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Thursday, July 29, 2010

What If?

Let's play "What If". What if the United States didn't enter WW2? What if FDR didn't push for Social Security? What if the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was never passed? What if President Bush had reacted earlier to the warnings about planes being used as weapons? What if we weaned ourselves off of foreign oil 30 years ago? We could play this game all day. It generally is not constructive to look back, but we can emphatically say that things would certainly be different if certain events of history had not happened, or had happened differently. I bring this up today because some economists are now suggesting a weaker economic 2011 than once hoped for. What if the Republicans had not delayed each and every economic recovery package so that it started earlier? What if Republicans hadn't weakened every stimulative idea? What if Republicans genuinely expressed sincere desire for real economic recovery? What if Republicans educated their constituents instead of egging their ignorance on and not challenging their obvious mistaken notions about health care, taxes etc. By the way, tax revenues are at the lowest point currently than at any time since WW2. Anyway, What if? Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Abandoning Obama and the Dems.

If you hear about the polls and listen to the radio talk shows, read tweets and blogs and watch cable TV political analysts, you would think that the President is presiding over a sinking ship and that the people will get back at him by giving Congress back to the failed Republican party. This, only into less than half of Obama's Presidency. Pretty grim if you are a Democrat. Pretty incredulous if you have a brain. To the blue collar white male voter who has abandoned Obama, don't forget how while out of work, your President and the Democrats extended your financial lifeline by passing unemployment compensation extensions. To the person having difficulty paying the mortgage, don't forget the President's policies that have led to refinancing arrangements that may be helping you meet your loan obligations. To the new homebuyer that was afraid to take the plunge, don't forget the first time homebuyer credit that stimulated you to buy while you complained about big government. To the parent of a recently graduated college kid having difficulty finding a job, don't forget that you can keep him or her on your health insurance policy for an additional 5 years or until they can handle insurance on their own if sooner. To the independent voter that lost faith in Bush and now in Obama, don't forget that the current deficits include in the budget, the costs of war that were not accounted for by Bush, thus giving you highly educated folks some honest accounting instead of disingenuity. To the young person who is reconsidering continuing their enthusiasm with politics after 2 short years. Remember that you voted for change, and change takes time and by every estimate, this President even though not being given credit, has done more in 2 short years to restore American credibility around the world and improved a mentality that favors Main Street over Wall Street than his predecessor for sure. To the automobile worker. Don't forget that under this Congress and President, the domestic automobile industry was saved. To those of you who have become impatient due to your frustration, remember that the word NO in the long term has never been a good thing for our country. Action, decisiveness and getting things done is at the heart of American progress and ingenuity. If you think the opposition party, by saying NO is going to fix your problems, think back fairly and honestly about how we got here in the first place. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Monday, July 26, 2010

In the Name of National Security

The latest chapter of the Government versus the Free Press involves 90,000 released documents that clearly show Pakistani/Taliban alliances, perhaps even helping the Taliban acquire surface to air missiles, and the government's anger about the public's knowledge. The public can't find out. It compromises our National Security. This reminds me of the fear that is manufactured in the citizenry about Iraq and Afghanistan wars being fought so we don't lose our way of life. Give me a break. BS. Our money, our brave men and women dying, causes not made clear, I have a right to know. So do we all. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Rangel and Boehner, two peas in a pod.

The title of this post may seem weird. How can a liberal Democrat from Harlem in New York City be compared to a Republican Conservative from rural Ohio? I will tell you, because when push comes to shove, neither cares as much for America as he does for his own personal political gain. John Boehner is so obsessed with becoming Speaker, that he will do anything and say anything regardless of its truth or impact. Just the other day he called the President partisan and unwilling to work with Republicans. The republicans have no ideas other than to say no, blame everything on taxes and to repeal everything....all job killing ideas at a time of much needed job creation. Lying, deceit and obstructionism seems to be the path the R's are using to try and reclaim power in the House and Boehner is fine with that strategy. He is just another bad, selfish, power hungry, incompetent member of Congress. Charles Rangel is so obsessed with his name, and his legacy that he will deny any wrongdoing, blame aides and others for his own failures and refuse to be contrite, apologetic and remorseful about his abhorrent behavior. All in the name of power and influence not in the name of America. At a time when Democrats need this story to go away quickly to campaign on issues, Rangel makes it all about him. Delay, have a trial go on near to the election, remind Americans about ethical lapses from a Democrat, these will be Rangel's legacy. The irony is that these two men are both awful. They preach that they love America and yet do everything they can to disprove that. Two peas in a pod. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Shirley Sherrod

Shirley Sherrod. Who? That's right, who? 72 hours ago this unknown, under the radar, medium level bureaucrat with the Dept. of Agriculture was known to no one but her friends and family. So why is it now the whole nation is focused on her? Why did Keith Olbermann while away from his show sign in with a 12 minute speech (excellent by the way) on her? Why have there been millions of tweets about Shirley Sherrod? Because of everything that is wrong about our wonderful nation. The fact that a media organization supposedly a news agency too, could report without fact checking, a biased, get back at the NAACP, blacks are racists too story, from a known piece of human scum, Andrew Breitbart that happened to be false, causing her embarrassment and pretty much get away with it, while diminishing every good instinct about journalism and news reporting that a free press should be about is sad. But even worse than that, worse than FOX and its actor/actress journalists, its partisan untruthful dangerous Limbaugh/Beck like hate, is the way our President and his administration handled it. Immediate forced resignation without checking. And the NAACP, all about protecting equality for blacks jumped on this poor woman too, without checking the facts. Now the Agriculture Secretary apologized as did the President's spokesman although meekly, and Mrs. Sherrod has been offered back her job but this is a weak response to a disastrous mishandling of this situation. Forget the particulars of Mrs. Sherrod's speech and the edited youtube clip, which anyone can research if you like. And forget FOX. They were just being FOX, a useless, self-serving entertainment organization with hate in its bones. But let's not forget President Obama, who promised to call out politicians and the media when they are wrong, who promised us a better path to civility and who gave the most marvelous speech on race in Philadelphia during the campaign that I had ever heard. He has been advised by his aides to play everthing cool, not to look too black, to be the President of all the people as Mr. Olbermann talked about on his program last night. Obama is not delivering the kind of tough, no nonsense response to hate and bigotry that he is really all about. I voted for the President because I know that in his heart he loves this country and believes in its better side and its wonderful people, but when you allow an active, vocal, mean spirited minority to get so under your skin that you react to them with fear and politics, you have failed us all. Mr. President, Shirley Sherrod is owed more from you than her job back, she is owed a national speech, heard by us all, telling us that such badness and hate, will not be tolerated by you and fought with every fiber in your soul. Then, I will feel as if you are being you, not a creation of safe political hacks looking for moderation and compromise with no reward in sight. Please Mr. President, our national psyche is at stake. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Watered down some more.

The unemployment compensation extenstion to happen today is good for those in need. However, this bill began with some real plans for job creation. In an effort to break the Republican filibuster, the Democrats again allowed for a watered down bill, inclusive of nothing else except the extension and again will have little support from the obstructionist party. So what is being accomplished? Not what we need. President Obama needs to spend almost all of his time calling the Republicans out as he promised to do. President Obama has to rail against watered down legislation and remind Americans that they voted for aggressive change. President Obama needs to get back his groove and stick it to the obstructionists, tea party racists, Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachman, John Boehner, Mich McConnell and Michael Steele. Call them out for what they are...true power hungry partisan charlatans with nothing but their own interests in mind. They care not one iota for America. They continue to lie, obstruct and convince a weary public through sound bytes that the Democrats are bad. They continue to deny their own culpability and responsibilty for our woes and are winning the PR battle. If the President doesn't get out there and pound these people, not only will legislation continue to be watered down and not do what we need, but so too will his Presidency and the Democratic Congress. Where are you Americans for Reason and Truth?

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Remember

Remember:

Republican Opposition to extending unemployment benefits.
Republican opposition to financial reform
Republican opposition to health care reform.
Republican alliances with tea party activists who compare Obama to Hitler.
Republican refusals to name one program they would cut.
Republican refusals to denounce hateful and vitriolic language of its extreme supporters.
Sarah Palin
Michelle Bachman
Michael Steele.
Mitch McConnell
John Boehner
Republican support of the unpaid for tax cuts but not unpaid for benefits to the middle class.
Republican support for unpaid for wars.
Republican support for Bush bailouts but not Obama's
Republican support for Bush budgets and soaring deficits.
Election Day 99 days. REMEMBER
WHERE ARE YOU AMERICANS FOR REASON AND TRUTH?

Monday, July 19, 2010

Scarily Stupid

Today a poll was released stating that only 34% of Americans know that the Bank Bailout program was orchestrated by the Bush administration. Frankly, this was one of his better decisions and by all accounts, Obama's continuation of this policy has actually helped to avert a disaster. As a population, it is scary that so few of us understand the realities of our own nation's policies and which leaders stand for what policies. Furthermore, it is scary at how 30 percent of Americans would consider voting for Sarah Palin. This woman is scarily stupid and I do not make such an insult lightly. She cannot articulate a coherent thought, scoffs at the need to be aware of the important issues in our world and believes that education is less important than a mother's instinct in deciding the nucelar policies or foreign policies or domestic policies of our great nation. Mrs. Palin is riding the tide of media fascination with media personalities having made her a news story, but frankly, it is scary to have the likes of this woman even mentioned as a possible future candidate for President. She is street smart, but dumb in every important aspect of leadership. She actually compared herself to William Shakespeare when she was called out about saying words that do not even exist in the lexicon of the English language. Refudiate is not a word. Scarily Stupid. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Loopholes

In every piece of legislation or policy, there are those who find the ways to avoid the law or to avoid their responsibility because there are always loopholes. We pine over the high tax rates on the wealthy claiming it reduces our ability to grow, but the reality is that very few high tax rate Americans ever pay that rate. They find loopholes to avoid it. Therefore claims by politicians about choking growth by high tax rates are not really accurate. Businesses are regulated by government and there are screams about how socialism is afoot and business needs to be allowed to follow Adam Smith's notion of free markets and pursuit of profit, but often these reguations are avoided and ignored by the discovery of loopholes. It seems as if Government can never insure that its laws are followed. If simple Immigration laws that are on the books were to be honored by private businesses, we wouldn't even have a problem with illegals. They wouldn't be able to prove their legitimacy because businesses would be following the hiring requirements. Instead they find loopholes or just don't do it thus creating a greater problem. The point of this post is that we are already hearing about health insurance providers finding loopholes in the recently passed reform to reduce choice by offering cheap plans with tiny networks. This certainly was not the intent of the legislation and again we are seeing corporate greed take precedence over what is right. Instead of barking about big government, Americans should be demanding that legislation is followed or huge penalties will be levied. Our frustrations are misplaced. We need to begin to face the truth, that corporate greed is at the root of most of our problems. Blaming government is a copout. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Promises Promises

How often do politicians honor the promises they make during their campaigns? Not often at all. In fact we as Americans have been trained not to believe a word. Our system allows for soaring rhetoric, broad statements of policy but is designed for only incremental moves. In 2008 came a Presidential candidate, Barack Obama at a time when we were tired, in need of a change and excited about the prospects made hopeful by his words. We voted for Health Care reform. We voted to stimulate the economy. We voted to improve America's standing abroad. We voted to ramp down our commitment to Iraq and to invest more resources in Afghanistan. We voted for Financial reform. Lo and behold, we got it all. I think America is in complete shock that we actually voted for someone who accomplished what he promised to do. We continue to be frustrated at the slow pace of recovery, the partisan bickering in Congress and are bombarded by the sheer magnitude of hate speech and obstructionism toward the President and today polls suggest we aren't happy with the job he is doing. Are we nuts? We voted, he promised, he delivered and now we are disatisfied? Elections mean something. If you don't like what you hear, vote for the other guy but if you get what you voted for, have the courage of your convictions. Where are you Americans for Reason and Truth...

John Boehner and Mitch McConnell are the absolute worst of the worst. They could not care one iota for this country. Shameful, deceitful men.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Jobs

It is clear that a 9.5 percent unemployment is uncomfortable, disconcerting and unacceptable. If you do not have a job then you do not want to hear about it taking time or that unemployment is always a lagging indicator, the last to recover in a recovery. Today, the President announced that his stimulus package has saved jobs and has been accountable for a slight increase in job creation and a turnaround from consistent negative job creation over the past years. Republicans smell blood and are seizing on the discomfort of America in an effort to seize an electoral victory. It is however, all about jobs and there is much disagreement on the way to go about creating them. So in fairness and in an effort to be bipartisan, I would like to explain the Republican Party plan for job creation, one which I hope America reads and understands. Here we go:










There. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Forget the Experts

Each day, when an American evaluates the state of the economy, he/she does two things...evaluates the reality of his/her situtation and secondly, listens to the supposed experts. President Obama's popularity on handling the economy is now below 50% and this is largely due to unemployment and to the negativity of the loudest experts. The reality is that this nation under the President's leadership has dodged a bullet. He has taken the devistation of bank failures, brokerage failures and auto industry failures and has helped to put each one of these industries back on track. He passed health care which will ultimately lead to less stress and less cost long term, good for the economy. He is about to see real finance reform, not everything we need but certainly an improvement and will get 2 or even 3 Republicans to support him. We are growing again as a nation, not hotly, but slow and steady. We are saving more as Americans, a good thing to help keep us from being irresponsible again with our money. Jobs at a slow rate are being created and this morning it was announced that the trade deficit is lower than it was last year at the same time. These are facts. Experts are saying we are taxing small business, unless jobs return we will double dip, Obama will tax the nation to dealth, big business drives the economy and he is hurting it....and on and on. These experts don't know sh-t. Take a deep breath, read and see the good news, recognize that progress takes time and to expect a new President to fix all the wrongs in a year and a half is unreasonbale. Slow and steady. Reality. Not the paid experts who are always 50% wrong. Where are you Americans for Reason and Truth?

Friday, July 9, 2010

Lohan and James

The title for this post sounds like a law firm. It's not. Lindsay Lohan and LeBron James have taken the egocentricity of the entertainment and sports world to new and despicable heights. I know we all need a break from the sad realities of our world, but the creation of entertainment celebrities and athletes into the second coming of the Lord seem so out of proportion. I am not naive to the fact that these people have been marketed and created by many managers and media types that make their living this way, but it simply is not setting the example we need to set for those who will tackle the problems of the future. LeBron chose to stop his education and Lindsay decided she could not comply with the legal punishments for her alcohol abuse. These are their choices and I for one do not think they are the role models for the future. I like to be entertained too, but not with egocentricity and elevating the importance of mere mortals. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Soldiers or poets?

We are fighting and dying in two wars and the reasons for being there are becoming more cloudy each day. It is as if we totally have forgotten Vietnam and Korea. Anyhow, much of the news of late is about the inappropriate comments or politically insensitive comments of some of our military leaders. Frankly we need to get off this. These men are warriors who should be fighting and winning. Who cares what they say. I want to win and get the heck out. If a military man says something like "it is fun to kill the enemy" (paraphrase") and then gets hired to win the war, who cares? Military expertise is what I want on the battlefield so that our brave men and women can come home. These wars are becoming an unacceptable drain on our resources. Let us not look to criticize the comments of our fighters for political gain as FOX news has done today. What a bunch of despicable hypocrites all of a sudden looking for verbal decency as opposed to winning these wars. FOX sucks. Let our fighters fight, win these wars, bring home our people and leave eloquence to the politicians. By the way, our politicians are each day becoming more and more unbearable to listen to. So the reality is...no one knows what they are saying. Sad and scary. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Oil or Democracy

Yesterday was a most deadly day in Afghanistan. We seem to forget often that we are still dangerously engaged in two wars as we lost 6 troops. So why are we fighting? We are told to save our freedom and to protect our way of life and to keep the terrorists from kidnapping our values.
Does anyone really believe that our system of government or our freedoms are in real jeopardy? I don't think so, but it is easier for a politician to speak these words because they sound so patriotic and so easy for us to understand. We claim that these wars will help us to spread democracy and this is good. Does anyone really believe this? If Democracy was at the root of our war policy, we would be fighting in Zimbabwe, the Sudan, North Korea, maybe finish the Vietnam War, try the Bay of Pigs again and storm the Chinese. We aren't. We are however friends with Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Kuwait, The UAE, nations who are run by wealthy oil families or a person we need for calm, that pound freedom into submission and have insulated themselves from the real problems of their own countries..poverty and hate toward the leaders. So, our response is to cozy up with these totalitarian regimes and claim our wars are about terrorism and democracy. Not so. We criticize Israel, the only Democracy in the region for abuse while those they are clamping down on continue to vow its destruction. There must be another reason we are so invested in the Middle East with nations who defy Democracy and are so far removed from relations with those who need us most. Maybe it's oil? How about someone from either party, in a leadership role finally admitting the truth? We cannot reduce our need for oil and until and if we do, the Middle East has what we want. Therefore, we will be there to protect our energy interests. It has nothing to do with terrorism or Democracy. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Monday, July 5, 2010

Don't Take it out on the Blameless.

There are 1.3 million people for whom extended unemployment benefits are the lifeline for their next meal or their next utility payment or for keeping their homes. Most of the unemployed have lost jobs from the private sector for which economic downfall kills profit margins and stockholder worth. As a result, employees are fired or downsized or forceably retired. Business is business, profits are profits and recessions have consequences. The unemployed didn't cause the economic distress and they are not responsible for private industry hoarding cash, paying overtime and staying on the sidelines of job creation until the government sorts out its bills and regulations. They are blameless. Who is responsible for delaying the lifeline in the name of deficit reduction? That's right. The Obstructionist Party...or to most political followers, the Republicans. Obama's failure is their only goal..and they will use the unemployed as bait for their rabid and extremist supporters. Way to go. Be careful though...this strategy may come back to haunt you along with Mr. Steele. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Sunday, July 4, 2010

He Steele's the Show

Michael Steele is the head of the Republican Party. He is a gregarious fellow and the first African American to serve in this role. He has consistently been an embarrassment to the nation and to his party. He has presided over a Committee engaged in reckless use of its donors' money. He himself is a self promoter concerned more with his own ego than the responsibilities of his job. Had he not been a continuous source of embarrassment for the Republicans, they would be riding the anti incumbency mood of the nation with increasing popularity, but they are not. Mr. Steele should stay in his role only to support partisan Democrats that wish to offset the nation's momentum that does not appear positive for the 2010 election according to today's poll numbers. However, as an American, on this 4th of July, it is important to come together and try and rid the nation of those who care more for themselves than for our country. Steele's recent suggestion and then retreat and rationalization about his remarks were his worst move yet. He claimed that the war in Afghanistan is Obama's war and not one that the nation was interested in pursuing. Mr. Steele, how far removed from reality can one man be? Get the heck out and sell some books. You are bad for politics in this nation. Where are you Americans for reason and truth?

Saturday, July 3, 2010

I am Back

School ended on June 23rd and I said goodbye to my beloved students. I took some time off to regroup and think about the feedback I received about being too negative with my posts. After wonderful sunsets, delicious chowder and great times at the beach, I am back to blogging. And I have decided that the feedback, although well intentioned, will not be listened too. There is a lot of negativity to our politics in this country. This is a political blog and therefore will continue to attempt to find Americans for reason and truth. While away from posting, Russian spies were caught...what is this the cold war again? Oil continues to spill into the gulf....Republicans continue to block the President, most recently in providing extended unemployment benefits to those still out of work. Gun activists are reveling in the recent Supreme court decision to incorporate the 2nd amendment to all 50 states....Where are you my AP students? Orin Hatch, republican conservative of Utah, frightened by threats from the extreme right, announced his opposition to the President's selection to the court claiming that Elena Kagan will be an activist justice. His hypocrisy is as easy to see as the nose on his face. He has always respected Presidential authority to choose justices but now he is resorting to the tired and old cliches about judicial activism. Give me a break. Michael Steele the leader of the Republican political party is praising the Bush job creation performance in an effort to further embarrass Obama and forget the recent past. Republicans will do anything to thwart the Democrats, hope for slow growth, hope for rising unemployment, hope for health care revolts and pray for all that is bad for this country for their sole desire to re take Congress. So I ask you, what do I have to be positive about? Where are you Americans for reason and truth?