Three Dangerously Blind Mice

Rottenecards_3711530_xd6br5b52tSpice is nice but Incest is Best’.

If they are going to do this rather sick and nasty act, I just wish they wore protection.

You know, put a raincoat on, prevent conception. Do not under any circumstance visit the products of their choice to keep it in the family on the rest of us.


 

Next up on the hit parade I have the triplets of ignorance and religious strife. Christian stupidity at its best or worst as the case may be. If ever there was ever a case for Atheism it would be these three.

Kim (the law doesn’t apply to me) Davis, Rowan County, Kentucky Clerk and self-elected martyr to the cause of civil rights denial.

Mike Huckabee, GOP Presidential Candidate without a clue, past Governor of Arkansas and Baptist Minister.dangerousmice

Rafael Edward “Ted” Cruz, GOP Presidential Candidate, Junior Senator from Texas, immigrant, Pentecostal Bible Thumper, Tea Party Rabble Rouser, Government Hater and Shut Down Organizer.

These three on the surface seem to not have much in common other than their God Love and in the case of Huckabee and Cruz their pursuit of the highest office of the land, but in fact they have far more in common than not. Let me explain.

All three believe the Constitution is not the ‘Law of the Land’ and should be ignored when it doesn’t align with their worldview. All three believe a Dominion doctrine that places literal Biblical interpretation above secular law of the land. All three believe their religious ‘rights’ trump your and my legal and civil rights, every single time and without recourse. Were it within their power we would all be living under a Christian Taliban, believe me it would look very much like the most conservative Middle Eastern country under Muslim Theocratic rule, democracy would be thrown to the curb along with Civil Rights.

All three believe the following based on their version of Biblical Law:

  • Women should not have access to Reproductive Healthcare or Abortion, Constitution be damned
  • Marriage is between a Man and Women only, Constitution be damned
  • Keep Christian God in the Public Sphere, Constitution be damned

As to that third troublesome bullet, they also believe this nation was founded by Christians was designed to be a Christian Nation for Christians. They are clearly without a foundation in history. Ignorance can be corrected with education however, one must be willing to learn, these three are without a willingness to learn, clearly. These buffoons are ignorance personified, their desperate need for attention at any cost, certainly at the cost of other peoples civil rights is frightening.

All three are now or have been in the past elected officials. Think about that; give that a moment to sink in. These are elected officials who would refuse to grant civil rights to you or I simply based on our gender, our sexual orientation, or religious affiliation or lack thereof. These elected officials would refuse you or I access to health care, this is especially true if you are a woman in need of reproductive healthcare up to and including abortion even to save your life. While you may not agree with abortion, it is the Law of the Land that I have access to it, that it is my choice and that it is none of your damn business.

Mike has real issues with women and their reproductive healthcare.

Rafael Cruz and Reverend Huckabee both believe women shouldn’t be paid equally, do not have the right to demand equality in the workplace. Both believe women have a place in society, at home bearing and raising babies. This of course flies in the face of the fact Rafael’s wife worked quite lucratively for Goldman Sachs, I suppose it only applies when it is the rest of us.

Just in case we need any further reminder of the absolute and utter ignorance of the good Reverend Huckabee, this Presidential Candidate believes that Dred Scott remains the Law of the Land. Yes, he truly believes this, forgetting amendments 13-15 which fully undid that ugly piece of our judicial history. But you know, why learn about the Constitution when it doesn’t suit you, kinda like picking and choosing which parts of the Bible you will apply; right?

While Kim Davis is making $80K being a twat and not doing her job. This weekend she will be receiving the “Cost of Discipleship” Award at the Values Voters Summit, sponsored by the Family Research Council. Yes, them also known as FRC and listed as a Hate Group by the ACLU for their frequent attacks on the LGBTQ community (oh big shock there) and others this is the primary sponsor of the Value Voters Summit. This is where Rafael and Mike, along with all the other clowns from the GOP the clown car will gather this weekend to see Kim receive her award for standing for her principles to collect her government check while denying the Civil Rights of the citizens of Rowan County.

While I could likely write thousands of more words about these three throwbacks to another time, I will stop here with the simple comment; not only do I wish their parents had worn protection, barring this I wish the education they disdain had sunk in and truly I wish they had not bred either. It is truly unfortunate they are training up another generation of hate filled, biased, ignorant bigots.

A little of what Rafael thinks the problem is.

Rome burns. These pseudo Christians hold the lighter and fiddle while the cinders smolder. We are doomed if we don’t open the floodgates and drown them all soon.

http://presidential-candidates.insidegov.com/compare/52-62/Mike-Huckabee-vs-Ted-Cruz

http://www.valuesvotersummit.org/schedule

Our Apathy Pays Dividends

OpEdMy great and dear light at the end of the tunnel, Deborah over at Monster in Your Closet, reminded me today there are many ways to look at a problem, many angles to hold a prism to the light. When she wrote about panic attacks in the air here I burst out laughing, I remember well feeling exactly the same panic at wheels up. What I was really thinking about while reading her piece though is why I have not touched my fingers to my keyboard, why I haven’t wanted to write for weeks. I considered why what I have been thinking hasn’t been making its way from my brain to my blog. My normal righteous indignation has hidden under a tree, whimpered and cringed from the light of day like a beaten dog.

Here is the thing; this nation is descending into a morass of ignorance and no ignorance is not bliss, not by any stretch of any imagination or any measurement, we are growing stupider and we seem to like it that way. I am finally at a loss for words; I finally after all these long years am without the language necessary to say what is needed. I must admit to not understanding the people of this nation any longer. There was a time I understood, I even believed there was a necessity for both sides of the aisle to exist, it kept us all honest. Elyse over at FiftyFourandaHalf just today reminded me of that not so distant past in her piece on the suicide of Thomas Schweich, a contender for the office of governor in the not so great state of Missouri. I was reminded, once upon a time more than half my family were staunch members of the GOP, yet they were not Racist, or against public education, or against public assistance, or against Social Security, or against immigration; nor were they ignorant of the Constitution and what it really said about Guns or Religion.

I am without words, truly. I remember arguing with my father over the dinner table about real issues of the day he was a staunch Republican by the way nearly his entire life, he bled the party line of fiscal conservativism, he could not understand how he could produce such a hippie, such a ‘blasted Liberal, dammit’. The one thing about my father was he saw clearly and he hated across the DAD&Meboard; he hated LBJ, Ronald Reagan, Richard Nixon, Bill Clinton and Bush Jr with equal intensity and all for different reasons. He voted for Barack Obama and was very proud of that vote.

Today, those members of my family who retain their GOP card do so without any real understanding of what the party truly stands for. When called to the table to defend the latest horror story, the latest idiocy, the latest dumbass thing to come out of the mouths of those who would rule, they cannot do so only relying upon the sound bites, they picked along the way to defend their position in Right Wing LaLa land. When presented with facts they sniff and rock back, scramble for purchase on the quicksand of their position.

We get what we deserve, whether it is the government we deserve or otherwise. This time we truly did get what we deserve, those of us who wanted more and better we stayed home in droves. What did we think; others would pick up the slack of our apathy? We listened to those who said we wouldn’t go to the polls and thought to ourselves, well it is a lost cause so why bother; we stayed home. That is exactly what they were hoping for and they won.

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Ignorant really; GOP majority in the House and the Senate, the ability to make the next two years sheer hell for this nation and this President and we sat on our asses and handed it to them through our apathy. The absolute genius of it is astounding and we fell for it, not for the first time even we know the game and we fall for it every single time. This time though, we are going to pay and pay big, it is our fault and we should be ashamed of ourselves. We handed the keys to the nation to a bunch of low intellect know-nothing, bought and paid for members of the extremist coalition who are intent on destroying the nation and handing the remains to those who would rule without the will of the people.

fox-gop-2016-field-120114

Congratulations citizens of America, you have finally succeeded in showing your true nature and intent. What you really want is to be second class citizens of the world, ruled by those who don’t give a damn if you live or die, if your children are ignorant so long as you have them for their wars, if you live in poverty so long as you labor for their benefit you will be given enough to drag your azz to their crumbling factories for another day and when you are too old to do that, better hope someone loves you enough to take you in, cause there won’t be a safety net left to catch you ass.

All I can think is, rise up before it is too late. Do not allow this once great dream of a free nation to crumble at the feet of your apathy. Look around; do not allow what little progress we made toward unity be destroyed by the hate and fear of a shrinking minority. Rise up and look around, stand up and take back the power we own as citizens. Stand up and demand accountability of those in public office, whether they are elected officials, bureaucrats or the Police.

Honestly, look around and ask yourself is this the country you want? If the answer is no, what are you willing to do to change it?

Omnipotent Really

Hands_of_God_and_AdamWhat if you had a single day to do whatever wanted, just one single day. Whatever you did would remain, no one could undo it or wish it away. What if you or I were granted the power to affect change, what would you do with that single day and all that power.

The ramifications of that much power at the tips of your fingers sounds spectacular, doesn’t it?


Untutored in being an omnipotent  entity would we look around and begin to right all the wrongs we see? Where would we start?

But wait, your vision of utopia might not be the same as mine? Your changes might well bring misery to others. You are a minority of one, you could of course choose to talk your decisions over with others or simply go it alone.

What will you do? How to choose with this great power to make dreams come true and only a single day to accomplish it all in. This could well give you a few grey hairs by the end of the day.

Maybe you would cure terrible disease, eradicate Aids and Cancer, other scourges Alzheimer’s and Dementia. That leaves so many other terrible plagues though, maybe you could broaden your scope and eliminate all illness from the world now and in the future.

A-helmet-rifle-set-of-dog-tags-and-pair-of-boots-called-a-Fallen-Soldier-Battle-Cross-stands-in-front-of-the-Vietnam-War-Memorial-Wall-repLooking across the globe there are terrible wars, you could wave your hand and stop them. Bring peace to all the lands, causing all the warriors to put down their weapons of death. Eliminate all the horrible tools of mass destruction, the poison gases and nuclear bombs. But in doing this could you also eliminate all the reasons for war?

Conceivably it is something of more immediate concern you would try to change, something more in your neighborhood, something more real to you. What would that be? Are you in the United States? Would you consider the violence marring our landscape and think, ‘I can fix this with a wave of my hand’. Then do it. How would that look afterward, would the Constitution suddenly be without the 2nd Amendment or instead would our attitudes, our culture of violence the hearts and minds of our citizens be changed. Could you possible conceive of what this means? What is underneath this terrible culture of death and mayhem, this murderous nature of ours. How did you fix the trajectory? What are the ramifications of your ‘fix’?

There are so many things any one of us might pick on our day of omnipotence, while we sit in our seat of power with just twenty-four hours to exercise our will. We could of course choose the selfish way out of this dilemma, we could choose to do not one damned thing at all for World Peace, Earth or Human Unity. We could choose instead to do only selfish things, things that serve only ourselves. We could promise with our new future we will do good works later when we have fixed ourselves first.

Do you think I am rambling just for the sake of it? No, I am really not.

There is this idiotic rumbling by many in our nation the President isn’t doing enough, I have to ask, enough what? He is one man and he is not infused with omnipotence through his election. In fact, the President of the United States does not write the law, he does not vote on the laws that are written, he has the limited power of doing one of two things when they arrive at his desk from Congress; he can sign them into law or he can veto them.

The President is not a God, not even a minor God. He does not have the power to wave his hand and fix what is broken. Unfortunate really given the situation this nation finds itself in this morning. The tawdry demagogues of the far Right have brought our government to a screeching halt, as they had planned since before they took power in one house of Congress in 2010. Their self-awareness is limited to what they want, what they have promised to their constituents since before the elections of 2010, Anarchy. It doesn’t matter what the issue is, only they bring down the government:

  • Budget Cuts – give us our way or we will shut it downAnarchy Reigns
  • Planned Parenthood funding – give us our way or we will shut it down
  • Block access to birth control for women – give us our way or we will shut it down
  • Repeal ACA (twice) – give us our way or we will shut it down

The above are only the five (5) times and a partial list of why, the House Republicans have pushed this government to the brink of shut down. Until now, today government workers in all branches of government have been ordered to proceed with shutdown activities, take their toys and go home until further notice. TURN OFF THE LIGHTS.

I did not include in the above the two (2) times those same selfish Azzhats from the Tea Party and their beaten allies from the original GOP threatened to carry this nation over the Fiscal Cliff, not pay our bills, not raise the debt ceiling. Of course, what these irresponsible idiots fail to understand or maybe simply do not give two shits about, the first time they did this our Bond Rating was lowered making the cost of credit higher. By threatening the Full Faith and Credit of the United States, they threaten not just the economy of this nation but the economy of the world.

Since the GOP took power in the House, they have not passed a single piece of relevant new legislation; in the two years prior to their taking over the House fifteen (15) major pieces of new Legislation were passed. They have obfuscated and obstructed, they have threatened and they have puffed up their chests along with fear mongering among their base. Their hubris is monumental in the face of their failure to accomplish a single positive outcome for this nation.

the-fall-1511Oh wait, they promised to shut down the government before they were elected. Now, on 1-October-2013 they have finally accomplished what they set out to do, Government Shut Down.

So, Anarchy rules in the House. The Government of the United States is Shut Down. Eight hundred thousand government workers will be without paychecks and we do not know for how long. Government services will not be open for business, the only good news on this one NO NEW GUN PERMITS.

Guess what? ACA is open for business, Americans can start signing up today.

So if you were omnipotent for just one day what would you do?

GOP, Rape and the New Rage

This is the world of the future for women if the GOP takes the White House. The following may be sound ideological, even strident, I won’t apologize for this now or at any time in the future. I apologize for my offending your delicate sensibilities on this subject, stop reading now if you are of the opinion a woman should not be the ultimate Sovereign of their procreative health and choice. Please stop reading now if you are of the opinion old men, government or religious institutions should have greater authority over a woman’s body integrity than the individual woman.

This is the platform of the GOP.

“Faithful to the “self-evident” truths enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, we assert the sanctity of human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children. We oppose using public revenues to promote or perform abortion or fund organizations which perform or advocate it and will not fund or subsidize health care which includes abortion coverage. We support the appointment of judges who respect traditional family values and the sanctity of innocent human life. We oppose the nonconsensual withholding or withdrawal of care or treatment, including food and water, from people with disabilities, including newborns, as well as the elderly and infirm, just as we oppose active and passive euthanasia and assisted suicide.”

Please note in the above the absence of any exceptions, none. Not to save the life of the already born woman, not for rape, not for incest.

Since Ronald Reagan invited the Religious Right into the GOP, there has been a slow march toward every greater misogyny, punishing women for our sexuality and choosing to express it. Essentially, punishing us for having a vagina and using it was intended, something more than spitting out baby after baby.

The following are some of my favorite quotes from elected GOP members across the US:

“I’m very proud of my pro-life record,” Ryan told WJHL-TV in Virginia in an interview aired Thursday. “I’ve always adopted the idea, the position, that the method of conception doesn’t change the definition of life.”

Paul Ryan, VP Candidate WJHL.com Interview

“First of all, from what I understand from doctors, (pregnancy from rape) is really rare,” Akin told KTVI television in an interview widely distributed by Democrats. “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”

Representative Todd Akin ( R ), Fox News interview

“I struggled with it myself for a long time, but I came to realize life is that gift from God,” he said. “And I think even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that God intended to happen.”

Representative Richard Mourdock, Indiana Senate Debate

“Understand though, that when we talk about exceptions, we talk about rape, incest, health of a woman, life of a woman. Life of the woman is not an exception.” Duckworth accused Walsh of allowing a woman to die rather than get an abortion, and Walsh said that was unfair. After the debate, he explained further to the press, NPR reports. He told CNN: “This is an issue that opponents of life throw out there to make us look unreasonable. There’s no such exception as life of the mother, and as far as health of the mother, same thing, with advances in science and technology. Health of the mother has been, has become a tool for abortions any time under any reason.” He told WGN: “With modern technology and science, you can’t find one instance … there is no such exception as life of the mother, and as far as health of the mother, same thing.

Representative Joe Walsh, ( R ), Illinois ongoing Debate and interviews

I lived something similar to that with my own family. She chose life, and I commend her for that. She knew my views. But, fortunately for me, I didn’t have to.. she chose the way I thought. No don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t rape.

Scolforo: Similar how?

Smith: Uh, having a baby out of wedlock.

Scolforo: That’s similar to rape?

Smith: No, no, no, but… put yourself in a father’s situation, yes. It is similar. But, back to the original, I’m pro-life, period.

Tom Smith ( R ), Reporters Interview
_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Mitt Romney started his political life ambivalent toward the issue of women’s right to choose. His mother was firmly Pro-Choice during her Senate race. According to Mr. Romney he has always been personally Pro-Life and politically willing to keep a foot in both camps until he started this run for the Presidency. Now he is firmly and without exception in debt to the Religious Ideologues who hold the GOP in their hot hands, ready to turn the clock back and push women into the kitchen and the closet. Early in this run Mitt stated he was Pro-Life without exception, gaining the support of the crazies. Since that time he has moderated his stance, now he will make exceptions for Rape, Incest and the life of the already born and enfranchised woman, to save her life.

Keep in mind though, Mitt has said without equivocation it is his goal to overturn Roe v. Wade. It is his plan to defund Planned Parenthood. He fully supports disallowing the tax exemption for any health insurance policy that includes Abortion as a covered service. His Vice Presidential pick has co-sponsored five (5) anti-abortion bills all of which were dubious in their language, infantilize women and further strip them of their legal rights,  personal authority and body integrity.

My personal favorite is the Sanctity of Life Act, this little gem of a bill would have stripped SCOTUS and all other courts of their authority to hear challenges and rule, while at the same time making abortion mostly illegal for any and all reasons, no exceptions. Paul Ryan and Todd Akin were co-sponsors on this treat, not once but they introduced this in multiple sessions of congress.

Before I end my tirade I want to remind women and men, these ‘Sanctity’ of the sperm, because this is what they are, bills are nothing more than attempts to diminish women. Attempts to define the ‘life’ of a zygote as having greater value than an already born women; they are rubbish. When Mitt Romney or Paul Ryan call the social issues, particularly women’s issues such as our right to determine our health and future nothing more than a distraction from the ‘real’ issues of the day they show their true colors. The men I quoted are not on the right side of history and those who pick up the banner and run with it are running backwards and make me afraid.

These Bills not only want to strip women of their right to access safe and legal abortion, they will take many safe forms of contraceptives off the market. They will make IVF illegal. They will make most forms of stem cell research illegal. Some of the Bills introduced, including Paul Ryans would give a Rapist the right to sue his victim to prevent her from crossing state lines to obtain an abortion if the worst were to happen.

I fully support your right to be Pro-Life, whether for religious reasons or because you truly believe life begins at conception. This is your right.

Stay out of my business. Make your decisions based on your personal beliefs and choices. Do not interfere with my right to make my decisions based on my personal beliefs, my doctor’s medically sound advice and what science tells me. I love science and believe in it.

When someone says to me these things don’t matter they make me cringe. When they say these are distractions I realize they believe that 51% of the population of this nation, women; their mothers, daughters, wives don’t matter. But I am not a special interest group any longer, I am part of a majority. I am a bread winner, in fact the primary bread winner. I am not a distraction, but if the GOP wins my daughters and granddaughters might just once again become distractions, less than or not enough.

I fear for our daughters in the world the GOP wants to create. I fear for our daughters in a world where Rape is no longer a violent assault but something equivalent to having a child out of wedlock, or maybe ‘Gods will’, another form of conception. I fear for our daughters who might not have access to safe, affordable and certain contraceptives and will be subject to the same condemnation I was as an eleven-year-old Rape Victim with nowhere to turn and no one to protect me.

Is this the world we want for our daughters? Is this the world we fought for?

Race 2012, Platforms & Ideology

This nation has taken on the inequity of education at every level from K through university as part of the on-going debate. The question we have to ask ourselves is it only poverty that drives the inequity or is there something else at work is there a racial undercurrent, still. It is hard to ask the question, hard to look at the year and think back to the days of Civil Rights marches, sit-ins, busing and finally forced school integration and have to ask; have we really not come any further than this?

There are some things we can see in black and white, there is no question there is a lack of parity. What is not so easy to determine is why. It is easy to say this is pure institutional racism, brush our hands together and move on to the next subject. Is that enough, have we solved the riddle? I don’t think we have, the inequity built into our education system has been with us for a very long time, it is the outcome of how we fund and administer our local schools. It is only natural, eventually, as poverty forces people together into communities, schools along with other services would suffer the consequence of economic decline.

It isn’t just poverty that divides us. Unless we cannot absolutely avoid it, we will always seek out communities where we are comfortable. We will always seek out a place to settle where the people look like us and sound like us.

Ruby Bridges, New Orleans 1960

It is natural, we might not even realize we are doing it; it is our own deep-seated fears and underlying prejudice driving us on, informing our choices. We might not be Racist, we might not be a raging flaming outright Bigot but these are very different animals from carrying that seed of fear and that ember of racial bias. We are by nature Xenophobic; we fear what is different from us.

I am not a Racist!

Except where racism is overt, where the neo-Nazis, KKK and others of their ilk march down city streets decked out in well-pressed sheets or Para-military gear, racism hides behind polite social forms. Since the signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 there have been changes in what is accepted in our public discourse regarding race we have even found a racial etiquette, at least until recently. This etiquette though, this burying of the Jim Crow era overtness has given way to new resentments and new racial dog-whistles.

  • Government Intervention
  • Welfare
  • Affirmative Action
  • Title I
  • Drug War

What does all this mean when it comes to education? It is an unfortunate truth, the very communities that have been ripped apart by our failed policies and barely concealed bias, have failing schools. We covertly accept some children, within some communities will not thrive and thus set up the circumstances for them to fail while paying lip service to hoped for success.

I am not going to try to hide my disdain today; the following quotes are taken directly from the GOP Platform, you can read all about their thoughts starting on page 35 [2]:

The Republican Party is the party of fresh and innovative ideas in education.

periodic rigorous assessments on the fundamentals, especially math, science, reading, history, and geography; renewed focus on the Constitution and the writings of the Founding Fathers, and an accurate account of American history that celebrates the birth of this great nation;

We renew our call for replacing “family planning” programs for teens with abstinence education which teaches abstinence until marriage as the responsible and respected standard of behavior. Abstinence from sexual activity is the only protection that is 100 percent effective against out-of-wedlock pregnancies and sexually-transmitted diseases including HIV/AIDS when transmitted sexually. It is effective, science-based, and empowers teens to achieve optimal health outcomes and avoid risks of sexual activity.

We support keeping federal funds from being used in mandatory or universal mental health, psychiatric, or socio-emotional screening programs.

Republican Governors have led in the effort to reform our country’s under performing education system, and we applaud these advancements.

Now let me just quickly give some examples of what one Republican Governor has done as part of the reform of his under performing system.

  • Removed Thomas Jefferson from history books as part of the Enlightenment. Why you ask? Well because he was a known Deist who coined the phrase “separation of Church and state”; can’t have that coming out of the mouths of one of our Founding Fathers. He is still in the History Books, obviously can’t remove him completely but he isn’t mentioned as one of the key figures of the Enlightenment.[1]
  • Added a section called the unintended consequences of Affirmative Action. In the meantime, there is a section about the positive aspects of slavery in America and the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade is now referred to simply as ‘Atlantic Triangular Trade’. [1]

Can you begin to guess who this genius of Educational reform is? This stellar representative of a GOP Right Wing-nut might be? This would be President? Oh, I won’t hold you in suspense; it is my very own Governor Rick Perry. Only in Texas would they think to screw the pooch of Education this deep, keeping in mind a very large portion of our students are poor, Hispanic or Black.

The GOP promotes school choice, so do I so should we all. The GOP also promotes vouchers and privatization of our education system, here is where the GOP and I part ways. Families with no means to send their children outside of their communities, no transportation, no extra funds for school uniforms will not be in a position to ‘choose’ schools outside of their immediate communities. School choice is only for those with true choices, true means beyond the single ‘voucher’ for tuition and possibly books. The meme of borrowing money from your parents doesn’t begin to touch on what poverty means to those whose entire communities have been decimated by it.

Private industry will not build schools or invest in communities that represent no return on that investment, no profit. What does this mean? It means public funds will be all that remains and will be even more limited so long as we continue to limit public funding to property tax collection. It means after the Unions have been busted, public school teacher ranks have been further demonized and decimated and school text have been bastardized by boards with agendas, our children our future will be left in failing systems with no hope and no future.

Is this Race Based? It is poverty based and has the unintentional effect of further kicking the can down the road, closing the door on dreams and opportunity for those who would like to live the once real American Dream.

Is this Race Based? Perhaps a more important question is this truly unintentional or is it simply the new more polite Jim Crow.

http://nces.ed.gov/programs/coe/indicator_sdi.asp

http://nces.ed.gov/pubs2012/2012006.pdf

http://www.census.gov/prod/2011pubs/acsbr10-05.pdf

[1] http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/13/education/13texas.html?_r=0

[1] http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/22/education/22texas.html?fta=y

[2] http://whitehouse12.com/republican-party-platform/

http://www.democrats.org/democratic-national-platform#moving-america

Civil Free Fall, Platforms 2012

We come to what was intended to be the last of the 2012 Platform comparisons, Social Reformation or do what I say whether it is in your best interest or not. Both parties have a great deal to say about Society and social direction, both have their own ideas about the course our nation should be traveling and what is wrong with us. Obviously, the Candidates at every level have been speaking their minds for many months on many of the issues so we might think we know what is in store for us if one party or the other win the day in November, but do we really understand the platforms.

I am to the best of my ability going to try to keep this to the issues within the platforms and keep my opinions out of the way. I saved the social issues to the last knowing this would be the most difficult.

Let’s get to it shall we?

DNC GOP

Civil Rights

We believe in an America where everybody gets a fair shot and everybody plays by the same set of rules. At the core of the Democratic Party is the principle that no one should face discrimination on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, language, religion, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or disability status. Democrats support our civil rights statutes and we have stepped up enforcement of laws that prohibit discrimination in the workplace and other settings. We are committed to protecting all communities from violence. We are committed to ending racial, ethnic, and religious profiling and requiring federal, state, and local enforcement agencies to take steps to eliminate the practice, and we continue to support enforcement of Title VI. Nothing

Women’s Rights

We will urge ratification of the Convention for the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women Nothing
We will continue to promote the full engagement of women in the political and economic spheres. We will work to address underlying socio-economic problems, including women’s access to health, education, and food security. And we will ensure that women are equal participants in reconciliation and development in areas affected by conflict. Under our Constitution, treaties become the law of the land. So it is all the more important that the Congress—the Senate through its ratifying power and the House through its appropriating power—shall reject agreements whose long-range impact on the American family is ominous or unclear. These include the U.N. Convention on Women’s Rights, the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and the U.N.
President Obama overturned the “global gag rule,” a ban on federal funds to foreign family planning organizations that provided information about, counseling on, or offered abortions. And that is why the administration has supported lifesaving family planning health information and services. The United Nations Population Fund has a shameful record of collaboration with China’s program of compulsory abortion. We affirm the Republican Party’s long-held position known as the Mexico City Policy, first announced by President Reagan in 1984, which prohibits the granting of federal monies to non-governmental organization that provide or promote abortion.
The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to make decisions regarding her pregnancy, including a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay. We oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right. Abortion is an intensely personal decision between a woman, her family, her doctor, and her clergy; there is no place for politicians or government to get in the way. We also recognize that health care and education help reduce the number of unintended pregnancies and thereby also reduce the need for abortions. We strongly and unequivocally support a woman’s decision to have a child by providing affordable health care and ensuring the availability of and access to programs that help women during pregnancy and after the birth of a child, including caring adoption programs. Faithful to the “self-evident” truths enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, we assert the sanctity of human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children. We oppose using public revenues to promote or perform abortion or fund organizations which perform or advocate it and will not fund or subsidize health care which includes abortion coverage. We support the appointment of judges who respect traditional family values and the Sanctity of innocent human life.
We are committed to ending violence against women, why Vice President Joe Biden originally wrote and championed the Violence Against Women Act during his time in the Senate and why we support reauthorizing and strengthening it now. Nothing
The President and the Democratic Party believe that women have a right to control their reproductive choices. Democrats support access to affordable family planning services, and President Obama and Democrats will continue to stand up to Republican efforts to defund Planned Parenthood health centers. The Affordable Care Act ensures that women have access to contraception in their health insurance plans, and the President has respected the principle of religious liberty. Democrats support evidence-based and age-appropriate sex education. Nothing

 

See my notes below

My Notes: I urge you to read in its entirety the GOP statement on women’s health services beginning on page 13, I have not posted it here. I also recommend reading those UN White Papers, Conventions and Reports the GOP takes issue with. The links are below. The GOP has stated their intention to overturn the Affordable Healthcare Act. Within this context they have also stated their firm intention to limit access women’s health services including abortion, birth control and other services where these collide with ‘moral’ convictions of the insurance provider, employer or medical services provider. This information is provided in detail on pages 32 – 34 of the GOP Platform.

Same Sex Marriage & DOMA

We support the right of all families to have equal respect, responsibilities and protections under the law. We support marriage equality and support the movement to secure equal treatment under law for same-sex couples. We also support the freedom of churches and religious entities to decide how to administer marriage as a religious sacrament without government interference.We oppose discriminatory federal and state constitutional amendments and other attempts to deny equal protection of the laws to committed same-sex couples who seek the same respect and responsibilities as other married couples. We support the full repeal of the so-called Defense of Marriage Act and the passage of the Respect for Marriage Act. A serious threat to our country’s constitutional order, perhaps even more dangerous than presidential malfeasance, is an activist judiciary, in which some judges usurp the powers reserved to other branches of government. A blatant example has been the court-ordered redefinition of marriage in several States. This is more than a matter of warring legal concepts and ideals. It is an assault on the foundations of our society, challenging the institution which, for thousands of years in virtually every civilization, has been entrusted with the rearing of children and the transmission of cultural values. My Note: I left out several paragraphs of fluff, read on page 10

We reaffirm our support for a Constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman. We applaud the citizens of the majority of States which have enshrined in their constitutions the traditional concept of marriage, and we support the campaigns underway in several other States to do so.

I could simply do what others do; I could simply rail at the sound bites of the day. Rail at the stupidity of the news coverage from those who should be informing us but are not, more shame them. I could simply stop where I am, this is hard and not terribly popular this road of compare and contrast. I feel I am losing audience each time I post. Honestly, I thought I would be able to end the Platform 2012 review today, I thought this would be the end. I suppose it could be, but with less than 40 days to Election Day and would that make sense? Should I simply stop where I am? Perhaps.

Civil Rights, not privilege granted because someone granted a favor but RIGHTS. The GOP spends a great deal of time in their Platform 2012 criticizing Liberal Activist Judiciary. The GOP doesn’t seem to mind Judicial Activism though when it is their own, in fact they frequently praise judges, legislators and Governors for their activism, for their creative stripping of citizens’ rights. Yes, the GOP truly doesn’t seem to have a real problem when it is Activism that strips citizens of Rights guaranteed within the Constitution, Rights enumerated by the Bill of Rights or defined by our Declaration of Independence as inalienable so long as those citizens affected aren’t models of Right Christian Propriety.

Well, despite my intent to end it here it seems we have one more to go, maybe even two.

Education

Poverty and Programs

Voter Suppression or better said maybe the Right to Vote

Republican Party Platform: http://whitehouse12.com/republican-party-platform/

Democratic National Platform: http://www.democrats.org/democratic-national-platform#moving-america

United Nations Human Rights: http://www.un.org/en/rights/

Convention on Women: http://www.un.org/womenwatch/daw/cedaw/

United Nations Women: http://www.unwomen.org/

Convention of the Rights of the Child: http://www2.ohchr.org/english/law/crc.htm

Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities: http://www.un.org/disabilities/convention/conventionfull.shtml

Taxes, Platforms 2012

I said I would take on taxes, but there isn’t much to say on the issue of taxes when it comes to the two parties. I say this with a bit of disappointment; once again, the two parties do not make it easy to do a side-by-side comparison. This time it isn’t the GOP who fails to put in black and white their intent, this time it is the DNC that is a bit opaque. This being said, here are what the two parties have said about their plans for taxes.

DNC – Tax Plans

GOP –  Tax Plans

Individuals  – Individuals –
Democratic Party cut taxes for every working family – providing $3,600 in tax relief to the typical family over the President’s first term in office – and we are committed to extending the middle class tax cuts for the 98 percent of American families who make less than $250,000 a year, and we will not raise taxes on them.We support allowing the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest to expire and closing loopholesWe are committed to reforming our tax code so that it is fairer and simpler, creating a tax code that lives up to the Buffett Rule so no millionaire pays a smaller share of his or her income in taxes than middle class families do. Extend the 2001 and 2003 tax relief packages—commonly known as the Bush tax cuts—pending reform of the tax code, to keep tax rates from rising on income, interest, dividends,and capital gains;

Reform the tax code by reducing marginal tax rates by 20 percent across-the-board in a revenue-neutral manner;

Eliminate the taxes on interest, dividends, and capital gains altogether for lower and middle-income taxpayers;

End the Death Tax; and Repeal the Alternative Minimum Tax.

My Notes:Starting with the ‘Death Tax’, most of us in the 97% will never have to worry about this, as we won’t be inheriting estates valued in the millions, just as an example in 2011 the amount exempted from tax was $5,000,000.

Interest, dividends and capital gains; really how many of us working for a living  actually worry that are very small incomes from these amounts are being taxed at a lower rate or not at all? Do you worry? By the time we retire and are living on our Social Security and small retirement funds we don’t have large enough incomes to pay federal taxes, we are part of the 47% that no longer pay taxes because our incomes aren’t large enough. Again, this is a bit of dishonesty on the part of the GOP. Sounds good but really isn’t honest, or perhaps it is simply stubbornly stupid.Across the board reductions without reform makes no sense, especially in combination with repeal of the AMT.

Both the GOP and the DNC are correct, the tax code does need reform. That reform needs to look at how taxes are calculated, what deductions are fair and sensible and ultimately how taxes are paid. Today, all citizens pay taxes, income, payroll, state and local. These come off the top of our earnings before we can save for our future. Our tax code is ancient, unwieldy and frankly nothing more than a partisan bat to beat the other side with. The language of the DNC in their platform makes me as uncomfortable as the road to failure the GOP plan represents.

Corporations – Corporations –
We are also committed to reforming the corporate tax code to lower tax rates for companies in the United States, with additional relief for those locating manufacturing and research and development on our shores, while closing loopholes and reducing incentives for corporations to shift jobs overseas. We will reform the tax code to allow businessesto generate enough capital to grow and create jobs for our families, friends and neighbors all across America.To level the international playing field, and to spur job creation here at home, we call for a reduction of the corporate rate to keep U.S. corporations competitive internationally, with a permanent research and development tax credit, and a repeal of the corporate alternative minimum tax.

We also support the recommendation of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, as well as the current President’s Export Council, to switch to a territorial system of corporate taxation, so that profits earned and taxed abroad may be repatriated for job-creating investment here at home without additional penalty.

My Notes:The DNC doesn’t really tell me enough on this one, nice words but doesn’t give me enough to go on. During the first couple of years of this administration a total of 18 Small Business Tax Cuts, but don’t let this go to his head of these some were only temporary; in total there are only 5 that were permanent.

You can’t have it all, but the GOP is right those we do business with our partners and competitors are mostly using a Territorial Tax system. It only makes sense we look closely at this system and weigh whether it makes sense for the US to move forward with a more balanced approach for the future.Big sticks aside, we must align ourselves with a global economy and encourage business to bring work and do business here, on our shore.However, you can’t have it all. You can’t have taxpayer subsidies, corporate welfare, loopholes big enough to float the Queen Mary through and lowered tax rates that mean the wealthiest corporations in the world pay big fat Zero’s in Taxes or worse, get refunds each year while at the same time entirely reforming the Tax Code.

That is it in a nutshell taxes from the two sides of the battle for our hearts, minds and pocketbooks. You wouldn’t think taxes would be such a battleground would you, but it is more than just who pays, it is a moral distinction these days.

Reagan had his Welfare Queen moment; with his derogatory description, he shifted our entire worldview from the nuclear dust bowl family in need of our support to the lazy usually black single mother, defrauding the system. Reagan’s legacy endures, he reshaped presidential politics and his worldview continues to affect the public’s reactions, including the issue of taxes; who pays them and how they are used to the public good. When I see signs and Facebook posts about taking the country back, I have to wonder, from whom and for whom. These are two random pictures from the conventions, notice anything?

GOP National Convention Delegates, Google Image

DNC National Convention Delegates, Google Image

We, the people continue to our own detriment to defend the wealthiest of this nation in their extremely successful efforts to rape us of all we work for, all we save, all we need to make life even semi-safe, semi-comfortable and semi-palatable for our future. We hold up signs demanding the college transcripts of the current President of the United States but shrug at the GOP Candidate paying 14% on an income of $13,000,000, more than many will earn in their life time.

Meanwhile, we find nothing disheartening in the idea that Veterans, old people and children might not receive even basic care they need under a Republican administration. Nearly half this nation would be disenfranchised and receive even less than they do today because they are part of the 47% that do not pay any taxes!

Oliver Wendell Holmes

Taxes are not redistribution of wealth, nor are taxes class warfare. What taxes are is a the duty of each citizen to insure a civilized and safe society.

“I like to pay taxes. With them I buy civilization.”

Oliver Wendell Holmes

http://whitehouse12.com/republican-party-platform/

http://www.democrats.org/democratic-national-platform#moving-america

What a Tangled Web, 2012 Part II

I was accused by one of my siblings on the other side of the political aisle of offering a biased review in Part I of the 2012 Platform. I am trying hard to not be too biased, but admit freely and without shame to being on the side of the Democrats more often than not this year. This hasn’t always been true, not every year since my turning 18 and voting for the first time in 1976 for Jimmy Carter. While I did not regret my vote for the man I still consider the most honest politician elected as President in my lifetime, my next vote went to Ronald Reagan, a vote I continue to regret to this day. Oddly, I liked the first George Bush despite his association with Ronald Reagan and though I voted against him when he ran the first time, I voted for him for a second term. That second term was the last time I voted for a Republican for the Presidency, it was also the last time the GOP put a reasonably sane and moderate person before the general public to vote for.

I like a government that works. I believe in Democracy and Transparency, two things I think we are seeing less of these days, especially at the federal level. It is my belief the only way a government works well is when there are tensions over policy and position that can be debated towards a compromise that is best for the American people as a whole. We, that is this nation and our politics have been dominated by a two-party system that has

All American Rocky and All Russian Drago duke it out

polarized us, put us into corners rung the bell and sent us to the center of the ring like prizefighters. We are bloody. We are brutal in our attacks, at every level. We are willing to beat each other down, willing to beat strangers, friends and even family members with platforms and ideology until one of us cry uncle simply to make it stop.

Today I want to pull apart the economic platforms of our two parties, for what they are worth. Neither party is terribly forthcoming in their plans.

DNC – Jobs

GOP – Jobs

Open Markets – yes Open Markets – yes
Small Business – President Obama and the Democratic Party are committed to continue cutting red tape for small businesses, helping them sell their goods around the world and access the capital they need to grow. This includes tax cuts for small businesses that make new investments, hire more workers, or increase wages. Small Business – We will reform the tax code to allow businesses to generate enough capital to grow and create jobs for our families, friends and neighbors all across America. We will encourage investments in small businesses. We will create an environment where adequate financing and credit are available to spur manufacturing and expansion. We will serve as aggressive advocates for small businesses.
Since 2008, there have been 18 small-business tax cuts, altogether, the President’s Small Business Jobs Act accelerated $55 billion in tax relief through 2011.
Infrastructure – We support long-term investments in our infrastructure. Roads, bridges, rail and public transit systems, airports, ports, and sewers are all critical to economic growth, as they enable businesses to grow. That’s why President Obama and Democrats in Congress have enacted infrastructure investments that will sustain our Highway Trust Fund and provide states, U.S. territories, and communities with two years of funding to build needed infrastructure. These investments are critical for putting Americans back to work and strengthening America’s transportation system to grow our economy. The President has proposed to go substantially further, including a significant up-front investment in our infrastructure followed by sustained increases in investment paid for with part of the savings from winding down our overseas wars, together with reforms that will better leverage government dollars and target significant projects. We will continue to partner with local communities to support their sustainable development.  Infrastructure – We oppose any funding mechanism that would involve governmental monitoring of every car and truck in the nation. Amtrak continues to be, for the taxpayers, an extremely expensive railroad. The public has to subsidize every ticket nearly $50. It is long past time for the federal government to get out of way and allow private ventures to provide passenger service to the northeast corridor. The same holds true with regard to high-speed and intercity rail across the country.
The DNC has big dreams, it is true we have a crumbling infrastructure and need to address it. It is also true there are billions being spent on wars and Nation building at home should be a high priority, but we first need to deal with balancing a budget and getting our nation out of hock. Though the DNC platform address our debt and deficit; maybe it is me but I think there needs to be a balance between the privatization strategy of the GOP and big dreams of the DNC.
Insourcing– The Democratic Party believes in insourcing so that America can out-build the rest of the world again. We want to cut tax breaks for companies that are shipping jobs overseas and for special interests, and instead offer tax breaks to companies that are investing right here in the United States of America, betting on American workers who are making American products we sell to the world that are stamped with three proud words: Made in America.

We Democrats also recognize the economic opportunities created by our nation’s community colleges.That is why the President has invested in community colleges and called for additional partnerships between businesses and community colleges to train two million workers with the skills they need for good jobs waiting to be filled, and to support business-labor apprenticeship programs that provide skills and opportunity to thousands of Americans. The President also proposed to double key investments in science to educate the next generation of scientists and engineers, encourage private sector innovation, and prepare at least 100,000 math and science teachers over the next decade.

And to make this country a destination for global talent and ingenuity, we won’t deport deserving young people who are Americans in every way but on paper, and we will work to make it possible for foreign students earning advanced degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics to stay and help create jobs here at home.

Outsourcing – That will be critically important if States establish Personal Reemployment Accounts, letting trainees direct resources in ways that will steer them toward long-term employment, especially through on-the-job training with participating employers.

We can accelerate the process of restoring our domestic economy-and reclaiming this country’s traditional position of dominance in international trade-by a policy of strategic immigration, granting more work visas to holders of advanced degrees in science, technology, engineering, and math from other nations. Highly educated immigrants can assist in creating new services and products.

In the same way, foreign students who graduate from an American university with an advanced degree in science, technology, engineering or math should be encouraged to remain here and contribute to economic prosperity and job creation. Highly skilled, English-speaking, and integrated into their communities, they are too valuable a resource to lose. As in past generations, we should encourage the world’s innovators and inventors to create our common future and their permanent homes here in the United States.

It is an important note on the GOP Platform there is continued support to broaden the H1B and L1 Visa availability during a national unemployment crisis. This means while Americans are without work the GOP proposes to continue to bring in White Collar workers in high paying positions, willing to work on contract thus leaving Americans without access to full time positions. This has been an on-going position of the GOP since 1999, millions have lost their jobs and remain outside of the workforce.
Labor Unions – Support Labor Unions – Oppose and will actively work to bust.

I do not believe America is exceptional, we once were but we have sold our future out and stand in the quicksand of past glory. Could we regain our place on the world stage, rekindle our greatness? Perhaps we can, but not with the philosophy of Manifest Destiny as our standard, not with the drums of war as our song.

Next up? Taxes I think.

http://whitehouse12.com/republican-party-platform/

http://www.democrats.org/democratic-national-platform#moving-america

The Party is Over, Platforms 2012 Part 1

First, while I am looking through the lens of history at the two parties that shape our political conversation every four years, it is the Silly Season and both have now released their official Platforms. It would be remiss of me if I completely ignored this event, stuck my fingers in my ears and shuttered my eyes pretending the Platforms of the parties did not matter today. Some would have you believe they do not, but in fact, the Platforms do matter, they matter a great deal. The Candidates shape the platforms along with party leadership, these statements of purpose and intent define Philosophy and how the Candidate, Presidential and others intend to govern the nation if elected.

Ignoring the meat and potatoes of the Party Platforms is a mistake, one that we cannot afford to make as citizens. Let me just say this year, more so than many years I have read thus far the two parties spent much of their time taking swipes at the other side within the context of building their own argument, it was a bit disconcerting. I believe this quote is perfect for the season:

“People never lie so much as before an election, during a war, or after a hunt.”
― Otto von Bismarck

Are both sides in the game liars? Sure they are. I can honestly say I am disappointed in some of the DNC Platform this year, not entirely because of what is there but rather in some cases because of what isn’t there. I am also extremely disappointed the DNC used their opportunity to communicate their roadmap for the future to ‘Bash’ the opposition. I want to know, from both sides, what are your plans and how will you govern in black and white! I don’t care what you think of the other side; in fact, I already have a good idea of what you think of them by now, just tell me what you will do differently.

This being said, let’s take a walk on the wild side, shall we?

DNC

GOP

Immigration: Democrats know there is broad consensus to repair that system and strengthen our economy, and that the country urgently needs comprehensive immigration reform that brings undocumented immigrants out of the shadows and requires them to get right with the law, learn English, and pay taxes in order to get on a path to earn citizenship. We need an immigration reform that creates a system for allocating visas that meets our economic needs, keeps families together, and enforces the law. Immigration: State efforts to reduce illegal immigration must be encouraged, not attacked. The pending Department of Justice lawsuits against Arizona, Alabama, South Carolina, and Utah must be dismissed immediately. The double-layered fencing on the border that was enacted by Congress in 2006, but never completed, must finally be built. In order to restore the rule of law, federal funding should be denied to sanctuary cities that violate federal law and endanger their own citizens, and federal funding should be denied to universities that provide in-state tuition rates to illegal aliens, in open defiance of federal law.
There is of course more on both sides. The DNC has pushed for the Dream Act for young people brought to the US as children, the GOP rejects out of hand and under all circumstances the Dream Act calling even these children criminals. In 2008 the RNC position on H1B Visa’s was to increase the numbers, further. Both sides continue to support this position while Americans continue to be unemployed or underemployed in key white-collar fields.
Veterans: continue to prioritize support for wounded warriors, mental health, and the well-being of our military families and veterans. We will keep working to give our veterans the health care, benefits, education, and job opportunities that they have earned. That’s why the President and the Democratic Party supported the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill to provide opportunities for military personnel, veterans, and their families to get a better education. That’s why the President has launched partnerships with the private sector to help veterans transfer their experience into skilled manufacturing jobs, and why the President has proposed a new Veterans Jobs Corps to put veterans to work as first responders. That’s why the President signed an executive order making it harder for for-profit colleges to prey on veterans. That’s why we enacted the Returning Heroes Tax Credit and the Wounded Warrior Tax Credit to give companies incentives to hire vets. Veterans: is essential to meet our obligations to them: providing health, education, disability, survivor, and home loan benefit services and arranging memorial services upon death. All its branches in those various fields must be made more responsive, moving from an adversarial to an advocacy relationship with veterans. To that end we will consider a fundamental change in structure to make the regional directors of the Department presidential appointees rather than careerists.We urge immediate action to review the automatic denial of gun ownership to returning members of our Armed Forces who have had representatives appointed to manage their financial affairs
Both the GOP and DNC have peppered this section with platitudes. The GOP do not recognize that many of the programs they support have already been enacted. Unfortunately, much of the discussion by the GOP in their Troop support and Veteran support was a Faith based such as the discussion of their support of DOMA, which can be found in great detail elsewhere in the Platform. The GOP in their Platform is against the Veteran Jobs Corps, though this is buried in a very long paragraph, along with their support of the proposed Tax Credit incentives for hiring Veterans.
Civil Rights We are committed to protecting all communities from violence. We are committed to ending racial, ethnic, and religious profiling and requiring federal, state, and local enforcement agencies to take steps to eliminate the practice, and we continue to support enforcement of Title VI.We are committed to equal opportunity for all Americans and to making sure that every American is treated equally under the law. We are committed to ensuring full equality for women: we reaffirm our support for the Equal Rights Amendment, recommit to enforcing Title IX, support the Paycheck Fairness Act, and will urge ratification of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women. Civil Rights Nothing within the platform
Health Care We remain committed to eliminating disparities in health and will continue to make sure families have access to mental health and substance abuse services. We will strengthen Medicaid and oppose efforts to block grant the program, slash its funding, and leave millions more without health insurance. We will continue to invest in our public health infrastructure – ensuring that we are able to respond to emergencies and support community-based efforts to prevent disease. Health Care

  • Repeal Affordable Healthcare Act (ObamaCare)
  • Protect Faith Communities and Provider Choice. This means ensure no care provider, no employer, no doctor or nurse, no pharmacist will have to provide care or transportation even if the care you, the individual needs, goes against their personal ‘faith’.
  • Tort reform, to protect the medical provider from ‘frivolous malpractice’ suits and
  • Return healthcare to the Private Insurance Provider
  • Make costs transparent so you, the unhealthy individual can decide not to seek care given the high cost to both you and your health insurance plan

Well that is it for today; I thought those were some fun highlights. Tomorrow I am going to take on some of the economic issues within both platforms. Both the DNC and the GOP are rhetoric heavy and rather light on facts, figures and just plain bottom line. I have slogged through both of their Platforms countless times now, some of it makes me weep, some makes me so angry I could spit nails into concrete.

Anyone who reads me regularly knows where my heart lies; I seem unable to hide my light under a rock. I am an old hippie at heart, a social liberal to my last poor aging bone. I suppose the difference between me and many of

Special thanks to Google for supplying the photo

my contemporaries who sorta made it, meaning who learned how to earn a dollar instead of a dime; my personal ethos didn’t change with the adjustment in my income level and tax bracket. I haven’t forgotten where I came from; I haven’t forgotten my personal struggles or those who reached out to help me when I was at my lowest, those who held the door open so I could walk through and achieve my dreams. Perhaps my struggles are why I remain so very much committed to the American Dream being a real Dream for all of us.

I swore I would remain pragmatic and fair in my reading of the Platforms. I am trying my best to do so, the tax and economic issues are tough though. Let us all hope I can keep my cool.

http://whitehouse12.com/republican-party-platform/

http://www.democrats.org/democratic-national-platform#moving-america

Brain Farts aka Gaffes

It has been an interesting week in the political arena, a week of revelation and frank nastiness. Stupidity on the part of some of our national figures seems to run rampant doesn’t it? Without fail some members of the GOP simply can’t help but open their mouths and thoughtless statements flow out from between their lips without any restraint. Shall we look at the blatant ideological stances and “oops I made a gaffe” of the week?

Please, keep in mind my personal opinion of a gaffe is simply the lips moved before the brain engaged. The speaker said what they thought before they could think of a plausible lie.

Representative Todd Akin, R-Missouri

“It seems to be, first of all, from what I understand from doctors, it’s really rare. If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut the whole thing down.”

We all know this just started a storm swirling around every circle, Left, Right and Center. There were few who didn’t jump on the bandwagon to denounce poor Todd and demand he quit the race immediately. The GOP pulled funding for his Senate race and disinvited him from Tampa.

Bad Todd, bad indeed. But it wasn’t because he was taking a position so far out of the mainstream from his party, no indeed not. The fact is they were simply mad that he gave voice to their platform. Todd Akin let the cat out of the bag!

While all the controversy is swirling the GOP is hammering out their platform. Mitt and Paul are there, hammers in hand knowing this will be the soapbox they stand upon leading up to November. Oh, look at that there is that pesky language…..what’s that you say?

“Faithful to the “self-evident” truths enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, we assert the sanctity of human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children. We oppose using public revenues to promote or perform abortion or fund organizations which perform or advocate it and will not fund or subsidize health care which includes abortion coverage. We support the appointment of judges who respect traditional family values and the sanctity of innocent human life. We oppose the non-consensual withholding or withdrawal of care or treatment, including food and water, from people with disabilities, including newborns, as well as the elderly and infirm, just as we oppose active and passive euthanasia and assisted suicide.”

There is more, you can read it here: http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2012/08/23/full-gop-platform-statement-on-abortion/comment-page-2/

Next we have Mitt, the top of the GOP ticket who believes he can pretend to ignore the Platform he will be standing upon. Can we all say what a chump, you Mr. Romney courted the Wingnut Right and you will owe everything to them should you by some slim chance make it all the way to the White House. Your boy wonder VP supports Personhood Amendments to the Constitution and should he have a deciding vote in the Senate women will die in your new America, but let’s take a look at the statements of the GOP ticket shall we?

In an interview on August 20, with the National Review Online Mitt said the following:

 “Congressman’s Akin comments on rape are insulting, inexcusable, and, frankly, wrong,” Romney said. “Like millions of other Americans, we found them to be offensive.”

Love how he refers to himself as ‘we’, wonder if that is the royal ‘we’, he certainly isn’t talking about he and his running mate who had this to say.

“I’m very proud of my pro-life record, and I’ve always adopted the idea that, the position that the method of conception doesn’t change the definition of life,” Ryan explained. “But let’s remember, I’m joining the Romney-Ryan ticket. And the president makes policy.”

From an interview with WJHL this week, see more here: http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/08/24/ryan-on-abortion-exceptions-rape-is-just-another-method-of-conception/

Just one more little bit of humor from he who would be king, yes that’s right the Mitt, good old Mittens. I wonder if he aspired to a career as a failed stand-up comedian in his younger days, do you think this is might be the reason for his board stiff stage presence. Also do you think he is taking advice from the Donald?

“No one’s ever asked to see my birth certificate,” he added. “They know that this the place that we were born and raised.”

Next we have a few of the reasons why we all need to make certain we are getting out to the polls and voting this year. Here is Iowa Representative Steve King discussing his knowledge, or should I say lack thereof, regarding the incidence of young rape and incest victims (specifically twelve year old girls) who might need abortions.

“Well I just haven’t heard of that being a circumstance that’s been brought to me in any personal way, and I’d be open to discussion about that subject matter,” he said.

Unaware of one of the more famous Tea Party Gaffes, teen mother Bristol Palin with baby daddy

Steve King is a staunch supporter of Personhood legislation and came out in support of Ted Akins. This is a Republican who last year refused to debate his female Democratic challenger, offering instead to debate her husband former Governor Tom Vilsack in her place. Want to see more, http://www.rhrealitycheck.org/article/2012/08/21/kings-no-pregnant-12-year-old-rape-victims-just-latest-his-anti-choice-diatribes

Finally on the hit parade for the week we have this piece of awe-inspiring stupidity from my home state. This judge from Lubbock County is a real winner in judiciary prudence I tell you, or as we say down here this is one dumazzed sumbitch. Judge Tom Head, well he indeed had a full head in an interview broadcast on a local Fox station talking about what will happen if President Obama is re-elected, he had the following to say:

“He’s going to try to hand over the sovereignty of the United States to the U.N., and what is going to happen when that happens?” Head said. “I’m thinking the worst. Civil unrest, civil disobedience, civil war maybe. And we’re not just talking a few riots here and demonstrations. We’re talking Lexington, Concord, take up arms and get rid of the guy.”

“Now what’s going to happen if we do that, if the public decides to do that? He’s going to send in U.N. troops. I don’t want ’em in Lubbock County. OK. So I’m going to stand in front of their armored personnel carrier and say, ‘You’re not coming in here’.”

Of course, everyone in Lubbock, Right and Left are attempting to disavow his statements. Judge Head is an elected official and there are no real rules to remove him from the bench unless he can be shown to be just outright starkers. Currently the Judge is the head of the Emergency Management Plans for the county, he also presides over mental competency hearings (how scary is that).

Through all this the GOP has been pointing to the single statement by VP Joe Biden regarding Wall Street made in Virginia to a mixed crowd. The statement was as follows:

 “He is going to let the big banks once again write their own rules, unchain Wall Street. He is going to put y’all back in chains.” 

For the past two weeks, since the VP made this statement the Right and even some of those on the Left have been furiously hammering away at the Dog Whistle of race baiting this statement blows. But does it? I would say no, indeed we are not only defined by a single form of slavery and that being the horrific slavery of the African traded and abused on these shores for hundreds of years. While this was a terrible part of our history that continues to define a society even today, it is not the only slavery and not the only form of chains we endure.

The statement by Joe Biden, in my mind was not a gaffe at all but a very clear and truthful statement of where we are as a nation if we do not get back to some basic truths and basic facts. One of those is we must regulate Wall Street and Banking. How much clearer can we be than this?

So we all need to get over it. We are slaves to political correctness in this regard. We need to unchain our minds and allow ourselves to use the English language to express ourselves properly and with intent!

Rape is Rape. Force is Force.

Living breathing women must never be slaves to the moral choices of others who have no interest in their lives or futures.

Stand up, be counted.

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