Thursday, April 28, 2011

Racism Coming Out of the Woodwork

Yes, America, racism is alive and well. Better not get caught asleep at the wheel.

Oklahoma Republicans in the House of Representatives have passed a proposed constitutional amendment that eliminates affirmative action in state government. Rep. T.W. Shannon, the sponsor of the bill, explained the reasoning behind the bill: "While discrimination exists, I don't think affirmative action has been as successful as we like to believe."

As the issue was discussed, Rep. Sally Kern, R-Oklahoma City, said minorities earn less than white people because they don’t work as hard and have less initiative.

“We have a high percentage of blacks in prison, and that’s tragic, but are they in prison just because they are black or because they don’t want to study as hard in school? I’ve taught school, and I saw a lot of people of color who didn’t study hard because they said the government would take care of them.”

Kern said women earn less than men because “they tend to spend more time at home with their families.”

Kern is known for her extremist opinions -- from saying "homosexuality is more dangerous than terrorism" to introducing legislation to force teachers to question evolution.

Sally Kern called the United States "the greatest nation in the world where you have the most opportunities and freedoms." How do you rate a nation's freedom?  Be sure to read the Salte. com article below on how to measure liberty.
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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Obama Releases Birth Certificate

President Barack Obama confers with Federal Re...
The White House released President Obama’s long-form birth certificate Wednesday, citing a desire to rid the national debate of suggestions that Obama wasn’t born in the United States. Personally, I don't feel like this is the end to the Birthier issue.  Some will choose to still believe that the President wasn't born in the USA and all the other bull-pucky that goes with that position.

Of course, showman extraordinairie Donald Trump took credit for the document being released.  Now we'll see if he can talk about the real issues and his plans and solutions to address them vs the bogus birthier issue.
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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Haley Barbour Won't Run

WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 01:  Mississippi Govern...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
Haley Barbour, Mississippi Governor,  announced that he will not be a candidate for President in 2012.  After several gaffs that centered on racial issues, I can't say I'm unhappy about his decision. However, based on his stated views and positions, as well as others like him, I continue to understand that race is still an issue in American politics.

I see Ron Paul lurking in the background, thinking about a 2012 presidential bid once again. I'm sure we'll hear more. OMG!

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Saturday, April 23, 2011

AZ Governor Vetos Birther Bill

Jan BrewerImage via Wikipedia
Believe it or not, AZ Republican Governor Jan Brewer had the good sense to veto the state's recent Birther legislation. The controversial bill was passed by the AZ legislature and would require certain documentation before a candidate's name could be placed on a ballot in the state.

“I never imagined being presented with a bill that could require candidates for president of the greatest and most powerful nation on earth to submit their ‘early baptismal or circumcision certificates’ among other records to the Arizona secretary of state,” she said in the letter. “This is a bridge too far.”

Governor Brewer also vetoed a bill that would allow guns in colleges campuses.

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NV Senator John Ensign Resigns

John EnsignImage via Wikipedia
John Ensign will resign his Senate seat on May 3, although he admits no wrong doing.

“While I stand behind my firm belief that I have not violated any law, rule, or standard of conduct of the Senate, and I have fought to prove this publicly, I will not continue to subject my family, my constituents, or the Senate to any further rounds of investigation, depositions, drawn out proceedings, or especially public hearings,” Ensign said in a statement posted on his Web site. “For my family and me, this continued personal cost is simply too great.”

If the Ethics Committe chooses to continue it's investigation after May 3, Ensign may well still be on the hook for his actions after a a sex scandal involving a staffer.

The larger question for me is who will Republican Governor Brian Sandoval appoint to replace Ensign and if this chain of events benefits Sharron Angle, former Republican candidate for Senate.

Washington Post blogger Chris Cillizza reports the following in The Fix blog:
Ensign’s resignation would allow Gov. Brian Sandoval (R) to appoint a replacement to serve until the seat is filled in the 2012 election. Rep. Dean Heller, a Republican who is campaigning to succeed Ensign, is the front-runner for the appointment .

If Heller is named to the Senate, there will be a special election to replace him in the sprawling 2nd District. Nevada election law is vague, and officials in the secretary of state’s office are currently researching the rules. In a free-for-all race, Sharron Angle, the 2010 Senate challenger to Harry M. Reid (D), would be considered the early favorite. If state party committees pick the candidates, Angle has less chance of being the Republican nominee.

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Wiping Out A Lie

Jon KylImage via Wikipedia
I always thought that the Congressional Record contained actual quotes and remarks that Congressmen delivered on the floor of the House and Senate.  I learned something from John Kyl's big lie about Planned Parenthood and how he changed the contents in the Congressional Record to wipe out his lie..

Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ) has amended the congressional record to qualify his recent remark about Planned Parenthood which led to the mother of all spin from his flack: "His remark was not intended to be a factual statement."

The original statement from Kyl: "If you want an abortion you go to Planned Parenthood and that's well over 90 percent of what Planned Parenthood does."

After Kyl amended his remarks, the congressional record now reads: "If you want an abortion you go to Planned Parenthood and that is what Planned Parenthood does."

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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Limbaugh Calls Obama's Base "Savages"

Rush LimbaughCover of Rush Limbaugh
On a recent radio show, Rush Limbaugh called President Obama’s base “savages” . In discussing the President’s deficit reduction speech Limbaugh said
“His base is made up of people even more vile than he is,” he said. “You’ve got…a lot of it is just walking human debris on the Democrat base side.” He went on to say “That bunch of people, those savages that make up the Obama base, are fit to be tied,” he said. He had to get them back, and the one way to do it was to go out and savage us. That’s what they love. That’s what they get off on. That’s their orgasm. ‘Cause these people can’t find willing mates.”

This is Limbaugh's game and he gets paid well for these performances.  It's no wonder he's called the face of the Republican Party. It seems that he can get away with his hatespeak, but will that last forever?
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Sunday, April 17, 2011

CA GOP Official Sends Racist Pic of President

Official presidential portrait of Barack Obama...Image via Wikipedia

A Southern California Republican Party official was under fire Saturday after allegations she sent an email that included an altered photo depicting President Barack Obama as an ape.

Marilyn Davenport, who is a member of the central committee of the Republican Party of Orange County, sent the email. The photo in the email shows an image, posed like a family portrait, of chimpanzee parents and child, with Obama's face artificially superimposed on the child. Text beneath the photo reads, "Now you know why no birth certificate."

Davenport told the OC Weekly it was a joke.

"You're not going to make a big deal about this, are you?" Davenport reportedly asked when the newspaper's political blogger reached her for comment. "Oh, come on!"

The RPOC chairman is calling for an ethics investigation and says Davenport should consider stepping down.

Do I have the photo Davenport sent in her email?  Yes, I do.  However, I'm tired of spreading the filth that racist politicians produce.  Rather, I chose a photo of the President of the United States that every American can and should be proud of. Your thoughts?

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Thursday, April 14, 2011

Round Three of the Budget Battle via Wikipedia
Round One-The battle offered increased taxes for the middle class vs. keeping Bush tax cuts for the rich.

Round Two-Showdown over funding the government through the end of this fiscal year.

Round Three-The debt ceiling fight now in progress-two opposing sets of values.

Paul Ryan has been hailed for his "vision" evidenced in his budget proposal.
By proposing to dismantle Medicare for people retiring in 2021 and afterwards, he's laid out a radical alternative to today's policies. By slashing taxes for the wealthy and proposing deregulation for all industries, the Ryan plan envisions a future America: one where the environment is despoiled, the poor go unfed, and the middle class faces a lifetime of financial insecurity following by an old age of sickness and penury.
When President Obama offered his budget proposal, Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security remain in tact. He supported his healthcare plan to address Medicare and Medicaid issues. He proposed a return to the Bush-Clinton policies that put us on the path to budget surpluses in the 1990s — and he will be able to restore the Clinton tax rates simply, with his veto pen, if necessary, in 2013. He proposed a tax-reform process that will eliminate loopholes. All in all, his plan is reasonable and far less distasteful than that of the Republicans.

 Joe Klein, Time Magazine, offers a summary of the President's history lesson:
Republicans, colleagues of Paul Ryan's, voted for the Bush tax cuts — which, as Obama noted, added $500 billion per year to the deficit — and they also voted for the (unpaid for) wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and a massive (unpaid for) Medicare prescription-drug benefit. On top of these obligations, we suffered a severe recession starting in 2008, which reduced tax revenue by an estimated $500 billion per year — and which required nearly a trillion dollars in government spending to avert a total economic collapse. And voilá, this year's $1.6 trillion budget deficit.
As the round three battle begins, I hear Rodney King in the background..."Can't we all just get along?".

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The Inside Job-Naming the Culprits

If you want to clearly understand all the elements of the Financial Crisis, I strongly suggest you view the academy award winning documentary "The Inside Job".  It'll be worth the effort to track the film down and the time it takes to view it.  It'll make you angry, but you'll see how all the familiar names chased the almighty dollar at the expense of our collective financial welfare. I promise you'll learn everything you need to know to make sense of the whole sorry mess.

Highlights from an article in The New York Times, "Naming the Culprits" by Gretchen Morgenson and Louise Story:

“Wall Street and the Financial Crisis: Anatomy of a Financial Collapse,” a 650 page report, was released Wednesday by the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, whose co-chairmen are Carl Levin, a Michigan Democrat, and Tom Coburn, a Republican of Oklahoma. The result of two years’ work, the report focuses on an array of institutions with central roles in the mortgage crisis: Washington Mutual, an aggressive mortgage lender that collapsed in 2008; the Office of Thrift Supervision, a regulator; the credit ratings agencies Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s Investors Service; and the investment banks Goldman Sachs and Deutsche Bank.

“The report pulls back the curtain on shoddy, risky, deceptive practices on the part of a lot of major financial institutions,” Mr. Levin said in an interview. “The overwhelming evidence is that those institutions deceived their clients and deceived the public, and they were aided and abetted by deferential regulators and credit ratings agencies who had conflicts of interest.”

The report adds significant new evidence to previously disclosed material showing that a wide swath of the financial industry chose profits over propriety during the mortgage lending spree. It also casts a harsh light on what the report calls regulatory failures, which helped deepen the crisis.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Washington's Money Game

Well, the politicians got together and finally managed to advert a government shutdown.
I must say I'm not impressed and the battle of the budget left a bitter taste in my mouth and left me disappointed with all the parties concerned. Democrats gave up $38.5 billion in spending cuts, when the original Republican demand was for $32 billion. That means the Democrats only gave the Republicans 20% more than they originally demanded. Democrats agreed to enormous program cuts but managed to save the EPA and Planned Parenthood.

 The tax cuts for the rich passed in December amounted to $150 billion and rescinding them would have solved the supposed fiscal problem. Of the 535 members of Congress, 237 are millionaires, 55 are worth over $10 million each and 3 are worth $150 million each. Every body else depends on contributions from wealthy donor with vital interests they want protected.  Is there any wonder why we can't get rid of Bush's gift to the top 2% of the population.

People can debate who won the second wave of the Battle of the Budget, but I believe the country and the American people are the clear losers.
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Thursday, April 7, 2011

Bristol Palin's Paycheck

NEW YORK - MAY 06:  Bristol Palin and and her ...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
Bristol Palin, the 20-year-old daughter of former Alaska governor and 2008 vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin drew ire on Tuesday after tax documents revealed she raked in more than $262,500 for her work advocating against teen pregnancy in 2009.

She has been advocating youth abstinence on behalf of New York-based Candie's Foundation, a nonprofit organization that seeks to raise awareness of teen pregnancy and parenting issues.  The head of the nonprofit group against teen pregnancy on Wednesday defended the $332,500 his organization paid Bristol Palin over a two-year period to advocate for sexual abstinence.

"Bristol did a tremendous amount of work for us -- many, many days and weeks," said Neil Cole, founder of the nonprofit Candie's Foundation.

I wonder if this money will trickle down to the disadvantaged like the tax cuts for the rich.

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Trump for President? Get Real!

Donald Trump in February 2009Image via Wikipedia
The talk about the Donald running for President floods the news media, but can you take Trump for President seriously?  Never mind the fact he claims to be a "Birthier". Never mind the fact that he's polled number 2 at 21% behind Mitt Romney's 27%  in the Republicans for President polling. It's good for publicity.  It got him a weekly show on Fox News.  It makes him a person in demand on the talk show circuit. It may raise the ratings on his TV show Celebrity Apprentice. It allows him to garner campaign donations. It's money in Trump's pocket...that's what it's all about.
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Paul Ryan's Budget Proposal

WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 05:  U.S. Rep. Paul Rya...Image by Getty Images via @daylife

Wisconsin Republican and House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan compares his recently introduced budget plan to the proposals for welfare reform enacted during the 1990s.

“This budget,” Ryan proclaimed, “extends those successes . . . to ensure that America’s safety net does not become a hammock that lulls able-bodied citizens into lives of complacency and dependency.”

I agree with Washington Post contributor Ruth Marcus: when she say “Paul Ryan is wrong about the safety net.” ” Nothing justifies spending nearly $700 billion to extend tax cuts on the wealthiest Americans while cutting even more, $771 billion, of health care for the poorest."