Month: October 2013

New Jersey Becomes First State To Have African American and Hispanic American Senators

The state of New Jersey become the first state to have African American and Hispanic American Senators representing it.

The swearing in of Cory Booker, escorted by Bob Menendez (of Cuban heritage), makes the state proud that it has done something that only Hawaii has done otherwise, having had two Asian Americans in the Senate for much of its history as a state.

Menendez was the second Cuban American in the Senate, and Booker is only the fourth elected African American Senator in American history.

Cuts In Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (Food Stamps): Is This The Moral And “Christian” Thing To Do?

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (Food Stamps), promoted in a bipartisan way by past Senators George McGovern (D) South Dakota and Bob Dole (R) Kansas, both nominees of their party for the Presidency, was designed to make certain that children, single mothers, the disabled, veterans, and the elderly would always have help in providing a decent amount of food for their nutrition and health, as hungry people get sick more often, and it undermines growth and accomplishment of children in particular.

A country which would allow its unfortunate poor to starve, to have inadequate nutrition, while at the same time providing subsidies to corporate farm interests is a country in spiritual trouble!

The average food stamp recipient receives $133 a month, about $1.50 a meal. Can anyone seriously believe that they can afford to eat at such a low cost? What it means is that toward the end of the month, there is no money for food, and children go to school hungry, and adults get sick from hunger and lack of nutrition.

Is this the moral and “Christian” thing to do? Apparently, Paul Ryan and Michele Bachmann and other Republicans are very eager to deny the poor the basic sustenance of life, while also opposing them gaining any health care coverage! So a new cut in food stamps is about to go into effect at the end of business today, despite Democratic attempts to prevent it. The average recipient will lose $36 per month of their present allotment!

And these and others in their party are insistent that women MUST carry pregnancies to term, but once a child is born, to hell with whether his or her mother has the ability to feed them and keep them healthy!

So the goal is to make them poor, keep them poor, and make sure the rich continue to gain tax cuts and benefits at the expense of the poor!

Are Paul Ryan and Michele Bachmann and others “good Christians”?

This is the hypocrisy of so called “religious” people who, unlike other good hearted Christians, fight against the message of their faith, to care about the poor, and do nothing to harm them. Shame on them!

Virginia Gubernatorial Race Going Democratic: Great Sign For 2014 And Beyond!

The lead of Democratic gubernatorial nominee Terry McAuliffe, a close friend and fund raiser for the Clintons, over Republican Attorney General and gubernatorial nominee Ken Cuccinelli in Virginia, is a great sign for the future of the Democratic Party.

Cuccinelli is a truly nightmare nominee, with his extremist right wing views, and his decision to invite Ted Cruz and Rand Paul into the state to campaign for him, signs of true desperation on his part, and a sign of why the GOP is losing its hold in Virginia.

Cuccinelli’s Lieutenant Governor nominee, preacher E W Jackson, is even more of a right wing lunatic than Cuccinelli, and it is clear that young people, minorities, college educated people, women, and those who believe in socially moderate views are not willing to tolerate such narrow minded and bigoted nominees as Cuccinelli and Jackson.

It has often been said that how Virginia goes in the odd year elections affects Congressional elections the next year, and that has often rang true.

So the Virginia election results, now seen as a massive victory for the Democrats, is a good sign that the state is turning more blue, particularly because of northern Virginia federal government workers, but also because the Republican Party has been unduly influenced by its Tea Party lunatics in that state, as well as nationally, and has led to the highest rate of disapproval for the GOP nationally in its entire history, 63 percent!

IF Hillary Clinton Chooses Not To Run For President, Elizabeth Warren Goes To The Head Of The Class!

2016 is clearly a year for a woman candidate to be taken seriously for the White House, and everyone figures that is Hillary Clinton.

But despite indications that she plans to run, as hinted at in campaigning for Virginia gubernatorial nominee Terry McAuliffe , it is clear that the attacks on her would be brutal if she ran, particularly on the overinflated manner of Benghazi, Libya, the tragic loss of the ambassador and three others on September 11, 2012. The fact that Ronald Reagan presided over the loss of 252 Marines in Beirut, Lebanon in 1983, is simply overlooked, while the loss of four people is made out to be the crime of the century, while certainly it is a tragic manner.

It could be said that Hillary has problems with her long career, as any one with her experience would have, but it could be that she will, ultimately, decide that at the age of 69 in 2016, she would rather have a life as a lecturer and author, and a new grandmother by that time.

So IF she chose not to run, it would seem clear the Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, who has inspired many by her strong stands on consumer affairs and so many other matters, would then decide to run, and would excite the base.

And if not her, further behind are New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar, both exceptional women, who might join the race.

It is clear that there will be a female candidate on the Democratic side of the Presidential race, even if Hillary Clinton ultimately bows out of the race for the White House!

Disturbing News That NSA Spying Unknown By Obama! If So, What Does That Say?

The news that the National Security Agency (NSA) has engaged in massive spying NOT only against terrorists, which is understandable, but also against American citizens by invasive investigation of all phone calls and emails, and also against friendly nations, such as Germany, France and Spain, is truly alarming to the extreme!

One might say that national security requires it, but that is a slippery slope that can undermine the Bill of Rights, and do permanent damage to the concept of having allies in the world against terrorism.

If American citizens cannot trust their own government to avoid invasion of their privacy, that is alarming!

If friendly foreign governments cannot trust that America is avoiding unnecessary intrusion in their private activities, and can look at these governments as not worthy of being trusted as allies, that is alarming!

And even worse, the news that, supposedly, Barack Obama was not aware of these activities by the NSA and, also, the Central Intelligence Agency and other intelligence agencies, then that is TRULY alarming, as that means we have a shadow government which operates outside the parameters of accountable government authority!

It was often said in the past that the CIA was out of control, and that agency was investigated by the Church Committee in the 1970s, and supposedly, controls were put on that agency, or were they?

Are we being lied to all along, and indeed, no matter who is President, they are often unaware of what the spy agencies do?

And if that is so, does that not mean that Presidents of either party are, themselves, subject to being watched, observed, and possibly compromised, and conceivably, be marked for being “neutralized” by these agencies?

Notice the word “neutralized”, as the author is reluctant to say precisely what he means, but anyone reading this is likely to understand the dangers that any President faces from unaccountable espionage!

And although the author has never believed in conspiracy theories, the thought has to cross one’s mind as we come up to the 50th anniversary of the John F. Kennedy Assassination, and the belief of some that the CIA or FBI or other such agencies MIGHT have been involved in the demise of the 35th President.

This whole scenario at present is something to be really concerned with, worried about, and requires some kind of government action and oversight to stop these breaches of civil liberties and diplomatic protocol!

Hillary Clinton Now 66–On Way To White House In 2017?

Hillary Clinton celebrated her 66th birthday yesterday, October 26, a day before the birthday of Theodore Roosevelt.

One can wonder whether Hillary Clinton will join the pantheon of Presidents with her famous husband, Bill Clinton, TR, and the other 41 Presidents, all men, who have occupied the Oval Office.

Certainly, few have ever been so hailed as a likely future President as Hillary, who comes into the campaign for 2016, super qualified to be our Chief Executive.

But it is highly unlikely that she will have an easy ride, with an almost guaranteed challenge within the Democratic Party, and a vicious campaign by whoever is the Republican nominee for President in 2016.

And one can wonder if she might have second thoughts on running, although so far, it looks likely that she will run, and has a better than majority chance of being our 45th President of the United States!

155th Annniversary Of Theodore Roosevelt’s Birth

Today is the 155th Anniversary of the birth of our 26th President, Theodore Roosevelt.

Few Presidents have had the impact of our youngest President, who was affectionately known as “TR” or “Teddy”!

Few have been as popular as he was in his time, and in most of our history since.

Few were ever as open and outspoken about their belief in political, social and economic reform as Roosevelt was.

TR became a model for later Presidents, including his distant cousin, Franklin D. Roosevelt.

TR was proud to call himself a “progressive”, and he inspired generations of people with his belief that America could be a better place, and not be under the thumb of powerful corporations.

Certainly, one can disagree with TR on many ideas and beliefs, particularly in his promotion of “imperialism” in Latin America, and his limitations on the issue of race, but that does not take away from his greatness, with him usually being ranked just below the “great” Presidents, Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, and FDR.

TR changed our country for the better, and the fact that he is attacked by the likes of Glenn Beck and other right wing extremists, only adds to his magnificent stature!

A trip to his home at Sagamore Hill in Oyster Bay, Long Island, New York, is well worth it!

A Third Party In The Offing: Not Likely!

With the disgust over the disaster of the 113th Congress, and the GOP inspired government shutdown, the public opinion support for a third party has risen to its highest point in a decade, with 60 percent stating such a belief, in a Gallup Poll.

The frustration is understandable, but the American system of government has never moved toward a three party system, which would create the need for coalitions, and prevent passage of legislation, making it more difficult than the split Congress has demonstrated.

Third party history has been one of protest, and having an effect on who wins the Presidency, and promoting new ideas that often are later accepted by one or the other major political parties.

What is much more likely than a third party competing with the two major parties is a political realignment, with the Democrats likely to benefit by the civil war in the Republican Party.

And the Tea Party Movement is doomed, as the American people are catching on as to how destructive and negative that movement has been in the past four years.

The Republican Party has had a history of some great leaders and accomplishments, but their ability to compete is doomed, until and when they recognize that moving to the Far Right is a disaster, and that they must appeal to the voting groups that they have antagonized, including minorities, the young, woman, labor, and the struggling middle class.

And they must repudiate the hold of religion over their party, and emphasize tolerance, open mindedness, and a belief in the power of science, or else they will never be competing, and might be replaced by a new party!

The Destruction Of The Middle Class And The Working Poor By The Republican Party

Republicans and conservatives do not want to admit it, but since the age of Ronald Reagan, they have effectively decimated the middle class, and heaped scorn on the poor.

This is reprehensible, particularly when they profess belief in God and call themselves “good Christians” as they work to slash food stamps for single mothers, children, the disabled and the working poor; oppose any rise in the minimum wage; support exporting of jobs to third world nations by greedy corporations; undermine respect for women and their basic human rights; and promote nativism and hate for ethnic minorities, as they try to survive in a nation rapidly becoming less white and Protestant by the day!

As it is, they are still able to convince struggling whites in the South and the hinterland to vote their fears, and blame all their troubles on the poor and the minorities, and progressive initiatives to help the working poor and the middle class.

But in the long run, this is a losing strategy, as now the GOP, allowing the KNOW NOTHING Tea Party Movement to have growing influence, are totally alienating the young, women, minorities, labor, gays, and educated people who care about their fellow man and woman.

So the Republican Party is rapidly becoming a dinosaur, and Ted Cruz and his buddies in the libertarian movement and the Tea Party crowd are destroying any hope of a future for the party of Lincoln, TR, and Eisenhower. They are rapidly becoming part of the dustbin of history!

Misogyny And The Republican Party’s Doom, Short Term And Long Term

The Republican Party has displayed, again and again, its total lack of respect for women in so many ways!

Not only have they worked to deny women their basic human rights to their own bodies, and had candidates and office holders who debate what rape is.

Not only have they now worked in Texas and other southern states to deny women who are married or divorced the ability to vote by making an issue of their use of maiden names and married names that do not match on IDs, so as to take away the right to vote. Such is the case with a Texas judge recently challenged because she has an ID with her middle name but has also used her married name on other documents and in public, and is well known, and yet is being told they do not match, so she should be denied the right to vote, although never challenged for the past half century! And this is just the tip of the iceberg!

And not only these examples above, but also the total lack of respect the Republicans have for women who serve in the Obama Administration. So we have had nasty attacks on the honesty and competence of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton; former United Nations Ambassador and now National Security Adviser Susan Rice; and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.

These three women have devoted their lives to public service in magnificent ways, and are suffering from misogynistic attacks of a party only too willing to attack, while not being embarrassed by the asinine behavior of such women, including Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann, but not limited just to those two women!

The GOP is dooming its future, as already, the majority of women vote Democratic, so continuation of their misogynistic attitudes is a losing strategy, short term and long term!