Thursday, September 30, 2010

They are who we thought they were~Edited/Amended

Please disregard previous post I hit post by mistake~Redeye

Remember when Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D. California) said, "Let them define themselves, let them reveal who they are." Referring to the overt racism of the gop infused, media enabled, Tea Party congress critters?Ministry of Truth said;
I can only imagine how much class and restraint it must take our African American members of Congress to even look their Republican colleagues in the face after the last 7+ months of racist, vitriolic nonsense about birth certificates, monkey comparisons and other open acts of hatred.

Well they have revealed themselves,and to think these are the congress critters who, according to the Talking TeeVee Pundit Head class, are poised to regain control of the Congress. *Cringe* And yes, this is the same Maxine Waters who is conveniently faces an *cough cough* ethics hearing. Bring It On!

Let me give you a local, state and national rundown of just who THEY are.

On the local level we have Po Mo Brooks, the current Madison County Commissioner and republican congressional nominee who signed a pact with the devil, I mean the Tea Party before he unsigned a pact with the Tea Party because at the time he didn't know what he was signing. Confused yet?
Mo Brooks has unintentionally provided a perfect example of why candidates need to be -- and typically are -- darned careful about signing on to pledges, contracts and so forth put out by political action groups. Signing is easy; unsigning is a public relations nightmare.

Moving on down the road to AL-7 Congressional District rich Republican Don Chamberlain wants to replace current, soon be to former Congress Critter Artur Davis by running on anti health care reform, anti choice, anti Nancy Pelosi/President Obama, pro gun platform, and, he's endorsed by Rolls Royce, L&L Industrial Supply, and Carol Hendrickson. Maybe he thinks the voters in the 7th district like being thrown under the bus by their Congress Critters or something. Uh, the voter in the 7th district already had 8 years of that,it's time for a change. Enough!
Davis is running for governor of Alabama and even though his constituents are among the Yellow Hammer state's poorest and most in need of comprehensive health care reform, he voted against their needs to position himself as a moderate. He knows that in order to win the votes of white moderates (he'll never win the votes of white conservatives) he must show that he is against the expansion of government

Then you have NRA and republican leaning Alabama Farm Federation endorsed AL-02 Congressional candidate Bobby Bright joking about the death of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi. Oh wait, he's a democrat. Why?
Alabama Democratic Party Chairman Joe Turnham said voters tend to know their members of Congress and vote for the person rather than the party.

He said he doesn’t believe anti-Washington Republican rhetoric will fool voters.

“I don’t think you need to run against something, you have to position yourself to be the best candidate and advocate for your district and your people,” Turnham said.

Never fear, Sweet Home Alabama candidates don't monopolize the crazy, its from sea to shining to sea.

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) - Republican gubernatorial candidate Paul LePage told a group of fishermen at a GOP forum that he won't be afraid to tell President Barack Obama to "go to hell."

LePage, a favorite of tea partiers, told The Associated Press on Wednesday that he regretted the words he chose Sunday in the small coastal town of Brooksville but that he wasn't backing down in his criticism of the administration for what he describes as free-spending, anti business policies.

Rep. Louie Gohmert (r. Texas) wants to replace welfare refrom with sharecropping. For real. Warning this post contains raw language and racial slurs.
Why on earth is this Texan ********* allowed in the halls of our congressional chambers to spew this utterly shameful, disgusting, racist, bulls%*t? Make no mistake about it, if this ********* advocates this nonsense, you can bank on it that a few of his peers are on board with poor folks going back to the good old days of sharecropping. Can you say 14th Amendment shenanigans!

They are who we thought they were.
As with other forms of dementia, the signs weren't obvious at first. After the 2008 election, when former House majority leader Tom DeLay suggested that instead of a formal inauguration, Barack Obama should "have a nice little chicken dinner, and we'll save the $125 million," black folks didn't miss the implication. References to chicken, particularly of the fried variety, have long served as a kind of code when white folks referred to black people and their gustatory preferences—and weren't many of us already accustomed to older white politicians making such gaffes? But who among us sensed that it was a harbinger that an entire nation was plunging into madness?

This is why all men and women of good will must get out and vote Democratic in the mid term elections, because they (gop) are who we thought they (gop) were. They (gop) want to take us backwards not forward.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

All Fear all the Time, UnFair and UnBalanced

That's the republican plan for America, and it' working. With skeered democrats like these who needs republicans? Instead of telling The Professional Left to "buck up" and to "stop whining", President Obama and VP Biden need to relay that message to the cowardly conservadems who care more about being elected/re-elected than they do about the people they are supposed to represent.
We presume that Democrats, especially those in more conservative districts, are doing this in response to the anti-Washington insurgency on the right. But it’s hard to imagine that conservative voters will confuse them for Republicans, and punting on the tax cuts won’t score them any points with the Democratic base.

Here in Sweet Home Alabama voters without access to health care are scared by candidates for Governor who have access to health care into voting against health care care. How sick is that?
Alabama District 7 is 61.7% African-American. 72.2% live in urban areas (primarily Birmingham, Bessemer, Tuscaloosa, Selma and Demopolis). The district’s median per capita income was $26,672.
NO group is disproportionately uninsured than Black folks, and he voted AGAINST health care reform.
No group is at the BOTTOM of nearly all health care statistics like Black folks, and he voted AGAINST health care reform.
Is it name calling if it's true?
Ron Sparks: ''Robert Bentley is the most dangerous candidate that has ever run for governor."
One thing I can say about the gop infused, media enabled, tea party is they are not afraid to keep fear alive and scare the bejeezus out of their "base".
Scanning the thousands of hopped-up faces in the crowd, I am immediately struck by two things. One is that there isn't a single black person here. The other is the truly awesome quantity of medical hardware: Seemingly every third person in the place is sucking oxygen from a tank or propping their giant atrophied glutes on motorized wheelchair-scooters. As Palin launches into her Ronald Reagan impression — "Government's not the solution! Government's the problem!" — the person sitting next to me leans over and explains.
"The scooters are because of Medicare," he whispers helpfully. "They have these commercials down here: 'You won't even have to pay for your scooter! Medicare will pay!' Practically everyone in Kentucky has one."
A hall full of elderly white people in Medicare-paid scooters, railing against government spending and imagining themselves revolutionaries as they cheer on the vice-presidential puppet hand-picked by the GOP establishment. If there exists a better snapshot of everything the Tea Party represents, I can't imagine it.
I'm scared NOT to vote in November.
I am from the Stephen Colbert “Keep Fear Alive” school which says that this crop of looney tunes Republicans are the most radical throwbacks we’ve ever seen and that it’s important to keep them away from the reins of power. That’s as good a reason for voting as I can imagine, so I’m not sure what more it takes.

Be afraid. Be very afraid.
So, for the record: please vote. No matter how disappointed you are or how rotten you feel about your present circumstances, empowering these crazies is a huge, huge mistake. The Democrats, sadly, will not learn the right lessons if a bunch of neanderthals take over and history shows that in times of great stress and transition, very bad things can happen when you let these people take the reins.
As the young people say, Word.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Redeye's Tuesday Must Reads Local/ State/National

If you can't dazzle them with brilliance then baffle them with bull$%#t Mo,
I favor "good" earmarks. I oppose "bad" earmarks. It really is both that simple and that complex. It is a matter of judgment as to which earmarks are appropriate and which are inappropriate (using proper federal government function and cost/benefit analysis tests).
I have a few question for Commissioner Mo Brooks(r.Tea Party); Do you or don't you believe residents who live in North Huntsville have a lower IQ than residents that live in South Huntsville? And, do you believe "project kids" should not be allowed to attend south Huntsville schools because they will lower standardized test scores? And, is it or is it not true you will not be attending a debate sponsored by the local chapter of the NAACP at the Richard Showers Center with your democratic opponent Steve Raby? If elected are you only going to represent the intelligent residents of south Huntsville and oppose ignorant residents of north Huntsville?

The baffling blundering bull$%#t just keeps on coming from the gop candidates.....Huh?
In discussing the issue of transportation in and around Birmingham, Bentley said he would not support light rail for the metro area. That's fine. Reasonable arguments can be made on either side of that issue. But he went on to say: "If light rail brought people into the city, well there is nobody in the city downtown, there's not a lot going on down there, and it's not necessarily right now the wisest use of our dollars."
"Conservative Principles" are like knives. Stupid people shouldn't flash them around. H/T revbob

Ian MacIsaac: Americans don't learn lessons: The Moral failures of conservative leaders and the intellectual failures of average Americans
Barack Obama is not like you. He’s not normal. We’re not exactly sure what it is about him, but something just isn’t right.

God, you’ve been hearing that a lot, haven’t you? The above quotes are just a sample of the nonsense spread over the past month or two about the president. Maybe it was all inspired by this Ground Zero mosque hubbub, but there seems to be a pretty consistent and united effort on the part of conservative talking heads nowadays to paint Obama as both (a) foreign and (b) untrustworthy. There was a lot of this before the election, but at least within my sphere of news it had steadily declined after he’d actually taken office, and people began to get interested in real issues again….
The Undisputed Truth tells us what we've learned about the Tea Party.
We have learned that they may dislike Dems, but they hate Republicans. They hate Republicans until they win I guess and then they are waiting in line for the hand-outs and infomercials they get to do on FOX. We have learned that these folks were the crazy cousins hiding in the attic of the Republican Party. We have learned that these folks are the reincarnation of the “Know Nothings, the Moral Majority, and the Christian Coalition. We have learned that they really aren’t independent nor or they grassroots
Guest Post: Reform School Versus School Reform (Rant)
I have taught off and on for the last decade, and prior to that I was a student in this once great education system. Contrary to former President Ronald Reagan's "A Nation At Risk" report, education was better in the 1980s and 1990s. I have vivid memories of projects, arts and crafts, books we read, dioramas we made and the California Achievement test we all took that was nationally normed.

There was 4H, shop, career explorations and computer class ... sans test. We still had to take state tests, but this did not stop teachers from giving us skills we could use in real life. (I.E. writing in cursive, all of our math facts, daily physical exercise, fine arts, music, etc.) We had at least one thirty minute recess per day. It was awesome, rigorous, and to be honest, I never recall having what some now call "bad teachers."
Charter Schools and Waiting for Superman
“The message of the film is that public schools are failing because of bad teachers and their unions. The film's "solution," to the minimal extent it suggests one, is to replace them with "great" charter schools and teachers who have less power over their schools and classrooms.
This message is not just wrong. In the current political climate, it's toxic.”
This film tells a moving story about problems and injustice in public schools but it blames the problems of schools on teachers unions. Why is that ? We should ask why the film focuses on teachers’ unions and not on poverty, race, school bureaucracies, or the foundations of the rich who support these initiatives.

Somethings rotten about "Waiting for Superman"
Something smells here. And it isn't the fresh, crisp, fall scent of number two Ticonderoga's.

Professional educators are going to take a major hit in the coming months and the Billionaire Boys Club, who are out to privatize our public schools by creating their own charter school networks, couldn't be happier.

The promotion of the movie Waiting for Superman has been nothing less than phenomenal for an education documentary. Oprah aired two shows about it, all pie and sunshine. Don't be fooled by the hype. This is just another in a series of hoaxes perpetrated on the American public by the very wealthy. We have something they want -- the minds of our children!
From Big Easy to Big Empty
Following the first broadcast of this film a criminal complaint was filed against producer Matt Pascarella and reporter Greg Palast by the Department of Homeland Security. The charge, filming “critical infrastructure” was dropped.
Maybe DHS was annoyed because From Big Easy to Big Empty, filmed a year after Hurricane Katrina, is critical of infrastructure, specifically Innovative Emergency Management of Baton Rouge which was paid a half-million dollars in 2004 to deliver a emergency preparedness and evacuation plan of New Orleans–only no one could find the plan when it was needed–that’s pretty innovative; and of FEMA itself which at the time of the filming, in 2006, had displaced 73,000 residents into trailer parks. Palast interviews a resident who explains that there is only one bus out of the ironically named, barb-wired ringed Camp Renaissance, and it only goes to the Wal-Mart.
Reading is fundamental! Happy reading!

There are more of us than there are of them

However, the majority of "them" vote and the majority of "us" don't. That is the problem with the body politics in a nutshell. It's the reason the gop infused, media enabled, Tea Party candidates win and progressive/liberal/democratic candidates lose. Armed with righteous indignation, misinformation and fear "they" are motivated to go to the polls to vote against "us" but in reality they are voting against themselves.

According to them

Progressive is another word for communism.

“The Democrats with their failed socialist policies have given us 10 percent unemployment.”

The government needs to be shut down until the budget is balanced.

The Barney Frank /Chris Dodd fiasco in banking and mortgages that led to nothing but devastation.

Bush's tax cut increased revenues.

The Community Reinvestment Progressives (with their friends in the SEIU) have been pushing banks and mortgage companies to make housing loans to people who couldn't afford them.

The government comes into your house and takes the things you've earned and give it to people who "earn a living off of Welfare".

The government taxes the working class to pay for people who don’t work: some warped idea of “fairness” that dictates that those who worked to “have” must give those who “have not”.

The colored man looms large in the Communist plan to take over America.”
Eventually, the well-meaning citizens who thought they were part of a spontaneous citizen movement will discover that a group of billionaires put their views like a saddle on citizens’ backs and rode them to the polling place.

They will be furious and I won’t blame them. I’m already mad as hell that good citizens are being manipulated by men of vast wealth — for their own benefit — hiding behind such innocent names as Americans for Prosperity.

The majority of Americans are against health care reform according to them.
A new AP poll finds that Americans who think the law should have done more outnumber those who think the government should stay out of health care by 2-to-1.
[...] The poll found that about four in 10 adults think the new law did not go far enough to change the health care system, regardless of whether they support the law, oppose it or remain neutral. On the other side, about one in five say they oppose the law because they think the federal government should not be involved in health care at all.

The fact that none of what they believe to be the truth is not the truth doesn't matter to "them". They can't handle the truth. They would RATHER believe the lies. Democrats don't have the time or the means to deprogram them by the midterm elections, so our only HOPE is to strike fear in the hearts and minds of democrats and get out the vote. There are more of us than there are of them. The only thing standing between "them" and "us" is Y-O-U not getting off your Donkey and voting like it's 2008 all over again.
Reading some blogs, listening to the radio, watching TV, especially cable, including msnbc, just gets me down. "Dems going to get smashed" is the constant refrain. There is a lot to be worried about, and there is a lot to be pissed at some Dems (e.g., Blue Dog Enabler Steny Hoyer) about. But despair is a tool used by Republicans to suppress the vote, to perpetuate an enthusiasm gap.

October 4 is the last day to register to vote in time for this fall's elections.
It's up to us to save them from themselves.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Update; The sad, sorry state of public education in Huntsville, Alabama

Typo in original post, should read: The Huntsville City Schools spent 4 million to borrow 8 million.
Readers also might want to read about The sad, sorry state of seperate and unequal education in Selma, Alabama.

Public Education is under attack in Alabama

I found the subject of this diary during my morning blog stroll at radio boy's blog of all places. Radio boy ask why it's controversial for the Huntsville City Schools to hire temp workers to save money. Uh, because HCS didn't hire temp workers to save money, they hired temp workers to go around the tenure laws stupid.
The Huntsville school board has been paying millions of dollars to a private temp service to get around Alabama tenure laws.

"We've never done anything of this magnitude," said system auditor Rob Terry. "We've always had temporary services, but not to the level we've done this last year."

The issue first surfaced during the budget hearing earlier this month, as board members questioned the use of a staffing firm, Onin Group, to hire and supervise people who work in the city schools, doing everything from custodial work to supervising special needs children.
Saving money my Donkey!
"It just seems like we're wasting a lot of money," said Martinson during the budget hearing. 'If we're spending $4 million just to avoid somebody getting tenure and we need them anyway, that doesn't seem like a good use of money."
The HCS saved 4 million so they could borrow 8 million???
The board plans to spend $143.5 million on instructional salaries next year, down from $153.3 million last school year. Administrative salaries, which account for 3.2 percent of the budget, went up slightly from $5.6 million last year to $5.7 million this year.

Wheeler said the system may yet have to borrow money, up to $8 million, to make it through this fiscal year. "I think we probably will soon," said Wheeler, showing plans to pay off the short-term bank loan next year.

The system has already borrowed from itself, he said, taking $5.8 million set aside for construction in order to make payroll. That will also have to be paid back next year.
In the plus column, Wheeler placed federal stimulus money. The system is expecting another $5.5 million next year from the 2009 state stabilization package.
This is the same board who brokered a back room deal to pay the current, soon to be ex Superintendent to "consult" with the new Superintendent.
Superintendent Ann Roy Moore did not want to leave the central office in Huntsville City Schools, asking to step back into her old job as deputy superintendent.

More than 200 pages of e-mails and attachments from the behind the scenes negotiations show the school board rejected her attempt to stay. The board and Moore instead struck a compromise that keeps her on as a highly paid adviser for six months after her contract ends next summer
I've been participating in a online discussion regarding the upcoming school board elections in Huntsville and I've come the conclusion voters hate the Alabama Education Association more than they love our school students. The question is why?
The paranoia displayed by some folks is astounding and may only be self fulfilling.
When will voters stop voting out of spite and start voting for what is right (pun intended)?
Blair and Robinson fought the AEA while on the board and thus I support both of them.
Only in Alabama is the Alabama Education Association (AEA) treated like the enemy of the state. Contrary to popular right wing opinion, the AEA is not for the teachers and against the students, nor does it run and operate the Huntsville City School system. AEA is for the TEACHERS who TEACH the students. Why would they be against the students? What purpose does it serve to elect people so they can fight the TEACHERS who TEACH our children? If you keep doing the same thing, you will keep getting the same results. A sad, sorry, public education system. And who wins in the end? Not the chilren who are our future that's for sure.

If you can read this thank the Alabama Education Association. If you can't read this, thank the Huntsville City School System.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Redeye's Week in Review

Well what do you know? Tea Party Candidates Benefit From Stimulus and Federal Spending.
Tea party backed Republican candidates -- indeed most Republican candidates -- base their campaigns largely on opposition to President Obama's agenda, and an imprecise pledge to reduce the federal deficit. Perhaps no single issue encapsulates that pledge better than the Democrats' stimulus bill -- one of the President's signature initiatives that is, by design, a big deficit booster. Government can't create jobs, they say, the stimulus wasted tax payer dollars, and simply bloated the federal government.

Scratch under the surface a bit, though, and these candidates' opposition to government spending isn't very deep at all -- particularly when they benefit directly.

Why am I not surprised? The gop rolled out their whites only vision for America.
What’s interesting is that up until now, the GOP has been so careful to cloak their deep unpopularity with people of color by featuring them prominently whenever possible. Thus we are forced to endure the sorry spectacles of’s bizarre photos, Black Tea Party members, the black people paid to be on Glenn Beck’s show and the entire careers of Michael Steele and Clarence Thomas.

So the photos from the GOP’s Pledge to America specifying how they plan to take back America and destroy it all over again (except for the rich, of course) are a fascinating departure from the norm and a telling shift in tactics. I think this tells us all we need to know about who the Tea Party and GOP plan to take America back from and who they plan to give it to — the KKK. It’s pretty dang sinister and terribly honest about their real agenda. If you squint real hard, you might see an Hispanic here and one black person there. And maybe that cowboy in silhouette — that guy could totally be black maybe!

Question. Why would we the voters want to fire the people who are trying to get the country out of the ditch and re-hire the people who drove the country into the ditch? I'm just saying...

What's that you say? The Iraq War was planned pre 9/11? I'm shocked! Shocked I tell you! NOT.
Newly declassified documents published at the National Security Archive prove beyond all reasonable doubt that the Bush administration planned to topple Saddam Hussein and invade Iraq as early as January, 2001, and were making strategic plans and resource allocations as early as November, 2001.

Will they or won't the gop shut down the government again? Only the Orange Boehner knows for sure.
Boehner, in an interview following the release of the House Republicans' "Pledge to America," said he would not rule out a government shutdown, but he would look to avoid it should his party take control of Congress in the fall.


Thursday, September 23, 2010

Don't Think. Vote republican!

How's that for a gop bumper sticker? I mean, really? Who wants to go back to before?
I don't want to a turn to the right, I don't want to go back. And I really think I'm not alone. My generation suffered through a Republican shut down of government, not in 1994 but from 98 and on. When Bill Clinton's private life became all of our most important business. I don't want that again. Bombing Baghdad for no good reason... I don't want that again.
Or, how about Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me--you can't fool me again.

What is it about those who make less than, say $200K, that makes them even think about voting for them?

How about I'm exhausted too?
I’m exhausted when I see people working against their own best interests out of spite.
Tempest in a Tea Pot
Judge the Tea Party purely on the grounds of effectiveness and you have to admire how a very small group has shaken American political life and seized the microphone offered by the media, including the so-called liberal media.
Annoy the middle class, Vote republican!
''People will choose a government that helps them over no government at all,''
If you are against the lottery don't play the lottery.

If you are against having access to quality, affordable health care, vote republican!
Starting now, insurance companies will no longer be permitted to exclude children because of pre-existing health conditions, which the White House said could enable 72,000 uninsured to gain coverage. Insurers also will be prohibited from imposing lifetime limits on benefits.

The law will now forbid insurers to drop sick and costly customers after discovering technical mistakes on applications. It requires that they offer coverage to children under 26 on their parents’ policies.

It establishes a menu of preventive procedures, like colonoscopies, mammograms and immunizations, that must be covered without co-payments. And it allows consumers who join a new plan to keep their own doctors and to appeal insurance company reimbursement decisions to a third party.

If can read this, thank a teacher!
We would suggest that national Democrats take a page from the Hubbert playbook, before it is too late and Republicans have taken back one or both houses of Congress
Vote like it's 2008 all over again!
Interestingly, Boehner's Ohio media allies can only make one rationale for re-electing him again-- he might wind up as Speaker (as though that might be beneficial for Ohio voters, instead of the disaster his term in office has already proven!). But will the lazy, hard-drinking golfer wind up as Speaker if the Republican manage to win in November? Republican House members prefer to not discuss it openly but there's a lot of chatter about kicking the corrupt Boehner out of the leadership (again) and inserting a more ideologically extreme candidate more in line with the teabaggers. Mike Pence is the obvious choice.


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Edit~The sad,sorry,state of separate and unequal education in Selma Alabama

LiA blogger countrycat posted a diary requesting donations to help educate Alabama school children via email from a friends daughter who is assigned to a school in Greensboro, AL with Teach for America. Which prompted the following comment from another public school teacher in Selma; 
I could use a hand too while you're all at it...
sorry its been awhile, busy personal life and transition from being unemployed to being fully employed has kept me from posting.

I have 135 students and only 82 textbooks for my kids. Out of that 82, probably only 40 are fit to be distributed. This isn't just a problem in Greensboro, or for newly minted TfA'ers (still not happy that they are displacing local, unemployed teachers, but I digress), most teachers in the state are feeling the pinch after now 2 years of proration.

I've had to be pretty creative, which means that I have killed my copier budget for the year printing pages out for students to take chapters home. I would be happy to set up an account on to help facilitate those interested in helping my students.

countrycat used the diary to illustrate the negative effects the Alabama Constitution has on public schools. However it lead me to question why educators are requesting donations to serve public school students in the black belt? What I discovered was a separate and unequal school system. One public. One private. One white. One black. Guess which one needs donations to help educate the students. *sigh*
There are 21 public schools and 4 private schools in Selma.

While the private school gets a new name and new life
When Gary Lamar Crum heard that Central Christian Academy’s low enrollment threatened to close the school, he decided to do something about it.

“We saw the school turning financially, and we said we need an angel, we need help,” said Carl Rawls, assistant principal. “[Crum] said I’m your angel.”

With funds from Ellwood Community Church, Crum, pastor and board chair, and the church purchased the pre-kindergarten through senior high school in March, changing the name to Ellwood Christian Church at the end of May.

The Selma School board wants voters to pass a 3-mill tax increase in order to build a new school and keep one open.
Earlier this year former school system superintendent Austin Obasohan had suggested closing the School of Discovery. The school costs more than $635,000 each year to operate. Obasohan also had recommended cutting staff in the Central Office to save $350,000. Both measures would provide most of the $1.4 million needed to pay off the debt service each year for construction of the new high school, Obasohan said at the time.

The lone white member of the school board is calling for fiscal responsibility
The Selma City Schools are asking for a raise in their allowance from the citizens of Selma. Understand that all citizens participate in a tax increase. Those who do not own property will see their rent increase and the price of goods will increase from local merchants so as to pay the tax. We all will equally suffer this increased tax burden. But if every effort has been made to be efficient and the public schools are producing excellent results an increase is certainly justified. This sadly is not the case.

There are approximately 4,000 students enrolled in the public school system, 97% African American, 2% white, 1% other. Approximately 1000 students are enrolled in private schools, 97% white 1% black, 1% other.

The public school system is begging for donations and the private school system gets new life.

The school system that serves the masses is struggling, the school system that serves the status quo is thriving.

The school system that depends on the state for funding is begging for what it needs.

Only in Alabama.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Updated ~WTF did Joe Reed do to you?

 I've noticed a renewed interest in this post which gave me the opportunity to correct some typo's and update some links. The original content is unchanged.
Looking back I have to wonder how Left in Alabama feels about Joe Reed now. Their candidate, Artur Davis ,was anti AEA and pro privatizing  public education in Alabama, and he was backed by the business community in and outside of the state.  That's a group with little love for entitlements, I mean,  social programs such as access to quality, affordable health care, equal access to a quality public education, a poor woman's right to choose to have a safe, legal abortion, access to birth control, LBGT rights, and the right to vote, and have that vote count.  ~RedEye
That is the question I would like answered by those *ahem* democrats who resent (for lack of a better word) Joe Reed for the power he wields as chairman of the Alabama Democratic Conference.
The Democratic Party has had considerable political power in Alabama for a long time. As head of the ADC, Reed has had a big share of that power -- he derives it from his apparent ability to deliver votes and campaign workers.
Uh NO. Joe Reed doesn't have the ability to "deliver votes and campaign workers", he has the ability to get out the vote and recruit campaign volunteers. It's his J-O-B to get out the vote.
Since 1960 ADC’s basis mission has been to organize and unify the black vote and to have it respected by candidates and elected officials alike. Initially the organization moved its mission through a network of committed volunteers who traveled across the state establishing local chapters, holding district meetings, and educating voters. It took at least one decade for ADC to consolidate the black vote, build credibility, and create political clout in the state.
Also known as "community organizing".
Community organizing is a process where people who live in proximity to each other come together into an organization that acts in their shared self-interest. Unlike those who promote more-consensual community building, community organizers generally assume that social change necessarily involves conflict and social struggle in order to generate collective power for the powerless. A core goal of community organizing is to generate durable power for an organization representing the community, allowing it to influence key decision-makers on a range of issues over time. In the ideal, for example, this can get community organizing groups a place at the table before important decisions are made.[1] Community organizers work with and develop new local leaders, facilitating coalitions and assisting in the development of campaigns.
So, what's the problem with Joe Reed wielding power? What power is he wielding? Who/what is he wielding power over?

So, what's the problem with Joe Reed getting out the vote and recruiting campaign workers?

So, what has Joe Reed done to satisfy his need and desire for total control ? Total control of what? Total control of whom?

So, what has Joe Reed done to severely damage the Alabama Democratic Party?

Is the "change that's afoot in the democratic party" about white insecurity because a black man "wields power"?
reed's focus is so dominated by control of what there is, what's going to be left means nothing to him so long as he controls it. and there still is no real solution.
Go ahead and just spit it out, I want to know why Joe Reed is considered by some to be the evil enemy of the Alabama Democratic Party.  in the African American community Joe Reed is known as a fighter for fairness,  not some power hungry, racist, dictator.
Joe Reed is known as a “fighter for fairness” for black representation. In 1975, Joe Reed led the efforts to get equitable representation for blacks on the Montgomery City Council. His efforts resulted in four (4) blacks of nine (9) being elected. He served on the Montgomery City Council for 24 years. In the Democratic Party today, Alabama’s black representation exceeds all other states in the nation. For over 40 years he has led the effort to get more blacks elected and appointed to public office, including federal marshals, federal and state judges, members of the boards of registrars, legislators, county commissioners, city councils, and school boards. Due largely to his leadership, today Alabama has more black elected officials than any state in the nation. He drafted two (2) plans that increased black representation in the Alabama House of Representatives from 13 to 27; and in the Senate from 3 to 8 in 1982, and 1992, respectively. He also drew a reapportionment plan that provided for 25% (two of eight) majority black districts on the State Board of Education. Alabama is the only state in the nation where the Legislature reflects the state’s population of blacks and whites. Dr. Reed’s congressional plan also led to Alabama’s gaining a black congressional seat

Seriously, some of y'all are beginning to remind me of the Obama is a Kenya born/Muslim/Socialist/Nazi/Dictator gang.
I have been troubled lately by the ADC, New South and especially Joe Reed. Artur was damned if he did, and damned if he didn't by courting either of them! And like you, I thought it took guts to say "I don't need you to tell me that I'm Black, care about Blacks" but instead, his campaign said, "I am like you and this is 2010 and I care about all Alabamians. I care about a better Health Care Bill."
Could the problem be:

1. They don't like educated black men unless they are Artur Davis.
2. They don't think that Blacks are capable of being in charge unless they are Artur Davis
3. They resent the fact that a black IS in charge unless it's Artur Davis.
Bottom line, history tells us Joe Reed would move heaven and earth to keep ADC from endorsing Artur Davis. Ditto Hank Sanders and New South Coalition. It's the status quo vs. a new way of doing business in Alabama, and the folks who wield power with the current system aren't going to give it up quietly.
Ron Sparks will happily kow-tow and they'll endorse him. No surprise there.
I'm tired of hearing the  ADP is comparable to a social club of good old boys; why include anything new or different when they're exactly where they want to be - in charge and in power, even though theirs is a shrinking, failing club.

I'm tired of the threats to leave the party because of Joe Reed. Where are you going to go? The gop? Are you going to start your own party? What to do and where to go? 

forming a new democratic party from scratch would be legally very complicated and formers would be accused of racism, regardless of make-up of initiators group. But, the coalition that produced the statement could study initiating a law suit on the basis that the makeup of the state democratic committee is disproprtionately minority, and that the fact of disproprtionate minority detracts from the electability of Democrats of any race. So, the court is asked to find that the racial make up of the committee deprives citiznes of their ability to nominate and elect persons of the majority's choosing. and, following up, the court should decree that a plan proposed by the new south coalition for allocating seats on the state cttee be adopted.
I'm tired of pretending the criticism against Joe Reed isn't rooted in prejudice. I know I'm going to be accused of playing the race card, but I don't care. For most white Americans slavery, segregation and Jim Crow are ancient history and they want to just forget about it and move on. But for me and mine,  that history is as close as my children, my parents, my grandparents and my great grandparents. I don't have to do a google search to recall America's racial history. I live it everyday. So yes, I can be hypersensitive about racial issues, I guess that's why I take the vilification of Joe Reed personally. I don't feel like it's just Joe Reed is being attacked, I feel like it's an attack on all black leaders and all of the members of the ADC. You call them black gate keepers, I call them black freedom fighters.
The Alabama Democratic Conference (the Black Political Caucus of Alabama) was founded in 1960 by a small group of black citizens who banded together that year in an effort to influence black voters to support the Democratic presidential ticket of John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson. Among the founders were: Arthur Shores, a highly respected civil rights lawyer in Birmingham; Rufus Lewis, a successful Montgomery businessman and former coach at Alabama State University; Dr. C. G. Gomillion, a college professor and activist at Tuskegee Institute; Q. D. Adams a gifted salesman and civic promoter from Gadsden; Isom Clemon, a powerful labor leader among Mobile County longshoremen; and Beulah Johnson, a feisty Tuskegee educator.
I was raised by educated parents who taught me I could be anything I wanted to be if I worked hard and played by the rules. I grew up in an environment where respected black leaders promised one day I would be judged by the content of my character not the color of my skin. I'm still waiting on that day.

So please tell me WTF Joe Reed did to you? I asked this question on Left in Alabama before I was banned, Here is what I wrote. Click on the link to read the comments.

Something to think about today by: Redeye Tue Sep 01, 2009 at 09:41:52 AM CDT

Postings and comments will be light for me today as I have some personal, family health issues to deal with, but I've noticed a "trend" here on LiA that I want to bring to your attention (because I'm sure you're not aware of it), and hopefully give you something to think and comment about.
I have noticed that true liberals/progressives/community organizers/those that stand up and fight for the rights of the "little people" get bashed, slammed and held to a higher level of accountability than those who are and do the opposite.

Take Joe Reed and Paul Hubbert for example. I don't understand the animosity (for lack of a better word) and distrust (also for lack of a better word) coming from progressives.

Joe Reed and Paul Hubbert are the duly elected leaders of the Alabama Education Association. They have spent most of their lives representing the interest of Alabama school students, teachers, administrators and support staff. What pray tell is so wrong with that?

My Mom says Reed and Hubbert are hated (for lack of a better word) because they are powerful. If true, what's wrong with them being powerful?

Think about it and get back to me.


Sunday Reading List

Lost in the Tea Party obsessed, breathless, 24/7, wall to wall TeeVee coverage of the Bigots, I mean Values Summit, is the annual Congressional Black Caucus Foundation annual legislative conference. Lot's of coverage on the *ahem* Values Summit but little or no coverage of the President of the United States speaking at the Black Caucus Foundation conference. Wall to wall coverage of the Values Summit but nary a peep on the CBC annual conference. I wonder why?
In a fiery speech Saturday to the Congressional Black Caucus, Obama warned that Republicans hoping to seize control of Congress want "to do what's right politically, instead of what's right -- period."

"I need everybody here to go back to your neighborhoods, to go back to your workplaces, to go to the churches, and go to the barbershops and go to the beauty shops. And tell them we've got more work to do," Obama said to cheers from a black-tie audience at the Washington Convention Center. "Tell them we can't wait to organize. Tell them that the time for action is now."

His speech acknowledged what pollsters have been warning Democrats for months -- that blacks are among the key Democratic groups who right now seem unlikely to turn out in large numbers in November

Do democrats deserve to lose and be punished?
STEVE HILDEBRAND: The Democratic strategy right now is to run from the president, run from important proposals that help this country. If we’re not going to do something about health care, if we’re not going to do something about climate change, if we’re not going to do something about the economy, about the deficit, about the war, Washington is going to get punished. The Democrats might get punished more because they’re in power, but Washington in general is going to get punished. And you’ve seen it in Republican primaries across the country. You’ve seen it in Democratic primaries across the country. And you’re going to see it with a lot of just pure incumbents from both parties in November. They’re getting punished because they’re not dealing with the issues. They’re not dealing with the real problems that we face as a country. And they should be punished. Stand up and lead or get out of the way. And you might be replaced with someone worse, but you know, those are the options that are sometimes given to people.

Will we get what we deserve and turn the country over to the right wing bigots again? Be skeered. Be very skeered. The Tea Party is coming!
I am taking the fringe serious as they
are influencing mainstream and they are the New Dixiecrats. Be afraid of them and know they are more than fringe. They harbour the most seemingly logical racist that has been hidden for some time. Now that the black man is in charge, they have come out without the sheets and want their white country back. Not their country. Their white supreme authority back. That is the message.
Don't be fooled with the crazy messengers, be afraid of the racists and bigots who really agree with them deep down and will vote for them, excusing their behavior in exchange for the good ole days when a black knew their place. (sarcasm). These good ole boys don't just live in the south, they live everywhere and the eye candy who are channeling their message is a good reason to turn out at the polls. These women are manipulated and stupid. Look who their leader is.....Sarah Palin. That alone should scare you to the polls.

If it looks like crazy, talks like crazy, walks like crazy, it is crazy. Mission Accomplished. Faux News and hate radio made them crazy. They distorted what we decide with all spin all the time, UNfair and UNbalanced.

The rank-and-file have been indoctrinated, literally. They've consumed so much of this shit from Fox News and hate radio that they actually believe in it. And one of the things they believe is that our institutions are not trustworthy and they're not worth a damn. It's hard to argue with them about that; it's just that everything they're doing is making things worse. By making it harder for the government to function and making it harder to do the things that need to be done, the right-wing creates a self-fulfilling prophesy. We ought to close Guantanamo Bay, but the people are too frightened and, so, no one has the president's back to make that decision. Congress denies him the funds. The same is true on a host of other issues, most notably stimulus spending, climate change, and immigration reform.

Comment of the week h/t GM;
This election is NOT about President Obama. Yes, I know the Republicans and their media helpers have done a good job of making it seem otherwise, but the actual REALITY is that it is not. It is a CONGRESSIONAL, mid-term election, in which we choose senators and congresspersons and governors - NOT a frigging president.

The goal is to prevent the wacko, dangerous, Republican LUNATIC FRINGE from taking over our country.

Never underestimate the power of the fear and bigotry.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Saturday Links I Like

The DNC better Learn how to tell the story unless they want the gop infused, media enabled Tea Party to whup their Donkey's in November. It's shut up or put time.
“The Democratic Party is not telling the STORY so that voters GET IT. You can’t throw a laundry list of accomplishments at voters and hope they’ll remember what you did. Nor can you be aloof or out of touch with the base that got you to the dance.

Speaking of shut or put up, all of you progressives who either aren't going to vote or are going to write in "none of the above" because your candidate lost, you might as well pull the lever for the gop infused, media enabled Tea Party. At one time during the democratic primary I was undecided and considered not voting but I always said I would support the democratic winner in the general election because that's what real democrats do.

The gop infused, media enabled Tea Party is having a *cough* values summit this weekend and prominent republicans are sharing the stage with bigots.
Prominent Republicans such as Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, U.S. Rep. Mike Pence and U.S. Senate candidate Christine O'Donnell are scheduled to speak at the Value Voters Summit.

They will share the stage with notorious anti-Muslim bigots such as Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association and Gary Bauer.

Boss Hoggs, I mean Mississippi Governor, wanna be gop Presidential nominee, Haley Barbour, is working overtime to sanitize the gop's *ahem* race problem
Clearly, a debate is brewing over how to explain the GOP’s racial history to an emerging generation of voters who consider the sixties and the civil rights movement as prehistoric museum artifacts. But memories are stubborn things that shape our present and future. It’s never easy to allow the past to go gentle into that good night.

All of you anti public education, Charter School advocates might want to read how the Charter School Lobby buys elections.

When hedge funds invade the public schools arena, we are no longer talking about education, but of markets. Obama's version of education reform is to turn the schools into profit centers for the speculator class. “Education is up for grabs and at the mercy of the highest bidders and the most cynical and ambitious.”

Happy reading!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Redeye's Week in Review~Update 5/4/2013

It was a very interesting week in Alabama poliTricks. There are some who don't believe justice was served in the Hale County so called voter fraud case against Gay Nell Tinker (aka Gay Nell Singleton), and are wondering what in the world they have to do stop voter fraud in the black belt.
 A one year suspended sentence, Attorney General stipulation that notarizing altered absentee ballots is not a crime of moral turpitude, allowed to keep her jobs as a city magistrate, Gay Nell Tinker AKA Gay Nell Singleton lost nothing by entering a guilty plea other than being barred for six years from handling absentee ballots.
I don't disagree with the judges ruling in this case, but I understand how they feel. I felt the same way when Radio Boy got off with a slap on the wrist for using the public air waves to promote voter suppression with the state seal of approval. I appreciate the concern about so called voter fraud in the black belt, but what about black voter suppression?
The right to vote is sacred to African Americans. I know it sounds cliche, but it's steeped in blood, sweat, tears, courage and sacrifice. That's why we don't think Voter Suppression with the State Seal of Approval is funny. It's why we shake our heads at The Tough Voter ID Laws. It's why we get weep silently when the real voter suppression gets a slap on the wrist and the imagined voter fraud is prosecuted to the full extent of the law. It's like pre 1965 all over again.
The Race Baiting continues in the Kenya Lavender Marshall/Nikki Still/Elisabeth French Circuit Judge election saga, inspired by a piece written by Joe Turnham, chairman of the Alabama Democratic Party, that was published in the Birmingham News last week and a letter from retired federal Judge U. W. Clemons, also published by the Birmingham News. Which makes me wonder, who gets to determine if something is racist, the victims of racism or the perpetrators of racism? Some are convinced Nikki Stills in the victim of so called black racism by the SDEC, but they aren't willing to even consider that maybe Kenya Lavender Marshall a victim of racism by the Alabama Bar Association. What's black is white. What's white is black. It's a Topsy Turvey world when it comes to racism.

The Alabama Democratic Executive Committee probably sensed that a black female candidate, who had been heavily favored by voters, was treated unfairly. The committee decided, we suspect, that the fair and right thing to do was to replace her with a black female candidate--one who was equally qualified to the white candidate. That, in our view, is not racism; it's a logical reaction to racism.
The New South Coalition and the SCLC are barking up the wrong tree when it comes to injustice. We suggest they train their sights on the Alabama State Bar.
Speaking of racism, Gooberner Bob Riley has decided to pay them there black attorneys in lieu of testifying under oath.
What can make an arrogant Republican crumble in fear? The thought of having to testify under oath about his corrupt actions.
That's the lesson to take from reports that Alabama Governor Bob Riley has agreed to settle a lawsuit, in the face of a tight deadline for his deposition. A state judge had refused to dismiss the lawsuit and given both sides until September 20 to complete depositions--and opposing counsel had indicated that Riley would be among those questioned under oath.
Knowing that depositions can be wide ranging--and this one could have covered issues related to campaign finance, no-bid contracts, and other uncomfortable matters--Riley decided it would be a good idea to pay up.
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Ron Sparks beat republican candidate Dr. Robert Kevorkian, I mean Bentley like a drum in a debate on Bentley's home turf. So here's the choice facing Alabama voters in November.... Do we want a governor who has specific ideas and plans to create jobs, supports health care reform, raise millions with a state wide lottery, and wants all students to have access to a quality education, or, another Governor who will stand in the school house door and stand up to the Federal government? I report. You decided.
Bentley is pro life (4.00 / 2)
Believes in Article 10, state sovereignty.

Real problem with illegal immigrants. Applauds Arizona.

Only a gov. can stand up to feds. and I am that gov.
Oh snap! President Obama has endorsed a progressive who won't be a rubber stamp for him in Congress. What in the world is he thinking? Maybe he's demanding rubber stamp fealty from them there voters in the 7th district. Maybe he's expecting them to fall in line like good little sheep and follow the Pied Piper. As I said before I was booted from leaning Left in Alabama, I weep for voters in the 7th district. They don't need or deserve another progressive representative, they need and deserve a liberal, democratic representative in Congress. And for the progressives who think black voters vote for who President Obama tells them to vote for just because he's an African American need look no farther than EX Washington D.C. Mayor Artur Davis, I mean Adrian Fenty. President Obama is the President of the United States, not the King of black folks. Sometimes his policies can even be considered neocon. As the young people say "you better recognize"
What too many folks don't realize, especially those who are not connected even tangentially to black folks save through the ephemeral artifacts of pop culture, is that there is "old guard" in our section of the American neighborhood who you cross at your own peril. Once these folks are done with you, they are done with you. No ifs, ands or buts. In the wake of the election victories of Corey Booker, Adrian Fenty and Barack Obama there was a significant move to write these folks off. What wasn't understood is that the success of Booker, Fenty and Obama was due, in great part, to the support of this "old guard" that tends to remain just below the radar. Fenty's defeat clearly sends a message that news of the old guards demise was premature.
The GOP infused, media enabled Tea Party prevailed in the republican primaries. Let the Co-opting Begin.
what the teabaggers are putting on display is what is at the heart of the conservative movement which is fear, racism, and tribalism. The teabaggers are like the crazy uncle that you keep in the attic. He is in the family but you don’t want anyone to know about it. The teabaggers are the raw nerve of the Republican Party. They are the ones who are the attack dogs for the Party. Let’s not be naive the reason the so-called Establishment Republicans are not challenging the teabaggers is because the teabaggers are the heart of the Republican Party. And now the trick that they want to play on the American public is to disguise this dark heart as being normal or main stream.
What if the Tea Party takes control of Congress?
The problem with managing a mob filled with hate, fear, and paranoia is that there is no managing it. Since a recent poll shows that 50% of the public does not have an opinion of the teabaggers their handlers have decided now is the time for a face lift. Their hope of course is that the public will not remember the signs, the rhetoric, or the racism. Or there is another opinion and that is they truly believe that the majority of Americans secretly share these intolerant views.
The midterm elections will determine if the majority of Americans secretly share these intolerant views.
God help America if they do.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Democrats vs Progressives

The Democratic Party has been infiltrated by progressives, there in lies the dilemma. I am posting the following diary because the writer articulates with clarity the difference between Democrats and Progressives and why the two will never be one in the same. A party divided will not stand.
The democratic party is not pure or perfect because it's been infiltrated by those who don't share democratic party principles or values.

Why I am not a Progressive and other liberal musings

A letter came to our household the other day from President Obama. He wanted money and our support on November 2 for Democratic candidates, so he could continue to promote the changes our nation so desperately needs, in areas like health care, banking reform, and job creation. I wasn’t expecting him to mention anything about a liberal agenda, but there wasn’t anything about a progressive agenda either or any sort of underlying philosophy motivating the Democratic Party. Instead, it was all about the Obama administration and his goals, which assumedly provide the philosophy and platform for the Democratic Party. 
My dear departed mother continues to get mail from the Republican Party, so I look at it now and then. Of course they want money too, whether you are dead or not, but they need this money to support conservatism and conservative causes. Lowering our taxes is high on this list, along with getting big government out of our lives. The Republicans do talk a lot about the liberal agenda, which is focused on gay marriages and murdering innocent, aborted children. 
At least I know what the liberal agenda is, even if it is only the Republicans who talk about it. They’ve been doing this for 30 years, but really made a science out of it in the 1990s during the Newt Gingrich and Frank Luntz hay day. That’s when Republicans decided to make “liberal” into a dirty word, along with “tax and spend liberals” and the “liberal agenda.” 
They’ve certainly succeeded; even the liberals don’t think of themselves as liberals. Liberals these days are “progressives”. That sounds kinder and gentler, and maybe that’s why it has never caught on with the public. Who wants a kinder and gentler political philosophy guiding the nation at a time like this? The public wants to be protected from the evil terrorists, and in recent years they also want someone to protect their job, or at least make it relatively easy to find an equivalent job if they happen to lose the job they have. 
This is one reason I can’t see myself , or describe myself as a progressive. The other reason that has rankled for a long time is why should I allow people like Newt Gingrich and Frank Luntz define who I am, or define a whole political movement? Someone should have stood up to these word-manipulating bullies a long time ago, but since they didn’t, they should certainly be standing up for liberalism now. The public has seen in gruesome detail the consequences of Republican borrow and spend economic philosophy and their laissez-faire approach to regulation.

Call me a tax and spend liberal any day. At least it is honest. If the money can’t be raised in taxes for whatever favorite projects liberals may wish to implement, the projects don’t get done. I know this sounds a lot like the Pay as You Go policy of the Democrats during the Clinton years, but back then there was a federal budget surplus, and at least the Republicans didn’t call us “spend and tax liberals”.

The thing I like about liberalism is that it is honest, not simply in its fiscal approach, but its ability to promote the interests of the people against the power of corporations and government itself. It was the liberal wing of the Democratic Party that pushed for post-Watergate reforms to prevent government spying on its own people. There used to be a liberal senator – William Proxmire of Wisconsin – who presented a regular award to that government agency or department most worthy of disgrace for wasting taxpayer money. The Environmental Protection Agency was designed specifically to stand up to corporate polluters. When liberalism was at its strongest, under Kennedy and Johnson, it was unashamed to state honestly what its philosophy was and whose interests it served. 
Basic honesty is sadly lacking in Washington. The Republican Party is hopelessly entrapped in a web of hypocrisy and delusion of its own making. The Democrats are led by a president who has failed to govern honestly, because he supports initiatives and causes that are the opposite of those he promised to implement in his campaign. The whole political system is as dishonest as it appears, which makes people wonder what is really going on behind the scenes. Most people conclude that corporate money has bought off the Congress, one administration after another, and increasingly the judiciary.

It is a rare politician who will admit to this, though, since it is corporate money which buys all the television ads that are such an essential part of running a political campaign for national office. John Boehner, Republican leader in the House, was caught this week during a vote on tobacco industry subsidies handing out checks to Republican Congressmen – checks which were issued by tobacco industry lobbyists. No matter how many Republican voters realize that corporate money drives the political process, John Boehner is not about to change his ways. Instead, the Republican leadership is goading the Tea Party activists to protest any attempt to shackle business with more regulation.
In a perverse way, this is as close as we are going to get to honesty from Republican politicians; admit that corporate money owns the Republican members of Congress, and then dress it up for the party faithful as something noble because it allows the benefits of the free market to flow unimpeded. The only thing missing is a Republican politician willing to admit that unimpeded free markets blew up our economy, but it is probably just a matter of time before someone agrees with this and says, So What?
So What seems to be the last refuge of any of our politicians. So What if you don’t have a job, if your unemployment benefits have expired, if the oil is running out except when it is gushing by accident from the floor of the Gulf of Mexico, if the ice caps are melting and this past summer was the hottest on record, if your civil liberties are disappearing, if you have no health insurance and the reform package isn’t going to help you until 2014, if the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have no end in sight, if the budget deficit is at an annual running rate of $2 trillion, if the Fed is starving the economy of interest income, if the zombie banks aren’t lending despite all the largesse showered upon them, and if we refuse to talk honestly about any of these problems. We’re doing the best we can here in Washington, and don’t forget we spend 20 hours every day begging for campaign donations from corporations. We don’t have time for your problems.
These are the people asking us to go to the polls in November and vote for them once again. The White House is imagining all it needs to do is crank up the Obama-mania and even the progressives will run to the polls, or just as likely, the White House doesn’t really care whether the progressives vote at all. Judging from the comments of press secretary Robert Gibbs, the political wing of the administration is fixated on the ingratitude of the liberal wing of the party. 
As for this liberal, the only reason I have to trudge to the polls is to prevent the crazy wing of the Republican Party from getting into office. These are the people proudly wearing the Sarah Palin seal of approval. They run on platforms to outlaw masturbation and overturn the 14th amendment so “terrorist babies”, meaning children of immigrants, will no longer automatically be granted citizenship. If asked to come up with policies of substance, they talk about abolishing Social Security and the income tax, and eliminating all federal departments except for Defense and Homeland Security.
I won’t be voting for the Democratic candidates; I will be voting against the Republican Party candidates, all of whom represent the logical result of Ronald Reagan’s efforts to denigrate public service so thoroughly that only a moron would possibly want to run for public office. 
I will vote for a candidate – and it will likely never be a Republican but needn’t be a Democrat – when that candidate speaks honestly about the list of problems facing our nation, and when they present intelligent solutions to these problems. Given the depth of these problems, the solutions will likely be radical, and involve an overthrow of the existing political system, and the banishment or at least significant curtailment of corporate influence from the political sphere.

I’m like Diogenes searching for one honest citizen. That such people are rare in the political arena is a matter for despair. If I let the despair get a permanent grip on my soul, I wouldn’t vote at all, but allowing absolute morons anywhere near the levers of power is so dangerous that it overwhelms my despondency that the people I am forced to vote for may not be morons but are still creatures of a corrupt system.

Are we in trouble yet?

Never underestimate the power of hate and stupidity.
And even as all these people buy into the republican line that tax cuts must be extended to the wealthy, the rich laugh all the way to the bank as the rest suffer. If these people support policies that clearly hurt them can we really expect them to be able to tell the difference between a candidate who will go to work for them and one who will try to exploit them? As my favorite political commentator, Bill Maher once said, "you can never underestimate the stupidity of the American people".

The gop infused, media enabled, Tea Party candidates prevailed last night.
The only question is who they hate the the most: Obama? Muslims? Blacks? Gays? Hispanics? Liberals? "Big Guvment" and its bureaucrats? Teachers? Scientists? The Republican Establishment? All of the above?

We are now far outside the bounds of any political movement this country has seen since the Know-Nothing Party of the 1850's or the apex of the Klu Klux Klan's influence and power in the 1920's. Those groups arose by appealing to racist and anti-immigrant sentiments and they are the only comparable movements to which I can compare the modern day Tea Party movement.

For at its heart, the Tea Party feeds on the anger and blind rage of its self-identified members against anyone who is not like them. The beliefs they hold are often inconsistent and contradictory, but the hate they share for "people not like me" is what binds the movement together.

Stop calling them Tea Party candidates and call them what they are. Republicans.
It's time we changed the meme and change how we talk about the teabaggers. There is no "Tea Party" in the USA, not as a political party. There may be a bunch of clubs scattered around the country, groups of like-minded mostly-white, mostly-bigoted, super conservative no-brainers that don't see the stupidity and hypocrisy in most of what they do & say.

But there is no "Tea Party" on any ticket in this country this year.

There is only the Republican Party for these people. And it's high time we quit calling them Tea Partiers or teabaggers and call them what they are:


We will reap what we have sown;
Republicans are still poised to have an exceptionally good election cycle, and many of the lunatic candidates who've won primaries without the party's backing are very likely to win anyway.

But stepping back, even with the GOP's expected gains in mind, Republicans' carefully-executed strategy will leave them with (a) fewer wins than they would have had; (b) a smaller, more extreme party; (c) a base that's been taught to reject any and all compromises; and (d) a party incapable of governing effectively.

What enviro said;
I woke up all cheery about O'Donnell winning in Delaware and the R's chances of taking the Senate that much smaller . . . but then I see something like this and think of what it means when a tea party candidate can create momentum like she did and I feel sick instead. I want to believe that the people who put this together are the hard core, and some of the tea party voters are just protest-voting and don't necessarily buy into this . . . but I really don't know.

What color is the Terra Lert?

This post is dedicated to Denise McNair, Carol Robinson, Addie Mae Collins and Carol Wesley also known as The Birmingham Four.
A Blues for the Birmingham Four

By Amin Sharif

They say the Devil walks the land

way down in Birmingham.

And when a black child

goes to sleep,

they dream of hell’s hounds

at their small brown feet –

no fairy land will they ever

greet – way down in Birmingham.

And in each poor cabin found

down the way,

black men sweat and black women pray

that a blind white vengeance does not

take their soul away –

way down in Birmingham.

For in the night beneath the stars –

the rope, the gun, the burning fire,

the pungent smell of roasting flesh

will this Devil never rest – way down

in Birmingham?

Now in the church four come to pray

but these young souls are marked to stay

‘til they wake on Judgment Day

way down in Birmingham.

Broken bodies! A tattered dress!

The fires of hell! A demon fest!

Yes, Lucifer is at his best – way down

in Birmingham!

As the blue black smoke begins to fade,

black heads have bowed and they

have prayed for heaven’s vengeance

to be displayed – way down in Birmingham.

But still black children dream

of Dragon’s Grand,

hell hounds' teeth, the bogey man –

and with pounding hearts they lay awake

way down in Birmingham!

* * * * *

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Teaching Hate and Disrespect Redux

Would someone please tell me what is so darn "controversial" about the President of the United States giving a televised back to school address to public school children? Why is the President of the United states being screened/censored in public schools? Why are some Superintendents caving to the anti public education, right wing, bigots? Why are they teaching students they don't have to respect the office of the President of the United States because the President is an African American man?

Here we go again. The Superintendent of Huntsville City Schools disrespected the President of the United States again this year by not requiring, yes I said requiring, students watch the the President's back to school address. In honor of my mother I am re posting what I wrote the same time last year before I got booted from leaning Left in Alabama.

Teaching Hate
Click on the above link to read the comments.

This is what my mother believes happened in schools across America in wake of the recent "controversy" regarding President Obama's back to school address to public school students. After reading the account in yesterday's Huntsville Times I have to agree with her. Note* The Huntsville Times did not cover the issue this year. Out of sight out of mind.
All white is not right. I'm talking to you Huntsville Times. Why were only white students from the two predominately white High Schools interviewed? What about black students reaction from the four predominately black high schools? Why did you choose to only report on the schools that "opted out" of hearing the President's speech?

Where was the first HCS African American female school board member during all of this? I'm still finding it hard to believe she and the first HCS African American School chief allowed teachers and principals to "opt out" of letting students hear the first African American President of the United States' back to school address. As my mother said, you better believe if Dr. James I. Dawson were still a member of the board there wouldn't have been any "opting out". He had the character and the courage to place himself on the right side of issues, even when it was unpopular to do so. He didn't trade his race for politics. He stood for equality and justice. Where is the equality and justice in this?

Do parents screen all the movies that are shown in classrooms? Do Principals makes sure the movies have something to do with the lesson plan? Do parents and principals screen lesson plans to make sure they meet their approval? No. No. And no. It was only THIS President. Good job educators. You're doing a heck of a job molding the minds of our future doctors, lawyers, judges, teachers, nurses, and elected officials.

Ok, we get it. You hate black people. The question is why? You say black people want the "government to take care of them", translation, welfare. Nothing could be farther from the truth, but even if it were true, you didn't have a problem with the government taking care of black people during 200 years of slavery. As a matter of fact, if I recall correctly, there was a Civil War fought so government could continue to take care of black people. If the south had won the Civil War, the government would still be taking care of black people. Black folks don't want the government to take care of them. Black folks want the government to protect their right to liberty and justice for all. Black folks are not the enemy.

For the sake of our country and our future let's stop teaching hate and start teaching tolerance. All this hate is hurting us.

September 15 marks the sad anniversary of the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing when four young black girls were killed while attending Sunday School. The following day civil rights attorney Charles Morgan had the courage to stand up and speak out against hate.
This is a lesson for school children and teens brought by the Southern Poverty Law Center, Teaching Tolerance program. It frankly, in these days, needs to be learned by more adults it seems then children, though those same adults, parents, granparents and other relatives, friends, neighbors, strangers and talking heads of many media outlets are showing just wasn't learned, nor wanted to be, when they were young!

Now is the time to speak not censor or suppress;
If one is calling themselves, or sympathizing with, these so called 'teabaggers' and aren't calling out those around you or those you watch or listen out for the racist remarks, posters, whatever, guess what, you're no different then them! That goes for any so called political party they affiliate themselves with.

If you supported, or were with others who did, the recent damaging rhetoric on burning a religious groups Sacred book, especially using the umbrella of another religion you think espouses intolerance like that, then you are as much guilty of any destructive blowback that has or may result from these types of actions! Those who seek to minimize any reporting, suppressing the dangerous issue and not how it was being reported, are just as guilty!

Children are our future. Remember?