Day: August 2, 2010

Target Stores Should Be Boycotted: Citizens United Case Rears Its Ugly Head! :(

In January, in the Citizens United Case, the Supreme Court changed a long held legal restriction on corporations spending money on political campaigns!

Now the effects of that decision are coming home to roost! Target Corporation of Minneapolis has decided to spend money and intervene to back an extremist right wing Republican candidate for Governor in that state!

The Republican nominee supports the Arizona immigration law; supports the abolition of the minimum wage; and endorses a group that condoned the execution of gay people!

Target gave $150,000 support to this candidate, state representative Tom Emmer, and has defended its support! Of course, if the minimum wage disappeared, Target could join Walmart in being anti union, and attempting to pay the lowest possible wages to its workforce, with no sense of morality as to what it is doing!

Under these circumstances, all progressives and liberals should cut up their credit cards, and refuse to spend their money at an organization with such despicable views, and such a high level of arrogance!

Exactly Three Months To The Midterm Elections! The Most Crucial Midterm Since 1934!

Today marks exactly three months to the midterm Congressional elections of 2010!

Every midterm election is, of course, significant, but looking at the economic and political situation that exists now, it could be argued that this is the most important such midterm election since 1934, when Franklin D. Roosevelt had begun the New Deal to tackle the Great Depression, and the conservative and Republican opposition was bitterly attacking it as a failure, and calling for a return to the conservative economic policies which had caused the massive downturn in the early 1930s!

The future of the nation was at stake then, and it is similar to what is faced now! If the Republican party were somehow to gain control of the Congress, it would likely lead to a total meltdown of the economy, and further deterioration of the political system, leaving us in threat of total anarchy! ๐Ÿ™

This is due to the fact that unlike any other Presidency, the aim of the opposition party is total destruction of the Obama programs and policies, and no willingness to accept the responsibility of shared commitment to the public good!

If we think that the economy is in sad shape now, imagine a GOP Congress declaring further war on the middle and lower classes, and using social wedges to divide American society, and appealing to the lowest common denominator of hate and prejudice! ๐Ÿ™

This is not the time for anyone who cares about progressive or liberal causes to sit on their hands because the Obama Administration has not accomplished all of the goals it set for itself in the 2008 election campaign!

Perfection is not possible, but if committed people do not vote, they will bring about a scenario they will regret for many years! The need to vote is absolutely essential!

Alan Greenspan And David Stockman: Tax Cuts For the Wealthy Based On Borrowed Money Are Wrong And Do Not Pay For Themselves!

Alan Greenspan, the former head of the Federal Reserve Board, and clearly a conservative and Republican in his philosophy, was on the ABC News This Week show yesterday.

Greenspan was asked if a continuation of the Bush tax cuts was a good idea with such a tremendous deficit situation. His response was that, in theory, tax cuts are good, but NOT on borrowed money!

Greenspan also said tax cuts DO NOT pay for themselves in the sense of economic expansion!

Is there any need to go further in seeing that what conservatives and Republicans are enunciating is totally hypocritical? ๐Ÿ™

We cannot afford, supposedly, to give extended unemployment compensation to those who are long term out of work, even though giving this to them promotes spending and the creation of jobs! But we can give more tax cuts to the top two percent, even though it has been shown that in most cases these people SAVE the money, rather than spend it, and DO NOT create new jobs because of receiving more tax cuts!

To top it off, former Reagan Budget Director David Stockman came up with exactly the same prescription: that tax cuts to the wealthy top two percent on borrowed money does not stimulate the economy! Instead, economists tell us it creates a more stratified society, already the most stratified in the industrial world!

But does this affect Sarah Palin, John Boehner, Mitch McConnell, or others in the GOP? No, just keep on borrowing money and raising the deficit so that the rich can become richer, the middle class is made poorer, public services are cut, and the poor become even poorer!

Is this the kind of America we want? To think this is justice requires a warped sense of morality! ๐Ÿ™

More Crazy, Whacky Behavior By Republican Politicians! :(

Crazy, whacky behavior by Republicans in government continue, making it that almost daily there is some outrageous statement or action to report! ๐Ÿ™

Congressman Zach Wamp of Tennessee, running for the GOP nomination for Governor of his state, suggested that if the elections of 2010 and 2012 did not lead to a change of attitude on the part of the national government, then it would be necessary for Tennessee to promote secession from the Union! ๐Ÿ™

So, in other words, 150 years after the Civil War began, we might face a Southern state again trying to break its bonds with the Union, even though that was supposedly settled by the blood of two thirds of a million American soldiers from 1861-1865! How irresponsible and divisive a statement for Congressman Wamp to make, and one he should be ashamed of! ๐Ÿ™

Meanwhile, former Colorado Congressman Tom Tancredo, a leading nativist and extremist firebrand, is complicating the Governorship primary in the Republican Party by suggesting he will run as an independent. But beyond that, he has suggested that Barack Obama should be impeached! ๐Ÿ™ Mr. Tancredo, on what basis do you utter such a ridiculous statement? ๐Ÿ™

Tancredo is a lunatic, and Wamp is not far behind! When, oh when, will the GOP decide that remaining silent, and being connected to whacko statements such as these two characters have uttered, is hurting the long term future of the party of Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Eisenhower, and yes, even Ronald Reagan? ๐Ÿ™

Add to the above conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly who has condemned single women for voting Democratic in large percentages, and refusing to keep their marriage vows in large numbers! Of course, Schlafly fails to understand that many women do not wish to tolerate abuse by their husbands in unhappy marriages, and many women are less willing to give up their careers and futures and tie themselves to men who they feel are not worthy! But remember that Schlafly still enunciates the views of the Christian Coalition which helped to bring Ronald Reagan to power in 1980! Thank goodness that Reagan passed her by and selected Sandra Day O’Connor as the first female on the Supreme Court! ๐Ÿ™

Continued involvement by Wamp, Tancredo , and Schlafly only undermines the future of the GOP, and is a godsend to the Democratic Party!

African American Lawmakers And Ethics: No Excuses Accepted! :(

As if the Democratic Party did not have enough problems facing them in the midterm elections in November, two senior African American lawmakers in the House of Representatives have managed to make themselves the center of corruption probes that are leading to ethics investigations!

Congressman Charlie Rangel of New York, the former Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, is facing 13 ethics violations in a public trial which seems daunting to overcome! Having been in the House for nearly 40 years, Rangel seems obviously to have misused his office and to have a level of cockiness and arrogance which does not do his cause any favor!

Congresswoman Maxine Waters of California also faces ethics charges, and is the senior African American woman in the House, with nearly 20 years in the chamber. She is facing charges of helping her husband financially with a bank tied to him. She is well known for her often outrageous statements and actions, including wanting earmarks named after her!

The problem with both Rangel and Waters is that they both display arrogance, cockiness, and extreme egotism, but if one dares to state that publicly, they often are called racists!

That cannot be allowed to be reasons for them to avoid paying the price for their corruption, which seems quite clear! The Democrats in the House need to do what is proper, which is to back away from both members on the basis that they are hurting the party’s interests and do not deserve united support just because of their race!

If the Democrats refuse to hold Rangel and Waters responsible simply to avoid the charge of racism, then the party will suffer dearly in November!

What is needed is to make clear that the party will not accept corruption in any member, whether African American, Hispanic, Asian, or Caucasian! The principles of decency, ethics, and honesty are essential to keep public support and deal with the many issues that face this nation!

The fact is that all those under any stage of ethics violations, a total of eight now, are African American House Democrats! Does that make it a racist act, or just the reality that apparently SOME members of the House who happen to be black take liberties with their positions of power?

To promote the idea that race is the key factor is not a service to the House of Representatives, and in the case of Rangel and Waters, instead of fighting the charges in a divisive way, they should both “cut deals” or face a vote based on their behavior, not their race!

The Reality Of Illegal Immigration: They Fulfill Jobs No One Else Will Take!

With much of the Arizona Immigration law on hold with the injunction by a federal judge, it is time for everyone to recognize the reality on the subject!

What is that reality? While no one wants to promote illegal immigration, and there is no doubt that it is a problem in regards to security, the reality is that illegals fulfill many job roles that no Americans will take!

A report on CNN was very revealing about this. Who do we think picks our fruits and vegetables in the fields of California? Illegal immigrants, who are paid eight dollars an hour and do back breaking work that no Americans have applied for, are those who do this, and without them, we would not have our fruits and vegetables!

Who is the majority of people working on lawn care, cleaning houses, working in hotels and motels on room service, working as dishwashers and busboys in restaurants, and many other low wage jobs that Americans run away from for employment? Illegal immigrants do these jobs, and without them, we would not have these various services done for millions of Americans!

Maybe the problem is that too many Americans are too fickle and picky about work they will accept, so maybe the work ethic is at issue!

But until there is widespread acceptance by Americans of these kinds of work, illegal immigrants will do what they have to do to survive, with the vast majority of them hard working, sacrificing for their children, paying taxes, being good law abiding people beyond the reality of how they came to this country!

Most are not drug runners, criminals, or involved in other unsavory activities, and it is unjust to label them all in the same negative description! Many are children who are here because of what their parents did, and now suffer the consequences as adults, but just want a chance to succeed in America!

We need more border security and policing, and the removal of illegal immigrants who are detriments to our society, but we cannot at this point deport millions of hard working people who actually contribute to our work life every day in ways most Americans do not appreciate!

So the nativists, who have always been against every immigrant group in America in the past, must be fought by decent Americans, not encouraged in ways that when we look back in the future, we will regret! ๐Ÿ™

A Journalistic Legend Is Gone: Daniel Schorr, 1916-2010

Just as I was leaving for my NYC vacation, the news came that journalistic legend Daniel Schorr had passed away at age 93!

Daniel Schorr was one of a rare breed of journalists that we are unlikely to see again in a field that has changed so much!

Schorr worked for the Christian Science Monitor for decades! He also reported for the NY Times until he went to CBS News as part of the great group of journalists who worked for Edward R. Murrow!

He became controversial during the administration of President Richard Nixon, deeply hated by the President, who put him on the “enemy list” for his open opposition to the Nixon policies and his investigation of Watergate!

He then worked for CNN, and after a few years, went to National Public Radio, where he worked until his death! The author had heard his commentary very recently, and wondered how long he had been serving as a journalist, checking it out as being over 60 amazing years!

Schorr spoke his mind, but it was based upon careful scholarly research, not just personal opinion! He was a walking history book, having been intimately involved in our politics through his coverage of presidents from Eisenhower to Obama!

He was the winner of three Emmys during the Watergate years, as well as a Peabody for a lifetime of reporting, and numerous other awards, and was inducted into the Hall of Fame of the Society of Professional Journalists!

Daniel Schorr was a thought provoking and insightful journalist who gave pleasure to his listeners on many channels over the years, and he cannot be replaced, any more than Walter Cronkite, one of his colleagues at CBS, can be replaced!

Journalism will never be the same, but he left a legacy that will endure!