Winter Flash – Deranged

Dark tunnels run under the city, a labyrinth of hiding places for what doesn’t wish to be seen or found; the city below without light or charity. Ghost rivers run wild and the taint of long dead monsters can still be scented. Some say it was a deranged architect that cursed the city with the under city, under even the trains and the sewers, one-step above hell.

Michella stood at the door, “Here be Monsters”.

Go back; her life would continue to be a misery of degradation and abuse. Forward, life would be hers to determine, he wouldn’t find her.


WinterFlashinthePan

It is a new season, time for a Winter of Disturbing Flashes. Flash in the Pan is brought to you by the remarkable Red of M3 fame, to join in the fun read the rules at the link provided and get to flashing!

The word this week isDeranged, with a word limit of 100. Deranged comes in at 100.

Hashtags: #flashfiction #getpublished with @RedmundPro

False Equivalence Right

Albrecht Durer, Weeping Angel Boy

Albrecht Durer, Weeping Angel Boy

I cannot begin to tell you all how tired I am of hearing about Healthcare.gov and all of the glitches. Yes, I get it, really I do. It is hinky, the roll out was not seamless and smooth, it is well let’s just say it is imperfect.

It is in fact an ugly baby.

What Healthcare.gov is not; it is not the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). Healthcare.gov is simply a delivery vehicle, one of many and one that is currently not performing as it should but it is not the law itself. Democrats on the Hell  Hill, pundits in the media and all of us truly need to separate the two and discuss them as distinct and not at all equal. It is contingent upon those of us who support the idea of access to affordable Health Insurance for all citizens that we not confuse or confabulate the issues surrounding the ACA (aka: Obamacare) and the rollout of one hinky delivery system, Healthcare.gov.

All this being said, let’s first talk about some of the idiotic conspiracy theories first. Don’t think they exist? You don’t read the Right Wing My Head is Exploding with all my f’ng insider knowledge, do you? So, here are a few of my recent favorites, those Right Wing walks resulting in False Equivalency that eventually makes their way into the mainstream because everyone is afraid to call Bullshit:

  • No bid contract awarded to CGI, the Canadian corporation, prime contractor.
    • Since 2007 CGI has had an ID/IQ designation with the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). The designation means Indefinite Delivery, Indefinite Quantity and covers contracts from $1K to $4B. CGI is one of 16 companies granted this designation prior to President Obama’s first term. These designations are consistent throughout the government, whether they are appropriate or not is a different issue. (sourced from various sites including DHHS). It is possible, though not probable some work orders for Healthcare.gov were awarded under this designation. It should be noted however, CGI was not the only vendor working on the Healthcare.gov integrated solution.
    • Further, on various sites (no confirmation yet) the RFP (Request for Proposal) was sent to several qualified vendors. DHHS received four (4) responses and of these, only CGI’s response was reviewed and accepted (again no confirmation of the veracity of this statement). There is only one reason why other responses would have been rejected without review; the response did not meet the stated requirements of the RFP.
  • Senior Vice President of CGI Federal, Toni Towne-Whitley was a Princeton classmate, class of ’85 of First Lady Michelle Obama and is a member of the Princeton Black Alumni.
    • Yes, both of these statements are true on their surface. Careful examination of some facts would find though, it is unlikely they are friends or ever met each other at school. They traveled in different circles, attended different schools at Princeton with different educational goals and attainments. Simply attending the same very large school does not instantly mean you know each other. By the way, Daily Caller, not every Black Person in the country knows every other Black Person in the country.
  • Upon award of the contract to CGI the President of CGI Group, George Schindler donated to the President’s reelection campaign.
    • Yes, in fact he did, $1,000; big money there. Mr. Schindler also donated to Mitt Romney and previously he had donated the max of $2,300 to John McCain. To make this easier though, let’s just debunk all of this and go ahead on to Open Secrets if you are interested. Follow the money, use the following criteria;
      • CGI
      • George Schindler
      • CGI Technologies and Solutions, Inc. PAC
      • Toni Townes-Whitley
  • The cost of Healthcare.gov was somewhere in the neighborhood of $693M.
    • No, no it was not anywhere close to this. In fact, the awarded contract was approximately $70M originally, when you factor in all the changes required due to recalcitrant GOP Governors who refused to implement their own state marketplaces, the final cost might be closer to $115M. The final costs are not in, however Daily Kos have done an excellent job of pulling apart the Right’s argument with facts here, including a great spreadsheet here.  I love facts!

Now, those are my favorites of the weekend. Really, how hard is it to stick with facts and stop making shite up?

healthcare-gov-affordable-care-act-website-jpg_fb_big

Can we talk for a minute about what Healthcare.gov is and what it is not? I don’t want to bore you with tech-speak; I do some of this for a living and even my eyes glaze over. I do want to talk about what Healthcare.gov is and why the idiots on the Hill should not be holding hearings over which they have not a clue.

  1. Healthcare.gov is not a simple website. The website is a frontend; it is how you and I access the system behind it.
  2. Healthcare.gov is an integrated system. This system requires tens of thousands, if not millions of lines of custom code to parse information you and I enter, including our names, address, financial status, this determines what products to show us. This is essentially “If, Then, What” lines of code based on multiple options. Then, once the products we qualify for are delivered to our screen and we have the opportunity to review and decide this same solution must send our choice(s) to external private vendors, outside of the Healthcare.gov system.
  3. Integration is not simple and it is not a one-to-one process at the federal level. For every single state that did not create their own marketplace the integration had to be created for that state. What this means, for example in Texas every single district, county, city, zip code combination had to be entered. All of the private insurance companies willing to offer plans for Texas citizens had to offer those plans to the marketplace. The State of Texas vetted those plans and made their own rules that had to be incorporated into the system.
    1. This was true of every single state. Every Red State that did not create their own Marketplace made up their own rules; rules in many cases with the sole intention to case the ACA to fail in their state, to prevent their citizens from accessing Affordable Insurance and ultimately affordable healthcare.
    2. Finally, nothing in Healthcare.gov stores your medical information, thus nothing in Healthcare.gov is in non-compliance with HIPPA. Keep in mind, one of key provisions of the ACA is the elimination of ‘pre-existing conditions’. With this provision, you and I no longer fill out extensive medical histories when applying for Health Insurance, in fact the only information we are asked is if we smoke.

If you are a Democrat, Liberal, Progressive or Left Leaning Independent please stop referring to Healthcare.gov as Obamacare or the ACA, or even a Website. It is none of these. It is just one of several delivery systems for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, it isn’t the entirety of it. Could it have been done better? Yes, certainly, it could have been and I suspect all that is wrong with this particular delivery system will be corrected fairly quickly but let’s not fall into the trap the Right is laying for us, let’s not repeat their idiotic talking points as if they were gospel.

The truth is we are now going to have to watch as the GOP members on the Hill waste valuable time and money following their boogiemen down every conspiracy hole. Their insatiable appetite to find this President at fault for something, anything is horrifying, wasteful and frankly boring. The propagandizing by the Right is tiresome; that we fall into their trap repeatedly is shameful. They throw the Red Herring and we run with it.

Red Herring

Next up, what likely went wrong in developing Healthcare.gov.

Zombie Apocalypse (A Halloween Tale)

If you don’t know ELEANOR LOIS TOMCZYK of How the Hell Did I End Up Here, you are in for a real treat.

Winter Flash-Mind

“Hit me.”

Three times in a row, against odds she had hit seventeen and come up with twenty-one. It was a fool’s play yet based on the pile of chips in front of her; she was anything but a fool. A crowd gathered watching, other players left the table, it became the Bride and the Dealer.

“Hit me.”

Again, she hit a seventeen and made twenty-one, the crowd burst into excited laughter. Finally, someone asked, “Where’s the groom?”

“At the chapel”, she answered, “A girl can change her mind can’t she?”

“Hit me.”


WinterFlashinthePan

It is a new season, time for a Winter of Disturbing Flashes. Flash in the Pan is brought to you by the remarkable Red of M3 fame, to join in the fun read the rules at the link provided and get to flashing!

The word this week isMind, with a word limit of 100. Mind comes in at 93.

Hashtags: #flashfiction #getpublished with @RedmundPro

Not the Right Things

soapboxpileRecently I have been giving a great deal of thought to the idea of how we move through the world. Not our physical movement, though this is important but rather our emotional, intellectual and philosophical movement through life.

During one of my long talks with my sister Red this subject came up, it was a round-about, that is we got there because of something one of her young friends said to her. I suspect this discussion has actually been part of a much longer conversation about happiness, Red has written about it here. I couldn’t help thinking about the question of Happiness and about what her young friend said that truly set my head on fire, it was this:

“My parents didn’t give me the right things.”

I think when I heard this initially I went silent for a full minute. Then out of my mouth came, “What the fuck does that mean?”

No really I wanted to know and my inside voice simply escaped through my lips and out into the world.

I haven’t been able to let go of this one. It has floated around in my head for days now. I have considered the ramifications of what this means, especially if entire generations think this way. First, I had to think about what it could mean and what the right things might be.

  • The right DNA – pairing two adults with reasonable intellect thus producing offspring with reasonable intellect who would eventually be flung into the world capable of fending for themselves.maslows needs
  • The right physical environment – parents provided basic human needs while child was incapable of providing for self (see first or bottom tier of Maslov’s Hierarchy).
  • The right emotional environment – parents were neither emotionally or physically abusive and provided for child’s spiritual well-being.

So, after I considered what the legitimate potentials were I considered what this ungrateful wretch might be thinking and what other churlish snot nosed, pedantic, navel-gazing, self-absorbed twits might also be thinking. I looked around at young people I knew, my own sons and others their age (the thirty something’s), as well as, those younger and those slightly older. Part of me truly is trying to find a correlation between all the bad behavior in our schools, on social media, what we see reported everyday about bullying and the comment:

“My parents didn’t give me the right things.”

What could this possibly mean? To put this in perspective the young man who uttered this idiocy is twenty-three (23), he is a White American, raised in the land of plenty though not with great wealth, he had access to public education and certainly should he wish to do so could attend trade school or community college. I am not privy to his home life or his parents’ income, but as I understand it he was not hungry or homeless ever in his life, he was raised in a two-parent household, with access to an extended family. So, what does he mean his parents didn’t give him the ‘right things’.

Does he mean his parents didn’t drive him hard enough to achieve? This gets me to the idea of personality and temperament. Isn’t it in part our individual make-up and responsibility to suck it up and become self-driven, self-determining, to stand on our own two feet at some point? When do we stop blaming everyone else, including our parents for our failure to thrive, our failure to launch into adulthood? Many of us had terrible childhoods, traumatic teens and yet we find our way through and evolve into stable and self-sufficient adults.

great-white-shark-kids-649456_14762_600x450-300x210Where is the cutoff?

I know my grandparents, who raised children in the Great Depression wanted their children to have more and do better than they did. That was the great dream.

My parents and their siblings, they wanted to leave a legacy of dreams. They wanted their children to have opportunity, access to success.

All of us, my generation seemed to have split down the middle. Some of us handed our children the legacy of our parents and the rest, we somehow have screwed it all up. We gave birth to generations of selfish bullies and their victims, overgrown children in expensive suits, incapable of achieving true maturity; intellectual midgets with the empathy of Great Whites Sharks, the MEMEME generations.

“My parents didn’t give me the right things.”

All I could think was this, my parents didn’t give me all the things I might have wanted either, but my father did teach me to think and use my mind. My father gave me a moral compass and a work ethic by his example. I was never hungry, never cold, never without a roof over my head even if that roof wasn’t always welcoming or safe. The truth is, by the time I was twenty-three I was an adult; weren’t most of us? It would never have occurred to me to utter the words above. We all have stories, some of them are good, some not so great, some truly suck. We though, we are responsible for the outcomes of our lives, not anyone else. Yes, the world sucks sometimes. Yes, our upbringing can be a hindrance if we allow it; all I can say is so what get the hell over it at some point you and only you are responsible.

I see and hear these over grown children of ours, these MEMEME, do nothing, got nothing, pathetic, whining poor me children and I want to beat them about the head and shoulders. Yes, it is hard out here right now; I get it I really do. Yes, the economy sucks and education is expensive. Yes, we need to fix some things to make it better. However, if you had most if not all of the advantages barring inherited wealth you poor baby have absolutely no reason to complain so get off your narrow ass and do something with your life.

Stop blaming others including your parents for your failure to turn off the Xbox long enough to find a job. Sit down and figure out what it is you want to do and be and begin doing it and being it. Do not look to others to polish that silver platter and hand it to you. Do not blame others for your failure to pursue your opportunities; you are not a victim get over your pathological need to be one. The rest of us worked our asses off, try it.

I leave you with this, Malala Yousafzai a portrait in selflessness and courage.

Winter Flash – Loco

“Tell me what you think the problem is?”

“I really don’t know Doctor, I am so angry.”

“You have the right to feel that way.”

She glanced from her place on the couch. He reminded her of the Longleg spider her brother use to catch. She squirmed slightly and wondered again, why she was here.

“I sometimes feel like hurting strangers.”

“You have the right to feel that way.”

“Really Doctor, do you think so?”

She glanced over at the doctor thinking, ‘he really is creepy.’

“Yes, you have the right to your feelings.”

“Doctor, you really are loco.”


WinterFlashinthePan

It is a new season, time for a Winter of Disturbing Flashes. Flash in the Pan is brought to you by the remarkable Red of M3 fame, to join in the fun read the rules at the link provided and get to flashing!

The word this week isLoco, with a word limit of 100. Loco comes in at 99.

Hashtags: #flashfiction #getpublished with @RedmundPro

Indignity in the House

soapboxpileDignity

A way of appearing or behaving that suggests seriousness and self-control

The quality of being worthy of honor or respect

Merriam-Webster

For our comedic interlude, let’s talk about what America thinks of Congress. I think this is absolutely fabulous and nearly fell off my chair the first time I heard it, however what I do not find fabulous is the reasons for it. Rep. Alan Grayson (D-FL), brought to the floor of Congress a resolution asserting privilege under Rule IX.

This is a bit long, there are shorter versions available, however this is worth a listen I promise you.

The resolution was for nothing more or less than a vote to end the shutdown and insure our debt is paid through next year; he aptly named it the “Anti-Self-Destruction Act”. You can read this lovely and sane piece of legislation here: http://endthelunacy.com

While you are reading it, please I beg of you sign the petition! Last I checked, the petition is still 10,000 shy of the 25,000 needed before it can be presented. Sign it. Tweet it. Send it to your friends. This truly is non-partisan. It is funding at current levels while Congress hammers out a budget.

Now to things I think are funny or important in the midst of the horror show that is our current government shutdown, looming debt crisis. Congress truly has reached a new low, there are only a very few things the American public find more appealing, watch this one2:

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I would like to think we human beings are capable of logical thought, of compassion and empathy. I have always wanted to believe these things about my fellow human beings. Yes, I know you are out there reading this and thinking to yourselves, but Val you have met some real true proof to the contrary. You would be right, I have. On the other hand, I have met some truly wonderful people in my life. I have met people who have overcome real hardship to soar. I have met people who walked out of prisons to stand beside me in Victim Impact and I have cried as I heard their stories. I have listened to offenders tell their stories during Victim Impact and I have been moved.

Then there is this clown, this fool who climbed out of brutal poverty with the help of society to achieve greatness but who would prefer no one else be given the same opportunities. Listen to what Dr. Ben Carson has to say about ACA.

Of course, life wouldn’t be complete without acknowledging Faux has a new face, yes that is correct the retired good doctor has joined the line-up of talking heads to spew his trash.

Now, on to other wonderful things I found this week across the net. Want to send your congressman a pointed message? I surely did, in fact I think I will be sending at least one a day to good old Pete Sessions of Texas 32nd District, he of the scandalous lying and government shutdown support. I love this great site and whoever set it up, well I think they are magnificent.

http://fuckyoucongress.com/hey-tea-party-doing-nothing-is-doing-nothing

There are plenty of things to do at “Fuck you Congress” besides sending a nice bit of tweeting to your personal Congressman. There are links to voter registration, current information to browse and petitions of relevance like this one I hope you will sign:

Sign to send a message on Campaign Reform: http://www.rootstrikers.org/#!/

Finally, I am leaving you with this; Clint Smith a fabulous Teacher (Government Worker) and Spoken Word Poet. I had some wonderful teachers in my day, but never anyone this good.

This is by far one of the most moving pieces I have heard on the need for community movement and healthcare in a very long time.


1 http://clerk.house.gov/legislative/house-rules.pdf

2 http://www.publicpolicypolling.com/pdf/2013/PPP_Release_CONGRESS_108.pdf

Wake Up Citizens

wordle2

I am a bit annoyed. Truthfully, I am more than a bit annoyed, I am over the top, heels over ass pissed the hell right off. What is wrong with people? By people, I do have specific people in mind.

markmeadows

Seditious Mark Meadows, Jr Congressman North Carolina (R)

I could list the seventy-nine seditious ass clowns who signed the letter initiated by North Carolina Junior Representative Mark Meadows; instead, I will simply provide you the link to his site, which includes the letter and the signatures1. I want to talk about something other than the shutdown of the United States government, though my subject is closely tied to this one.

I don’t want to talk about those subversive son-of-bitches in D.C., they simply do not care; keeping in mind, they are still collecting their pay. Don’t be fooled by their sad eyed bullshit, they got their checks on September 30 through Direct Deposit and are not expecting another until October 30. They cannot ‘defer’ their own pay; no indeed not, it is all a great big lie. The only thing they can do is donate it and very few of them are doing that.

So let’s talk about what is equally important, what is critical to the function of our government and your and my voice in the future. We don’t have much of one left because the last time something this important was before SCOTUS we blinked. If we blink this time, we lose our voice, perhaps forever.

McCutcheon v. FEC

With Citizen United v.FEC the door was opened to corporations, giving them the same voice citizens had in the workings of our government. Now of course this isn’t true, corporations, especially multi-national corporations, have a great deal more money than you and I thus they had more to give. In essence, what SCOTUS said with their ruling, money is speech, corporations just like you, and I have the same First Amendment Rights to Free Speech. Citizen United broke the dam, opened the floodgates and the money poured in as the legislators at every level (federal, state and local) draped  “For Sale” signs around their necks and stuck their hands out. The voice of the citizen, it was drowned out by the voice of the big business and their CEO’s, as it never had been before.

We were asleep. We let this happen. Only after the fact, have some of us woken up to what this meant to our political systems, to our democratic republic. Now, only after the fact we do we bemoan the loss of our voice in Congress. Now, as we watch the Koch funded Tea Party terrorist shut down the government do we shake our head in dismay and question our reasoning. Now, as we watch those sleazy and ignorant knuckle draggers obstruct the appropriate workings of our government and threaten the economy of this nation and the f’ng world, do we realize what it meant to cede our authority and our voice in the government “by the People and for the People” do we realize what ‘money as speech’ means. Unfortunately, there are still those, even those without a pot to piss in or window to throw it out of, who continues to defend Citizens United, the Tea Party and those who would strip the very meat off their bones.

So, let us quickly talk about McCutcheon v. FEC, which was argued before SCOTUS on 8-October to raise further individual campaign limits to $3.5M per donor to a single party’s candidates, parties or committees. Previously, a single donor was limited to $123,000 in direct donation to parties or committees, or $2,600 in individual contributions to 17 candidates for a total of $46,200 and an additional $70,800 to a political action committee (PAC) or group within a two-year federal cycle. Keep in mind this is only on the federal level, these wealthy donors are not similarly limited at the state or local level. Mr. McCutcheon though, he is outraged his voice is limited, his ability to buy his own personal Congressman or woman is limited in this way.

Those who have joined in his suit, they are also similarly outraged. They are:

  • The Republican National Committee
  • Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, joining as an outside party

Oh, did I forget to mention Shaun McCutcheon is a little known multi-millionaire from Alabama who is active in conservative circles? Yes, indeed our friend Mr. McCutcheon is another one of the ‘big’ donors who likes to buy up legislators to make certain his personal agenda is well represented at the expense of all the rest of America’s citizens. He is the CEO of Coalmont Electrical Development, an engineering firm specializing in mining. He is according to the chairman of the Alabama Republican Party, Bill Armistead, a sincere Republican and Activist. This sincere member of the 1% first broached the idea of his lawsuit to further strip your and my voices from the public forum at the 2012 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC)2.

We need too really think hard about this one for just one minute, currently a single donor can give $123,000 in any two-year cycle. This amount is twice what the average American family earns, that is two times what the Average American Family has to pay their bills with, save against catastrophe with, save for their children’s future education with, pay for their healthcare with, feed themselves with and contribute to political campaigns, candidates, committees and parties from. Consider some of this:

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A bit of history is important, limits were put in place to prevent corruption or the appearance of corruption after Nixon and the Watergate scandal of the 1970’s. Watergate led to changes in campaign financing, as well as, the Freedom of Information Act in 1974. In addition to these legislative changes, it became expected that candidates would disclose personal finances including tax filings. In fact, Mitt Romney was the first presidential candidate since that time to balk at the release of personal financial information, wonder why that was.

So we must ask the question, like so much else we achieved to move this nation forward toward equality in the past one hundred years, why this why now? I think I can answer this question, we have the perfect storm, we have a court that will continue to strip away, every progressive accomplishment and every citizen’s right we have gained. Someday, those at the top will look back and it won’t be Ronald Reagan they will worship it will be George W. Bush, who tipped the scales of the Supreme Court in their favor.

Supreme_Court_US_2010

Are you willing to see this happen? I am certainly not prepared for the slide backward, not in my lifetime. I am constantly astounded when anyone who is barely able to meet their rent or mortgage defends the likes of Shaun McCutcheon, the infamous Koch brothers or for that matter the GOP and their slimy Right Wing minority the Tea Party contingent. Is it not clear yet? These people are not your friends, their version of the American Dream is an American Nightmare for 99% of us, this Shutdown is only a taste of what is to come under their vision of our future.

Tell SCOTUS, tell your Representative, tell the Administration: Enough is Enough. Return America to the People. Restore Campaign Finance.

Tell the Supreme Court No: http://www.demos.org/mccutcheon-v-fec-new-citizens-united

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

1http://meadows.house.gov/press-releases/meadows-sends-letter-encouraging-house-leadership-to-defund-obamacare/#.UlV_9FDoZ8F

2http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/10/08/meet-shaun-mccutcheon-the-republican-activist-trying-to-make-history-at-the-supreme-court.html

Election Spending: http://www.demos.org/publication/election-spending-2012-pre-election-analysis-federal-election-commission-data

Complete Analysis: http://www.demos.org/publication/stop-next-citizens-united

Brief filed with court: http://www.demos.org/publication/amicus-brief-supreme-court-mccutcheon-v-fec

Report Special Interest over National Interest: http://www.demos.org/publication/billion-dollar-democracy-unprecedented-role-money-2012-elections

Super Pac money Auctioning Democracy: http://www.demos.org/publication/auctioning-democracy-rise-super-pacs-and-2012-election

Millionaire Megaphones: http://www.demos.org/publication/million-dollar-megaphones-super-pacs-and-unlimited-outside-spending-2012-elections

Wendy Davis Kicked It

KickmIt has been a very long time since I have been to a political event. This is not because I am disinterested in politics, as anyone who reads me knows. The truth is since my shooting I have an abiding fear of crowds. It is difficult for me to quell my fear, to stop my heart beating outside of my chest. Nevertheless, I did it. In fact, I did it twice in one day and I am glad I did.

On 3-October-2013, Texas Senator Wendy Davis announced she was entering the race for Governor. I was there! The invocation by Tarrant County Commissioner Roy Brooks was old school church, moving and at times funny. In my mind, his most appropriate request:

“We ask you, Lord, to change her pink running shoes into combat boots … so she can do battle against the negative forces that rule this state”.

Following the invocation, former TXU executive Alex Jimenez introduced Senator Davis with his own story of climbing from pole setter to Vice President at the largest power company in Texas. His story was met with cheers from the crowd even if his former employers name was met with jeers. Mr. Jimenez provided a fabulous backdrop to what is possible in Texas, just as Ms. Davis does. Their friendship extends back to her days on the Fort Worth City Council where she chaired the Council on Economic development.

Ms. Davis bounded onto the stage as “This Girl is on Fire” by Alicia Keyes played, the crowd was on their feet and enthusiasm was obvious. I must tell you, my nerves were on edge even as I was happy to be there, excited to be part of Texas politics and thrilled to see a woman of integrity with values close to my own fearlessly stand up knowing just how hard this next year was going to be. Make no mistake; this year is going to be hard for Wendy Davis. Even before she announced her intention to run, the attack dogs were out. Before the black drapes were pulled off her campaign signs, the ugly was being prepared and the negative ads were hitting the airwaves in Texas. From outside Texas things were just as nasty, those tweets rolled off, here are just a few examples:

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Of course, lest we forget we have our own champions of ignorance right here in Texas and one of them is currently the front-runner in the gubernatorial race. Greg Abbott is a hypocrite, a far right conservative, a friend and supporter of Ted Cruz; the Tea Party was damned near made for his brand of politics. This man got rich because of a freak accident, not just a little rich mind you but $10M or more rich. He is now a fervent advocate of Tort Reform and derides those who represent individuals in personal injury lawsuits. He has also never seen fit to defend or support others with disabilities; in fact, he has more than once made social gaffes like this one:

GregAbbott

We can only hope Greg Abbott continues down this path to become the Clayton Williams of this campaign, making it ever so much easier to show the stark contrast of the GOP Neanderthal thinking. Honestly? It doesn’t appear we have made much progress since ole’ Clayton made his ridiculous statements about Ann Richards and rape during their hard fought 1990 campaign. He out spent her 2:1 and was at the time considered a shoe in for the Austin Governor’s Mansion, until this:

Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? Currently Greg Abbott has approximately $25M in his war chest, much of it from out of state. There are no viable sources to tell us where his current war chest comes from yet. However if the history holds true we can expect when Follow the Money, Open Secrets and other reporting agencies start reporting numbers we will see a similar trend to Mr. Cruz and Mr. Perry, millionaires, Big Business, Banking, Big Oil and the far Right-Wing Paks contributing big dollars to keep Texas Red. The single issue nutcases were already out when I pulled up on Thursday, signs a-waving with “Keep Texas Red” and “Pro-Life Texas”, all I could think was dumbasses. I was hoping for a picture of them but by the time I had parked and walked back the police had moved them off.

It was a good day in Haltom City and later in Fort Worth at the reception. People were energized, applauding during all the speeches. The crowd was mixed, all ages from the very young to the octogenarian, every ethnicity and race was represented on the floor and in the surrounding seats. People were smiling, talking to strangers and kind, even for me with my nerves somewhat frayed by the crowd, it was a good day.

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Ms. Davis gave a good speech, she talked about her own humble beginnings and why she cares. She focused on how great Texas could be if we got out from under the yoke of Republican rule and the decimation of our education system and the deep cuts to our healthcare, no not women’s healthcare but our overall Texas Healthcare. She focused on the needs of the state, the needs of all citizens to achieve our goals through opportunity. She spoke for just under 15 minutes and she had the crowd on their feet. Most people don’t know Ms. Davis staged her first filibuster on the $5B cuts proposed by Rick Perry and his cohorts in the Republican Party to our education system. Her most recent filibuster for which she is better known wasn’t her first trip to the rodeo.

Senator Davis ended her announcement with this:

“Until every child from Longview to Lubbock to McAllen to Mesquite makes it to a stage like this, and gets their diploma, and knows that nothing will wash out the road to their future dreams, we will keep going,” she said. “Until the corridors of power are the corridors of the people, until problem-solving trumps partisanship, until our state is ‘a lot less lone and a lot more star,’ we will keep going. As long as we can make this great state even greater, we will keep going. Because with the right kind of leadership, the great state of Texas will keep its sacred promise that where you start has nothing to do with how far you can go.”

http://www.davis.senate.state.tx.us/

http://www.policymic.com/articles/51249/10-facts-about-wendy-davis-the-rookie-state-senator-from-texas

http://www.austinchronicle.com/blogs/news/2011-06-06/who-is-wendy-davis/

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/07/15/five-things-to-know-about-greg-abbott/

http://www.austinchronicle.com/blogs/news/2013-08-19/greg-abbott-and-the-fail-whale/

http://www.austinchronicle.com/news/2013-09-20/abbott-more-twitter-troubles/

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/08/20/1122097/-Clayton-Williams-Victims-of-Rape-Should-Relax-and-Enjoy-It

http://votesmart.org/candidate/campaign-finance/50168/greg-abbott#.UlAsnFDoZ8E

http://www.followthemoney.org/database/StateGlance/candidate.phtml?c=116443

Winter Flash – Delusional

Jaffee reclined against the hard back of his throne, avoiding the spindles and rails depicting his heroic ascent to power. He surveyed the scene of last night’s debauchery. The sycophants belly crawled across the floor, their whines white noise rising to thunder.

Jaffee polished his sword surveying what he had won by the strength of his arm. Should he desire it, he could demand any of these fools lay down so he could walk across them.

“Jeff, young man turn off that damned video game and clean your room!”

“Aw, Mom not now.”

“My God, you’re a delusional child.”


WinterFlashinthePan

It is a new season, time for a Winter of Disturbing Flashes. Flash in the Pan is brought to you by the remarkable Red of M3 fame, to join in the fun read the rules at the link provided and get to flashing!

The word this week is Delusional, with a word limit of 100. Delusional comes in at 99.

Hashtags: #flashfiction #getpublished with @RedmundPro

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