Saturday, April 30, 2011

"The Storm is Passing Over"

During a recent episode of The Good Wife, the main character was asked if she was happy. She replied;
"Are we happy when the storm passes over or are we relieved?"
I am relieved to report me and mine are fine. We had relatively minor property damage, however many friends lost everything, some for the second time, due to a tornado. The death count is rising daily, damages continue to be assessed, power is gradually being restored.

As a life long resident of Tornado Ally, I have to ask, is it a coincidence the red, republican, Confederate Slave states are being bombarded with tornadoes, floods, and fires? Will the latest frightful day in Alabama put a stop to the human meaness?
But what about human meanness? Are we capable of coming to grips with that, limiting the havoc it wreaks? I'm not optimistic about that one. This blog chronicles the actions of numerous judges, lawyers, and individuals who have acted corruptly in our justice system, heaping major damage on their fellow human travelers. Like Mrs. Schnauzer and me, quite a few of these bad actors probably were fortunate to escape major damage in yesterday's storms. Did that cause any of them to stop for a moment, count their blessings, and vow to change their ways? I doubt it. Were many of them right back to their underhanded ways this morning? Probably so.
Probably so indeed. Which brings me to the politicization of President Obama's post storm visit to Alabama.
Even as Republicans have been kicking and screaming about the need to shrink government, even as they support a budget plan that would devastate government's ability to respond to disasters like this, when something like this happens they stand shoulder-to-shoulder with President Obama as government leaders eager to serve the people they represent. They aren't calling him a socialist, they aren't saying he was born in Kenya, they aren't accusing him of trying to kill grandma: they are just trying to do the right thing. It's just too bad it took a horrific storm to bring out that cooperative spirit.
I hate to say it, but as an African American supporter of President Obama, his actions continue to disappoint me. Don't get me wrong, although it took a tornado to bring him to Alabama, I'm glad he came. But, Tuscaloosa was not the only area hit hard by the storms. Entire neighborhoods were devastated in nearby Birmingham also.

President Obama did not carry Tuscaloosa County, and he will never carry Tuscaloosa County. President Obama did carry Jefferson County, and he can count on carrying Jefferson County again. So why did he pander to the ones who will never vote for him at the expense of those who will, and did, vote for him?

It made me sick to my stomach to watch the President and First Lady arrive in Tuscaloosa and as femaledog notes;
I'm glad the President and First Lady came to Alabama but, why didn't he visit Birmingham too? He went to the place that didn't vote for him and ignored the place that did. And why wasn't Rep. Terri Sewell, the states top Democrat the first person to greet President Obama instead of being 4th in line behind anti Socialist Bentley, I haven't seen his birth certificate Shelby, I gave you the middle finger and sent the Azalea Trail Maids to your inauguration parade, Jefferson Beauregard Sessions, and Birther Spencer Bacchus all republicans?
Representative Terri Sewell (D.Birmingham) and Mayor William Bell (D.Birmingham) should have been the first people to greet President Obama when he stepped off Air Force One. And speaking of Air Force One,  it should have landed in Birmingham FIRST, Obama should have spent time there FIRST, then motorcade on down the road to T-Town.
Pres. Obama and Al. Gov. Robert Bentley tour tornado devastation (Larry Downing/Reuters)
Sidebar with a sigh
If you look closely at the photograph attached to this diary of a VIP group walking with President Obama, I count nine individuals....Two in the front row, three in the middle row and four in the back, one of whom is barely visible as a pair of grey-trousered legs and the corner of a face. Two of them -- counting the President -- are non-white, one more may be.
The proportion of non-white persons in Alabama's population is about 29%, so 22%, or better 33%, persons of color (2 or 3 out of 9) would not be far out of line with the state population.
According to the same source, the proportion of persons in the population of Alabama who happen to be female is almost 52%. Female persons in the VIP group including President Obama: precisely zero.
How I wish the mainstream media would ask Spencer Bacchus, Dick Shelby, Jeff Sessions, and other republicans from devastated areas if they still back Paul Ryan's budget that guts FEMA and the National Weather Service?

How I wish the mainstream media would focus on the pain and suffering in Pratt City Alabama to the same extent they focus on Tuscaloosa and the Royal Wedding.

How I wish the mainstream media would ask the red republicans how they feel about public service workers and the Unions who represent them now.

How I wish President Obama had bought relief to the people who voted for him instead of the people who didn't. 
EXCUSE NUMBER 10: “You can't expect him to address issues like black unemployment, which has been double the white rate forever. He's not the president of Black America, and you can't expect him to act like it. He's the president of the United States of America...”
QUICK ANSWER: Obama wasn't drafted, he volunteered for the job, he campaigned for it, said he was “Joshua” to Dr. King's Moses, and lectured us on the Fierce Urgency of Now. He campaigned like a “civil rights leader.” His web site said “Join the Movement!” If the black president can't or won't address black mass incarceration, black unemployment, HIV-AIDS, the foreclosure crisis and other matters that disproportionately affect our communities, then why do we have any kind of collective racial obligation to support him?
If the person we elect runs like a democrat then governs like a republican, for republicans, by the republicans, why do we have any kind of collective racial obligation to support him? What choice do we have?

The Storm is Passing Over for some, but not for all.  I am not relieved.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The sad, sorry, state of public education in Huntsville, Alabama continues

Readers who have been keeping up with the saga of the Huntsville City School system are aware the previous Superintendent's contract was not renewed (which is a polite way of saying she was fired), the former State School Superintendent was hired as a consultant , and B.W.P & Associates was hired to conduct the search for the new Superintendent.

Well, last night, without fanfare, but lots of speculation and rumors , B.W.P & Associates presented the names of seven candidates to be Huntsville’s next superintendent of education. H/T Ben at Flashpoint.

Before I give my critique/analysis of the finalist, let's recap the current state of public education in Huntsville. The United States Department of Justice told HCS don't even think about being released from the desegregation order because the schools were still segregated.

The District’s 2007-2008 overall student enrollment was 43.1% black and 48.7% white. However, the majority of the District’s 47 schools were racially identifiable black or white due to the composition of their respective student bodies.

Here is the *ahem* rationale for the segregation

The DoJ can’t force people to live where they don’t want to live (yet), so it is basically saying that either Huntsville must engage in massive busing or… engage in massive busing.

In addition,the prevailing attitude among the status quo is African American/Hispanic/low income students don't want to learn, have a lower IQ because they are black/brown, their parents aren't involved (what ever that means) or, the racial disparities are caused by unfairness in life.

Top it off with the local branch of the NAACP and other African Community Leaders saying they are sick and tired of black/brown/poor children getting the shaft and Huntsville City Schools ignoring the United States Supreme Court.

Oh, and did I mention the school system is in debt to the tune of $2o Million Dollarrs which caused a RIF (Reduction in Force) and three Principals have filed suit against the School Board and the former Superintendent?

Why anyone would want this job is a mystery to me. After a careful analysis of the candidates selected by B.W.P. and Associates I choose NONE OF THE ABOVE. The School Board either needs to get a refund or send B.W.P. back to the drawing board.

I like the Florence County S.C. Board of Trustees concept

The Florence County School District Three Board of Trustees is comprised of 9 members from seven voting districts. Each board members is elected to serve a three-year term. Each year, three trustee seats are up for election.

The board of trustees normally meets on the third Thursday of each month at 6:30 p.m. A list of meeting dates and locations as well as meeting agendas have been posted to the website. Special meetings are scheduled as needed.

The board is charged with policy making, planning, goal setting, providing school buildings, and adopting an annual budget to finance instructional programs and services. Trustees must also be familiar with important legal decisions as well as state and national legislation and regulations.

Trustees do not receive a salary for their service to the district, but do receive a per Diem of $49 per month.

While some would rather concentrate on Dr. King's race, I mean controversial – mishandled rape charge plus many other disappointments,
he is the only candidate with a track record and a proven plan to improve student achievement.
Muncie Community Schools administrators, elementary principals, and elementary teachers have been successful in implementing, maintaining, and studying the student data results outlined in the “8-Step Process” now utilized in each of our nine elementary schools. Through a means of studying data derived from local assessments, our educators have provided intervention and support designed to improve student performance on the state exam.

Because our Spring 2010 ISTEP+ test scores showed significant improvement, the Indiana Department of Education (IDOE) recognized MCS last Fall for our successful implementation of the 8-Step Process in each of our elementary schools. We anticipate the Spring 2011 ISTEP+ test results will reveal continued improvement.

Based on our successful performance at the elementary level, the IDOE recently provided us the opportunity to pilot the process at the secondary level this Fall. Central High School administrators and teachers received training in the 8-Step Process March 14-18 in Indianapolis.

Muncie Community Schools is excited about the significant gains demonstrated by our elementary students using the 8-Step Process. The Process is composed of eight focal points: 1) Data Disaggregation, 2) Curriculum Timeline, 3) Instructional Focus, 4) Assessment, 5) Tutorials/Remediation, 6) Enrichment, 7) Maintenance, 8) and Monitor. We look forward to the full implementation of the 8-Step Process in our elementary schools and to working with the IDOE to pilot the process at Central High School this Fall.

E. Casey Wardynski has NO Educational background or experience. He would be better suited as Comptroller not the Instructional Leader.

For the past 15 years, Wardynski has provided the Secretary of the Army and senior Army leaders with strategic advice and program management to more effectively convert tens of billions of dollars of fiscal resources into new programs that develop a more capable Army workforce. He has also been responsible for all financial aspects of major innovations such as the $150 million Army Game Project, an online career development exploration game, which gained national recognition from Harvard University and the Council for Excellence in Government.

What Mom said;
It doesn’t seem to matter what I do to help the schools, what I say, etc. I have no power to change anything anyway and it doesn’t look the school board is going to change any time soon. I mean, didn’t they get us into this whole mess to begin with and now we are trusting them to make decisions to fix it??
How could they have NOT known they were spending millions beyond the amount they had to spend??? When they said “sure, let’s sign that. We’ll spend a few million on that project”, couldn’t they see that there were no millions for them to spend?? I just don’t get it. And now the solution is to lower the salaries of the teachers so we can pay it back? Now that’s a great idea: let’s make sure we destroy the moral of the teachers we have left in the system.
And these are the people choosing the next superintendent? Why on earth should I expect anything to change for the good?

I hate to sound cliche', but we have to be the change we are waiting for. The School Board works for us, not the other way around. If we aren't happy with the candidates it is our duty and our right to let them know. Education is the HOPE of the Republican. No Education. No Hope.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Monday Talking Points

Psst TeaPublicans, cut spending on all war all the time! I am sick and tired of TeaPublican after TeaPublican, all over the public airways talking about cutting spending on social programs (code word for we the people), but you don't hear them saying a mumbling word about the monetary cost, nor the human cost of all war all time.

Don't you wish some enterprising Talking TeeVee Pundit Head would ask them how much we are spending on the wars, and how many of our sons and daughters have lost life and limb fighting them? Don't you wish they would ask them about cutting spending on all war all the time?

Will Obama Throw a Grenade to Blow-Up Hidden Campaign Donations? I sure HOPE so.:)

Frustrated by limited, near-term legislative or regulatory options to increase disclosure of hidden federal election expenditures, President Obama is considering an executive order aimed at government contractors which would partially achieve that goal. If issued, this order will cause a political uproar--and stimulate immediate litigation to stay its effect.

The president is responding to the 2010 political cycle, when groups allegedly independent of candidate campaigns spent $300 billion in attempts to influence the outcome of federal elections. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, almost 50 percent of that total was spent by organizations which did not disclose their donors, up from 25 percent spent by entities with no disclosure in 2008.

Georgia on my mind...Lawsuit seeks dissolution of Dunwoody, Sandy Springs, Johns Creek, Milton, Chattahoochee Hills because 'super-majority white neighborhoods' were created. Meanwhile the Feds allow Sandy Springs out of Voting Rights Act. Hmmm. I wonder why the Feds would do something like that? Never mind. WE know.
Congress passed the act in 1965 to stamp out illegal efforts to deny minorities access to the ballot box. It applies to all or part of 16 states, including Georgia.

In 2006, Congress renewed the act for 25 years.

Then in 2009, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that jurisdictions could seek relief from the act’s Section 5, which requires them to gain federal clearance to change any election procedure, including small items such as moving polling sites.

For Alabama to be 2nd in the nation in Religiosity (Is reglisiousity a word?), they sure don't practice what they preach.
Alabama is second to Mississippi in the nation in the percentage of residents who say that religion is very important in their lives (74%) according to the Pew Research Center (though the state is fifth in the percentage of residents who say they attend religious services at least once a week at 52%).

I guess it depends on what the definition of Religiousity IS in Alabama and Mississippi. :)

Jesus of Nazareth, or Jesus Christ, continues to intrigue all sectors of society, all peoples, all races, both rich, not so rich and, most particularly, the underclass and poor. In an age that has come to emphasize money, materialism, outright greed, and admiration for the rich and powerful, he offers an alternative.

Yet Jesus is in an enigmatic and troubling figure. For many people in the world, he is seen as a kind of general love figure, the ultimate nice guy. After all, that is what the world wants to see in other people - niceness, tolerance, humanity, and kindness in others. Far from being solely concerned with being loving and nice to people, however, he is the ultimate litigator. One might see Jesus as an advocate of the underclass. Perhaps one could see Jesus as a socialist or communist, since in the Gospels, he seems to make a point of associating with and advocating for, the poor and working class.

Jesus, save us from your followers. :)

Saturday, April 23, 2011

If President Obama is a one term President it will be his own damn fault

My friend piggieheart with the help of Rachael Maddow connect the dots and make a compelling case why President Obama is well on his way to being a one term President

What piggiehart said;
Watching the Rachel Maddow show a few nights ago I became aware of something I should have seen for myself.

I have known for some time that the crazy birthers are trying to get "Birth Certificate " laws passed in state legislatures to require proof of citizenship from every candidate wishing to appear on the presidential ballot in that state.

And, living in certifiably nuts Alabama, I am certainly aware of "Voter ID" laws making their way into the legal code of all the crazy states.

All I am going to say is President Obama has no one to blame for himself because the first thing he should have done after he was sworn into office on January 8, 2008 was to restore honesty and integrity to the United States Justice Department.

But did he do that? Hell to the NO. His first act was to clear Republican Senator Ted Stevens. Meanwhile the former Democratic Alabama Governor Don Siegelman languishes in the wind and other Alabama Democrats are still under attack.
Obama moved with alacrity to replace GOP political puppet Alice Martin in the post of U.S. Attorney for the Northern District. However, as I have noted elsewhere, his inexplicable, and inexcusable failure to replace Republihack Leura Canary in the Middle District remains an open wound on the soul of Alabama, exuding a purulent Niagara. Allowing Canary to remain in office while she shamelessly uses that office to launch political attacks on the President’s own party, suggests nothing less than an Administration that doesn’t know the basic mechanics of government and politics. At a purely political level, this attack on the Alabama Democratic Party, sanctioned by this President and his Attorney General through their inaction, threatens decades of progress in placing black hands on the levers of power in this state. For all its faults, and they are legion, the Alabama Democratic Party has given a real seat at the table to Alabama blacks, in the form of some of the most powerful committee chairmanships in the Legislature. These include, but are not limited to, Sen. Hank Sanders of the Senate Education F&T, and Rep. John Knight of the House Government Appropriations Committee.

If President Obama is a one term President it will be because of his depraved indifference . He turned HOPE into NOPE especially for black folks, in a misguided attempt to appease white folks.
President Obama seems positively eager to dismantle the safety nets put in place in the Thirties and strengthened by a Black-led movement in the Sixties. He calls it “Winning the Future” – a future that “holds nothing but further pain and decline for Black America.” By virtually all indices, Black fortunes have plummeted under the First Black President, whose policy is to let the (chocolate) chips fall where they may.

President Obama will be a one term President if he continues to ignore labor and public workers unions and allow republicans to attack Democracy.

Although much of the conversation about the new Republican governorships and state legislative majorities in the US has focused on Wisconsin, Ohio and Florida, the new Republican governor of Michigan, Rick Snyder, and the Republican state House and Senate majorities have been busy as bees proposing or imposing a host of new changes to how state government works. One of these changes has been the ability for the State of Michigan to grant executive powers to emergency managers for municipalities, not just school boards, which allows the emergency financial managers to eliminate collective bargaining contracts. It also allows earlier appointments of such managers, before a municipality asks for one or declares bankruptcy.

The next thing President Obama needs to do is put the media in check and stop letting them control the message because he/she that controls the message controls the outcome. So far the media has done a pretty good job of downright ignoring and enabling the republicans to obstruct and deny what we the people voted for in November. Instead of reporting on Sarah Palin, Donald Trump, the Birthers, Charlie Sheen, Lindsey Lohan and the Royal Wedding, they need to start using the public airways to tell the TRUTH about Paul Ryans plan instead of gushing over it.

By now you might have heard that the Republican budget plan proposed by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) wants to eliminate Medicare as we know it and to give hundreds of billions of dollars in tax cuts to U.S. billionaires —paid for by raising taxes on the middle class and slashing services to families that our economy has left behind. You might also have heard that, in spite of all the pain Rep. Ryan’s plan would inflict on regular families, it makes almost no progress in reducing the federal budget deficit by 2021.

But did you also know that Ryan’s plan will strip bare investments in innovation and competitiveness that are critical to long-run growth and prosperity in the U.S. economy?

Psst President Obama! If you had listened to us Professional Lefty's maybe you wouldn't be on your way to Waterloo.
It's time to kick some A$$ and take control of the right wing media narrative. Right now internal polls are showing the gop/infused Tea Party is going to beat the crap out of democrats in the mid term elections because they have managed to fire up a segment of the American people who would rather not have access to health care, tax cuts for the rich, and all war all the time than have a democratic, African American President. It's the old bite off your nose to spite your face syndrome.

Don't get me wrong, if the choice is between re-electing President Obama and some Batsh#t Crazy Teapublican, I'm going to cast my vote for President Obama because I don't have a choice. But is that what we want the legacy of the first African American President to be?

I sure HOPE not.

I foresee something happening within my lifetime that I had thought would be two or three generations from now, and that is people in the streets of our cities in greater numbers than the War Protesters of the sixties and seventies. I foresee civil disobedience and civil unrest unlike anything we have seen since the War of Southern Intransigence. And that might not be a bad thing.

Hope I'm around when it starts!

I HOPE we're both around when it starts my friend.

Friday, April 22, 2011

The Poverty Tour, by the grace of God go I~A Good Friday Crosspost

This was posted on Left in Alabama before I was booted, I thought It appropriate to re post on Good Friday as a reminder to my Christian and non Christin brothers and sisters that we are all in this together.~RedEye

My family relocated from the big city of Huntsville to a small, rural Alabama town when I was eight years old because my Daddy was appointed the principal of a segregated K-12 school. We weren't rich, but we were better of than a whole lot of our new classmates and neighbors. My Daddy didn't want us to think we were better than anyone else because of who we were or how we lived, so one cold winter evening he and my mother bundled us up, loaded up the VW bus with brown paper bags of "government cheese, butter, powdered milk, rice, flour and cornmeal and set off on what my Dad called the Poverty Tour.

We were exposed to real, unfiltered poverty. We saw some of the worse living conditions imaginable. But we also saw the real people who lived under those conditions.

After we returned to our nice, warm comfortable home my siblings and I asked lots of questions. We wanted to know why there were no bathrooms inside the house? We wanted to know how so many people could fit into two rooms? Where did they all sleep? We wanted to know why they were burning wood and coal in the stove? We wanted to know why air was coming through the floor boards? We wanted to know why the chickens, dogs and cats were inside the house? We wanted to know why they didn't have a telephone or a television set? We wanted to know why the house smelled the way it did? We wanted to know why they offered us food when we were taking them food? We wanted to know why they were so happy to get some cheese and butter? We wanted to know why their clothes were ragged?

After answering our questions, my Daddy looked at us and said "By the grace of God go I". He explained the circumstances we witnessed could be either one of us, or someone in our family. He cautioned us never to look down on our fellow human beings, but to have compassion for them. To never think we were better than anyone else because their circumstances could be our circumstances. To always put yourself in another person's position, to walk a mile in their shoes because one day you could be in their shoes. The Poverty Tour taught us gratitude, humility, empathy and compassion.

Last nights annual board meeting of the Huntsville Housing Authority reminded me of the Poverty Tour. Young, old, black, white, Hispanic, men, women and children, residents of "public housing", shared heart wrenching stories of brain tumors, lost jobs, living in cars, calling DHR to come take the children because they had no place to go, divorce etc. They shared triumphant stories of honor roll students, college graduations and good jobs. They appealed to south Huntsville residents to not judge them, but to accept them as worthy and worth while beings. It was heart breaking to watch them recount their pain, and humbling to listen to their impassioned pleas to be accepted as human beings.

While the "public housing" resident's spoke of brain tumors, living in cars etc., with the exception of two women who welcomed the public housing residents, the majority of south Huntsville residents spoke of property values. Specifically, declining property values if "those people" were "allowed" to move into "their" neighborhoods. South Huntsville residents at the meeting talked about the prospect of increased crime if "those people" were "allowed" to move to "their" neighborhood. South Huntsville residents at the meeting spoke of lowering test scores if "those kids" were "allowed" to attend "their" neighborhood schools. South Huntsville residents at the meeting spoke of the government using tax dollars to devalue "their" property in "their" neighborhood. South Huntsville residents at the meeting don't want "their" neighborhood to become a "HUD" neighborhood. South Huntsville residents at the meeting talked about "their" investments and how comfortable they were.

None of the south Huntsville residents who spoke out against public housing thought about the fact they were just one Tornado away from losing everything and possibly needing public (government) assistance themselves. None of the south Huntsville residents who spoke out against public housing residents thought about the fact they were just one catastrophic illness, or one divorce, or one lost job away from needing public (government) housing. None of the south Huntsville residents who spoke out against public housing realized that , but for the grace of God, go they.

None dared call it racism.

It is racism to believe you own a particular neighborhood or a section of town and you can keep poor/black/brown people from moving and living there.
It is racism if believe all poor/black/brown people are natural born criminals.

It is racism if you believe poor/black/brown children are not as intelligent as white children.

It is racism if you believe one side of town is for poor/black/brown people and the other side is for white people.

It is racism you believe your property values will decrease if poor/black/brown people move into your neighborhood.

It just is.

The work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives and the dreams shall never die.~Senator Edward M. Kennedy (D. MA)

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Resorting to Racism and Bigotry to win the day

There are legitimate reasons to oppose President Obama's agenda, but I hate seeing the republicans, enabled by the mainstream media, resort to racism and bigotry to win the day.

There is a segment in this country who simply cannot, and will not, accept the fact Barack Hussein Obama is the duly elected President of the United States of America. Sarah Palin was the first to put a pretty face on the voice of bigotry. Donald Trump, Michelle Beckman and others jumped on the bandwagon enabled by the media.

Just as former President Clinton's personal life was a distraction from the real issues facing real people, President Obama's birth certificate is the latest distraction for the real racism. No other President, or Presidential candidate, is being asked to produce their birth certificate. Senator John McCain was not born in the USA, but no one cares. Why? Because he's not an African American that's why.

So now that we know it's the stoopid racism Could we maybe get a discussion about race right for once?

I don't care what's in your heart. If you say something that is racist or maybe forward an email that is racist, I don't care if you're pure of heart and have black friends. It's about what you did, not who you are.

It would help if the mainstream media would stop giving the racist a platform
To MSNBC: Just get rid of the racists. Pat Buchanan needs to go and Breitbart should not be allowed to appear on any one's show to pimp a book which is an intellectually dishonest screed about how devoted Breitbart is to the truth. This is not free speech suppression. It's simply NOT NEWS.

It would also help if African Americans weren't Locked Out of cable and mainstream media newsrooms, blogs and radio.
Simply put, the typical guest on a cable news show is white and male. This becomes stark when we compare the proportion of white men to the proportion of minority women:

Why do Tea Party rallies get so much media attention, even when their gatherings appear to be shrinking in size?

That is because the corporate mainstream media has a bias toward covering protests from the right, but virtually ignores progressive

If President Obama had been booed at a Town Hall meeting yesterday there would have been breathless, wall to wall, coverage in the mainstream media.

As long as the media continues to enables racism and bigotry it will continue to win the day. Instead of talking about how the proposed budget cuts will adversely affect low income and disadvantaged citizens the media would rather focus on Donald Trump. And as Lawrence O'Donnell said, that's what is dangerous.

There is something very ugly in what Donald Trump is doing, and it is built on a base of racism and paranoia. I'm not saying Donald Trump is racist or paranoid. He doesn't have to be to do the damage he is now doing to this country. He just has to be vulgar enough to keep barking out the lies that the racist, paranoid, Obama haters want to hear. And in doing that for them, on major network television talk shows, he legitimizes their feelings, their hatred, their racism. The millions out there who seethe with the madness Donald Trump stokes watch him and say, 'Hey, it's not just me who thinks this, Donald Trump thinks this. And he's a smarter guy than me and I know he's a smarter guy than me because he says he's a smarter guy than me. And he's made a lot more money than me, and that proves he's smarter than me.'"

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Wednesday Must Reads

In honor of Earth Week please read Taking America back from the Polluters  aka the gop.

We must finally put an end to the days when dirty interests — who put their own short-term profits before the long-term health of our country — have more influence than the people.

America belongs to everyone. It’s time to take our power back from the polluters.
On the first anniversary of the BP/Gulf Oil disaster please read Lax Congressional Response to BP Oil Disaster Another Gulf Tragedy?

One year ago today, an explosion aboard the BP Deepwater Horizon drilling rig claimed the lives of 11 workers and initiated the worst oil disaster the U.S. has ever seen. Thousands of animals in the Gulf of Mexico were killed, many of which were endangered or threatened already, and oil and toxic dispersants continue to impact coastal communities and natural habitats.

Despite recommendations from the Presidential Oil Spill Commission, Congress has yet to pass legislation that ensures safer operations in any water depth, provides better spill response, lifts the existing liability cap or secures funding for restoration efforts in the Gulf.
There is no pretty way to say it...women, strike that, poor women are under attack by rich white men aka republicans. Read Give me your money and your conscience , then read how the gop wants poor women to Trust their Twat to Walgreen's big H/T to Writechic.

Not content to have a go at gutting tenure, the red TeaPublican Alabama state legislature is also looking into having a go at the Teachers Retirement System too. If you can read this thank a Teacher. If you can't read this thank the TeaPublicans.

Speaker Mike Hubbard, R-Auburn, the House leader, praised the bills, which are set for review Wednesday by the House Ways and Means -- General Fund Committee.

"I believe we've long needed to update the members of the boards overseeing those funds, to make sure they make sound, professional decisions and ... look out for the taxpayers," he said. The state expects to pay a total of $964 million to support the TRS and ERS this year.

Mac McArthur, executive director of the Alabama State Employees Association, said the ERS board doesn't need fixing. "I don't know why anybody would want to fix something that's not broken," McArthur said.

The Birmingham Skews is back with a vengeance after it's Hack Attack! Read, Don't Take it Out of the Oven-It's Half Baked
Power to We the People!
Recently, I wrote a post about the difference between blogs and the big newspapers and why I favored blogs. Reading Archibald’s column today, it occurred to me that blogs allow us (as in “we, the people”) to serve the function that the newspapers once ostensibly served: holding those with power accountable. I see no reason that the Birmingham News and its journalists should be exempt. They have power. And influence.
Check out this headline from The Birmingham News (not to be confused with the Birmingham Skews)Birmingham's Nation of Islam leaders call for firing of officers involved in latest video-taped incident which prompted comments like this;
The Nation of Islam is a joke. Who really gives a rip what they say?

And this
Religious leaders are social gagsters (sic) prey on the weak of mind.

And this
"Granted the police shouldn't have kicked his tail . . . " - I happen to disagree with you: They SHOULD have kicked his tail! They should have kicked it longer and harder! They should have kicked it enough for him to be coming forth with an apology instead of a lawsuit!

Notice how public opinion is focused on the Nation of Islam and not the actions of the Birmingham Police Department?

What are you reading today? Knowledge is power. Share the knowledge.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Non Apologetic "Socialist"

Let's just cut to the chase and stop the pretense. The words Socialist and Socialism didn't appear in our lexicon until Barack Hussein Obama was elected President of the United States of America. Calling him a Socialist is an acceptable slur because calling him the N word is not.

Former MSNBC Host Carlos Watson said it first which is probably why he's a former MSNBC host.

What concerns me is that in some of those town hall meetings including the one we saw in Missouri recently where there were jokes made about lynching etc, you start to wonder whether in fact the word socialist is becoming a code word, whether or not socialist is becoming the new N-Word for frankly for some angry upset birthers and others, I hope that’s not the case, but that sure does say to you what David Brooks said the other day on T.V. which is that more credible conservatives have to stand up and say there’s a line that has to be drawn, that there’s a line of responsibility, that’s important that extends to the words we choose including how choose even legitimate words like “socialist…
Calling his agenda Socialism is an acceptable slur because it's code for lazy, shiftless, baby making, black folks that want the government to take care of them (social programs). Rush, Sean and the other Lords of Loud use the public airways define Socialism as the use of taxes and government entitlements (welfare) to redistribute wealth from the rich(white) to the poor (black/brown). If the media we had would do it's JOB and use the public airways to inform the public instead of keeping the dumb bigots in line we wouldn't be in this mess.
The media who can talk at nauseam about balloon boy, can’t seem to put together a complete educational story about crap that really matters. Instead the media, and their overpaid experts, who opine about everything irrelevant, have yet to correct or educate anyone on one broken record statement; “Obama is moving America towards Socialism.” It really irritates me that none of these overpaid “news” celebrities even bothers to deal with “what is Socialism” and “are we really going there?”
I bring this up now because our illustrious Congress Critter from the 5th district Mo Brooks was forced to retract the socialist comment from his House floor remarks but he's not sorry. I'm not surprised Mo is not sorry. I'm just sorry my progressive, informed, involved friends help send him to Washington D.C. in the first place. I tried to tell them, but did they listen to me? Noooo. That would have been too much like right (pun intended), but I digress.

Ironically, candidate Mo Brooksand I had the following exchange on Flashpoint blog regarding his anti socialism platform
Commissioner Brooks,
Would you be so kind and define/explain/clarify specifically what you mean by your assertion “the American economy is threatened by the twin evils of unsustainable budgets and socialism”? What unsustainable budgets and what socialism?
His response was to refer me to his website (thanks but no thanks), bash Pelosi and Obama, and an invitation to call him. But, he had this to say when pressed for specifics by someone who wanted to support him.

The beauty of the free enterprise system is that it will take care of economic matters by itself if we elect leaders who both understand how the free enterprise system works . . . and have enough confidence in our free enterprise system to let it work.

The free enterprise system has served America well for more than two centuries (and made us, for roughly sixty years, the world’s greatest economic power).

And yes, we should have let the bad banks fail. The government should never reward failure with tax dollars. If the federal government had stayed out of it, the banks that were doing things right would have survived and purchased the assets (primarily customer base) of failing banks . . . and everything would have worked itself out. And everyone would have been reminded that the price of failure is failure. Not reward.

As for GM, the same principles apply. Although we should note that it was government interference in the free enterprise system (examples: extraordinary tax burdens on GM and/or wrongful interference with the natural balance between labor unions and management) that led to GM’s demise. Had “know-it-all” and/or pandering politicians not intervened and made GM uncompetitive, it would still be thriving (with no taxpayer intervention or subsidies).

If my economics degree at Duke University (with highest honors) taught me anything it is this: no one group of people (i.e. – the government) is smarter than the collective knowledge of everyone who participates in and makes decisions concerning the free enterprise system. Anyone who believes our government “leaders” are smarter than the collective wisdom of everyone else in America gets the failures they deserve

Stated differently, I know I’m not smarter than the collective wisdom of the free enterprise system. Hence, I know that it is best to defer to the solutions and innovations the free enterprise system ultimately creates.

Government’s role should be very simple and very limited. Get out of the way except in the most extraordinary of situations (an example of proper government interventionism is when competition has been replaced with monopoly or similar anti-competitive practices).

Non apologetic Mo is hosting a WVNN Legislative Get Together at the Melting Pot of all places on May 13, 2011. I think all non apologetic socialist should attend and say it loud,

We're Socialist and Proud!

I believe in nationalizing banking.

I believe in nationalizing energy. Oil, ng, electricity generation.

Added to our already nationalized...


Edit: to clarify and correct my OP the following are mostly under the control of state and or local governments. However many listed below do receive funding from the federal gov't.

I believe in government for the people, by the people.

Free and fair elections. Hand counted paper ballots.

Ban corporate person hood.

Use anti-trust laws to break up mega corps and multi-nationals.

Ban corporate campaign spending.

Eliminate the disgraceful wealth divide in America.
- fair, progressive taxation of the super wealthy.
- pass and sign Employee Free Choice Act into law with a strong card check provision.
- a government with the backbone to protect a workers right to organize, and enforce labor law.
- ban of all federal funds to states with 'Right to Work'(for less) laws until they repeal these anti-worker laws.
- creation of a workers Bill of Rights.

End all foreign wars of Imperialism.
- America's war against the poor in Central and South America.
- Close the School of the Americas
- Close Gitmo
- Close our 700+ international military bases spread all over the globe. Bring EVERY soldier home.

Reduce our so-called "defense" budget by no less than 50%.

Invest in America's aging infrastructure- rail, mass transit, high speed, light rail, city bus, roads, bridges, water, sewer, high speed Internet, electrical grid, seaway, PUBLIC EDUCATION.

There is no greater investment that a government can make in it's people than public education. Access to a quality education for ALL is a basic human right. Is there anything that can enable and empower a person to be self-sufficient better than access to a quality education?

Perhaps, affordable access to health care.

Single Payer Universal Health Care for all, and nothing less.

Affordable housing. End homelessness - a growing tragedy.

Feed the hungry.

I believe that democratically elected representative government can prevent us from being a 3rd world nation.

I don't pretend to speak for all socialists. Many here may disagree with my stances. What I listed above are just some of the reasons why I consider myself to be a Socialist.

I am a proud Socialist.

Socialist to the bone!

I will take my Socialist beliefs to my grave and make no apologies for them.

See you the Melting Pot Mo. I'll be the one wearing the Socialist T-Shirt, :)

Monday, April 18, 2011

Monday Talking Points

There is nothing wrong with Teachers having tenure, that's why republicans want to mess it up too.

One of the more closely watched bills at this stage of the 2010 Regular Session of the Alabama Legislature has been SB310, a Republican proposal to “reform” the teacher* tenure law in Alabama. The list of the bill’s sponsors reads like a Who’s Who of the hard-core GOP political apparatus: Senators Pittman, Dial, Waggoner, Marsh, Taylor, Beason, Williams, Blackwell and Whatley. The bill’s main sponsor, Sen. Trip Pittman of Baldwin County, has been quoted as saying the object of his bill is “making it easier for school boards to get rid of the bad ones [teachers].”

You are either with the racist Tea Party or you're against the racist Tea Party.

Remember, the Tea Party is based on serious policy disagreements with Obama and not just bigoted people freaking out over our first black president. And when they send out emails like this comparing Obama to a monkey, it is totally not racist of them at all. I know this is true because I saw it on Fox News and why would they lie?

If the tea party is about taxation without representation Shouldn’t this be a fight tea party people would want to get involved in?
While it may not seem important to some, there is a crisis brewing in the nation’s capital:

What might be required to enact change, Raskin said, is a “mass movement of protest to test the conscience of the nation. It’s clear that President Obama does not intend to be the personal leader of a liberation struggle. He’s dealing with multiple crises. This is not a crisis until the people of Washington make it one.”

D.C. residents are pissed, and rightly so. They’ve always been the step-children in state rights discussions. They’ve always been tapped for cash and concessions, but never allowed the kind of representation that goes along with that.

Psst President Obama! D.C. residents are tried of being treated like the step children at the family reunion.
Mark Plotkin, a WTOP political commentator who has made District statehood something of an obsession, said he sees little to distinguish Obama from his Republican predecessor, George W. Bush. Bush angered voting rights advocates by refusing to place the D.C. “Taxation Without Representation” license plate on the presidential limousine. Obama also has not added the plate to his limousine.

“The greatest assault is indifference, and he has the hubris to take us for granted,” Plotkin said of Obama. “He went to Cairo to talk about democracy. He won’t go to Brentwood or Deanwood. He has not made one utterance about D.C. to D.C. in D.C.”

Those republicans know how to fight crime, don't they?
you can be on the lookout for a convicted sex offender--and rest assured that law enforcement will be nowhere in sight.

Is the Budget Deal real or is it Memorex?

The latest report from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) reveals that the much vaunted budget compromise, being sold as a massive cut, is actually nothing of the sort, and taking the ongoing wars into consideration will actually see 2011 spending increase somewhat over the previous plan

The data shows “non-emergency appropriations” falling nearly $38 billion on paper, but that this would translate into only $352 million in actually spending cuts compared to the previous estimates.

Hey Left in Alabama did you learn anything from this story, or are you going to continue to suppress liberal voices?

If your view of politics is filtered by a lens marked "Progressive" or "Liberal", there's a pretty good chance that you've been gnashing your teeth and pulling your hair in frustration over the "give away the store, then negotiate" approach professional Democrats have used when facing the challenges from the Tea Party last year, and all that's come after.
Over and over and over people like me have written stories wondering why Democrats, starting with this President, don't get out in a very public way and slam Republican policies, over and over and over-especially when most Americans hate the things Republicans seem to love to support.

Talk on. Talk loud. Talk often.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

RedEye on Alabama's Congress Critters

It's official. Congress Critter Mo Brooks joined the ranks of Make Alabama Ashamed in the halls of Congress this week. For some reason he thought it appropriate to call his Democratic Congress colleagues Socialist. Yes Mo. They are laughing at you, but they are really laughing at us for sending you to Washington D.C in the first place.

What Dragontide said

The floor in Washington is a long way from a right-wing talk show studio in the Tennessee Valley, isn't it? The floor in Washington is not a drunken Tea rally, is it?
The man sees Socialists in his sleep. He challenges overwhelming climate science. He beclowns himself even more than Sessions & Shelby. He just might be the most ignorant politician in the history of our state. I hope somebody on Saturday Night Live is working on an impersonation of him. It would be as big as Tina Fey portraying Sarah Palin.

What gets me is Mo had to be forced to withdraw the word Socialist from his remarks and said,
"For whatever reason I am permitted not to use one word."
I'm surprised someone from side of town that's supposed to have a higher IQ than those living on the other side of town doesn't understand why name calling doesn't have a place in civil discourse.

H/T Bessemer Opinions for the best report on CD 7 Congress Critter Terri Sewell.

Terri Sewell voted in favor of HR 910, the so called Energy Tax Prevention Act (which mentions "tax" zero times in the bill, by the way) which could have been called any number of things more accurately.

In lay mans terms this is what Sewell voted for;
Anyway, the bill's purpose is "To amend the Clean Air Act to prohibit the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency from promulgating any regulation concerning, taking action relating to, or taking into consideration the emission of a greenhouse gas to address climate change, and for other purposes.

The bill goes on to name water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide and several other gases as "greenhouse gases."

In other words, the bill prohibits the administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency from protecting the environment.

Check out the *ahem* double speak from Sewell office
I spoke with someone in Ms. Sewell's office at length about the bill. He told me they had spoken to people in the scientific community and the manufacturing community before deciding how to vote. I asked him to name the scientists, but as it turns out there weren't any, just the "science committee members." (Terri sits on the "Science, Space and Technology Committee, by the way). The committee, like all committees in the house, is chaired by and controlled by Republicans.

So what does little Miss Sewell do to redeem herself after all of this? She pledges to miss a couple of meals after voting for the budget compromise. Woo hoo!
Around America and around the world, many people are hungry because they have no food. Now others are choosing to be hungry to draw attention to the plight of those less fortunate. Fourteen Democratic Congresswomen are joining tens of thousands of Americans in fasting to protest attempts to balance the budget on the backs of those who are most in need and and have the least political power.

The majority of the voters in the 7th district fast every day because they have no JOBS. As a matter of fact, the voters in Perry County have to decide to starve or die. Again I have to ask, what did the voters in the 7th district do to deserve this?

I don't live, work, or most importantly vote in Alabama's 7th congressional district, but I know a lot of people who do. I know a lot of people who don't have indoor plumbing, don't have access to health care, send their students to under achieving public schools and have toxic coal ash waste dumped on them. The 7th congressional district is historically and culturally important to me because thanks to the work of Dr. Joe L. Reed, it is the only African American district in Congress.

Alabama's 7th congressional district is in the heart of the black belt and the cradle of the civil rights movement in Alabama. It was the only Alabama district President Obama won in 2008. For the past 8 years the 7th district has been represented by Artur Davis, who sold them out for his own blind ambition. They deserve competent, committed, effective, courageous, experienced leadership in congress. The stakes are just too high.

Buyers remorse? Naaah. That would be too much like right (pun intended).

Thursday, April 14, 2011

By George I think they're getting it!!!!!

Dare we HOPE the real republicans are waking up and smelling the Tea Bags?

Looks like the light bulb clicked on bright for this righty regarding TeaPublican Paul Ryans voucher for Medicare plan.
Maybe a little harsh, but the reality is that we should at least be honest about what the GOP is proposing. The reality is, from what I gather, is that Medicare pays around 70% of seniors medical bills right now and Ryan’s voucher will cover about 30% Where will these seniors get the additional revenue to pay for their healthcare?

I'm glad you asked that question...the seniors won't get additional revenue to pay for their healthcare....therein lies the problem.

Are they finally waking up and realzing the Tea Party are hyprocrites?

I clearly remember the series of raucous rallies throughout the spring and summer of 2009 by people calling themselves ‘Tea Party Patriots’, who claimed they were following the example of the “founding fathers” by attacking government in order to “restore democracy”. Given the groups avowed ideological perspective, you would think they’d be averse to violating a basic tenet of democratic government that propelled the original Tea Party – no “taxation without representation”.

How paradoxical then that House Republicans – goaded by the Tea Party – have summarily nullified the will of the people. I’m referring to the people of Washington, D.C. who once again have been reminded of their status as second-class citizens subject to the whims and fancies of Congress members who view the District as their laboratory for experiments in social engineering. In this political equation, the votes of a few House members count far more than the many thousands of voters of our nation’s capital, a significant portion of whom happen to be poor black people.

Remember how the Alabama gop said they wanted to take out the trash in Montgomery because the Democrats were ethically challenged and corrupt?

More than $13 million from the Alabama Department of Education has been paid since 2008 to a group with strong ties to the Alabama Republican Party--all without the approval of the state school board. And who is at the heart of this little scam? Why, none other than GOP operative Dax Swatek, who has ties to such conservative luminaries as Bill Canary, Karl Rove, Jack Abramoff, and former Governor Bob Riley.

Also in the middle of it all is House Speaker Mike Hubbard (R-Auburn), a longtime Riley backer. Alabama Republicans have claimed that the Riley administration was untouched by scandal. This story, broken by Bob Lowry of The Huntsville Times, might lay that canard to rest.

And how is this for GOP hypocrisy? These are the same Republicans who claimed it was unethical for a Democrat to work at a two-year college while also holding a seat in the legislature. They even came up with a clever term for it--double dipping. The scam that involves Hubbard and Co. makes "double dipping" look like recess.

Are they finally realizing they've been p'unked?

It's pretty clear that the Tea Party members are being set up for a big disappointment. There is little chance that the politicians they are supporting are going to do what the members think they're going to do once in office. The members might supply the votes, but the big corporations behind so many of the things that the Tea Party members hate are the ones supplying the money and organization. These politicians, once in office, will understand that the big money can go after them just as well is it went for them this time, if they don't do what they're told by their big corporate founders. But on the other hand, there will be lucrative lobbying jobs waiting for them if they play along. They are going to disappoint the Tea Party members, no question. What will Tea Party members do then?

What indeed.

What POTUS should have said

Good afternoon, the gop infused, media enabled, Tea Party want to destroy and discredit me because I am the countries first African American President.

They also want to make sure the rich the get richer and the rest of you get the shaft.

They want to cut Social Security and Medicare.

They want to make sure if you get sick you die quickly.

They want to make sure only the privileged have access to a quality education.

They want to make sure we have all war all the time, unfair and unbalanced.

They want to make sure workers can't organize and form unions.

They want to make sure poor women can't chose to have a safe, legal abortion.

They want to make sure we have debt as far as the eye can see.

You're either with them or against them.

Good day and God Bless America.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

A long over due RedEye Rant

Why did I wake up this morning to see TeaPublican after TeaPublican all over the TeeVee spouting the same, tired right wing lie.... "now is not the time to raise taxes" over and over again, in a pre emptive strike against President Obama's speech tonight.

WTF were the Democrats? WTF weren't they allowed on TeeVee to complete the sentence.."now is the time to make the rich pay their fair share of taxes"? Publius IX is right (no pun), What We've Got He-ar is a Failure to Communicate. Until and unless Democrats demand equal time in the mainstream media the TeaPublicans are going to continue to control the message, thereby controlling the outcome.

The media wants the message be Obama is going to raise your taxes. Dumb and Dumber hear this on the TeeVee and get all riled up. They don't know the republicans are fighting to keep the Bush tax cuts for the rich intact. They don't know if the rich paid their fair share we wouldn't have a budget deficit, we would have a surplus (remember Clinton?)

I'm pi$$ed President Obama and the democrats threw the citizens in Washington D.C. under the bus for political gain. I agree with Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D.C. residents should tell Congress to go straight to hell. President Obama may have averted a government shut down, but what if the residents of D.C. shut down the city? What if they cut off the water and electricity to the capital? I'm just saying...

I'm pi$$ed the senate will vote tomorrow on the TeaPublican amendment to defund Planned Parenthood.

One of the less loathsome aspects of the deal Obama and the Democrats cut with the GOP was to allow an open vote on one of the less rational strategies in the Republican Party war against women: defunding Planned Parenthood. Pence's amendment passed 240-185 on February 18. Right wing Michigan freshman Justin Amash voted "Present," 7 Republicans-- Charlie Bass (NH), Judy Biggert (IL), Mary Bono Mack (CA), Charlie Dent (PA), Bob Dold (IL), Rodney Frelinghuysen (NJ) and Richard Hanna (NY)-- voted with the Democrats, and 10 anti-Choice fanatics on the Democratic side voted with the GOP:

Dan Boren (Blue Dog-OK)
Jerry Costello (IL)
Joe Donnelly (Blue Dog-IN)
Dan Lipinski (IL)
Mike McIntyre (Blue Dog-NC)
Collin Peterson (Blue Dog-MN)
Nick Rahall (WV)
Silvestre Reyes (TX)
Mike Ross (Blue Dog-AR)
Heath Shuler (Blue Dog-NC)

You know something is wrong when Alan Simpson starts speaking truth to power. I wish he would talk to his girl Michelle Bachman and The Donald and put the Obama Birth Certificate Bull Poo to rest once and for all. Speaking of the double standard, remember how White House Environmental Advisor Van Jones was fired because he signed a 911 petition? Remember how Dan Rather and CBS producers were fired over the George W. Bush Alabama National Guard Service (or lack thereof)?

We now have mainstream media and punditry giving credence to a "both sides" meme regarding President Obama birth certificate making it acceptable to openly question whether the President is a citizen with an air of legitimacy. Notice how the mainstream media didn't entertain a "both sides" meme about Bush and Van Jones? I'm just saying...

Speaking of giving credence to a "both sides meme", I tried to tell y'all Alabama 7th district Congress Critter Terri Sewell was Artur Davis in designer pumps, but did y'all listen to me? Noooooo. As a matter of fact I was booted off the front pages at Left in Alabama for my *ahem* efforts. But it looks like I've been vindicated. And if that's the case, may I please have my posting privileges at Left in Alabama restored?

RedEye Rant over and out. For now.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

The Base has left the building

President Obama's base is deserting him faster than rats leaving the Titanic. I want to blame the Presidents' staff/advisers, but in all honesty I can't because after all, he's the one who hired them.

From a press secretary who sneeringly referred to us as The Professional Left, to a Chief of Staff who called us F*cking Retards. From an Education Secretary who is against public schools and public school teachers, to advisers who made him into a their version of what the first African American President should be. A token, with no real power. Someone to make them feel good, so they could pretend we are a post racial America. Someone to lecture black folks about personal responsibility.

I'm going to assume President Obama honestly thought he would allowed to govern when he took the oath of office on that January day in 2009. I also assume he thought republicans would work with him. Little did he know Rush Limbaugh and Company were already planning his failure. Mission Accomplished. The first African American President is a failure, so we don't have to worry about this little social experiment again. I fear after President Obama, there will never be another African American President.

White people are truly scared of Obama. On one hand they are scared he might enact policies that might improve conditions for African American and be the black President for black people only. and on the other hand, they are scared he's going to exact some kind of revenge for the way blacks have been treated by the white power structure.

There is a divide within the black community regarding President Obama. Recent polling indicate his approval has dropped from 95% to 85%. During the campaign blacks were discouraged from asking about issues that affect their community.

Liberal/Progressive whites who supported the President are through too.

Ronald Reagan famously quipped that the Democratic Party left him before he left the party. Like many progressive supporters of Barack Obama, I'm beginning to have the same feeling about this president.

Consider what we've seen since the shellacking Democrats took in the fall elections.

I thought President Obama was smart and was going to surround himself with smart people. I didn't know he would be so busy trying to keep his JOB he would forget to do his job.

It's not wise to throw your base under the bus. As the young people say, you better recognize.

I've said it once and I'll say it again. President Obama needs to get control of the message. He who controls the message controls the outcome.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

We Won A TeaPublican Gang Banging

Comment of the week;
Even more frustrating is the fact that, once again, the republicans are driving the debate. Two years in and it is obvious that this president is either 1-A bad negotiator or 2-A Capitulator of major proportions. No wonder he's lost the excitement of the majority of folks who got him elected.

Obama Caved Once More and Right-Wing Bullies Will Continue to Hold the Nation Hostage Again and Again
When I was a small boy I was bullied more than most, mainly because I was a foot shorter than than everyone else. They demanded the cupcake my mother had packed in my lunchbox, or, they said, they’d beat me up. After a close call in the boy’s room, I paid up. Weeks later, they demanded half my sandwich as well. I gave in to that one, too. But I could see what was coming next. They’d demand everything else. Somewhere along the line I decided I’d have a take a stand. The fight wasn’t pleasant. But the bullies stopped their bullying.

Deja Voodoo all over coming again in May
Congressional Republicans are vowing that before they will agree to raise the current $14.25 trillion federal debt ceiling — a step that will become necessary in as little as five weeks — President Obama and Senate Democrats will have to agree to far deeper spending cuts for next year and beyond than those contained in the six-month budget deal agreed to late Friday night that cut $38 billion and averted a government shutdown

The Real Speaker of the House is the Tea Bag Gang

“John Boehner is having a difficult time in his caucus ….” Oh, really? Then someone should tell him that He’s in charge and stop trying to appease the Tea Bag gang in his caucus, take them to school and tell them to shut the hell up and go pound sand, or they don’t get a second term on the Hill. Period.

That kind of leadership was the reasons the public respected Tip O’Neill and Nancy Pelosi. Their caucus knew who was in charge.

Avoiding the Government Shut down was good....for John McCain

President Obama has brokered a deal between the Democratic-run Senate and the Republican-run House that avoids a shutdown of the federal government, while also stripping the bill of issues such as Planned Parenthood funding and decisions about the EPA’s authority.

Yet somehow, I’m seeing from some – particularly Ezra Klein, who should honestly know better – that this was a bad deal for the President

Curtis Abby at Progressive Electorate takes us Professional Lefty's to task
But look at all the venom now that we're reaping the results of our big loss last fall. Everyone wants to focus on the President, but what did we do last year?

What more could we have done? That is the question.

What could we have done is more of the question instead of what did we do. We did our part. We voted. We blogged. We organized. We wrote letters to the Editor. We went door to door. We contributed. What more could we have done?

THIS is what President Obama should have said

"Look, I'm not thrilled with how this came together, but I was negotiating with rabid conservatives and didn't want a shutdown. If folks wanted a better outcome, voters shouldn't have elected intemperate children to run the House of Representatives. Don't blame me for your bad decisions."

That's how you handle Bully's Mister President, Sir.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Deal or No Deal?

Well it's the morning after the Knockout-Dragout, Thrilla in D.C. but it's hard for me to to tell who won and who lost. I'm beginning to think it was we the peeps who lost.

President Obama discussed the significance of the deal in his weekly address.

“This is good news for the American people. It means that small businesses can get the loans they need, our families can get the mortgages they applied for, folks can visit our national museums and parks, and hundreds of thousands of Americans will get their paychecks on time – including our brave men and women in uniform. This is an agreement to invest in our country’s future while making the largest annual spending cut in our history.”

Oh really? I wonder what part of the banks aren't making loans to small business doesn't the President understand? I wonder what part of families aren't applying for or getting mortgages because they have NO JOBS? I wonder what part of families can't afford to visit our national museums and parks because they have NO JOBS? Investing our countries future is one thing but what about investing in the present?

The President stressed that some of these cuts would be “painful” as programs people rely on will be cut back and certain infrastructure projects will be delayed. However, President Obama urged that a tightening of the budget is necessary for the future:

Ya think it will be painful to Seniors when they can't afford heat and cool their homes? You think it will be painful to head start children? You think it's going to be painful for Medicare and Social Security recipients? You think it's going to be painful for low income families? You think it's going to be painful for public school teachers and unions?

“And beginning to live within our means is the only way to protect the investments that will help America compete for new jobs – investments in our kids’ education and student loans; in clean energy and life-saving medical research.

Living within what Effing means?????!!! What Effing new jobs????!!!! Our kids already have student loans with NO JOBS to pay them back!!!!! What good is life-saving medical research if you can't afford to get sick because you have NO JOB?????!!!! What part of that don't you understand?

Reducing spending while still investing in the future is just common sense. That’s what families do in tough times. They sacrifice where they can, even if it’s hard, to afford what’s really important.

Uh, NO Mister President, Sir. Reducing spending while Americans are suffering is dumb, stoopid and mean. Families are sacrificing, strike that families are struggling every day just to survive.

The TeaPublicans won last night.

I have to rescind my assessment last night that John Boehner got nothing out of the late negotiations on the 2011 budget. Apparently, he won the restoration of a ban on the District of Columbia spending its own money to help poor women attain abortions. President Obama and the Democrats had lifted that ban earlier in his presidency, and now it is back. Boehner also won funding for the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program, which spends federal money on private schools in the District. In addition to these concessions, there is another rider that was left unresolved. Will the DC government be able to spend money on a needle-exchange program? The answer will come out of negotiations between the House and Senate. So, it appears that DC Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton's fears have been realized; as the District took the hit for a budget deal. It's one more example of why they need voting rights and autonomy. For a ninety-percent Democratic city to have to suffer the indignity of being governed by a bunch of conservative Republicans (even in part) is intolerable. Having said all that, I am not impressed with the interpretation many progressives are taking on these negotiations.

The Republican Budget Plan to Kill Medicare Gets Vote Next Week

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan proposed a budget plan for 2012. It's scheduled for a vote next week. Among its features: Ending Medicare and gutting Medicaid.Ryan calls his plan "The Path to Prosperity." For who? No surprise here: it calls for further tax reductions for corporations and wealthy individuals. He claims to be saving Medicare, notwithstanding his plan would push tens of millions of people over the financial edge.

A government shut down was averted last night, but was that a good thing?