (23) Pay of the Navy, deposit funds. (24) Pay of Marine Corps, deposit funds. (25) Pay of the Army, deposit fund. (26) Preservation birthplace of Abraham Lincoln. (27) Funds contributed for flood control, Mississippi River, its outlets and tributaries. {{SO, explain HOW HURRICANE KATRINA OVER CAME THESE, PLEASE?}} (28) Funds contributed for flood control, Sacramento River, California. (29) Effects of deceased employees, Department of the Treasury. (30) Money and effects of deceased patients, Public Health Service. (31) Effects of deceased employees, Department of Commerce. (32) Topographic survey of the United States, contributions. (33) National Institutes of Health, gift fund. (34) National Institutes of Health, conditional gift fund. (35) Patients’ deposits, United States Marine Hospital, Carville, Louisiana. (36) Estates of deceased personnel, Department of the Army. (37) Effects of deceased employees, Department of the Interior. (38) Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania County Battlefields memorial fund. (39) Petersburg National Military Park fund. (40) Gorgas memorial laboratory quotas. (41) Contributions to International Boundary Commission, United States and Mexico. (42) Salvage proceeds, American vessels. (43) Wages due American seamen. (44) Federal Industrial Institution for Women, contributions for chapel. (45) General post fund, National Homes, Department of Veterans Affairs. (46) Repatriation of American seamen. (47) Expenses, public survey work, general. (48) Expenses, public survey work, Alaska. (49) Funds contributed for improvement of roads, bridges, and trails, Alaska. (50) Protective works and measures, Lake of the Woods and Rainy River, Minnesota. (51) Washington redemption fund. (52) Permit fund, District of Columbia. (53) Unclaimed condemnation awards, National Capital Park and Planning Commission, District of Columbia. (54) Unclaimed condemnation awards, Rock Creek and Potomac Parkway Commission, District of Columbia. (55) Miscellaneous trust fund deposits, District of Columbia. (56) Surplus fund, District of Columbia. (57) Relief and rehabilitation, District of Columbia Workmen’s Compensation Act. (58) Inmates’ fund, workhouse and reformatory, District of Columbia. [(59) Repealed.

Pub. L. 101-510, div. A, title XV, Sec. 1533(c)(1)(A)(ii), Nov. 5, 1990, 104 Stat. 1735.] (60) Chamber Music Auditorium, Library of Congress. (61) Bequest of Gertrude Hubbard. (62) Puerto Rico special fund (Internal Revenue). (63) Miscellaneous trust funds, Department of State. (64) Funds contributed for improvement of (name of river or harbor). (65) Funds advanced for improvement of (name of river or harbor). (66) Funds contributed for Indian projects. (67) Miscellaneous trust funds of Indian tribes. (68) Ship’s stores profits, Navy. (69) Completing Surveys within Railroad Land Grants. (70) Memorial to Women of World War, contributions. (71) Funds contributed for Memorial to John Ericsson. (72) American National Red Cross Building, contributions. (73) Estate of decedents, Department of State, Trust Fund. (74) Funds due Incompetent Beneficiaries, Department of Veterans Affairs. (75) To promote the Education of the Blind (principal). (76) Paving Government Road across Fort Sill Military Reservation, Okla. (77) Bequest of William F. Edgar, Museum and Library, office of Surgeon General of the Army. (78) Funds Contributed for Flood Control (name of river, harbor, or project). (79) Matured obligations of the District of Columbia. (80) To promote the education of the blind (interest). [(81) Repealed.


Pub. L. 101-510, div. A, title XV, Sec. 1533(c)(1)(A)(ii), Nov. 5, 1990, 104 Stat. 1735.] (82) Post-Vietnam Era Veterans Education Account, Department of Veterans Affairs. (83) United States Government life insurance fund, Department of Veterans Affairs. (84) Estates of deceased soldiers, United States Army. (85) Teachers Retirement Fund Deductions, District of Columbia. (86) Teachers Retirement Fund, Government Reserves, District of Columbia. (87) Expenses of Smithsonian Institution Trust Fund (principal). (88) Civil Service Retirement and Disability Fund. (89) Canal Zone Retirement and Disability Fund. (90) Foreign Service Retirement and Disability Fund. (91) Violent Crime Reduction Trust Fund.

(b)(1) Amounts (except amounts received by the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation) that are analogous to the funds named in subsection (a) of this section and are received by the United States Government as trustee shall be deposited in an appropriate trust fund account in the Treasury.

Except as provided in paragraph (2), amounts accruing to these funds are appropriated to be disbursed in compliance with the terms of the trust. (2) Expenditures from the following trust funds may be made only under annual appropriations and only if the appropriations are specifically authorized by law: (A) Armed Forces Retirement Home Trust Fund. (B) Fisher House Trust Fund, Department of the Army. (C) Fisher House Trust Fund, Department of the Air Force. (D) Fisher House Trust Fund, Department of the Navy

31 USC 1322 – Sec. 1322. Payments of unclaimed trust fund amounts and refund of amounts erroneously deposited

(a) On September 30 of each year, the Secretary of the Treasury shall transfer to the Treasury trust fund receipt account “Unclaimed Moneys of Individuals Whose Whereabouts are Unknown” that part of the balance of a trust fund account named in section 1321(a)(1)-(82) of this title or an analogous trust fund established under section 1321(b) of this title that has been in the fund for more than one year and represents money belonging to individuals whose whereabouts are unknown.

Subsequent claims to the transferred funds shall be paid from the account “Unclaimed Moneys of Individuals Whose Whereabouts are Unknown”. (b) Except as provided in subsection (c) of this section, necessary amounts are appropriated to the Secretary of the Treasury to make payments from – (1) the Treasury trust fund receipt account “Unclaimed Moneys of Individuals Whose Whereabouts are Unknown”; and (2) the United States Government account “Refund of Moneys Erroneously Received and Covered” and other collections erroneously deposited that are not properly chargeable to another appropriation.

31 USC 1323 – Sec. 1323. Trust funds for certain fees, donations, quasi-public amounts, and unearned amounts

31 USC 1324 – Sec. 1324. Refund of internal revenue collections =

(a) Necessary amounts are appropriated to the Secretary of the Treasury for refunding internal revenue collections as provided by law, including payment of – (1) claims for prior fiscal years; and (2) accounts arising under – (A) “Allowance or drawback (Internal Revenue)”; (B) “Redemption of stamps (Internal Revenue)”; (C) “Refunding legacy taxes, Act of March 30, 1928”; (D) “Repayment of taxes on distilled spirits destroyed by casualty”; and (E) “Refunds and payments of processing and related taxes”.

(b) Disbursements may be made from the appropriation made by this section only for – (1) refunds to the limit of liability of an individual tax account;*** and (2) refunds due from credit provisions of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (26 U.S.C. 1 et seq.) enacted before January 1, 1978, or enacted by the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997, or from section 35 of such Code

**If you actually get down to more of the discussion below, the US GAO Audit shows several billion$ of over-collection of taxes…

= END OF “CURIOSITY KILLED THE CAT” SECTION.

Continuing from above, we just finished, under the outline of Title 31 (“Money”), section 331(a)(7), what kind of reports the Secretary of the Treasury must make to Congress every year,  I looked up WTF is Section 1322(b).   Section 1322(b) apparently holds funds to be paid from among the trusts of 1321, which include the 90 listed above.

Reviewing:

31 USC 331 – Sec. 331. Reports

US Code – Title 31: Money and Finance
 (a) The Secretary of the Treasury shall submit to Congress each year an annual report. . .

(6) a statement on all payments made from the fund under section 3126 of this title for the prior fiscal year; and

(7) estimates of amounts for payment under section 1322(b) of this title. * *

. . .

(b)

(1) On the first day of each regular session of Congress, the Secretary shall submit to Congress a report for the prior fiscal year on

(A) the total and individual amounts of contingent liabilities and unfunded liabilities of the United States Government;

(B) as far as practicable, trust fund liabilities, liabilities of Government corporations, indirect liabilities not included as a part of the public debt, and liabilities of insurance and annuity programs (including their actuarial status);

Wait a minute.  Public Debt AND other Liabilities?  Something isn’t being talked about very well in the mainstream media, it would seem!  Moreover, the Government owns trust funds and corporations.  Interesting.

(C) collateral pledged and assets available (or to be realized) as security for the liabilities (separately noting Government obligations) and other assets specifically available to liquidate the liabilities of the Government; and

(D) the total amount in each category under clauses (A)-(C) of this paragraph for each agency.

NOTE:  The USGAO report cites 35 federal agencies….

I wonder where a person would get any CAFRs on the USA before 1997….

ON AUDITS:

The other day, I posted (ColdHardFacts) on a group in Baltimore calling for more frequent Audits. (“Audit Baltimore” is allegedly a nonprofit, though I can’t find it.

Evidence so far as I can see that Baltimore is at least as slush-fund-prone as Washington (D.C.) and can’t even produce a bona fide CAFR since 2009.  Coincidentally it was also around 2007 when complaints around the Mayor’s Office of Children, Youth & Families’ handling of a single HHS grant for only $900,000K, came into question, producing two audits in 2009 & 2010 which reveal, to me, what looks like the usual bunch of crooks.  Smaller scale, but simply not into accountability, and proud of it, too…).

I think, personally, that’s only the least indication of “what time of day it is” around.  yet we continue to give our own government the benefit of the doubt, for lack of better alternatives….

Anyhow, here it goes — “from the horse’s mouth.”  Itemized by me to break up the prose…

This is

(1) our report on the accompanying U.S. government’s:

  • accrual-based consolidated financial statements {CAFRs, I believe}} for the fiscal years ended September 30, 2011 and 2010;
  • the 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, and 2007 Statements of Social Insurance; and
  • the 2011 Statement of Changes in Social Insurance Amounts; and

(2) our associated reports on internal control over financial reporting and on compliance with selected provisions of laws and regulations.

As used in this report, accrual-based financial statements refer to all of the consolidated financial statements and notes, except for those related to the Statements of Social Insurance and the Statement of Changes in Social Insurance Amounts. 2**{{Sorry, but I’m going to expose us to this footnote 2, below}}
Management of the federal government is responsible for

(1) preparing annual consolidated financial statements in conformity with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP);

(2) establishing, maintaining, and evaluating internal control to provide reasonable assurance that the control objectives of the Federal Managers’ Financial Integrity Act (FMFIA)3 are met; and

(3) complying with laws and regulations.

Also, the 24 Chief Financial Officers (CFO) Act agencies {{Huh?  OK, one more thing to look up!}} are responsible for implementing and maintaining financial management systems that substantially comply with the requirements of the Federal Financial Management Improvement Act of 1996 (FFMIA).4

Appendix I discusses the objective, scope, and methodology of our work.~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

It’s interesting that another act on improving federal financial management was passed in 1996…  The “footnote 2″** detail talks about the difference (and  NOT correlatedness) of the items under the bullets below “(1)” at the top of this box.  It goes like this:

The accrual-based consolidated financial statements for the fiscal years ended September 30, 2011 and 2010 consist of the (1) Statements of Net Cost, (2) Statements of Operations and Changes in Net Position, (3) Reconciliations of Net Operating Cost and Unified Budget Deficit, (4) Statements of Changes in Cash Balance from Unified Budget and Other Activities, and (5) Balance Sheets, including the related notes to these financial statements. Most revenues are recorded on a modified cash basis.

The 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, and 2007 Statements of Social Insurance, including the related notes, are also included in the consolidated financial statements.

In addition, in fiscal year 2011, the federal government adopted Statement of Federal Financial Accounting Standards No. 37, “Social Insurance: Additional Requirements for Management’s Discussion and Analysis {{COMMONLY CALLED “MD&A”}} and Basic Financial Statements,” which calls for a new basic financial statement, the Statement of Changes in Social Insurance Amounts, that is included, along with the related notes, in the consolidated financial statements.

The Statement of Changes in Social Insurance Amounts presents the components of the changes of the open group measure (total present value of future expenditures in excess of future revenue), presented in the 2011 and 2010 Statements of Social Insurance. Both the Statements of Social Insurance and the Statement of Changes in Social Insurance Amounts do not interrelate with the accrual-based consolidated financial statements.

Whatever, and OK.  Some new statements were required with the adoption of a FFA Standard #37, and what caught my attention was “PReSenT value of FuTuRe Expenditures over FuTuRe Revenue.  This sounds an awful lot like the “Advance liabilities” thing that Walter Burien was warning us about.  Keeping in mind that one person formerly over FHA (just one small segment) claims that HUD is losing trillions, as is the Pentagon, and it’s in general being operated like a criminal element.

So say, apparently this law firm who filed the $43 trillion claim for damages, specifically antagonistic to the Obama Administration (I’ve not posted a link yet).   That’s the backdrop of this exact requirements of What the H%ll is going on!


Have been having some issues saving the most current version of the wordpress blogs here.  the segment showing their most Stunning Admissions isn’t in this version.  It has been a long time on this post, and I will seek to recover them from prior saved versions and post, at earliest convenience..  They are really the “punch” behind the message here….

You also could read these yourself simply by clicking on the link; the statement is really not that long.

Written by Let's Get Honest

November 12, 2012 at 8:04 pm

Family Courts, Part of Government= Business. Part II, Details:

with one comment

I just posted (Part I) too much reminder about Welfare Reform and how the Child Support Enforcement policies aren’t really just about Child Support Enforcement, citing two Congressional Research Services studies, and the commentary from a Huffington Post blog which also summarizing Dangerous HHS programs.
Two fathers’ rights activitist explained how the system HAS to expand fto feed itself, and only works if it separates children from good parents.
The first Dangerous to Women & Children program named in the blog, thereafter, was the Child Support Enforcement.   I’d have to agree — because as part of the TANF Block Grants to States, these just have too many diversions, and are too tempting to too many people, and people who are able to divorce without hating their kids by abandoning them financially — or so hating the opposite parent they completely cut off communications absent any real violence or criminal behavior — are no concern of these multi-million$$ initiatives.
And also because people have been killed over this matter, citing that matter.  It is dangerous, in other words, to go after child support from fathers who previously have demonstrated they were angry, out of control, resentful, perhaps violent, misogynist, or expressed intent to punish women.  Trying to make us all just “play nice for the sake of the kids” is not really about the kids.  It’s about ever-expanding government institutions.
Not only are they dangerous to women & children, they are insulting to them — and to the many fathers who don’t need a kick in the pants, or a bribe, to take care of their own children.
They are mostly (in my opinion) about political clout, with a little extra added anti-woman kick in the pants from the religious side, who has never, really, endorsed single motherhood, or objected seriously enough to abuse of women and children within their own ranks.  That is evidently not about to change much, given how strong the religious element is in both government and in many HHS departments.  Did I mention the US Supreme Court?

Religion in the Supreme Court, In Both Houses of Congress, and (in general), In Politics*

*this last link just a reminder, for fun, maybe some perspective….of the similarities between joining (or, being born into?) a religion and a political party:

  • These charters and beliefs are claimed by both entities to be divinely inspired.
  • Both change these charters and beliefs as times change, as technology improves, as law requires it, and as opposing knowledge and books become more accessible to the public at large.
  • Both are registered with the State via their Articles of Incorporation.
  • Both write and re-write history; and then edit and interpret their own writings.
  • They are both a form of control, both in political and moral correctness.
  • Members of both fear excommunication and public ridicule for questioning or acting against these chartered beliefs.
  • Political parties make the laws of the land and command consent, while religions teach that members must follow the “law of the land” as God commands.
  • Both give power to otherwise powerless men, who dress in robes and judge all people…
  • Yet both are well known to hide some of their deeds in the dark; without disclosure, and even against the very ethics they set for themselves.

Some of this list (I’m picking & choosing) are relevant to the post here, especially the next two:

  • Both claim to be non-profit…

  • And both avoid taxes on their for-profit ventures.

WHICH THE CAFRs will show, and some of the insets below prove:

  • Both have been caught many times over in pedophilia related activities
  • Both are very protective of this fact and the people involved in these activities

PAUSE to VALIDATE & ILLUSTRATE. Sorry, but:

This appears to be true, and is not amusing, or anything close to it.

(THIS IS RE: JUDGE JACK B. WEINSTEIN CHAMPIONING THE RIGHTS OF VIEWERS OF CHILD PORN)

Recently, Spire Law Firm filed a dramatic claim for $43 trillion damages relating to mortgage foreclosures (banksters, Rico, Mortgage foreclosures, etc.) which I am probably going to blog.  But it came under Federal Judge Jack B. Weinstein, Eastern District, NY, who assigned it to a Magistrate. According to the article below, Judge Weinstein must be over 88 yrs old now.

So I looked him up (again; he’s very well known) and was shocked to find a recent record of him defending a married father of five caught exchanging child porn (thousands of images).   Here are some of the letters to the editor (NYT) in 2010.  Apparently this judge believes that if no children are actually abused by the viewer, no children are seriously at risk.  That some children were in the PHOTOS doesn’t seem to have been an issue, i.e., the man was consuming child porn.

Judge Weinstein takes on Child Pornography Laws (May 21, 2010, A.G. Sulzberger, NYT):

The man he has spent three years trying to save from a long incarceration is Pietro Polizzi, a married father of five who collected more than 5,000 graphic pictures of children. If prosecuted in a New York State court, he would have faced a maximum prison sentence of four years. Instead, in federal court, he faced a minimum of five years and a recommended sentence of 11 to 14 years. Because of Judge Weinstein’s intervention, he remains free as he awaits another trial.

I don’t see Judge Weinstein as a judge,” Mr. Polizzi said during an interview as tears rolled down his face. “I see him as my father. He helps people. He doesn’t destroy lives the way the prosecutor has. He’s the one who is going to set me free from the court.”

(Bad court & prosecutor, and law: GOOD judge, the fathers’ friend….. Whoever’s filming the kids already helped destroy THEIR lives.   Deal with it, Dad.  You got girls??  !!)  From the same article:

Judge Weinstein declared that Mr. Polizzi had a constitutional right to have a jury know the punishment that would accompany a guilty verdict, a right he said he had violated. He pledged to inform the next jury of the mandatory minimum sentence. That idea, floated by a federal judge in Manhattan several years earlier in another child pornography case but rejected on appeal, would give jurors the option of refusing to convict if the punishment seemed disproportionate, as several jurors had indicated they believed it was in Mr. Polizzi’s case.

Did it occur to anyone where those images came from, and that one of them ‘t was someone else’s child?  And that you don’t DO that sick stuff to kids?  Or is it really OK?  Apparently not really.  After all, ..they were just looking.

I think, by and large, so many people are involved in this that an average jury is likely to have some viewers.   Same thing with DV.  This is why I want us to just focus on the finances.  The amount of unbelievable distress and anguish caused when child molestation DOES occur, to both the kids and the parent that, thanks to the family courts, cannot stop this, is unbelievable.  I also think that this issues is tied into more marriage breakups than is commonly admitted.

Moreover, this same administration is pushing marriage to reduce poverty and increase the safety (from child abuse is included) of minor children.  I personally am glad I was not married to this guy, and would rather support my kids alone (deal with it) than live and interact daily with a man with this habit.

However, the judge felt otherwise, and it was actually quite a hot topic!  A (male) blogger from Indiana argues in for the judge’s position…   Here, a Washington lawyer (Feinberg) assessing damages for the Sandusky case was assigned by Weinstein (Back in 1984) to also mediate damages for the 250,000 damages for Viet Nam Vets exposed to defoliant Agent Orange.  [[I have a relative who died from this…]  Article from The Daily Beast, last June, 2012]:

As he explains in his new book Who Gets What, his task is to maximize prompt, fair payouts and minimize dilatory litigation.  It’s no surprise that frazzled officials at Penn State University recently consulted the 66-year-old Massachusetts native, a former Judiciary Committee staffer to the late Sen. Edward Kennedy, about setting up a fund to pay off the victims of convicted pedophile Jerry Sandusky.

“I gave them some ideas. They said, ‘Let us think about it.’ Never heard another word from them,” Feinberg says in his pungent New England accent.. . .

Feinberg—whose boutique law firm specializes in mediation and dispute resolution—has been in this unusual line of work since 1984, when federal judge Jack Weinstein appointed him to mediate the $180 million settlement for 250,000 Vietnam War veterans who were exposed to the defoliant Agent Orange.

FACE  IT — most people (in the USA) are not going to want OPEN public identification with endorsing viewing child porn, molesting children, (or domestic violence), but nor are they really willing to accept what stopping these as INDUSTRIES would really mean.  There are too many counter-arguments.

SO — let’s just get back to the economic honesty aspect; perhaps we can all agree (even those who feel an uncomfortable male — or female — bonding at confronting certain kinds of violence and abuse towards others)…that at least it’s wrong to steal from the public and launder the money, or to mis-represent actual needs in order to accumulate more assets; which the CAFRs will reveal, IF studied (or at least located!) what those are.  These are where special funds of all sorts are revealed, and local courts’ etc. pay HAS to show up on them.

More on Religion and Politics….

  • Both have public relations officers to handle the public’s outrage at these actions so as to ensure the continuity of the corporation…
  • And both are protected from these crimes and from any major public scrutiny or punishment by the court system (BAR) and in the mainstream media (Public Opinion).  (obviously, cases in point, above)
  • Both rely on the ignorance of their members with regards to their business related and political activities…
  • And both despise watch-dog groups. (too bad….)
  • Both accept and rely on donations. 
  • Both have leaders that wear expensive suits and receive very good pensions.
  • Both promise hope and change to the poor and working class, but never quite deliver.
  • Both offer a welfare system that’s never quite enough to really make a difference in society… other than to maintain the poverty level.
  • “In God We Trust” is the credo of both – after all, it says so on the thing they both worship the most.

Biographies of Current Justices of the Supreme Court

Appointed by, in order:  Bush2, Reagan, Reagan, Bush1, Clinton, Clinton, Obama, Obama (Sotomayor, Kagan), retirees appointed by Reagan, Bush1, Ford (per this list).  Not to be crude, but how about an atheist or so?  Or aren’t protestants smart enough – or do they prefer to stay in the megachurch, corporate wealth (i.e., direct-marketing), faith-based area of running the government?
Faith shouldn’t matter if we’re all ethical, able to reason and respect the rule of law (ha, ha….).  But, unfortunately since 2001 (not to mention 1996), it actually does matter — a LOT.
(per Factmonster)
Service Birth
Name, state Assoc. Justice Chief Justice Yrs Date Died Religion
Antonin Scalia, DC 1986– N.J. 1936 Roman Catholic
Anthony M. Kennedy, Calif. 1988– Calif. 1936 Roman Catholic
Clarence Thomas, DC 1991– Ga. 1948 Roman Catholic
Ruth Bader Ginsburg, DC 1993– N.Y. 1933 Jewish
Stephen G. Breyer, Mass. 1994– Calif. 1938 Jewish
John G. Roberts, DC 2005– N.Y. 1955 Roman Catholic
Samuel A. Alito, Jr.,N.J. 2006– N.J. 1950 Roman Catholic
Sonia SotomayorN.Y. 2009– N.Y. 1954 Roman Catholic
Elena KaganN.Y. 2010– N.Y. 1960 Jewish
Regarding the years 2006, 2009, 2010, there was a little changing of the guards, I see:
Sandra Day O’Connor, Ariz. 1981–2006 25 Tex. 1930 Episcopal
David H. Souter, N.H. 1990–2009 19 Mass. 1939 Episcopal
John Paul Stevens, Ill. 1975–2010 Ill. 1920 Protestant
OK, so let’s go to Congress.  this is not the most recent Pew Forum on Religion and Public life, but it has some graphs, and some commentary….  Just for the record, the religious in sentiment are likely to go after those marriage/fatherhood/abstinence, parenting education (etc.) type grants, along with and including no doubt some who also like the lax oversight of the grants after they get down to the state level.
Faith on the Hill:  members of the 112th Congress from Pew Forum on religion & The Public Life:

According to a summer 2010 survey by the Pew Forum and the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, 61% of Americans say it is important for members of Congress to have strong religious beliefs. This view is expressed by eight-in-ten white evangelical Protestants (83%); seven-in-ten black Protestants (71%); and at least six-in-ten white mainline Protestants (64%), white Catholics (66%) and Hispanic Catholics (61%). Even among self-identified atheists and agnostics, 15% say it is important for members of Congress to have strong religious beliefs.

The religious makeup of the chambers of the 112th congress graphic

Footnotes

1 All six members of Congress who decline to specify an affiliation are incumbents and are counted in this analysis in the “Don’t Know/Refused” category. In addition, one member of the House of Representatives, Rep. Pete Stark (D-Calif.), identifies his religion as Unitarian but has also said he is an atheist (does not believe in God). {{PETE STARK, AGE 80, DIDN’T MAKE IT PAST THE LAST ROUND 11/6/2012}} He is counted in this analysis in the “Other Faiths” category, which includes Unitarianism. If he were counted, instead, as an atheist and added to the six members in the “Don’t know/Refused” category, the portion of members of Congress who either do not specify a faith or are unaffiliated with any particular faith would still be about 1%.(return to text)

2 The Mormon category includes those who identify their faith as Mormon (14 members) as well as those who identify with the Community of Christ (one member).(return to text)   {{OBVIOUSLY UTAH IS GOING TO RESULT IN SOME MORMONS.  THE PREVIOUS CONGRESS FROM UTAH (BOTH HOUSES) WAS 100% MORMON;

Here’s not the most current list, but at least a list.  Why not put this on the table?  While these are not today’s Congress (at least not all of them), it does tell who was passing legislation that today’s Congress and House of Reps will inherit. I notice Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona, who was shot during a public speaking list, is on there.  Was it her being female or being Jewish in Arizona that was part of the problem, not including the nutcase that did this?  (Peace to her and her family!!)….

Anyhow:

SECTION II.  PART II….

RE: WHERE IS THIS MONEY GOING?

In FACT, IF THIS POWERFUL FORCE IS MY GOVERNMENT,

SHOW ME THE MONEY — ALL OF IT — WHERE IS IT?

re:  CAFRs I have links to the right — Walter Burien explains this better than I do (How even a commodities traders learned about “the rest of the pie”).
So, yes, good question.  Where IS this money going?  According to its own governmental standards, the format in place to report this since 1947 appears to be the CAFR, at least for states.  For smaller units that actual US States that didn’t want to comply, they were welcome, apparently, to not comply and forfeit their drug of choice, federal payments (through the states or directly, I guess).

I thought, why not start at the top?  So, I looked for the “Comprehensive Audited Financial Report” (Year 2011) for the United States of America.  Why shouldn’t I?  Apparently, as a Citizen, I am a “shareholder” in this enterprise, and as it considers my labor, my kids, and my being its property — we are all schooled and lectured every day, and choose politicians and Presidents on the basis of what to do about the debt, and how to create more JOBS (translation:  while building assets and wealth for corporations, be taxed on our labor to further contribute to all kinds of funds (including funds established for our future welfare we’ve entrusted to management by our own overlords).

It’s relevant to OUR welfare to know what people (running the business which is called “government”) who claim they have it in mind, are actually doing.

All of this pretty well boils down to “assets and liabilities.”  So, what are the assets and liabilities of the country I’m a citizen of, by virtue of being a citizen of a certain State?

And where would I find that?  Because PART — a BIG part — of the business (government) of this country and that state, logically speaking, are the courts.

So I went looking, and while I didn’t yet find that CAFR, I did find a document I believe we should make a note of:

Terms to remember:

  • “GAO” (Government Accountability Office)
  • “OMB” (Office of Management and Budget)
  • the US Treasury
  • Annual Financial Statements (which are budgetary tools) vs.
  • COMPREHENSIVE Annual Financial Statements (which state net worth — everything — since the beginning of any government body).

Before presenting it, though, I want to show what happened AFTER someone who looked at a state CAFR found (I believe it was him) the $54 million extra funds that preserved the imminent closure of 70 California State parks, which had been threatened.  Department head resigned, there was clear evidence of coverup, and then apparently (apart from this one guy) the momentum or will to follow through on this job was pretty much lost.

To put this in California  (the “Golden State”) terms, it’s like discovering the motherlode, the vein that leads to gold, understanding who might be prospecting for it and profiting from it (although this one being a man-made motherlode of information) and then going back to sleep.

This CAFR information is the “motherlode” and some initial prospectors have begun.  I am also posting STATE level (and a few key city) such reports over at the Cold,Hard.Fact$ blog.  Any help digging these up and submitting links (labeled in similar format) on comments would be appreciated.  I already have a link to the links and am going beyond that and setting the table for those hungry for economic truth to sit down and start eating.  Or at least looking at the menu.  Once you get the taste, the usual menu of lies, coverups and dissembling (I am trusting/hoping) will be less tasty, and the consequence of the bastardized (economic) taste bud, so to speak, will turn sour.

EXAMPLE:  The Benefits of Paying Attention (as opposed to, going back to sleep) is a matter of opportunity, initial resources, and knowing “what time of day” it is — a business sense.

It being a weekend, please look down.  Are you wearing blue jeans today, or are your kids?  Do you recognize this?

Mark ImageMark Image

Levi Strauss came to SF during the gold rush, age 24, with “a small supply of drygoods,” and a brother with a store back in NY.  He listened to feedback from a prospector, understood that miners are going to need overalls, and ACTED ON THIS KNOWLEDGE.  “Levi Strauss” got a patent in 1873 for denim, and we got blue jeans (everything inside the next box is just an illustration of what can happen when people are paying attention!)  We also got, in buying them, to help contribute to Levi Strauss & Co’s current 47% profit margin.

Please read, and ask — what’s the “profit margin” on a quarterly (let alone annual) basis of the United States Government?  Of the State governments?  Of all the inbetween government entities?  We are part of that profit margin (despite being continually lectured on what debt we have).  Like this company, our governments have operating revenue, profit margins, investments overseas (and others investing in us FROM overseas).  These governments also have OPERATING expenses (and budgets) which they expect the public to pay every year (or cut product = services delivery) without revealing what the corporate buffer really is.  These governments have their NET income (which is often a loss somehow) but they also have GROSS profit (called assets) which they don’t want to talk about.

And because the government itself is not subject to the SEC, they don’t have to report it in this detail to shareholders.  They do have to report it to each other and to Congress, to an extent — but I have a question:  When they don’t (or manage it badly, decade after decade) who is going to prosecute?  The U.S. Attorney General?

More to the point, how did we get to the point, as a population, of not even WANTING to know about this, or realizing that, perhaps, we could?

In 1853, the California gold rush was in full swing, and everyday items were in short supply. Levi Strauss, a 24-year-old German immigrant, left New York for San Francisco with a small supply of dry goods with the intention of opening a branch of his brother’s New York dry goods business. Shortly after his arrival, a prospector wanted to know what Mr. Levi Strauss was selling. When Strauss told him he had rough canvas to use for tents and wagon covers, the prospector said, “You should have brought pants!,” saying he couldn’t find a pair of pants strong enough to last.

Denim Blue Jeans

Levi Strauss had the canvas made into waist overalls. Miners liked the pants, but complained that they tended to chafe. Levi Strauss substituted a twilled cotton cloth from France called “serge de Nimes.” The fabric later became known as denim and the pants were nicknamed blue jeans.

Levi Strauss & Company

In 1873, Levi Strauss & Company began using the pocket stitch design. Levi Strauss and a Reno Nevada-based Latvian tailor by the name of Jacob Davis co-patented the process of putting rivets in pants for strength. On May 20, 1873, they received U.S.Patent No.139,121. This date is now considered the official birthday of “blue jeans.”Levi Strauss asked Jacob Davis to come to San Francisco to oversee the first manufacturing facility for “waist overalls,” as the original jeans were known as.

The two-horse brand design was first used in 1886. The red tab attached to the left rear pocket was created in 1936 as a means of identifying Levi’s jeans at a distance. All are registered trademarks that are still in use.  (USPTO.gov life trademarks to Levi Strauss, below).

Serial Number Reg. Number Word Mark Check Status Live/Dead
1 78811081 3309476 LEVI STRAUSS SIGNATURE TSDR LIVE
2 73176884 1140853 LEVI STRAUSS & CO.SAN FRANSISCO,CAL. ORIGINAL RIVETED QUALITY CLOTHING. X X PATENTED MAY 20 1873 TSDR LIVE
3 73112100 1095986 LEVI STRAUSS & CO. SAN FRANCISCO, CAL. ORIGINAL RIVETED QUALITY CLOTHING. XX TRADE MARK PATENDED MAY 20, 1873 TSDR LIVE
4 73022316 1030033 LEVI STRAUSS & CO. SAN FRANSISCO, CAL. ORIGINAL RIVETED QUALITY CLOTHING XX TRADEMARK PATENTED MAY 20, 1873 TSDR LIVE
5 72382313 0928351 LEVI STRAUSS & COS.F.CAL TSDR LIVE

Now this corporation has its own foundations and is socially active

About Levi Strauss & Co.

Levi Strauss & Co. is one of the world’s largest brand-name apparel companies and a global leader in jeanswear. The company designs and markets jeans, casual wear and related accessories for men, women and children under the Levi’s®, Dockers®, Signature by Levi Strauss & Co.TM, and Denizen® brands. Its products are sold in more than 110 countries worldwide through a combination of chain retailers, department stores, online sites, and a global footprint of more than 2,300 franchised and company-operated stores. Levi Strauss & Co.’s reported fiscal 2011 net revenues were $4.8 billion. For more information, go to http://levistrauss.com.

Again, about 150 years ago, someone was paying good attention to market trends, and taking feedback from a prospector.  Also, as a public-traded  company (it has investors), Levi & Strauss must file with the SEC.  It HAS to

PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(D) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

SEC filings as a public-traded corporation (FYI, a Delaware Corporation based in San Francisco, CA).  It posts its quarterly earnings in millions — 3rd quarter 2012 was (ex. 99.1).  LOOKING AT SOME OF THE MANAGEMENT ANALYSIS, we see they are paying close attention to where the revenues are, impact of currency differences, individual brands & initiatives in which parts of the globe, and revenues versus net income.

I note the profit margin of 47%  – how many of us have a 47% profit from what we have been investing in our own government year after year?  Why isn’t it producing — or required to produce — reports of this detail for us, while managing allegedly our money for our benefit?

LEVI STRAUSS & CO. ANNOUNCES THIRD-QUARTER 2012 FINANCIAL RESULTS

Net Revenue Decline Reflects Global Environment and Strategic Actions

Company Reports Significantly Improved Cash Flow and Lower Net Debt

SAN FRANCISCO (October 9, 2012) – Levi Strauss & Co. (LS&Co.) today announced financial results for the third quarter ended August 26, 2012, and filed its third-quarter 2012 results on Form 10-Q with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

($ = millions)

Three Months Ended  August 26, 2012 ~ August 28, 2011

Net revenues             $1,101                 ~   $1,204

Net income               $    28             ~  $     32

Third quarter 2012 net revenues declined 9 percent on a reported basis and 4 percent on a constant currency basis. These results reflect the ongoing global economic challenges and actions the company took to drive improvements in its future performance, including the decisions to license the Levi’s® brand boys business in the Americas and phase out the Denizen® brand in Asia. Despite the notable revenue decline, net income dropped only $4 million, reflecting an improved operating margin.

“While the third quarter was impacted by the continuing difficult global macro-economic environment, we are very focused on what we can control: our product innovation and marketing programs, the key strategic choices we make and addressing our underlying cost structure,” said Chip Bergh, president and chief executive officer of Levi Strauss & Co. “Our goal is to prioritize efforts behind our core business to drive sustainable, profitable growth and drive shareholder value. During the third quarter, we began to execute several initiatives against our goals, including exiting the Denizen® brand from Asia and licensing the U.S. Levi’s® boys business.”

_ _ _ _ _ _ _

Gross profit in the third quarter declined to $521 million compared with $569 million for the same period in 2011, reflecting unfavorable impacts of $45 million of currency effects and $25 million associated with the company’s decision to phase out its Denizen® brand in Asia.  Third quarter gross margin of 47.3 percent was flat to prior year. Excluding the currency and the  Denizen® mpacts, gross margin improved, reflecting increased sales fromcompany’s retail stores, a decline in sales to lower-margin channels and lower cotton costs.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _

Selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses for the third quarter declined to $434 million from $489 million in the same period of 2011, inclusive of favorable currency effects of $22 million. The decline in SG&A was primarily driven by a reduction in advertising activities in some markets and a difference in timing of campaigns; organization and distribution expenses also declined during the quarter. Partially offsetting these declines, the company recorded a $19 million impairment charge on its owned distribution center in Japan due to a decision to outsource to a third-party in that market.

Operating income for the third quarter was $87 million compared with $81 million for the same period of 2011, reflecting the lower SG&A.

 From another link/Investor FAQs I learn that the SEC filing is not from its trading stocks, but from its public BOND holders:

Q: What is the ownership structure of Levi Strauss?
A: Levi Strauss & Co. is privately held by the descendants of the family of Levi Strauss. Shares of company stock are not publicly traded. Shares of Levi Strauss K.K., the company’s Japanese affiliate, are publicly traded in Japan.

Q: Are any family members actively involved in the day-to-day management of the company?
A: No.

Q: Why does Levi Strauss file financial statements with the SEC if the company is privately held?
A: We file with the SEC because we have public bondholders.

Just imagine if our own government were that accountable, and we expected such accountability, and collectively knew how to read the reports with intelligence.  But we don’t — we have gone to sleep on the matter, our grandparents (great-grandparents maybe) “drank the Kool-aid,” got hooked on this economy, and here it is.

Suppose we wanted to opt out (as we might for a public traded company that kept losing value) of this investment?  It won’t help to curse the past, but it might help to understand the past, know what stage of development things are in (and who are the agents) — in order to get more than emotional, or politically spoonfed “reading” on the future, by hired hands.

Anyone who is not independently wealthy (not dependent on a job) for the indefinite future can “opt out of” supporting this management of finances by “opting out of a job.”  However, most people cannot.  And the society is entirely structured around the job mentality and workforce mentality, rather than having just as good a work ethic — but not working for this system which doesn’t like to disclose its holdings!

Or those who have the option to opt out of businesses with employees run in the USA or any of its states (which, since at least 1934, must pay into the Social Security fund (per the 1935 & ff versions of that Act), who must register New Hires (with the advent of the Child Support Enforcement bureau that came with “welfare reform” (as I generally speaking, understand, whether 1996 or earlier), so that the state can act as collection agent for the feds in the matter of garnishing wages for child support.  Of course, there is a complex formula, which affects the courts, as to whether or not the States have to actually distribute what they garnish, or when they “can’t find” the custodial parents and declare it abandoned property (or, don’t clear it abandoned property….).  etc.

That’s a LOT harder to do.

IIA.  CAFRs in CALIFORNIA — the Debate after a Citizen Presents the Evidence to various legislators/county officials:

It’s like the difference between a slice of the pizza and the whole pie.  Also see Carl Herman’s work exposing California’s trillion-surplus assets and trying to get a response from politicians (summer 2012):

(CAFR audit, reform: So-called “pension” and “rainy day” accounts are tragic-comic in non-disclosure and non-performance for budget, infrastructure, and pension funding. For example, Californians have $8 trillion in surplus assets withheld by government in this current structure that 1% “leaders” claim requires our austerity (yes, that’s about $650,000 per household).”  (Articles list HERE)

7/2012 Discussion between Walter Burien & Carl Herman about the “legality” of California’s nondisclosure, paralleled to the SEC (what would happen should a PUBLIC traded company engage in the exact same behavior. Includes non-response from Dave Demerjian, Los Angeles County Head of “Public Intergrity Division,” — check it out:

The failure to disclose cash reserves is not a crime unless there is some evidence that official documents have been intentionally altered or destroyed to accomplish the non-disclosure.

He did not respond to my follow-up:

  • Please cite the applicable law(s),
  • please explain how it is not fraud for officials to misrepresent public taxpayer assets by only saying the budget has a deficit and never saying cash and investment accounts have in the case of California 35 times that amount?

Mr. Herman, apparently a Harvard graduate and Los Angeles County resident, I see, didn’t give up when Mr. Demerjian (below) implied it was a mistake, said his office didn’t have jurisdiction to prosecute (suggesting, “try Sacramento”[Northern California/state capital]”) and “this matter is closed.”

Notice in Herman’s response, it mentions 56 courthouses (but only 3 of them family courts) being closed in California (in case we don’t get the connection to “family court matters”).

I think it’s well said.  I feel a little sad that the link to the courthouse closures leads to a Socialist site. I’m no socialist!!– is there no one else who gives a damn around?

From “WASHINGTON’S BLOG” 07/12/2012 (whosever it may be…)

Los Angeles County District Attorney Dave Demerjian responded after my e-mail to him and article:

On Mon, Jul 2, 2012 at 11:04 AM, David Demerjian <DDemerjian@da.lacounty.gov> wrote:

Mr. Herman:

Fraud” is not a crime. In law, the term fraud is used to define an intent, or state of mind, required as an element to prove certain theft related crimes. You have not alleged that any public official stole public funds for their own use. What you describe as fraud appear to be allegations of misinformation. As to any unnamed state officials alleged to have provided misinformation, this office only has jurisdiction to prosecute crimes occurring within Los Angeles County. You may want to contact the Sacramento District Attorney’s Office.

This matter is closed.

Dave Demerjian
Head Deputy
Public Integrity Division

{all the emphases/font changes above are of course mine…}

Dave: the evidence I provided show Governor Brown’s testimony that reduced funding to Los Angeles County (LACO) while saying we have “no options” and lying in omission of $600 billion in taxpayer assets. This lie caused damages in your jurisdiction: Los Angeles County courts face 56 closures, as you know. Perhaps you should research local officials also saying we have “no options” while LACO CAFR shows $66 billion in investments.

There are a lot of taxpayers in LACO, Dave. The bulk of taxpayer assets claimed to be for “pensions” don’t fund pensions beyond a token 4%. That’s like taking a million dollars of public money, giving $40,000 to pensions while keeping $960,000 for yourself, and calling it a “pension fund.” How could you be so confident such a lie isn’t connected to stealing or officials own use without investigating?

Your wording of “misinformation” has a connotation of “mistaken” rather than officials at some levels damn well knowing these hundreds of billions in taxpayer assets exist and intentionally disinforming the public.


It appears (last I heard) the Los Angeles County District Attorney (?) head of Public Integrity Department isn’t interested in any further conversation, at least with Mr. Herman.

Looking up Mr. Dermerjian, I found a fascinating article on a Los Angeles city called “Industry” which (allegedly) while 50,000 people work their as daytime commuters, apparently only has 219 residents (88 of which voted) but which owns thousands of acres outside the city, has a $288 million ANNUAL budget, and in 2009  (through mail-in ballots only) voted to approve borrowing $500 million for infrastructure improvements.  It was discovered that many so-called residents actually lived in churches, invisible (not found) houses, and a factory.

Naturally, this is affecting the neighborhoods, and someone oughter do something about it.  So, here’s Mr. Dave Dermerjian giving approximately the same answer he gave to Mr. Herman above (you really should read the article and decide whether to laugh or cry), from the “Whittier Daily News.”  I also see from the diagram that in 2006, the City Council and another authority (an Authority should show up on a CAFR or have its own) created a third entity, a “Joint Powers Authority” (JPA) which morphed into an “Industry Property Housing and Management Authority” owns the property 4 out of the 5 City Council either live in, or rent.  To me, that all sounds like sticking it to the taxpayers or whoever is going to have to pay off that debt, including possibly tenants.  Hope the tenants are not as invisible as some of the voters’ homes…. That’s a lot of authorities for what was acc. to the US 2010 census (per article) “the third smallest city in the state.”  Seems to me, the real question is who decided to incorporate “Industry” as a city politic at all?


(see next post!)

Written by Let's Get Honest

November 12, 2012 at 11:17 am

Family Courts are Part of Government = Business Systems. Part I

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The government as a business is in the business of raising revenues in exchange for providing services.  In a just world, it would be operating without a huge surplus, engaging regularly in war, international banking, the support and overthrow of other governments, etc. but in the best interests of its citizens.  However, like any corporation, it likes to accumulate assets while doing this — the mo fre the merrier.

UNlike public-trade companies, however, there is no “Securities and Exchange Commission” regulating the government’s own selling and buying of debt, or others who sell and buy ITS debt.  There ought to be.

The only trouble with that model is when it gets out of hand, which is what most governments and institutions (and religions) throughout the history of the world, by nature, DO.  They get “out of hand.”    When challenged on this, they tend to engage in bloody wars, and redistribute land and profits afterwards.  Religions — and/or social science theories about life, poverty, families, and “welfare” (these days) or almost anything else– are handy for justifying the wars.

SECTION I.

TANF/WELFARE ASSETS used to WAGE WAR ON POVERTY/FATHERLESSNESS.  In order to divert these funds, and give grants to some, not to others; someone first had to obtain these funds.  

But whoever still questions HOW that happened, with a view to getting some of it back in the form of valid money (not “dollars”) instead of continually fighting about provision of what kinds of services from the same source?  In other words, how to change the conversation?  Did “the Occupy” movement entail exposing this?

Note:  the US government only has this weapon to use because it was able to accumulate the assets through, among other means, setting up the Federal Reserve Board & income tax (1913) BEFORE World War I, passing the War Powers Act, and only deactivating part of it (1921) declaring a state of emergency (1933),  having appropriated the people’s excess gold (under “Trading with the Enemy Act”) and, having collected through threat an abundance of gold, getting it OUT of others’ hands, suddenly raised the price of gold; then having passed the Social Security Act (1935) taxing not just individuals, but also employers to set up such a trust fund, and so on, and so forth. (some of which is in the last post here).

In other words, the dynamic of the government as our “hero” against foreign enemies and large corporations (therefore hand over the loot) was set up long ago.  Of course there are long-term consequences to centralized control of the economy in private hands!   Now, lo and behold, post- 2001, we (any American, potentially) is the potential enemy, as well as the domesticated cattle being farmed.  Thanks to the internet, it’s a little easier for some of us to learn more about this, however thanks to the same internet it’s also easier for the pace of this expansion (of government/corporate alliances) to accelerate.

Currently some of us are reeling from the war on poverty and fatherlessness in the family courts, which often results in a shifting of the poverty to the other parentage (family line) and motherlessness, which taxpayers are helping with — because this money comes from welfare diversions, some of which are to specifically help fathers get children away from mothers, including mothers that separated from fathers because of a lethality situation.  Period.   To pretend otherwise is to have immunized oneself against proof.

By now even fathers know this; fewer mothers do because mothers, through the DV and “protect the children” advocacy groups (some of who collaborate with fatherhood groups on the same grants’ streams) have intentionally silenced discussion on that topic leaving it to individual bloggers (many of us parents) to publicize.  We do not generally speaking, as the federal government does, have $7 million surplus sitting around to further a media campaign and divert MORE money into government programs, where it (to be honest) is often simply lost.  I wonder where that “lost” money goes to.  Even though through some due diligence, we can find out where (at which organizations, and who their owners are) some of the trails goes cold, and we do see the patterns, it would take some serious software — and internal controls, good data, etc. — to get the scope of it:

Just a sample reminder from Anne Stevenson’s Huffington Post blog, link to the right:

The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 and the Temporary Aid to Needy Families (TANF) program it created transformed welfare policy by drastically reducing and shifting federal assistance away from the homes of mothers and children and into the homes of violent offenders. In an article entitled “How Federal Welfare Funding Drives Judicial Discretion in Child-Custody Determinations and Domestic Relations Matters” fathers and rights activists Lary Holland and Jason Bottomsly explain that this policy has backfired because the incentives are structured so that the state will only benefit if children are removed from loving homes:

For “benefit” read “profit.”  This profit is in part from interest accrued while child support distribution is suspended pending resolution of the custody matter, and other various ways.  Also, there’s a “bounty” for the states on creating child support orders, payable from the US government.
“In essence, the federal guidelines wanted the states to function as collection agencies,** recovering financial support from parents who had willfully abandoned their parental responsibilities to their children. The result, however, was different from the intent and has caused the state welfare programs to adjust their environment to have a greater need, . . .
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Written by Let's Get Honest

November 11, 2012 at 5:03 pm

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