Day: May 24, 2011

A Sign Of 2012 Reversal Of 2010 Midterm Elections: NY 26 Congressional District Results Show Medicare Is Democratic Weapon Against Republicans!

In what could be described as an upset, the Democratic nominee for the New York 26th Congressional District seat in the Buffalo area, vacated by Republican Chris Lee (involved in an embarrassing shirtless pic scandal), won in a district which had voted Republican on a regular basis since the Civil War!

The winning Democrat won about 48 percent of the vote, nearly twice the amount of the Democratic nominee against Chris Lee in the 2010 election six and a half months ago, and it was based on the issue of Medicare, where the GOP nominee said she would have supported the Paul Ryan plan to privatize Medicare over a ten year period!

Town Halls and polls have steadily indicated that Americans of ALL ages, not just senior citizens, do NOT want the privatization of Medicare, and there are also strong hints that the whole issue of Health Care reform may be moving in the direction of the Democrats, after they lost more seats (63) in a midterm election than since 1938, and more seats than ever before since 1948.

Health Care is a basic human right, and the issue has been brought to center stage again by what the 26th Congressional District has just done, and it will create many sleepless days and nights for the House majority led by Speaker John Boehner, the Senate minority led by Mitch McConnell, and all of the GOP Presidential candidates competing to replace Barack Obama in the White House!

Supreme Court Issues Surprising Decision On California Prisoners: Release 30,000 Inmates Within Two Years!

The Supreme Court, in a surprise decision by 5-4, ordered California yesterday to release 30,000 inmates in its prison population due to improper care and attention to the medical and mental problems faced by many prisoners.

Justice Anthony Kennedy, the swing vote on the Court, again surprised people in that he joined the four liberals–Stephen Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginseberg, Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan–in arguing that the living conditions of many prisoners were unacceptable under the 8th Amendment’s banning of “cruel and unusual punishment”!

The case, Brown V. Plata, drew an oral condemnation from Justice Antonin Scalia, and an equally scathing written attack by Justice Samuel Alito, and Justice Clarence Thomas and Chief Justice John Roberts also joined the minority.

California, in the midst of a horrible economic crisis, will need to find solutions within two years, and possibly gain an extension, and can utilize new construction, out of state transfers and utilizing county facilities to resolve the issue. Otherwise, up to 30,000 inmates could be unleashed on the general population, a security issue of horrifying proportions if it actually comes to be!

While the future seems grim, Justice Kennedy can be applauded for recognizing the concept of human dignity and a minimal condition of medical care and basic sustenance, and Kennedy has long been a critic of long and harsh sentences.

Realize that not all of the inmates of California state prisons are murderers or rapists, as many are in prison on drug convictions, and there have been laws in California requiring a three strikes concept that puts a prisoner under a life term, no matter how small the infractions on later legal issues.

Key solutions that will arise over the next few years under Governor Jerry Brown will be financing, meaning the need for more taxes to support keeping more people in state prison; making sure that violent criminals do not walk the streets in the future; and overcoming recidivism by promoting real job training and mental health intervention to assist parolees in finding work and going straight, rather than returning to prison through a “revolving door”!

It is clear that America has never been very good at promoting change in felons, whether younger or older. The tendency has been to “throw the keys away”, but in reality, that is not a solution long term, and we must work as a nation on improving the odds of prisoners learning from their incarceration, and hopefully not having to return to prison after having created new victims!

The Right Wing Has No Limits: REDSTATE’s War On Conservative Republicans As NOT Conservative Enough!

REDSTATE is a right wing website of blogger Erick Erickson, and seeks to make the Republican Party as right wing as possible, failing to realize that the party will destroy itself if it goes that direction anymore than it is already!

In an entry this morning entitled “Conservatives Stand To Lose Big In 2012”, Erickson declares war on conservative Republicans in the Senate who he claims are not conservative enough!

On his hit list are the following Senators:

Richard Lugar of Indiana
Roger Wicker of Mississippi
Bob Corker of Tennessee

Also, such well known candidates for the Senate as the following are opposed as not conservative enough:

Former Congresswoman Heather Wilson of New Mexico
Former Governor Tommy Thompson of Wisconsin

Ericikson also attacks such former Republican officeholders as former Senator Chuck Hagel of Nebraska, former Governor Charlie Crist of Florida, former Kentucky Attorney General Trey Greyson, and former Congressman Mike Castle of Delaware, treating them as if they are “poison”!

His declaration of war on the above, if successful, will marginalize the GOP to such an extent that it will lose all semblance of being a major political party, and maybe, just maybe, that is his intent, with the replacement of the GOP by an openly Fascist party, a la Benito Mussolini, Juan Peron, or Francisco Franco!