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Thursday, December 30, 2010

Guilty as charged.

Well, the witch is back and Favre is still in our faces. American society and culture has evolved into a system where celebrity behavior crosses over all barriers of decency. This reality TV environment has so diluted what is truly important in our land, that we have become a country that fails to hold its more famous citizens accountable for their actions. Chrinstine O'Donnell, former tea party favorite and dabbler in witchcraft had her 5 minutes of fame. During this period, she amassed sums of money that she could only imagine, as supporters funded her campaign. Now she is being investigated for improper use of these funds. Her reaction, typical, and I is a thug political thing...My enemies are behind it...Think about this, she lost big, became a fool and is likely to go the route of her mentor into the world of entertainment. She has had no real impact on the political discourse and has no real power base. Why, therefore, would there be a witch hunt (hee hee) against her? I am not in the know and I have no proof one way or another, but I do have common sense. Guilty as charged. As for Favre, who continues to be in our face with his ridiculous and non stop career ending talk and return, a man who may have had some skills on the field, but has become a mockery to his fans and detractors alike. I just wish he would go back to Mississippi and do some fishin. You are history Mr. Favre. You are also a man who gives the gender a bad name. Your contemptable behavior is worth a greater punishment than the pittance of the fine that the weak kneed NFL just levied. Their investigation of you was a sham and I am ashamed at their actions, almost as much as yours. Guilty as charged Mr. Favre. Go home please. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

It's football stupid

I like Governor Ed Rendell, but his objection to the the cancellation of a football game due to the blizzard would be humorous if he wasn't so serious. Living in New Jersey and still digging out from the storm, I can attest to the fact that the safety of masses of people needs to be at the top of our priority list at all times. So what if the NFL Macho non wusse policy during its history was turned upside down for this game. So what, that Philly only received a foot of snow instead of the more dire predictions. This was the right decision and I only blog about it because as a politician and loyal Democrat, Rendell is amongst the best in the party and I would expect him to pick a better fight. Comparing us to China, a communist country with 5 times the population is silly. As far as their fans "doing calculus on the way to the game", that is a different story. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Peace and Joy to All

During the holiday season it is important to be thankful for that which we have and hopeful for a future filled with peace and joy. As our new Government is sworn in, let us hope that they can work on behalf of the people and become shining examples of what is important....not bickering and hatefulness and power grabbing, but job creation, civility, sharing and responsibility. Only then will we be the kind of nation that lives by it's principles. Happy Holiday. Peace and Joy to all. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Laugh out loud funny

Senator Jon Kyl of Arizona said today as a result of the successful vote to bring the START treaty to the floor that Democrats were being partisan. Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha...Let me catch my breath. Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Monday, December 20, 2010

Cold War Revisited

As of this blog, I feel skeptical that the 67 needed Senators for passage of a treaty will be rounded up. Reducing our stockpile of weapons of mass destruction as well as Russia's just ain't in the hearts of the partisan hatemongers in the Senate. All because the Republican leader is such a complete, unadulterated schmuck. He and others in his party are bringing up cold war issues and disapproving on the grounds of decades past. I know, in their hearts, they support this treaty. It is just a manufactured fear tactic to simply continue with their efforts to embarrass the President. Mitch McConnell has become the personal whipping boy for my blog, but in my life, following politics, I don't remember a more partisan, vindictive and mean spirited man than he. Merry Christmas Senator McConnell. You aren't even worth my time. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Sunday, December 19, 2010

One win, one loss, one to go.

Let's forget the new poster boy for nasty on the Republican side, Jon Kornyn for a moment who had the audacity to say yesterday that Republicans have heard the call from America and have used their power as a minority to exercize restraint on deficit spending, one day after passing a bill to expand the deficit by almost 900 billion. Let us forget the crotchety old grinch of a Senator, John McCain, who has said that letting gays have the same liberties as all other Americans willing to fight and die for his freedom, isn't a good thing and will disrupt our war policies against a cacophony of disagreement from better men than he. Let us forget for a moment the innocent college age American who as an infant was brought to the United States illegally by their parents in an effort to have a better life. Regrettably, these folks will have to remain outcasts in their own country because of the mean spiritedness of politicians for an indeterminate amount of time. This was a great loss, not passing the DREAM Act..shameful in fact. We did get a win however, a final recognition that sexual orientation does not exclude you from the guaranteed liberties we as Americans all have. The repeal of DADT was a good moment for liberty and equality. Now, lastly, as the days toward the holiday break come closer, our illustrious Senate must decide whether less nuclear explosive capability by the two largest stockpilers of weapons of mass destruction is good for the world or bad for the world. Let us see if these Merry Gentlemen and Women can break the tie and start the new year on a safer footing. Let's just see. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Friday, December 17, 2010

I can hear it already.

In a moment of bipartisanship and in time for the holiday, Congress passed the tax bill. There are Christmas tree ornaments for both parties and for all Americans. There is also an ever increasingly large bill to pay down the road. If this helps to stimulate the economy and put people to work, it will all have been worth it despite the wrangling. However, politicians in our country do not do anything solely for the people. They do it out of spite, jealousy, power and re-election. I can hear the new Congress now....Republicans- "look at what President Obama did. Another spending bill that increased the debt by over 800 billion dollars. Those Democrats never saw a spending bill they didn't like"....Democrats- "look at what those Republicans in the Congress did. Held the government hostage for another break for the rich fat cats in this country. Those country club Republicans continue to have their let them eat cake attitude. Shame on them." Yes, I can hear it all now. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Petulant little babies

I am a teacher and every day I listen and observe the normal adolescent actions of my students. For them, this often childish behavior is normal and part of the growth process. When I come home, however, and watch my government act like petulant little high school students not getting their way, I could explode. As I write this blog, the Senate has passed the tax compromise bill. After months of stupid and unnecessary wrangling, something finally got done in terms of compromise. The House members, not ready to act like responsible adults, instead are looking to stroke their own egos, looking to make a statement before the power base changes, and trying to find face saving measures so that they can seem relevant. They risk the whole bill by their incredibly immature actions. Their suggestions about the inheritance tax and perhaps derailing the best part of the bill, the payroll tax reduction is not only stupid, it is downright immature. It is a lot to ask, but we need them to grow up and pass the bill. Enough of this torture. Our founders built in checks and balances as well as vehicles to slow government down, but they would be embarrassed by what they see today. Good thing they are dead. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

He just can't help it.

Senator McConnell just cannot help himself. This arrogant, insensitive, and fanatically partisan Republican will not go a day without criticizing Democrats. Even during a rare moment of bi partisan compromise. Yesterday the Senate took a test vote 83 to 13 to support the tax bill. 70 percent of us as I blogged yesterday support it. McConnell ignored the moment and took to the floor to bloviate against Democrats. He vehemently criticized them for spending and raising the deficit. He practically called them liars when he said it was never their intent to use rich people tax reductions to reduce the deficit. While this awful man chose to ingnore the new and temporary spirit of comity, long forgotten in the Senate, he amazingly supported a program about to grow our deficit by 900 billion dollars. That is OK because it is for the rich. Mitch McConnell continues to represent everything that is bad about our government and is a man who frankly I cannot understand how he lives with himself. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Monday, December 13, 2010

70 percent

When is the last time America supported anything at 70%? We have become such a polarized nation, that a one percent majority is considered a mandate. With 41 being the new Senate working number and with popularity in the high 50s seeming insurmountable these days, a 70 percent support of anything seems highly unusual. So, we should seize this moment of bipartisanship and get something done. It ain't perfect, there is a lot I do not like about the compromise and if I was in charge, I would have tried for certain things that are not included. However, this is why it is called a compromise. So let us have our Congress stop the bickering for a moment, listen to the people and go vote for compromise. Maybe then we can move ahead to face the battles that lay before us. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Saturday, December 11, 2010


Yesterday while Senator Sanders was holding his near filibuster on the floor of the Senate, President Obama addressed the media with former President Bill Clinton by his side. Then, in something that seemed amazing to me at first, the President gave the stage to Clinton and left to attend a party. The former President answered questions on matters of economics, the current tax compromise and other issues as well. As usual, William Jefferson Clinton wowed us. He spoke in less professorial terms than is the custom of the President and loved every minute being back on the center stage. My initial feelings of Obama weakness went out the window when I realized that this was actually a very smart strategy. Bill Clinton still reaches the hearts and souls of moderate Democrats. He has more Presidential experience than Obama does and as Abraham Lincoln proved to the world, surrounding yourself with expertise no matter what the previous adversarial history of your advisors is just good sense. President Obama by seeking counsel from the most skillful politician of our time is not allowing his ego or the comments of a voracious media to rule him. It does not matter who we learn from as long as we learn and if the President believes he can win on the merits by using an elder statesman, good for him. The angry and petulant Congress will come around soon enough. After all, they want to go home and wrap some presents. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Friday, December 10, 2010

A Bitchy Mood

Yes I am in a bitchy mood today. It starts with my party's House members who are strutting their stuff and trying to prove relevancy. The President supports a bill to extend UE benefits, give college tuition tax credits, lower everyone's payroll tax and keep every single American from seeing a tax increase in January. Sounds like a Democratic plan to me and they are threatening and whining because of process. They will vote no...stall it, hold out for some relatively insignificant change, boast about it and move on to their holiday break while trying to forget the reality of their diminished numbers and clout come January. Don't give us any crap that the current proposal kills the deficit because neither party could care one iota for deficit reduction as long as the increase of it, fits their politics of the moment. As for the Republicans they have stalled the liberites of gays, stalled if not killed support for 9-11 responders and have shut down a chance at real nuclear stability by their abuse of the filibuster. To equate equal rights for all with a tax bill is hateful, contemptable and true to their colors of lying, distorting and cheating our nation. As far as the President is concerned, he is appropriately taking the Truman approach. I paraphrase [you can get much more done if you don't worry about getting credit]. No wonder Congress is more and more unpopular with Americans each day. Let us not confuse the anger of last month with a substantial shift or dedication to policy or ideas. Both sides stink and if they don't correct the stench of their incompetence, we will swing the other way again. This continuous bickering and partisan hate will hurt us more than any of us can imagine. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Thursday, December 9, 2010

True Colors

Two of our nation's political celebrities were heard from yesterday. The witch from Delaware and the Alaskan Shark. Both were outraged at President Obama's tax deal.....not the Republicans mind you. What were they griping about? Extension of unemployment benefits. They loved the tax breaks for the wealthy probably because their lucrative book deals will put them in the company of the wealthy. People, these women are an embarrassment to our nation and totally incapable of coherence or logic or intellectual curiosity or plain competence. Their true colors as celebrity wannabees are ever more evident. Forget about shutting down wiki leaks, we need to shut these two idiots and those of their kind, down. Not by censorship or denial of their rights to speak, but simply by not listening. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

It's the middle class...stupid

All this noise about Presidential weakness and poor negotiation skills by members of his own party simply does not make any sense. Most people, frustrated or angry as they may be, believe that helping the middle class and the unemployed is a good thing. These are traditional beliefs of the Democratic Party. Our President has worked out a compromise package soon to be voted on that includes protecting tax rates from rising for all of us to include the 98% that the Democrats wanted to protect. It includes college tax credits. It includes a reduction in the payroll tax meaning an actual increase in take home pay and it includes an extension in unemployment benefits. These are Democratic issues, issues that are foundational for Democrats. So the rich get to keep their money too. I may not like that portion of the deal, but a deal means wins and losses for each side. This compromise while not perfect, represents aspects of stimulation for the economy, tax policies which lead to no one getting an increase in taxes and something that I would happily campaign on if I were running for office. First Republicans wouldn't give the President a win on anything and now his own party won't. Not too smart. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

What Deficit?

The President and the Republican Party have announced a tax compromise. It will increase the deficit by an amount approximately the same size as the much maligned stimulus bill. I guess the Republicans only hate deficit spending when it helps cops, teachers, infrastructure repair, help to the states and other important and needed economic growth opportunities. When it comes to helping those in least need of help, then deficit increases are fine. Therefore, in principle, it has nothing to do with the deficit and frankly for all the yelling and screaming we do about it, most of us do not even understand it. What are the tea party activists saying today knowing that they will willingly go along with raising it even though they will spin it as not their's the lame duck Congress. My party, the Democrats are blaming the President for being weak. They are probably in large numbers going to vote against this compromise, not derailing it, but making a point. In a country where slogans and easy to understand concepts rule, the bottom line is that I would rather say on the campaign trail that I supported helping all Americans than saying I helped most, but not all because of the wealthy not needing the help and blah blah blah. Taxes are not going up for anyone. Unemployed are being helped. Social Security Tax is reduced. Run on that. Shut up about the deficit because no one really cares. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Sunday, December 5, 2010



Friday, December 3, 2010

Chicken Crap

So what we have gotten, is the eloquence and intellect of John Boehner our new speaker. A man who cannot put two coherent thoughts together and make an ounce of sense. A man who is only as good as the recently rehearsed Republican spin. A man who is so intent on forcing Democrats to lose, that he resorts to nonsense, stupidity and gobbly gook. Chicken Crap...the best he can do? What a damn shame. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Thursday, December 2, 2010

A Reminder

Today I want to remind readers of the kinds of people we have in our government that sadly put themselves before their country. Two in particular come to mind today and are both in the Senate. One is Mitch McConnell, minority leader who I have condemned before. He is so hateful and resistent toward President Obama that he has instructed his minions of scared Republican sheep to be lockstep in their resistence to the President. Even Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins from Maine, somewhat sensible at times, fear going against their dictator. The result is an abuse of the power that the minority has sparingly wielded in the past through filibuster but now uses as much as eating and sleeping, now threatening to derail compromise, progress and growth. McConnell is refusing to support tax relief for 98 percent of Americans solely to embarrass the President and to protect the rich, the hallmark view of the Republican party. He has instructed his flunkies, one in particular, Jon Kyl from Arizona,to keep the sheep in line and to hit all the network news programs arguing against a peaceful and safe reduction in nuclear arms between Russia and the U.S. Every credible past Republican Cabinet member or high level military official supports this, but Kyl has been instructed by Mighty Mitch, to stall it. They will not under any circumstances give the President a victory. They put party and power ahead of their country. They and those like them are scoundrels of the worst sort. America did not vote for this last month. What they have gotten is one of the most shameful periods of our government where compromise is condemned, lies are repeated and all this during a time of real economic peril and global unrest. Unless my party, stands up and fights, changes the filibuster rule in the Rules committee, takes the issue of Middle Class relief to their own town halls, calls the Republican bluff, I too may join a party of NO. NO to my own failed, gutless Democratic Party. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

It's War

Yesterday, foolishly, President Obama again tried to work with Republicans who continue to bask in the election results of last month. The President would have you believe that the meeting yesterday was constructive and useful. Today, Mitch McConnell pulled the usual. No bills being allowed for discussion until taxes are addressed. Mitch McConnell has a sole goal. Defeat the President. Block him at every turn. No compromises. This is what you get Mr. Obama when you try to be conciliatory with the party of NO. Throw some elbows Mr. President. You have been taking a lot of elbows these days. Tough it out. Stand true to your principles. Scream to the breaks for millionaires or the middle class? Make that the issue or else your bruises may never heal. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Sunday, November 28, 2010

True to principles.

It is amazing to me that after the election has passed, we have all these politicians staking out positions and saying "we must be true to our principles" Bull hockey. If these folks were true to their principles in the first place, we would have legislation that had already created jobs, expanded health care to the millions who remain uninsured and tax rates that reflect fairness and deficit reduction. These folks all ran away from their principles and now want us to believe they truly stand for something? Not going to happen. On this Thanksgiving weekend, I am thankful for a lot, but NOT for the leaders of my country and party who have failed to stick by their principles. They can promise all they want, but when it comes to politics in this country, our leaders quickly fail us. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Giving Thanks

There is so much to be thankful for. I can have this blog and express opinions that many are able to oppose and disagree with. This is the beauty of our system. I am thankful for that and so much more. Happy Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The New Book

Yippee. Today Sarah Palin's new book is released. Well, not exactly, she didn't really write it. Now I am sure she gave some guidance to the ghost writers, not a new concept, but for anyone to view her as an author, that is a colossal joke. She is now going around the country selling her books in states that have impact on Presidential elections to test the waters for her 2012 campaign. She is also serving cookies at schools in an effort to object to the first lady's campaign against obesity. The government cannot require you to eat the school's food, but it certainly has the responsibility to try and improve our health, but Sarah is against universal health care too. Former first lady Barbara Bush made a tongue in cheek remark the other day about Mrs. Palin. She said, and I paraphrase, that Sarah loves Alaska and hopes she stays there. Not me. I want her out and about. She is a skillful marketer, but a lightweight in the gravitas and intellectual requirements of making responsible decisions. Look at North Korea today, when the new and inexperienced soon to be dictator made a reckless and dangerous decision. Mrs. Palin's lack of knowledge or understanding is scary in its own right and I am confident that the more she pedals her book, the more she picks issues and the more she speaks, the more divided and fractured will be the Republican party going into the Presidential election season. So go Sarah go. Get out there, speak, philosophize, misuse our language, show your ignorance. We will be better served learning just how unqualified you are.
I'd watch her weather report and take lessons on how to fish from her, but that's about it. Go Sarah Go. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Pat Down

Ben Franklin was wrong. He who sacrifices a little liberty for a little security deserves both...not neither. I am a liberal Democrat but it is time to stop whining about a little inconvenience at the airport. It is the airline companies we should be griping about...delays, charges for baggage, food, cramped seats, reduced schedules and increased prices. I prefer to stay on the ground. No scanner and no pat down. However, when I fly again, I will gladly submit to a little indignity in the hopes of a safe flight. More important things to worry about. Where are you Americans for reason and truth.

Friday, November 19, 2010

A Toxic President?

Yesterday at a meeting with Congressional Democrats, it got heated. So heated that one Senator called the President toxic. Toxic to the party and to the accuser's own personal chances for re election. The President, being the honorable and decent man that he is, listened and absorbed. In my judgement, the President should have pounced, pummelled and poked at these comments. How dare Democrats who forgot to run on the record of health reform, bank reform, economic recovery and tax breaks for the middle class criticize this President. Democrats who got scared, avoided campaigning for the truth, for the heart and soul of the Democratic party and for what is right are looking for a scapegoat and it is convenient to blame the President. As far as I am concerned, these people are Democrats in name only. Instead of blaming Obama, they ought to join forces with Republicans and for once and for all recognize the reality that they are not true Democrats. True Democrats would understand the President's agenda, run on the record of accomplishments and call Republicans to account for their lies and their responsibility. It is these so called Democrats that are Toxic. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Your wasted vote.

I always teach my students when we discuss the issue of citizen advocacy, that one's vote is never wasted. That it is your civic duty and responsibility to vote because apathy leads to the government only listening to those who express themselves at the polls. But, between you and me, this may be pure poppycock. If you believe your vote to reduce the deficit and to restore America counted by voting in Republicans two weeks ago, you were sadly mistaken and should get even more angry than you were then. Since that time, Republicans have called for tax breaks for the wealthiest among us which will raise the deficit by 700 billion and yesterday there were calls for an increase of 15 billion more to expand our nuclear arsenal. Today, President Obama was again derailed by another Republican, Senator Jon Kyl, who single handedly killed any chances of mutual reduction in nuclear arms between Russia and the US. You voted for increasing nuclear danger and tax breaks for the rich. There's a plan. Americans,,,,we blew it big time. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Monday, November 15, 2010


MINORITY Leader of the Senate Mitch McConnell has been a source of aggravation for me for quite some time. He is an arrogant man whose sole goal in life is to destroy our President. His preferred candidate for the Senate from his state lost to Rand Paul the newest tea party member of the Senate come January and his influence in Kentucky may not be as great as it once was, but he is a skilfull manipulator of truth and has carried the banner of obstructionism with success. He has also been one of the greatest abusers of the earmark process in all of the Senate and has fought against his own party to keep that which most Americans oppose ( as long as it is somewhere else ). Finally he relented and realized he was in an untenable position, so he expressed pride at his efforts in bringing waste to Kentucky but promises to do so no more. In his typical fashion, he then blamed the President for using stimulus money as earmarks. McConnell cannot go a day without taking a pot shot at Obama. I would like to remind the readers that Kentucky has been a beneficiary of stimulus money with jobs saved and needed projects begun. McConnell didn't cry then. It is people like Senator McConnell that make progress in our land impossible and attempts at real needed change unlikely. Thanks for nothing Senator. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Homeward Bound

President Obama will soon be home from his Asian trip. He will be criticized from the usual suspects for his wife's handshake, for his side conversations with leaders from other nations and for not finalizing a free trade agreement in Seoul. Notwithstanding the intensity of criticism in the campaign to defeat him in 2012, it is important to note the importance of his trip and his psyche. The President gets it. He gets that the United States will never again be the big successful bully and imperialist nation when it comes to economic clout. He recognizes that printing dollars and begging China not to stop buying our Treasuries is not good economic policy. He recognizes that other nations in their quest for economic opportunity sometimes clash with our ideas, but that this clash ultimately can lead to a more economically stable world. He understands that working with other nations can and will expand opportunities for American markets and American jobs. He gets it. It is sloppy work, tough to understand and fodder for the media and his enemies, but having an internationalist President who can speak with intellect about matters of economics and the future of our great nation is good for us all...whether you like him or not. We may be excited about Sarah's reality show and her new book written by others and her claims that she will do what the nation needs of her, but I would rather have a cool, calm, collected and smart man running the nation than an idiot. Welcome home Mr. President. A new battle begins. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Friday, November 12, 2010

Don't Bet on it.

In early 2009, President Obama called for an official bi partisan deficit reduction committee with some powers. Our Republican friends, keeping with their campaign of No, were against it. So, the President appointed a bipartisan commission with no binding legislative responsibilities to pursue the task of deficit reduction recommendations. What was released is already being condemned and fought over. Everyone is saying that we need to put our financial house in order, but nobody wants to do it. How will the realtor association feel about eliminating mortgage interest deductions? How will the wealthy feel about means testing for Social Security? How will the military feel about closing bases and not building weapons systems deemed unneeded? How will the people with kids feel when their schools are shuttered and teachers are without jobs and American continues on a path to ignorance? How will older people feel when Medicare benefits are reduced? How will Veterans feel when some VA benefits are reduced? How will people feel when broken roads and bridges remain woefully in disrepair? And on and on and on. Everyone wants to get our house in order, but no one want to give anything up. Republicans through it all continue to persist in their pursuit of an increase in our deficit by 700 billion through irresponsible and reckless tax breaks for the richest 2%. With these attitudes, don't bet on anything happening soon. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Thursday, November 11, 2010


To all the marvelous veterans who have served and are serving here and abroad. THANK YOU.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A Dirty Word

As a high school teacher, I hear enough profanity every day. Students often seem to forget that four letter words are disrespectful and in the long run will not be helpful for the pathway to success. Now I myself am not immune to such verbal garbage, having uttered inappropriately myself at times, but I apologize and manage to stay clean for most of my conscious time. There is a new word, however, that is being treated as profane. A word that is uttered at one's political peril and viewed as the bombshell of cussing. At a risk of being scolded or given detention, here goes...STIMULUS. There, I said it. It felt good. Again, Go STIMULUS yourself. Ok, enough. This word represents a 787 billion dollar expenditure by Congress which is being vilified by Republicans and they have done a wonderful job as evidenced by last week's results, making the use of the word, a losing issue. But, jobs have been saved, projects for improving infrastructure have begun, and taxes have gone down. Anyway, not to argue today, I simply wish to call for MORE STIMULUS. Why? Two reasons..I am not running for office and every governor facing a budget crisis is already calling for cuts to education, health care, infrastructure repair and layoffs. This is not the way to revive a still struggling economy. The way to revive a struggling economy is to build. Build bridges, and rails, and runways, and educational foundations that work, and health facilities with modern equipment, an energy grid that is 21st century, solar panels visible as far as the eye can see, wind turbines in every section of the country and on and on. The only entity, powerful enough to do this at a time of historic need, is yes, The Federal Government. The STIMULUS should include funds needed to help states balance their budgets and serve the long term interests of the people. Spend it now, or it may be too late. And, I know, it won't happen. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

So what is different?

I realize that the new Congress does not begin its work until after the new year, but it is always a time, during the lame duck period, for new agendas to be discussed, new politics to be entertained and new promises to me made. This is what we have from our Republiclan leaders so far...No compromise on tax breaks for the wealthiest, mocking of the President's trip to India, the largest democracy on Earth and a market for American goods, a promise by the Senate minority leader that the number one agenda item is the defeat of President Obama and promises of cuts in Government without one ounce of specifics. Nothing different. See you in the minority again in two years. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Marathon

Today, thousands of people will run the NYC Marathon. The training, stamina and sheer commitment from all these people is to be admired. It takes patience, diligence and good physical and mental health. These people are to be admired. They pace themselves and realize that finishing this race is about slow and steady planning. It is not a sprint. The finish line isn't visible from the start and at times it seems as if it will never be reached. However, it will be. I only wish the voters and members of our government would take a lesson from these wonderful runners. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Friday, November 5, 2010


Two days after the election, the largest number of private sector jobs in several years were created, which means that perhaps cash possessed companies are beginning to recognize the importance of job creation. Additionally, many retailers have upgraded their performance estimates for the near future. Now, I am not saying things are magically better, nor am I calling the American voter selfish and unaware of reality, but the progress which began under this President, promised to be slow, is beginning to take hold in many parts of our economy. Mitch McConnell has made his number one priority as MINORITY leader, the demise of President Obama. Is this what the angry American voter really voted for on Tuesday? I think not. Now that the Republicans are in charge of the House, I will patiently wait for all of the things they are going to cut to restore "sanity" in the Federal budget. Their cuts will be symbolic at best and irresponsible at worst. Actually, Tuesday's results weren't so bad at all. Let us watch them govern. Let us see if they go back to their failed policies of 5 years ago, or, actually come up with something new. Let's just wait for some leadership. Wait and wait and wait and wait and after they fail, again, we can vote for some new people. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

The day after

The sun came up today. The United States of America hasn't collapsed. The Founding Fathers got their wish....a check and balance against an overreaching government. Today's word is repudiation. I heard it in victory speeches yesterday at least 30 times, 8 of those times from our new Speaker Mr. Boehner. Remember, this is the word that Mrs. Palin got wrong..."refudiation" she said..oh well. By the way who lost yesterday?..the three extreme tea party buffoons she endorsed...anyhow, what did we repudiate yesterday? Did we repudiate the agenda we endorsed in huge numbers 21 months ago? If we did, no real elected official should even consider changing a course that is based on long term value and slow progress...but I don't think the President's agenda was repudiated. 63% of the people who voted yesterday said the President was not a factor in their decision and those who said he was made up a percentage that is less than those who do not support him at all...Did we repudiate big government? Maybe, but what things are we ready to give back?...entitlements?, Veterans' Benefits?, new home purchase government subsidies? I think not. So we expressed some anger, licked respective wounds and started a new day. In two years, we can be angry again as seems to be our recent trend and throw the bums out that we threw out two years ago and welcomed yesterday again. And so it goes...Politics, unfulfilled promises and pure BS. If I were the President, I wouldn't care about the next election, and in his heart I do not think President Obama does. I would stand by the principles that my countrymen elected me on, by wide margins. I would stay the course and allow the slow and steady progress to continue. I would let the results of my actions speak for themselves and I wouldn't relent or fold under the pressure of a lying bunch of do-nothings who gave us the problem and now promise us paradise. I would not give the rich a free ride. I would hold out to insure 98% of Americans receive their tax break. I would continue to expand incentives for small business and encourage job creation. By the way, this is what our President has been doing contrary to the successful Republican spin machine. Let's hold the Republicans in the House accountable for their promises and the upcoming failure to deliver....Bring it on. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Election Day

In the current issues of "New York Magazine" and "The Economist", the lead articles are all about the angry voter. So as I prepare to vote today, I am wondering why so many are so angry. Are they angry because 4 million additional chidren got health insurance? Are they angry because 30 million additional Americans can now as well be insured? Are they angry because no longer can a pre-existing condition keep you from being covered? Are they angry because legislation was passed that guarantees women, equal pay for equal work? Are they angry because the auto industry in America has been saved? Are they angry because their Federal taxes actually declined in the past two years? Are they angry because they are now protected from abusive credit card practices? Are they angry because the financial institutions of this country did not collapse? Are they angry because 4.2 million teachers, firefighters and police jobs were saved as a result of the stimulus bill that was passed? OR, are they angry because they are being told by simpleton politicians who want to undo the President are telling them to be angry? If you think of how much of the economic woes of this country began, they began because angry Americans made stupid decisions. We took out loans for homes we couldn't afford. We devalued education and didn't learn new skills to market ourselves for better jobs when the recession hit. We spent money we didn't have racking up enormous amounts of debt with no regard for common sense, and we invested in stocks and bonds without a clue as to the quality of the companies behind the investments. Our stupidity caused the anger. Blaming Democrats is silly and supporting Republicans is even sillier. Those who scream for smaller government out of anger, should repay their unemployment compensation, their home loan subsidies, their social security payments and their low interest loans. Be angry or be responsible. Go vote. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Monday, November 1, 2010

1 to go

Ask an angry American what their vote will mean tomorrow, and often you will hear...."roll back Obamacare". Then you ask them what they would roll back and they stare back at you dumbfounded. They claim "we don't want government run healthcare", but the public option was never included in the bill. They don't want government run healthcare... but do not want Medicare shut down or prescription drugs for the elderly eliminated, both hugely expensive government programs. They want a job... but are voting to stop all Federal hiring, which means some good infrastructure projects and green jobs that could have been sponsored by Government will go away. They don't want high taxes..... They have already received a tax reduction under President Obama and he agrees to extend reduced tax rates for 98% of Americans. They want Wall street and greedy bankers controlled.... Tomorrow they may vote for the very party responsible for such greed in the first place and will conveniently forget that the Democrats have passed legislation to already stop what they want stopped. They want control of our borders....but Obama has deported more illegals than did his predecessor, has sent more border guards and penalized more companies for violating the hiring laws of this country. They want terrorism controlled....but more militants have been killed by drone attacks than were under George Bush......They want unemployment to go down....well so does the President, but they are voting for a party that voted against real job reform as proposed by the President. The anger is real. The promises are fake. The Republicans did not deliver, and won't deliver this time. Gridlock will continue, anger will persist, and again, our impatience will lead us to make a bad decision. The tea party movement wants you to believe that you can shrink government, but you cannot. If you believe what is being said, then you will be disappointed tomorrow. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Sunday, October 31, 2010

2 to go

I was reading an article this morning and when you added all the numbers in the article up, you were informed that BILLIONS of dollars have been spent in this mid term election period. The number one issue of concern to Americans is the struggling economy. Put two and two together and it doesn't make 4. Billions to get elected because the nation's economy is still struggling? It simply does not make sense to me. I have given up my hope of a Democratic surprise, even though I will continue to pray until the results are in and hope that all the bluster on cable news isn't truly reflective and that all the pollsters are using methods that aren't capturing the true sentiment out there. However if all of these dollars were spent to build a bridge, or fix a road, or hire some people, it certainly would be put to better use. Watching negative ads, listening to lies and seeing candidates run from their accomplishments has been truly sickening. Unfortunately, I don't see it getting much better. Anyway, don't forget to vote. I will be supporting Rush Holt for Congress in my home town. A great guy, wise, intelligent who is in a close race against a hedge fund manager. It's close because of nonsensical anger. A hedge fun manager? Aren't these the guys whose irresponsible and reckless investments contributed to the economic crisis? I'll go with a Princeton physics professor and expert on energy, any day. Go Rush. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Saturday, October 30, 2010

3 to go

In Delaware we have a tea party candidate who has dabbled in witchcraft. In NY, we have a tea Party candidate who threatens to "take out" reporters for asking questions. In Alaska we have a tea party candidate who has a paramilitary force for his body guards keeping the free press at a distance. He also has some serious new skeletons in his closet. Palin picks wrong again that stupid freaking idiot. In Nevada we have a tea party candidate who is calling on us to control the Government by exercising our 2nd amendment right to bear arms. In Ohio, we have a Republican candidate engaging in Nazi re-enactment weekend activities and a would be Speaker of the House endorsing him. In Kentucky, we have a tea party Senatorial candidate whose supporters stomp on peoples' heads with their feet if they support the opposition. In Louisiana we have a Republican Senator running for re-election as a moral values candidate who has regularly cavorted with whores. If only any of this was false, maybe we could laugh. But, it is all true. It is Halloween Eve and quacks and kooks come out of the woodwork in good fun, but this election season has given us quacks and kooks who wont go away after Halloween...unless voters chase them away. It is crunch time. People may be angry, but does America really want to turn the country over to such nutcases, all who are on one side of the two party system? Pay some attention to today's DC rally to RESTORE SANITY before it is too late. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Friday, October 29, 2010

4 to go

I woke up this morning to the following report....GDP is showing the fastest pace of growth since the recovery began. Additionally, apparently consumer spending exceeded expectations. This, coupled with 74% of companies reporting earnings that beat the street. How will the Republicans spin this good news as bad news? They will ignore it, or lie. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Thursday, October 28, 2010

5 to go

It looks like a victory for the Repubs. in the House. Maybe not as wide a margin as once thought, but probably a switch in leadership. It amazes me how the poorest states, with the worst education and the greatest need for Government assistance, continue to vote against their own best interests. Some spin machine the party of the rich has. Democrats win only when the nation is disgusted with the lies. The party never seems to deliver a message that sells to the masses. Democrats are disgusted with the truth. They are blowing it every day that they allow the lies and distortions to go unchecked and unchallenged. I am so tired and so disgusted myself. It is time for this election to end, to be depressed for a few days and then to get back in the game to watch more failure, more obstruction and more nonsense. I can still pray...Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

6 to go

Less than a week. The Democrats have caught up and surpassed the Republicans in spending for the mid terms, Obama's voice is gone from yelling at complacent Democrats and the polls still point toward a sea change in the House. I think any effort to change the minds of those who are blind to progress, hateful toward this President and ignorant of the facts is wasted effort. All aggressiveness must be toward rank and file Democrats, who if they stay home, deserve what they get....further obstruction...more Beck/Limbaugh hate....and a paralyzed government. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

7 to go

I just finsished grading an essay in my AP Goverment class entitled "Why we don't vote?" The students handled it quite well having responded to my own frustrations about stupidity amongst the American electorate. If you continue to believe the polls, the Republicans are poised for the re-taking of the House and at this time of slow and steady progress, this is particularly bad for our country. Failed policies leading to recession, obstructionism of the highest order, mistruths, scary candidates and an absence of any plan, is what we will again get if the polls hold. Anger is one thing, stupidity is another. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Monday, October 25, 2010

8 to go

I pretended today as if I was totally unaware of politics and the issues in my country. I wanted to become informed. I wanted to view the lead candidates, the ones we hear about most to determine whether they have earned my vote. I tried John Boehner's website first. After viewing it over and over again, I could not find one item of significane in terms of his plans for job creation. Not one thing other than propaganda about tax breaks for the rich and a condemnation of every piece of legislative action by the Democrats. I checked his record of initiatives in the House and found it to be ripe with vagueness and total absence of planning specificity. This is the man who would lead the House? I got so disgusted that I stopped looking. No wonder so many stay home during mid-term elections. John Boehner represents the party of no ideas, unkept promises and simplistic platitudes. Be careful people. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Sunday, October 24, 2010

9 to go.

Sarah Palin was in Florida yesterday pitching her reality TV show and railing against the policies of the Democrats. She said: "What this great country needs is a little bit of good old Reaganism -- lower taxes, less government intrusion and overreach, smaller, smarter government," Well if there is anything she shouldn't do with her life it is to have a reality show. She lives in a world of political spin, cliches and say nothing speeches. This time, invoking Reagan to a partisan crowd was not surprising. The facts, however, do not bear truth, (but Ms. Death Panel doesn't care about truth) in fact taxes went up under Reagan once you add State and local taxes needed to make up for his irresponsible Federal cut. Savings rates declined and the beginnings of reckless abandonment of sensible economic policies began. I do not wish to debate Reaganomics in this post, but I am sure that the leader of the tea party movement doesn't even understand or comprehend what comes out of her mouth. But, watch her show. We have 9 more days to become frightened with the prospect of having her candidates on the scene in Government with Mama Grizzly the uninformed buffoon who leads their cause. Oy vey. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Saturday, October 23, 2010

10 to go

10 more days. The real countdown begins. Our President said it best yesterday on the campaign trail. The Republican Party is selling "snake oil". Yes they are. The completely failed policies of greed, tax breaks for the wealthy and indiscrimindate unchecked actions by our financial institutions brought us to the brink. Do not let them peddle that crap anymore. Garbage, wrapped in a different box, is still garbage. 10 more days to do your homework. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Friday, October 22, 2010

11 to go

74% of corporations who have declared earnings have exceeded expectations. This doesn't sound like a declining economy to me. Republicans are screaming about unemployment being high and democrats expanding the size of government. So help me understand this hypocrisy....they call for smaller government and as every state in the union tries to decrease in size its government by shedding employees, employment growth slows or declines. Republicans ask for smaller government and when they get it, they are complaing about no job growth. Corporations, long supported by Republicans, have been doing quite well under the Democrats. People, you have got to wake up to the realities of the Republican party. 11 days to figure it out. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Thursday, October 21, 2010

12 to go

There are less than two weeks to go until a pivotal election and there is some electricity in the air. There are still some challenges that my Democratic party faces, but the gift that keeps giving, Sarah Palin, has just started a tea party express bus tour around the country, at least to places where sanity is a question mark. Anyhow, Mrs. Palin announced the end of the GOP yesterday claiming that if the moderate thinkers in the party don't get on board with the extremist haters, then the party will disappear. This should be a wake up call to every independent and moderate Republican that your ideas are no longer welcome in the Republican party. There is another place to go and it isnt' a crime to vote for the party in power if it delivers. The Democrats have withstood incredible opposition from obstructionists who have cost our nation dearly. Don't listen to rhetoric without researching the facts. Use the 12 days you have left to really understand what tea party extremists are saying. Listen. Don't go where you are not wanted. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

13 to go

Not only have your taxes gone down under the Democratic controlled Congress during Obama's Presidency, so too has deportation of illegal immigrants gone up. In fact, more deportations have taken place during President Obama's tenure than in all four years of the second Bush term. Additionally, the largest increase in border patrol agents and significant increases in penalties against corporate violators. So here again, two signature issues of the Republican party, taxes and immigration and under the current Congress there has been progress on both. Why vote the other way? It makes no sense. People have got to listen and learn. Being dumb almost negates your vote. The Founder's were right. We aren't as a population knowledgeable enough to make decisions. If only we were. 13 days to vote the truth based on facts not fiction. As Laurence O'Donnell says, "you are entitled to your own opinion but not to your own facts." Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

14 to go

As a teacher, I get frustrated when students do not pay attention and do not always perform to their potential. This, however is part of the job and you live to fight another day. When the general population of this nation, however, acts like High School students then I get angry. In today's front page of the New York Times, there is an article about a political rally and the people at the rally were angry at the increases in their taxes under President Obama. However, when pointed out to these voters that in actuality their taxes declined, the people were dumbfounded. They couldn't find the words to reply. To paraphrase, their reaction was :"Oh yeah, but it was so little that I forgot". Forgot that their taxes were reduced and about to vote against Democrats because of higher taxes. Wake up people. Every single person except the very wealthy received a 400 dollar per person tax reduction and 800 per couple. This was part of the stimulus package being so scandalously condemned by do nothing Republicans and tea party people. Taxes under Obama have gone down for those who are working. Wake up people. You have 14 days to get informed. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Monday, October 18, 2010

15 to go

I really dislike invoking the name of Sarah Palin in my posts, but she just keeps giving. Yesterday at her newly refined stump speech, she said we will all be dancing after the election. I suppose she is insinuating that a Republican victory in the House will be cause for celebration, but I wonder who will be dancing? The 19% un or underemployed Americans who cannot find work due to corporations not spending their hordes of cash on job creation? The remaining un-insured in this country who do not have a public option for health insurance due to Insurance company greed and Republican obstruction? The millions of people in this country who rely on the minimum wage to avoid poverty? Just who will be dancing? To invoke such happiness at a time of such unhappiness shows Mrs. Palin's true colors. She loves the limelight, loves the money and loves the fame. She remains immensely incompetent, uninformed and unwise. Perhaps she will be dancing, but no one else will. Progress is slow, neither party will hold an immense majority and much of what we have now will be the same, no matter what promises we hear. I vote for slow and steady progress, not for "Dancing With the Stars." Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

16 to go

Losing Presidential candidate John McCain, still bitter over his loss, ornery and hypocritical, the man responsible for bringing light weights such as Sarah Palin onto the political scene, yesterday made some very insulting and disparaging remarks about Senator Barbara Boxer. He is certainly entitled to his opinion, but saying it has been an unpleasant experience serving with her, and that she has the worst record on the military is just another scare tactic used by Republicans who consistently try and depict Democrats as weak on defense. Senator McCain never met a military expenditure that he didn't like and is an aggressive supporter of military force. His heroism notwithstanding, does not make him right. We lost Vietnam because we could not fight gorilla tactics which still today challenge our military. We are smarter, and lives are just as precious, but indiscriminate acceptance of military funding without appropriate review is just as irresponsible as not fighting when our interests are at stake. Senator Boxer may be more of a dove, but it is not unpleasant at all to have Senators that challenge our military strategy when the expense hurts us at home. Republicans cannot control the deficit create jobs, support the rich and two wars all at the same time. We need statesmanship, not name calling and insults. Go Boxer. Think about this over the next 16 days. Fear, or truth. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Saturday, October 16, 2010

17 to go

A few weeks ago I blogged that the Congress while on recess could call an emergency session and pass tax rate reform immediately. My plan was to have the issue that all agree with, 98% of America, protected under the current rates from the Bush era, and leave the disputed 2% for a debate after the election or once a new Congress was convened. Seems reasonable to me. Both parties, instead of showing concern for the people, balked, held fast to their inflexible positions and went home to campaign, leaving the rest of us to remain worried and disconcerted. Well guess what, Mike Pence, one of the self-annointed Republican leaders said the same thing, calling for an up or down vote, with one big exception...include the wealthiest Americans and add an additional unpaid for 700 billion dollars in debt. This is the Republican party way. While it asks for your votes, complaining about deficit reduction and unchecked Democratic spending, it calls for an irresponsible and unneeded debt expansion. In the last 17 days before the vote, this is what Americans must understand. Your anger toward the Democrats and assumptions that the party of the rich is looking after you, just ain't so. You must pay attention. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Friday, October 15, 2010

18 to go

Yesterday someone commented on my blog. This individual, clearly angry and frustrated and within his rights to criticize my sentiments called for all the liberals to lose their jobs. He thinks liberals destroyed the land. I am not sure that with already naggingly high unemployment wishing for others to lose their jobs is an appropriate solution, but it speaks to the issue of how blind we have become to truth. This blogger, clearly a tea party sympathizer wouldn't address the deficits created by the Republicans or the massive job loss under George Bush. Instead, it was about the liberals. I will not change his mind, nor is it my intent to do so. It is, however, my intent in these last 18 days to call us all to account for reality and to be thoughtful with our votes. Voting anger and extremist views has never worked in our country. Social Security will not end, unemployment insurance will continue when needed, Medicare and Medicaid will remain in place, a strong military will persist and a supported Veteran's Administration will remain. All this will continue to cost us mightily no matter who is in charge. Forget today's anger and direct it toward the future. Ask if you really were happier 2 years ago. If you are reasonable and fair, you would have to answer no. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Thursday, October 14, 2010

19 to go

In the last few days a very disturbing pattern has emerged, or at least at last the media is focusing on it. Many Republican Tea party candidates are coming out against a Federal minimum wage. At 7.25 per hour, a full time worker will earn 290 dollars a week. Wow, they're rich. So rich that the party of the rich wants to eliminate the safety net for the poor. An absolutely unfathomable and ridiculous notion if I ever heard one. No amount of spin about businesses being restrained due to the minimum wage or other such economic nonsense can mask the fact that the Republican party cares not one iota for the middle class. They care about wealth, supporting a system where the wages of the middle class have been stagnant for 30 years and the disparity between rich and poor is at the widest level since 1929. Remember what happened back then? 19 days to awaken to this sad but true reality: the Republican party is bad for America in its current form and the trend toward the right is scary. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

20 to go.

Yesterday a Bloomberg poll had a generic Democrate defeating a generic Republican 42 to 40. Today a Reuter's poll had it the other way, 48-44. Democrats have been creeping up, but most of the pundits have declared a switch in power in the House. Extended gridlock for sure. The House Republicans will not have an overwhelming majority if they win, and the Senate will stay in Democratic hands most probably without the necessary veto override power. Thus, extended partisanship, gridlock and false promises all over again. This result, will not result in change at all, only more of the same political lying and bickering at the expense of the people. Extremist tea party activists certainly won't help. One can argue this helps the President in 2 years when further anger and frustration about the tone of government persists. In fact, for all his difficulties, not unlike past first term Presidents, Obama remains personally likeable. So ask yourself this, if I am impatient with the pace of economic improvement, and the new guys in town will not be able to do much about it, why vote against the Democrats? Who saved the auto industry? Who saved the banking sector from collapse? Who put us on the road to recovery? Who is responsible for some growth in private sector employment after years of declines? Who passed some form of health care reform? Who has a plan for withdrawal of troops from two nasty and expensive wars? Who was in charge when the recession was declared over? Unemployment remains high, typical for a recovery and the stimulus has saved millions of jobs that would have been lost but no one seems to be listening to that fact. Big business is doing fine, record earnings, hordes of cash but they won't hire. This is so that stockholders can reap better stock prices and dividend income. If you are unemployed, it isn't because the Democrats are wrong. It isn't because they haven't legislated on your behalf. If you support the party that has promised to extend benefits for the rich and promise job creation without a plan, you have 20 days to change your minds. Republicans do not support policies that help the middle class and John Boehner does not have the capabilities to understand or care about your problems. You must be rationale, you must think and you must be patient. Don't make the worst decision of your life. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

21 to go.

When I was a little boy, I liked to jump off the stoop by my apartment. Every time I got up to the fourth step (third was easy), I would fall at the end of my jump and skin a knee, or sprain an ankle. My mother would bandage me and say these words "If you always get hurt, don't jump". As a typical 10 year old would do, I would say "OK mom" and then jump the next day for the cycle of my stupidity to begin again. With 21 days to go until the mid term election, I am thinking about my frivolous and unfathomable actions. Today a poll was released saying that Americans feel worse about the Republican party and its actions and ideas than that of the President. I feel as if the entire nation is jumping off a stoop, skinning our knees and ridiculously doing it again. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Monday, October 11, 2010

22 to go

There are 22 days until the mid term elections and today, Tea Party candidate from NY, Mr. Palladino has given us yet another reason to vote. His homophobic language of yesterday has caused an uproar and today he is backtracking and denying the undeniable. He will be marching in the Columbus Day parade which honors the millions in this country of Italian heritage, both gay and straight. This disgrace of a candidate could not even begin to walk in the shoes of any decent and honorable American.

Yesterday, President Obama came out swinging in Philadelphia. He plans to make many such stops before the election in an effort to awaken the Democrats from their stupor. Things aren't great, but clearly getting better. If the President can't shake them out their doldrums, perhaps Mr. Palladino can. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Sunday, October 10, 2010


My little blog has 19 followers. I average 50 views per week, not what you would call a blockbuster performance, however, it makes me feel good to write these posts and I will continue. To the small but loyal few who do me the honor by reading "Americans for Reason and Truth", I thank you and for the next few weeks I will be in countdown mode. 23 Days until the mid term election and I will be reminding absolutely everyone I know of some basic facts, indisputable and relevant before making a choice at the polls.

The Tea Party Movement may claim independence but clearly they almost exclusively field candidates who run on the Republican ticket. Therefore the extreme positions that they represent are encouraged by every Republican voter....Fueled hatred toward gays, blacks, Obama supporters and the educated.....excessive tax breaks for the wealthiest....cut back education spending because education fuels elitism.....privatize social security.....fundamental Christian elimination of a woman's right to choose....a complete misreading and misunderstanding of the Constitution.....and completely lying, distorting and made up facts of health care reform and economic recovery. If you do not believe these extremist views and allow your anger to fuel an anti-incumbent vote, just think carefully. A Republican House with a small majority will never ever be able to deliver on these promises, even ones you think are reasonable because of a Presidential Veto. Therefore, your vote on reasonableness could potentially and likely lead to an increase in hatred, bigotry and intolerance. Countdown, 23 days. Think. Where are you Americans for Reason and Truth?

Friday, October 8, 2010

Food Stamps

Yesterday, Newt Gingrich who has become the absolute worst of the worst in American politics, this adulterer and boor, and liar, told his Republican party to frame the debate in this election around food stamps. He wants to remind the voters that Democrats are the party of food stamps and Republicans are about jobs. Yeah Newt, great job creation during the Republican led Congress. This scoundrel of the worst degree is mocking the decent and hard working Americans that have a lifeline from their Government in times of need. The vast majority of food stamp recipients in this country are working, collecting a paycheck and doing all they can to protect their families. It is a tribute to the Democrats, that such programs like this exist during times of financial crisis. To condemn it as a crime or to use it to race bait as has been Newt's way, is hateful. Every program has abusers and I would ask Mr. Gingrich as he plans his 2012 Presidential run, if he is willing to condemn the banking sector for its abuses, caused as a result of a Republican Congress blind to using its regulatory powers? This morning a report will show private sector job growth and a continuance of slow but steady economic progress. Food stamps aren't the issue. The issue is contemptable, self serving, arrogant ego hogs like Newt Gingrich. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

" I am not a witch "

Remember these famous words uttered by President Richard Nixon during the Watergate investigation: "I am not a crook". As we all know, Nixon lied, was forced from the Presidency and became the poster boy for lying politicians...from both political sides I might add. Americans are legitimately skeptical of what we are told by politicians, but we are also quite gullible and responsive to political messages that are perpetrated by political spin doctors and media conglomerates. So when Senatorial canidate O'Donnell from Delaware says "I am not a witch" in a TV add, be skeptical. When politicians tell you they are not bigots and then support legislative initiatives that deny people their rights and when the Republicans promise to repeal health care, lower taxes and shrink government, be skeptical. Remember Nixon. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

It's Getting Worse

I suppose it is working in South Carolina, but last time I checked, it was still one of the 50 states and part of the United States of America. One of South Carolina's senators, Jim DeMint, tends to be the poster boy for extremism within the Republican party. What boggles the mind, is that in sections of this nation, his bigotry, his prejudice and his hate, really sells. Yesterday, Mr. DeMint called for legislation that would prohibit gays from teaching. That's like calling for women, or Jews, or straights from teaching because they have a lifestyle or set of values different from yours. This is one of the most unbelievable Un-American pronouncements that I have heard in a long time. To mark a segment of our population as unworthy of teaching or of doing anything in particular, takes us back to a time when McCarthyism reigned, when people were unable to be tolerant and when our nation was struggling to makes sense of its values. In 2010, for a senator to propose such a notion, regardless of how it pleases his constituency, speaks to issues that our nation must rise up against. Jim DeMint will be returned to the Senate and his idea will not move forward, but as we get closer to November, Americans must be more thoughtful and careful of who we choose to represent us. If we want irrationality, ignorance, hate and just plain nuts, the Republican party has provided us with the option. It's getting worse and this is our chance to stop it. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Monday, October 4, 2010

But What About Me?

Many Americans remain unemployed and there does continue to be nervousness out there. People may be planning to voice their nervousness at the polls by voting for the "other guy". We tend to be concerned about ourselves first and that is clearly understandable. We all say "but what about me"? The fact is, that corporate America has recovered from the recession with incredible speed as evidenced by cash, earnings reports and dividend payments. The fact is that the turnaround from job losses to gains has been faster during this recovery than in any recent recovery. The fact is, that the wealthy do not spend additional tax savings on jobs and growth, they save it, so to throw the Democrats out because of their reluctance to give the wealthy more breaks does not make any sense. The fact is that runways and bridges and tunnels and roads are being repaired and spurring job creation from stimulus money and the fact is that every child under 26 can now remain on their parents' health plan. Yes it is frustrating in many parts of the land, but going back to the very policies that led to our near economic meltdown, just isnt smart. Republicans even if they win the House will not be able to roll back health care or force tax breaks for the rich because their majority will be small, thus perpetuating the continuous pattern of gridlock. Vote for progress, slow and steady not for disastrous policies and promises unfullfilled. Be careful of what you wish for. You may get it. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Saturday, October 2, 2010

It was Hate, Not You Tube.

Tyler Clementi was an innocent young man, a college student at Rutgers, whose privacy was violated in such an audacious and despicable manner that he felt he had no choice but to jump. The debate over the cause of his suicide is raging. Many feel that the age of social networking and an unrestrained internet have reduced us to frivolous, superficial beings engaging in reckless, careless actions. Others believe that open communication and high tech pursuits have opened up the world and brought us together. No matter what side of the debate you are on, do not confuse Tyler's death with that discussion. One thing killed him....HATE. For thousands of years, no matter what mode of communication existed..the printing press or youtube, people have jumped because of hate. Our world has always had hatemongers, people whose ignorance and bigotry is blind to tolerance and acceptance. Pharoahs who hated Hebrews, Whites that have hated blacks, Christians that have hated Muslims, straights who hate gays, this has been history. One could argue that tolerance and acceptance has been on the rise over the past generations and I will accept that, but still, today, there is hate and bigotry out there that makes a person like Tyler Clementi kill himself. Tyler may have believed that those in his life, whose acceptance he valued may have been too distraught, perhaps making it untenable for him to go on. I don't know, I am not a psychiatrist and I did not know him, but as his parents and others mourn his loss, don't blame youtube or facebook or the internet, blame hate. Blame the people such as Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh and Laura Schlessinger who in this country fuel this kind of homophobic and bigoted and ignorant hatred. Sadly, the wrong person jumped. Let Tyler's death not be in vain. Let us learn from this sad experience and tragic loss. It is hate, not youtube. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Friday, October 1, 2010

Never too old.

It is fair to say that as a burgeoning man in the early 70s, my left leaning self was shaped by many influences, among them the "Village Voice". As I matured, and moderated somewhat, I allowed other influences to socialize me politically. But folks, I will never be too old to continue to think the Voice speaks for my voice. Here it is...couldn't have said it better myself.

It's all there. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Congress goes home.

It has been thoroughly exhausting listening to and watching our Congress attempt to do the peoples' business these past 2 years. Under Pelosi, much has been accomplished albeit at lesser levels than either needed or desired by the President. The obstructionist Senate Republicans have been far worse than the House and the shameful, embarrassing and inappropriate negativity and hate has been a bad experience for our nation. It is time for the campaign to really begin, but also for a rest from Congress. The legislative branch of our Government has been mired in politics and not doing the business of the people. I only hope that Americans realize that Republican obstruction and ideas that would move us back to the depths of national pain are what are at stake so as Congress lobbies for votes, listen to what is being said and remember the Who "We won't be fooled again". Where are you Americans for reason and truth.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Stop Whining

Over the past few days both the Vice President and President whose comments will be published, have urged the Democratic base to stop whining. On the surface this may sound patronizing and insulting, but then I think for real, how much I hate whining. My students will whine that there is too much work, people I run in to at various places will whine that the wait is too long, or the traffic is bad, or that other things totally out of their control deserve to be treated with complaining and dissatisfaction and yes, whining. I hate it and I am guilty of it myself. It is so easy to complain, so easy to forget. The Democrats and independents who voted so forecefully and energetically for the President have forgotten that we were in the depths of an historic recession. We were involved dangerously in two wars. Our auto industry was collapsing, our banks were failing, our people were out of work, businesses were shuttered and the nation had lost its grip. Since then, in a very short two years, much of this has changed for the better including economists declaring the recession officially over. There are many people out there who have not yet experienced any benefit from the improving situation and thus have become skeptical. However, the pace of change and turnaround has been dramatic. Any economist worth his or her weight, will honestly tell you the pace of recovery has been extraordinary. These pronouncements do not put bread on the tables of the out of work or will restore our 401K's to the values of 2005, but the change we voted for is afoot. It takes time to move forward, but only moments to move backwards. If Democrats stay home in November and if Independents vote with their frustrations instead of their hopes, our nation will quickly return to the agenda of the party that created the mess and we will be right back where we started from. So, you can whine that things are going too slowly and stay home, or you can energetically vote to keep the changes going, keep the growth going, keep job creation going and embrace the positives that lie ahead. Your choice. Be careful. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Great Compromise

In 1787 as the delegates to the Constitutional Convention convened, the differences in perspective and opinion would make today's difference seem amateurish. These founders, however, realized that the destruction of a nation must'nt take a back seat to personal beliefs. One example is how to deal with the representation in Congress between large states and small states. The genius of that Great Compromise allowed for both equal and population proportion representation through two branches of the Congress. Compromise is a word that seems to have been lost in the political discourse of the 21st Century. Here is an example of what could be done immediately, but won't be done. Both political parties agree that extending current tax rates to 98% of America is a good thing. They could do that today. Both leaders could call for a vote, package a simple piece of legislation and give relief to the middle class and small businesses in need the most. After the election, the debate about the other 2% could be held. There is no argument that is credible to suggest it must be done as a whole package because the Republicans do not wish to pay for the windfall for the rich, therefore this can be part of the debate later on. Instead, these folks will blame each other, harden their positions and do nothing, hoping that voters will side with their views. There will be no Great Compromise in 2010. Where is James Madison when we need him? Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Monday, September 27, 2010


President Obama is in the process, like his many predecessors, of trying to bring peace between Israel and the Palestinians. My one and only issue of agreement with President Bush, was his stance on Israel, as an unshakeable Democratic ally, the only real established Democracy in the entire area. President Obama has the lowest popularity in Israel of any U.S. President, unfairly in my judgement but as he tries to broker an agreement, I hope he does not confuse his desire for peace with his responsibilities to bring peace but not at all costs. Israel's size is miniscule to say the least and it is a nation that has been losing the public relations war around the world. Anti Semitism is on the rise and Israel is the scapegoat for media outlets and groundless criticisms the world over. I recognize the need and desire for Palestinian autonomy and I fully know that Arabs and Israelis conduct business, engage in commerce and even respect each other as human beings. I know that a healthy two state situation, with two democracies will lift the disenfranchised into the sunlight and the technologies and knowledge that Israel has shared with the world can be used to help boost a struggling people in the name of decency and harmony. There is one big BUT, however, the one that is continually ignored... the fact that Israel's Palestinian negotiating partner has failed to officially recognize its right to exist. Instead, they argue about the periferal issues, settlement freezes and right to return, all important but a constant existential threat by your negotiating partner cannot safely result in a lasting peace. Instead of the world condemning Israel, it must be fair and rise up against Palestinian violence, attempts to derail peace at all costs, and sworn doctrine of destruction. No peace until that time. Where are you Americans for Reason and truth?

Sunday, September 26, 2010


There is a quote out there that I will paraphrase and whose attribution goes from Rita Mae Browne to Einstein, but whoever said it or wrote it first, must have been referring to the Republican Party in the United States of America. "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting different results" Need I say more today? I don't think so. Happy Sunday. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Madame Speaker

Much of the political discourse in DC and around the country these days is revolving around control of the House. Many pundits predict a change, resulting in obviously a change in Speaker of the House. This job is arguably the most important job next to the President. It sets the agenda for the House, chooses committee members, schedules votes and wields enormous influence. Since almost all bills originate in the House, this adds even greater impact to the job. Additionally, she is only behind the Veep in Presidential succession. Our choices are pretty clear. Love her or hate her, Speaker Pelosi has done what she was supposed to do. She has helped push through a needed stimulus which now by all accounts is indeed helping. She advocated for health care reform and still maintains that the House may act on tax relief before the election even though Senate Democrats have dropped the ball. Nancy Pelosi has passion, strong views and is a skillful leader who doesn't waiver and Americans like strength, consistency and vision from its leaders even if we don't support all the views and beliefs of these leaders. What would we get from John Boehner? Inconsistency, unimpressive ability, and absence of any independent coherent thought and a person who would rather tow the party line than the country line. Boehner has gone from passing out checks on the House floor to tobacco legislators (he is a smoker don't forget), supporting the largest deficit increase in history before the recession, acceptance of his Republican President's entire agenda and an obsession with sound byte speeches, to a deficit hawk under a Democratic President, a clear political gesture which shows him to be nothing more than a puppet of Republican extremist doctrine. Be careful what you wish for. You may get a very unimpressive and clearly self serving buffoon as leader of the House. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Friday, September 24, 2010

The Great Tax Debate...Again

So it has been announced by Harry Reid, that any legislation regarding Bush tax cut extensions will not be handled before the election. He claims intransigence on the part of the Republicans. The Republicans have said the Democrats are not willing to negotiate....but they have, they want to retain current rates for all but 1% of the nation. I guess unless you get 100% of what the Republican party wants, it isn't negotiation. Both parties will tout their points of view...we need tax relief for those who need it the most and ask the wealthiest among us to defer the costs.....or....we cannot tax anyone during a recovery...even the rich who will invest and create jobs, blah blah blah. The point of this is this,...these rates do not expire until the end of the year. This means that never did any decision need to have been made legislatively until after the votes are counted in November. It was all a sham. Neither side cares about the country going in to an election. They care about votes. Any discussion on the matter has been a political distraction and theatre. If and this is a big if, these folks really cared about us, they would have compromised on something to at least ease our anxieties about the future and then both could have claimed victory. But that ain't how it works. Thanks for nothing. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Republican Plan

Wow. Today, after months and months of obstruction, saying no, and scaring Americans, the Republicans are announcing their plan if they gain control of the House. Here it is....take 37 million newly insured Americans and take away their health care...tell parents that their college grad kids. cannot stay on their insurance...tell the rich that they can continue to get all the tax breaks without paying for it and take away from needed middle class relief...stop all the needed projects that have yet to be done even though they were scheduled for 2011 when the stimulus was passed and reduce job creation..and promise shrinking government without giving one single example of where you would cut. These are the same guys that screwed it up royally for 6 years leading to one of the deepest recessions in our history. They ask for our trust again? Where are you Americans for reason and truth.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Political Courage

In 2008 we voted for change. The historic election of Barack Obama will, no matter what, be considered an historic event. His accomplishments vs. his promises on the stump have been extraordinary. Even though we as impatient Americans forget sometimes what we voted for and then get angry when we get it, the fact remains that this President is working to move the agenda that got him elected forward. Health Care Reform, a priority item for the President was passed and by all estimates the political demonization of it by the Republicans has worked. Americans wanted it, but now are skeptical of it. They do not understand it, they have accepted the Palinization of it, and now seem to be forgetting why it is important. I finally am seeing President Obama coming out from the isolation of the Summer. I have heard him over the last few days stump loudly and aggressively over the merits of the bill in the face of continued pessimism. This is political courage. It is easy to ignore unpopularity of an issue and pretend it doesn't exist or to nuance your words to find votes. Harry Reid, for instance, coming out against the Islamic cultural center, comes to mind. I understand without an ounce of naivety the process for finding votes, but I also know, that the people that are true leaders, the ones I admire most, are the one's that put electoral expediency aside and instead, stay true to their values. This takes courage and I am beginning to see it in our President. I thought he lost it. Nice to see it again Mr. President. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The Senate at its absolute worst

For 48 consecutive years, Congress has approved the military program expenditure bill with little fanfare. This year, an attempt was made to overturn the Don't ask Don't tell policy of our military, already accomplished in the House. A nation, founded on equality for all, discriminates against its gay citizens, putting us behind other nations with greater wisdom and truer understanding of equality. Both parties acted with disgrace. The Republicans for continuing their obstruction and cow towing to their extremist base, and the Democrats for denying amendments and mixing different pieces of legislation into the bill. Both parties of the Senate acted shamelessly, again putting electoral expediency ahead of American values. The Senate at its absolute worst. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Monday, September 20, 2010

" Let them eat cake "

We have all heard, even though we now know it to be historically incorrect, that the line "let them eat cake" is attributed to Marie Antoinette. The words may not have been spoken by her, but the sentiments are appropriately affiliated with her views. The average Parisian starved and could not even find bread to eat, while the rich of French society were never in want. They had not a care in the world for the poor peasants whose lives they ruled. In today's New York Times, Paul Krugman, nobel prize economist with views in support of government intervention, has railed against the rich. I agree with his sentiments. He claims that much of the vitriol is coming, not just from tea party activists, but from well known, mainstream financial conservatives such as Forbes magazine and other trickle down economists. What a great job they are doing lobbying the upper class, stirring up the pot of laissez faire economics, scaring us into believing that they cannot create jobs, or wealth for the lower classes if they are taxed at rates from the Clinton Administration. An administration by the way, that ended with surplus. It is anathema to me, that while one out of seven Americans is in poverty, while 51 million Americans remain uninsured and while the gap between rich and poor has grown to historically wide levels, that the top one percent of our countrymen remains steadfastly against helping their country. The character assasination portrayed by Krugman is mild compared to what it should be. This "let them eat cake" attitude is disguised as good economic theory. In fact, it is not. I am happy to trade places with one of the richest in the land, so that I can turn around and give back to the nation I love and the people in most need. Being rich is a privilege, and it is a testament to our freedoms that we have the opportunity to strive for such wealth. The privilege is also tied to a responsibility to do what is right on behalf of us all. Do we need another French Revolution American style? I hope not. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Real Sin

Yesterday was the holiest of days in the religion of my family tradition. It is a day to ask for forgiveness for all one's sins. Each year I do so. My sins, from which I derive personal embarrassment, seem to reappear each year: too much swearing, not listening or paying enough attention to my loved ones, impatience, an occasional white lie and abruptness toward others whose values and beliefs conflict with my own. I am a good person. I care deeply about others and would do more for my friends and loved ones than I do for myself, but as all humans, I am imperfect. So, each year, I apologize for my imperfections, ask for forgiveness and consciously try to improve. After all, aren't we all works in progress? I am proud to say that I am not a person that commits Real Sin. I do not hate others who believe or look different than I do. I do not wish to see others hurt or harmed, and I do not try and scare people with vicious lies and violent deeds. Real Sin, as I just described it, comes from those people who hate for reasons based on prejudice, bigotry and ignorance. Worse than they, however, are those who commit Real Sin because it is profitable. Beck and Limbaugh and Gingrich and Palin and Buchanan all stand to economically gain through their hateful, vitriolic and divisive talk. They use the ignorance that exists in the hearts and minds of an active minority to scare people into believing that a whole religious group, or race, or ethnicity are dangerous and Un-American and should be stopped. When Beck calls the President a racist, he knows that this will sell well to White Americans that still harbor prejudices against Blacks. When Limbaugh protests the Islamic cultural center in NYC, he uses 9-11 to bang the drumbeat of hate against Muslims. When Gingrich compares the President to a tribal Kenyan colonialist, he knows that the bigots will love it and when Palin rails against seculars, she knows that extreme fundamentalists will respond with hateful rallies against Abortion doctors, first amendment protectors and brings out gay bashers. These people are out to get ratings, sell books and get elected and they use the hate in our hearts and the ignorance in our minds, to create a maelstrom of divisiveness, argument and fear. These are the real sinners. So as I ask for forgiveness for my own sins, I also ask for an awakening and a battle against these real sinners, whose lives have little value to me and to the values that our nation stands for. Hate may sell, but it is truly the only Real Sin. It is time for the haters to be held accountable for their actions by the simple, peaceful and appropriate message of American tolerance, acceptance and appreciation of all. It is time to move Rush, Glenn, Sarah, Newt and Pat to the ashbin of history along with those who fail to condemn them for their self serving acts of Sin. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Friday, September 17, 2010

The Ultimate National Disgrace

In my Advanced Placement Government class, I am teaching the students about public opinion. One of the questions we ponder, is whether or not there is a list of American Values. After prodding and probing and brainstorming, one basic tenet is that most Americans believe that equality is an American value. Equality? Today it was announced that one in seven Americans is poor. America, the richest, most powerful nation on earth.. America, a democracy.. America, a nation of moral superiority. To this, I say a resounding NO. Both political parties, every President, every Congress will place blame, talk of this shame, and promise to change it. We haven't and we wont't unless real leaders with real passion for the issues of equality and moral superiority step up to the plate for real. Notwithstanding our economic turmoil, poverty in the richest nation on earth is an anathema to everything America supposedly stands for. Now, today, I don't have the plan to fix it, but I know it is wrong. I know that smart people can do anything and I know that Americans are caring and decent human beings. It is time to fix, for once and for all, this incredible National Disgrace. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Big Wins for the Democrats

Yeah yeah, I know what you are thinking. The extremists are taking over the country. Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck are kingmakers and Sarah Palin will be our next President. Fret not. Yesterday was a big win for the Democrats and those of us that subscribe to our party's left of center philosophy ought to rejoice. The mainstream always wins in a National Election and extremists tend to prevail during primary season. Once November comes around, people won't vote for a person who wants to stop Unemployment insurance, repeal Social Security, put prayer in the school, try abortion doctors as murderers and put Muslims in internment camps. The Palin backed candidates may win now, but we are still mainstream enough as a nation not to put such people in power. Before yesterday, Delaware was likely to switch in the Senate to a Republican, but not now. Harry Reid was a sure loser, now his opponent is giving him a real chance. So before you lose all hope and continue to fear that extremism is pervasive in the land, have some faith. Thanks should go out to those voters who put these maniacs on the Republican ballot for November. You have unwittingly given the Democrats some real hope of avoiding a disaster. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Job Creators?

Yesterday the Senate Minority leader from Kentucky, Mr. Mitch, said he opposes any tax proposal that doesn't include the rich, because they are the job creators. So, if these 10 years of tax breaks were in existence through the recession, how is it that we lost 8,000,000 jobs? What were the job creators doing? Now, while the economy slowly recovers, we have banks hoarding cash and corporations reporting record profits and dividend increases. So, why aren't the job creators, filled with cash and wealth, creating jobs? Don't listen to the BS of trickle down economics. It didn't work with Reagan and it won't work now. The real job creators create jobs not because of tax breaks for the rich, but because of a thriving, working middle class. Give them the breaks and pay for it by asking the few privileged amongst us to pay a little more. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Monday, September 13, 2010

Tolerance of Intolerance

Today at school, the issue of the Islamic Cultural Center in NYC was discussed between and amongst my students. After class, a dear friend of mine said, that whereas he doesn't agree with opposition to the building of it, he can accept a person who lost a loved one for having the point of view that opposes the building of the center. Upon reflection, I say NO. Loss is a terrible thing. No one should have to endure the pain and suffering of the bereaved, however, we cannot allow intolerance and bigotry to become an acceptable point of view. It isn't. Grief cannot excuse ignorance and denial of our values. People are entitled to think and feel as they do, but we cannot use grief and pain to excuse bigotry. This is not acceptable. Once you tolerate intolerance, you give it a voice and an excuse. This we cannot do. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Sunday, September 12, 2010

The You Tube President.

I just came back from shopping and in the store, I bumped into a stranger who was wearing an "Obama Sucks" tee shirt. I fully realize that this is free expression and is guaranted by our first amendment, but I was angry. I said nothing. The guy was much bigger than me and a bit menacing to look at, but as I left the store, I asked myself why someone is so angry at the President that they would wear such a slogan on their chest? Isn't he working hard at the job? Doesn't he really care about our country? Isn't he doing what we elected him to do? Yes to all three questions. It must be something else. Perhaps the message? President Obama is the darling of high tech. He understands the internet, used it to fuel his minions in 2008 and carries a blackberry. His presidency has been referred to as the You Tube Presidency. So why is he lagging in the polls, unable to connect? It seems counter-intutive. In wondering how to help him, I was thinking about FDR. During his presidency there was no cable, no universal ownership of TV, no internet, no instantaneous reporting of every bowel movement or tie selection and yet, FDR was able to reach America through his Fireside Chats. So, Mr. President, it is time to use your knowledge of today's technology and convert it to Fireside Chats, 2010 style. Don't hide. We need to see and hear more of you. Use this power of technology to fine tune your message in a simple and connectible way. Do not leave it to your advisors. They are running scared and giving you very bad advice. In addition, more prime time press conferences. You aren't afraid of the media. Remember, America hates them more than it does you. Tell us while we are watching about saving us from financial meltdown, about instituting the start of universal health care, about ending combat operations of the Iraq war, about how hard it still will be for us to fully recover but inspire us to again remember our greatness and our spirit. We will listen. The reporters will be inspired too. After all, we are all Americans. Remember, FDR did it without the Internet. You can do it too. I don't want to see any more of those tee shirts. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Saturday, September 11, 2010

A Complete and Utter Failure

Today, all hearts go out to the families and friends of those brave, innocent men and women killed on that horrific day, 9 years ago. This day will always be etched in the psyches and souls of all that bore witness to the tragedy. While my wife and I were travelling in the car this morning, as the moment of silence came from the radio, we both wept. No words need to have been spoken between us. We just felt sad, sad that such hate exists and that such an event, could have taken place. Sadder still, however, is the complete failure on the part of our leaders to have caught and killed the mastermind Bin Laden who still lives. Every American, hawk or dove, liberal or conservative feels cheated. We know it was him responsible for that day and yet all the arms, and power and strength of our country, is meaningless. We are impotent. Instead, our Government started a war in Afghanistan intended to root out the terrorists who we were convinced were there, but their leader survives. Bush then took us to war in Iraq under false pretenses insinuating a connection between 9-11 and Sadaam Hussein and let Bin Laden slip away. Now we are doubling down in Afghanistan due to our past failure and still, Bin Laden lives. Today as we all weep, we must forget all that we were told about Homeland Security, and improved airport screening and signs on our highways telling to call if we see trouble, all that crap. Forget it. Remember this, Bin Laden killed our people, he lives, and all else does not really matter. If we as a Government do not find and destroy him, nothing else will replace the void, the inconclusiveness, the lack of closure and the fact of our complete and utter failure. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?