Friday, January 31, 2014

PBS: Video: NewsHour: Shields & Brooks on Pipeline Politics and Chris Christie Scandal

The Keystone Pipeline is something that President Obama almost has to do for the economy. And I believe he and Secretary of State John Kerry who are going to have to sign off on this. Because of the jobs in the energy sector that will come to the United States. And also the biggest thing that President Obama can do for the economy to create good jobs by himself. So if he’s getting environmental reports that say there isn’t much of an environmental impact to this, he almost has to sign off on it. For the jobs and economic growth that is needed in this country.

As far as Governor Chris Christie, wow those Dick Nixon comparisons from a few weeks ago might have looked extreme then, but are now looking real and credible. About someone who probably knows more about a bad story than he wants to admit to, but if he gives too much out right away it could hurt him politically. But the problem being for him that he can’t control the story. Which is what happened to President Nixon in 1973-74 with the Watergate scandal.

State of the Union, I would give President Obama a B perhaps even a B+, but certainly not a great speech. It was strong in the areas that he wants to move the country forward especially economically. And that he’ll do whatever in his power to make that happen. But I don’t believe there was anything in it that will bring people who weren’t already behind him to him. “And say we need to get Congress especially the Republican House of Representatives to work with President Obama.”

JFK Library: President Harry S. Truman- Criticism of Senator John F. Kennedy (1960)

Source:JFK Library- President Harry S. Truman: 33rd POTUS (1945-53)
“TNC:27 (excerpt) Press conference given by President Harry Truman announcing his reasons for resigning as a delegate to the 1960 Democratic National Convention. July 2, 1960.

This film is copyrighted and may be licensed by the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation. See this link for more information about licensing this footage:JFK Library."

From the JFK Library

I find the lack of experience criticism of John Kennedy from President Harry Truman interesting. Especially considering that by the time Senator John Kennedy ran for president in 1960, he had already been in Congress for thirteen years both in the House of Representatives and in the Senate. And by the time he became President of the United States, he had been in Congress for fourteen years.

JFK’s Vice President Lyndon Johnson served in Congress for twenty-four years including as Leader of the Senate for six years. And yes, Senator Kennedy was a young president, but someone with who had been in Congress for a while and also someone who served in the U.S. Navy.

The biggest job that Harry Truman had before becoming President of the United States a job he got because he was Franklin Roosevelt’s Vice President for a couple of months and was out of the loop on all major decisions made by the Roosevelt Administration.

Truman’s most important job before becoming President was as U.S. Senator from Missouri. Where he served for ten years. Jack Kennedy actually served in Congress longer than Harry Truman before he became President. Jack Kennedy fourteen years in Congress and Harry Truman ten years in Congress all as a Senator.

So the lack of experience argument from President Truman about Senator Kennedy, even though I’m sure President Truman meant well and was looking at from the perspective of a former President, just doesn’t fly. Since Jack Kennedy had more experience before becoming President of the United States than himself.

Because before becoming President, Harry Truman’s first big job came at the age of fifty years old. And the first time he ever experienced real success in his professional life. 

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CBC: Front Page Challenge: Malcolm X in 1965

Malcolm X’s message was about self-reliance and self-defense for the African-American community. Not trying to destroy any other community in the United States. Which is something that the right-wing especially the far-right does not understand that prefers to view Malcolm X as a racist. At least towards Caucasians and a criminal looking to destroy the United States. What Malcolm X believed instead was empowering an entire community to be able to live in freedom. Wherever they wanted to live and be able to take care of themselves instead. And not have to be dependent on government or anyone else for their well-being. Conservatives should like Malcolm X actually because of his beliefs in self-reliance and education, freedom for people to be able to make their own decisions. And not have to be dependent on government for their economic survival.

American Enterprise: Video: Arthur Brooks: Why Conservatives Should Care About Social Justice

Arthur Brooks talking about creating a positive agenda instead of Republicans just saying what they are against. He’s arguing and has argued that Republicans need to offer what they are in favor of. His argument is and has been that Republicans and Democrats Conservatives and Liberals tend to want similar things when it comes to the economy. That both sides both want economic opportunity, freedom, economic mobility, self-reliance and self-sufficiency. But that both sides have different plans in how to accomplish those things. And what the Right needs is to have a plan that attempts to at least move low-skilled and low-income workers as well as the low-skilled unemployed into the middle class where they can live in economic freedom. And they don’t seem united in how to accomplish that yet. Lets say the New Gingrich/Paul Ryan wing of the Right seems to believe that empowering low-income adults whether they are working or not with educational and job training opportunities is a good way to close the income gap in America. But the GOP as a whole is not united behind that.

Brookings Institution: Robert Moffitt: Questions About EITC's Role in the Safety Net

The whole point of the Earned Income Tax Credit which was signed into law by Richard Nixon or Gerald Ford, hardly Socialists, or even Liberals, was to encourage low-skilled workers to work even for low- income jobs. Instead of collecting all of their income from public assistance. So these workers can at least get some work experience even at entry-level service jobs and not be completely dependent on public assistance for their economic well-being. And by this standard the EITC has been very successful in the United States. And has probably contributed to keeping our unemployment rate lower than it otherwise would’ve been. Had people making ten to twenty-thousand-dollars a year not enough for most of the country by itself. Especially If they had to pay federal income taxes as well.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

WTTW-TV Chicago: Chicago Tonight- John Callaway Interviewing Senator George McGovern, in 1978

Source: WTTW-TV Chicago.
Source:WTTW-TV Chicago

If George McGovern was a loser, than America needs a lot more losers just like him. When it comes to knowledge, experience and judgement, because he is one of the finest people America has ever produced. And we are lucky to have a man like him. Because here’s a distinguished teacher, historian, U.S. Representative, U.S. Senator and again historian, as well as U.N. Ambassador for Food and Agriculture. Who was always about two things. Public service and public progress.

When it comes to Senator McGovern’s politics. We probably do not agree on much at least as it related to economic policy. He was a real FDR Progressive Democrat and the real thing unlike some of these so-called Progressives today. That I’ll talk more about later, but he and I are probably pretty close as it relates to things like civil liberties and personal freedom. So on those issues Senator McGovern was probably to the Left of President Franklin Roosevelt.

Another thing I would say about Senator McGovern was that he was a real FDR New Deal Progressive Democrat. As it related to economic policy, foreign policy and national security. Who wasn’t anti-military, or anti-law enforcement. Unlike a lot of his supporters who helped cost him the 1972 presidential election. But he was someone who had a real respect for limited smart power. And not just as it related to economic policy, unlike a lot of the so-called Progressives today. Who sound more like Socialists and even Anarchists at times.

Thom Hartmann: Without Government, There is no Middle Class

Source: Thom Hartmann; Without Government, There is No Middle Class

Any good business person whose in business to make a lot of money and be very profitable and be able to provide very well for themselves and their families even if they are the only people they intend to benefit, it is in their best interest to have a well-skilled educated productive workforce. Even if that means paying them very well with benefits. Why because the more productive workforce you have, the more profitable the company you’ll have. And it is a hell of a lot easier for people to do good jobs and be productive if they know there’s something in it for them. And getting good money and benefits out of it.
Buy a cheap car or a cheap lawyer to use as examples and I’m not talking about a car that was discounted, or someone is basically giving you the car as a gift with a large discount, or a lawyer who agrees to work for less, or at a much lower rate than they normally do. But a cheaply made car, or an inexperienced lawyer with not much of a success record. You are going to get what you paid for those services and have to deal with the consequences of not having a good car. Or a lawyer with the experience and judgement to represent you well. And this applies to any business.
But if you invest a good deal of money in a car or lawyer, but do it in a smart way, “this is what I want and need from a car, or lawyer and this is what it’s worth to get those services” and you put the money into it, you are going to get back probably more than what you put in. Especially if you have a good case, or you take care of your car. Same thing with employees that if you invest in them and make it clear they could do well for you working for you and they are good employees who know exactly what the job is about and what you expect, that is what you’ll get plus what you put in. It’s the difference between do you see employees as a cost of doing business, or an investment in your company.

The Young Turks: Cenk Uygur: 'President Obama Sets Bear Trap, Republicans Walk Right Into It'

Source:The Young Turks- Fox News, talking about President Barack Obama.
"Following President Barack Obama's State of the Union address on Tuesday, where he called on Congress to end discriminatory workplace practices that "belong in a Mad Men episode" Fox News host Martha MacCallum proclaimed on the program American's Newsroom that women did not want special laws ensuring equal for equal work because they already were compensated "exactly what they're worth." On the Fox program, two men, liberal radio host Alan Colmes and Fox News host Tucker Carlson, debated equal pay for women. Carlson assertedthat women actually made more than men if the time they "voluntarily" took off work to raise children was factored in. "The numbers don't lie," he insisted...".* The Young Turks host Cenk Uygur breaks it down." 

From The Young Turks

The current Republican governing policy is, “if Democrats are for it, we are against it, even if we are for it, or were once in favor of it”. And even offered it in health care reform a perfect example of that where the Affordable Care Act actually has a lot of good conservative ideas like the health care mandate and the health care market place in it. Which is the main reason why there hasn’t been much compromise in Congress between the House and Senate because when Democrats say okay we’ll agree to that, the House GOP just moves the ball further to get more compromises. 
Then instead of Republicans saying okay let’s do that, Republicans just move the ball and say well, “if Democrats are willing to give us this, we can get them to give us this as well and hold off on a deal”. The deficit reduction negotiations are a perfect example of this where Democrats have put entitlement reform on the table and what Republicans is do is to say well, “if they will do that, then they’ll take exactly what type of entitlement reform we are interested in”. Like cutting Social Security benefits to future retirees or cutting benefits to current beneficiaries. 
The only goal Republicans have right now is absolute power. And to accomplish this, they need to hold onto the House and 2014 and retake the Senate in 2014. To give them a united Republican Congress and to win back the White House in 2016 as well. While hanging onto Congress and the hard right partisan Republicans in the House and Senate have one clear strategy. “If Democrats are for it, it must be a bad idea even if it is our idea. So we are only going to put policies that are as far to the right as possible to get our partisan right-wing base behind us to avoid primary challenges”.
Which leaves us with gridlock when you have the Republican Leadership saying no to anything that the Democratic Leadership especially in the Senate and White House say yes to. Because now Democrats are in a position where they are only negotiating with themselves. Trying to find more moderate members in Congress to go along with some of these more conservative ideas in broader packages, while not losing any of their more, well lets say progressive members. Instead of negotiating with their own caucus’ in the House and Senate, along with Congressional Republicans. 
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Reason Magazine: Jacob Sullum: Senate Judiciary Committee Approves Major Sentencing Reforms


I agree that this bill that the Senate Judiciary Committee doesn’t go far enough. I would decriminalize cocaine, heroin and meth. Not legalize them which is different, but my drug policy would be that if adults twenty-one and over are caught in possession of cocaine, heroin or meth, those drugs would immediately be stripped away from them. And they would pay a fine upon conviction based on how much the illegal narcotics are worth. And if they are caught selling these narcotics or smuggling them into the United States or producing them themselves to anyone, they would be arrested along with stripped of those narcotics. But at worst looking at jail time. Unless they are convicted of smuggling or producing narcotics in America. Or selling or giving them to minors.

What the Senate bill does instead is reduce the prison and jail time for people caught with these drugs. But they still are in prison and that is still the biggest problem with failed so-called War on Drugs. Is that it punishes people for what they do to themselves. And you could say sure if you are selling these narcotics to other people, you are hurting them as well. The problem with that is those people had a choice to purchase or not to purchase narcotics and then use them or not. So we are really at the core talking about punishing people for what they do to themselves instead.

The paternalists on the Right and Left will say that liberty can’t be allowing people to live their own lives, even if that means doing things that may be dangerous to themselves. Well one problem with that and there more problems with that, is the result of attempting to protect people from themselves for the betterment of society, is you end up hurting society because now you fill up your prisons with people are by in large are good people. And even productive people before prison or could’ve been very productive people before prison. But now they are in prison and would leave prison with criminal felony records. Making it very difficult for them to get a good job on the outside because of their felony conviction.

So the Senate bill is a very good start and I hope it passes in the Senate even if it is not improved. Good luck with the Neo-Con drug warriors in the House though. But it is just a first step and going further we need to get non-violent inmates who are not in prison for hurting anyone else. Physically, economically or anything else out of prison and either in drug rehab or halfway houses. And allow for them to move on with their lives and be productive citizens.

Washington Examiner: Equal Opportunity Should Be The Goal, Not Equal Outcomes

Washington Examiner: Editorial: Equal Opportunity Should Be The Goal, Not Equal Outcomes

In three years this might be the third time I’ve agreed with the Washington Examiner editorial page on anything. And that includes all of their editorial columnists, but I think they hit a home run with today’s editorial. By saying that the real goal when it comes to the economy is creating an economic system where all Americans have a quality opportunity to succeed in America. Even if that means that some Americans have a better shot at success, because of how they were raised. But that all Americans have quality opportunities to succeed in America. That quality opportunities becomes universal.

This is the economic debate that Democrats should be having with Republicans. Instead of so-called
Progressive Democrats calling for everything to be equal including income. That all taxes need to be so high so no one has too much compared with the rest of the country or doesn’t have too little. In other words quality of outcomes which is very different and bit more socialist. And economic Conservative Republicans, “saying that this is how capitalism works. That is some people have so much and others have almost nothing. So what because that is how capitalism works.”

The mainstream establishments of both parties including in the Republican Party understand that we have an achievement and success gap that leads to our income gap. And why we have a very small population with a lot of money and a large population with very little. Which is what I call the income gap and both parties have talked about how to close it. And this one thing I credit President Obama for because he has a real plan to close it built around education and job training for our low-skilled workers and a big believer in having a new national infrastructure plan. That would create more economic opportunity especially for the Americans that do not have it.

The Republican economic plan to address the income gap which I believe does not go far enough, is built around school choice and training for low-income workers and low-skilled Americans who are unemployed. And work requirements for people on public assistance. So the leaderships in both parties at least now understand that the education and income gap is the problem. And both believe equality of opportunity is the way to solve it. But the real debate now what is the best way to fix the problems.

The Washington Post: Robert J. Samuelson: The Debate That Wasn't

I agree with Robert Samuelson that Washington really hasn’t been debating the size of government. But avoiding tough decisions and when they find things they actually want to do that is both parties they either borrow the money to pay for it, or try to cut something they think not a lot of people would notice so they do not have to pay a political price for it. And the latest Farm Bill where they actually cut Food Assistance for millions of Americans who would go hungry without it is a perfect example of that. Instead of cutting subsidies to corporate farmers people who have money, they cut the people who do not have much of a voice in Washington and can’t hurt them politically.

The best way to reduce debt and deficits if that is your goal, is first to figure out what you need government to do and how much money it needs to do those things that can’t be done anywhere else, or done as well. Or perhaps done in other places, but you need the Federal Government to play a role there as well. And medical research from the NIH would be a perfect example of that. Right now in these so-called budget debates both sides are debating on the margins instead. Cut a little here, perhaps raise a little revenue like with the so-called fiscal cliff debate in late 2012. But neither party really has laid out a vision for the country at least when it comes to the size and scope of the Federal Government.

Even with the Tea Party in the Republican Party as much as they may bash Washington and big government they are the first to make sure no one cuts their Social Security and Medicare. And the first to get their share of whatever pork that is being offered for their states or districts. The so-called Paul Ryan plan from 2011 and 2012 doesn’t erase the budget deficit even by 2023. And most of the budget cuts in it are targeted towards people in poverty who again do not have the resources to complain. And that part of the budget is pretty small compared with the rest of the Federal budget. And leaves the current budget at about where it is right now as far as a percentage of Gross National Product. In the low twenties.

The only faction in Washington and in Congress that has a long-term vision for the size and scope of the Federal Government are the people with the least amount of power in Washington. The so-called Congressional Progressive Caucus, but they seem to have a Federal program and tax increase for everything the country has to deal with. Including raising taxes by trillions of dollars to spend all that money on current Federal programs. And create new economic and social programs to generate economic and job growth not to pay down the debt or deficit. As part of what they call the People’s Budget.

If this was a real debate about the size and scope of the Federal Government, both the Democratic Leadership would have their plan and the Republican Leadership would have there’s. They would both be different and they would both be about limited government. Since neither party at least at the leadership levels are social democratic parties and are both mainstream parties on the Left and Right. At least at the top with factions further to the Left and Right on down their party. But they would both say we need an effective Federal Government with the resources to do what we need it to do. This is what we need it to do and this is how we would pay for it. And let the voters decide who has the better plan.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

CBC News: Video: The National: Liberal Party Leader Justin Trudeau on Senate Reform

Perfect example of how the Canadian Senate is different from the American Senate. In America the Chairman of the National Party Democratic or Republican Party can’t order their party members to do anything. And neither can the President of the United States and even if we had an official leader of the opposition, which we don’t and I wish we did, that person wouldn’t be able to order their members of the Senate or House of Representatives to do anything. Especially kicking members out of their caucus. Because we have checks and balances and different branches of government.

In the Federal Government of Canada the official party leaders basically have complete control over their own parties. And can even make decisions about who can stay and who can go even in political bodies they aren’t members of. The Leader of the Opposition in Canada is a member House of Commons and not the Senate. In the United States Congress only the party leaders in both chambers can decide who can and cannot be members of their caucus. And they probably need majority support of their caucus to do so.

I’m not a Canadian, but an American of course and it seems to me Canada should make a decision about their Senate. Which right now is technically their upper chamber in their Parliament. And that is to either have a real Senate with real authority only accountable to their constituents and not the Prime Minster or Leader of the Opposition, or get rid of the Senate. And have a unicameral Parliament or just call it the House of Commons. Because their Senate is a joke. And this story with Leader Trudeau is a pretty good example of that.

Free Speech TV: Thom Hartmann's Daily Take- A Declaration of the End of the Reagan Era

Actually what Thom Hartmann didn’t bother to mention which I’m sure he already knows this having lived through these periods in his thirties and forties unlike myself who grew up in the 1980s and 1990s, is that President George H.W. Bush raised taxes and went back on a campaign promise that probably cost him his reelection in 1992. To deal with high debts and deficits in 1990 that he inherited. Bill Clinton basically finished the job along with a Democratic Congress when it came to deficit reduction of the 1990s. In 1993 with tax hike on the wealthy to go along with strategic budget cuts as well.

The tax hikes that Thom Hartmann talks about were not about economic growth. But deficit reduction and if they didn’t come with budget cuts, the economy and the deficit would’ve been even worst because of the lost economic growth with business’s struggling and even going out of business. The economy of the 1990s partly did better because of deficit reduction. But also because of infrastructure investment, new trade opportunities and middle class tax relief as well. And with the information technology boom of the 1990s.

When Thom Hartmann says he would repeal the Reagan tax cuts, I didn’t hear him say he would just repeal the tax cuts for the wealthy, but the Reagan tax cuts. That could mean the all the tax cuts because the 1981 Economic Recovery Act which I believe is what that bill was called, was across the board tax cut that lowered taxes on everyone and expanded the Earned Income Tax Credit. That is tax relief for low-income Americans so they do not have to pay taxes, came from President Reagan as well.

Kyungho Dean: Video: Documentary, Edward R. Murrow vs. U.S. Senator Joseph McCarthy

What was so brilliant about Ed Murrow and his See it Now broadcast which was CBS News’s nightly newscast before the CBS Evening News was created, what was so brilliant about Ed Murrow and See it Now in how they handled the Joe McCarthy hearings, is they just reported what Senator McCarthy said. And then Ed Murrow would give his commentary on what the Senator said, but they didn’t put words in his own mouth. “This is what the Senator said and what we think about it.” They didn’t put words in Senator McCarthy’s mouth or what his investigative committee in the Senate that he chaired said and what they were up to. They simply listened to what the Senator said and then used his own words against him. Which is very different from listening to what someone said and then trying to make it sound worst than what it really. Which is what partisan news organizations do today and back then as well.

PBS NewsHour: Representative Charles Rangel Debate Dr. Walter Williams on The Minimum Wage

Sounds to me that whatever spin that Common Sense Capitalism wants to give it, that Representative Rangel was arguing not only in favor of the minimum wage, but empowering those workers to be able to get additional skills so they wouldn’t have to work for the minimum wage. And be able to get better jobs and be able to support themselves. With Dr. Williams arguing and using traditional spin of the Right that the minimum wage kills jobs and costs others jobs even when some others are getting jobs.Representative Rangel was arguing for economic empowerment for low-income low-skilled workers. So they wouldn’t have to work for the minimum wage long-term. While Dr. Williams was making the so-called free market argument when it comes to employee compensation. “Let the free market decide”. When in fact the so-called free market wouldn’t decide that. Employers who just happen to be part of the market, would decide what wages should be for everyone including themselves.

Firing Line With William F. Buckley: Warren Report- Fact or Fiction: Mark Lane- December 1, 1966

Source: Firing Line With William F. Buckley- Conspiracy theorist Mark Lane. 
Source:Firing Line With William F. Buckley 
It is now clear that there were many holes in the Warren Report on the JFK Assassination. They did not know enough about Lee Harvey Oswald and probably didn’t look into other possibilities enough when it came to this assassination, but they did get at least one thing right. That Lee Oswald wanted Jack Kennedy dead and had the means and access to shoot and kill President Kennedy. And he was the person who shot President Kennedy whether he was the only person behind the assassination or not.

I’m personally a hundred percent sure that Lee Oswald shot and killed President Kennedy. The question is whether or not he was the only person behind this assassination. Or were others involved in this plan to kill the President, or was Oswald acting on his own. And I don’t believe we still know the answers to that considering that were plenty of the people on both the far-right and far-left that wanted President Kennedy dead in Dallas, Texas alone.

Sky News: Should an Independent Scotland Be Allowed to Keep the Pound?

A Federalist Union might be the only way to save the United Kingdom in Britain. Where the states there that currently flirting with independence from Britain or in North Ireland's case. Flirting with uniting with the Republic of Ireland, where they currently share the same island. But where two countries control parts of it. Because these states clearly want more freedom and autonomy over their own domestic affairs. Instead of London trying to govern the entire country with a unitary government.

With a Federalist Union or Republic, the British states for lack of a better term. On the British isles would have the autonomy to govern their own domestic affairs. Leaving foreign policy, national security, homeland security, as well as interstate commerce and law enforcement. Up to the the British Federal Government under this system. Instead of having a unitary government with most of the power in.

Economically as well as when it comes to national security and foreign policy. Each of these states and ethnic groups. The English, Scottish, Welch and the Irish in North Ireland. Are better off being part of a United Britain but politically the current political structure doesn't work very well. Even Socialists in each of these states would like to see more local and state control over their own affairs. And a Federalist system would still protect the Socialist state in Britain. But give the states more freedom and flexibility to govern the Socialist systems in their own states.

Radical Films: U.S. House Un-American Activities: Looking For Communists in Hollywood

Source:Radical Films-
Source:Radical Films 

The House Un-American Activities Committee and then later the Joe McCarthy Government Oversight Committee in the Senate, were classic cases of guilt by association. Because they assumed some Americans were Un-American and not deserving of being Americans simply because of people they may have associated with and political positions they may have held. Not because of any illegal activities they have been involved in. Which is how we are supposed to judge people’s involvement in criminal activity.
Source: Radical Films- U.S. House Un-American Activities Committee, or HUAC for short

The United States a liberal democracy where Americans have the right to believe what they believe. And say what they want to say with a few exceptions. Like encouraging violence or libeling people without any basis in fact. Yelling fire in tight public spaces. But for the most part our own politics is our own business. And we are free to either express our own political opinions, or opinions about any other subjects or not. And not be held criminally libel because of what we believe.
Source: The Scott Rollins TV and Trivia- Actor Howard Da Silva

But what we got instead from these Congressional communist investigative committees was guilt by association that ruined a lot of good productive Americans lives. And for what, so people on the far-right and people simply just looking for political advancement, Senator Joe McCarthy comes to mind, could have a big issue and use it to advance their own political careers. No matter who they may hurt along the way which is about as Un-American as it gets.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Paul Ibbetson: Larry Schweikart: 'A Patriot's History of The Modern World'

Source: Paul Ibbetson- Kansas right-wing radio talk show Paul Ibbetson.
"This is an Interview with New York Times bestselling author Larry Schweikart talking about his new book,  "A Patriot's History of the Modern World Part 1."

I love the United States Constitution. The whole document and not parts of it like the Far-Right and Far-Left like to pick off. And say this what is great about the Constitution as they try to destroy other parts of it. I like the whole document and every amendment to it including the First Amendment that includes Freedom of Religion and I’m in favor of that even as an Agnostic whose in a small minority when it comes to religion.

But our constitutional rights do not come from God whether it its a Christian God or anyone else. Our constitutional rights come from the U.S. Constitution itself. Our constitutional rights come from our Founding Fathers who founded our Federal Republic and liberal democracy. Who wrote our U.S. Constitution. Not from God, Christian or otherwise.

I get the fact that if the Tea Party and the broader populist-fundamentalist-right, was in charge back in the late 1700s or if the Unites States of America was being created today, along with the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, America would look a helluva lot different. Maybe it would based on their fundamentalist, Anglo-Saxon-Protestant views. But America is obviously a lot more diverse than that. Not just politically, but ethnically, racially, religiously, culturally, and it's for all of us, not just the first Europeans to America. 

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Thom Hartmann: Video: President Obama's 2013 State of The Union: A Report Card

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell in his first speech in the 111th Congress back in 2009, laid out the Senate Republican strategy at least if not the Congressional Republican strategy as a whole, both House and Senate when Minority Leader McConnell who may be leaving Congress if he’s not reelected in 2014, because he’s going to have a very strong Democratic challenger, but he said his number one goal was to prevent President Obama from being reelected.
The Senate minority party obviously has the power to slow and block legislation. Especially if they are a large minority that Republicans have had in the last three years. The House is a little different obviously, but what the House Minority Leader can do is tell his or her caucus, “you are not to work with the majority party on anything”. And get that memo out to their caucus. “Because we want to use everything they pass and try to pass”, that is the House majority party in this Congress, “against them whether the legislation becomes law or not.” Which is what John Boehner who in President Obama’s first Congress did as the House Minority Leader.
The President of the United States is the most powerful person in the world. Yet that person whoever they are, are limited to what they can do both constitutionally and legally. But politically as well and when you have an opposition party that is strong enough to at least slow you down in Congress and they tell you, “we aren’t going to work with you on anything. And just want to win more seats in Congress and are waiting for you to leave office one way or the other”, it makes the President’s job very difficult to get much done through law.

You Hot News: Video: Full Speech: Republican Address to The Nation 2014: U.S. House GOP Chairman Cathy McMorris Rodgers

This is what Cathy McMorris Rodgers should’ve of said tonight
“Good evening, I’m Representative Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington State and I represent Eastern Washington. I’m Chairman of the House Republican Conference and tonight I have the high honor of giving the GOP response to what President Obama said tonight during his State of the Union speech.” And then get into what she disagreed with President Obama on in a respectful way and what she and House Republicans believe should be done instead. And where both sides agree on if anything and they want to work together.
What Cathy McMorris Rodgers said instead
What we heard instead was a biographical address and I know she’s probably not very well-known outside of the House of Representatives and perhaps the national Republican Party. And felt the need to introduce herself with more of a biographical resume. But she’s not running for president or vice president or U.S. Senate or governor of Washington State. Her job was to layout the State of the Union from a Republican point of view and what House Republicans want to do in 2014.
And plus even when she talked about what President Obama and said and then finally got into what House Republicans want to do in 2014, nothing but Republican talking points. “We believe in free markets, apple pie, hard work and the American way to go along with low taxes. And we are working hard to do this.” And that without any details and specifics when it comes to policies. And what policies they are in favor of to accomplish, their goals.

The White House: The 2014 State of The Union Address

I thought President Obama gave a very good speech tonight that the American people probably enjoyed hearing. Even if it is the smallest audience to listen to one of his State of the Union’s. But I’m not sure it was a speech that will move the country behind his agenda and get the Republican controlled House of Representatives to move on it or move on anything that will boost the economy. Or something that Congressional Democrats and candidates can use to run on and get elected and reelected in November by itself. That he still has a lot more work to do.

The stuff that Americans tend to agree on that unites us was good. Talking about the troops and the need to support them and the fact we’ve ended our longest war in Afghanistan and one of our longest wars in Iraq. But you expect to hear a president to say these things and they always get good applause. But the test is can the president move the country behind his agenda or not and get Americans that he tends to count on and new Americans skeptical about him to say, “you know what the president is right on these issues and we should help his get these things passed in Congress.” I didn’t hear that tonight.

The Republican House of Representatives position on economic growth is very clear. Anything that requires the Federal Government to spend money that is not business or individual tax relief related is dead on arrival in the House. But President Obama wants new national infrastructure plan and new educational and job training opportunities for the long-term unemployed and for low-skilled workers. Those things cost money, but what he has going for him is the Democratic Senate. And instead of trying to push Congress as a whole on these issues, President Obama should focus on the Senate and see if he can and Leader Harry Reid can get anything done there.

To put it bluntly if the House Republican Leadership wants to take 2014 off as far as doing their day-to-day jobs and sit on their asses and just concentrate on electing more representatives, the hell with them if I’m President Obama. “And I’m going to run against a Do Nothing House in public. As I and Vice President Joe Biden are working very hard behind the scenes with the Democratic controlled Senate to move my agenda there and try to get some things passed that country will support.” And the more they get passed over there, the more they’ll have to run on in 2014. That would be my advice to President Obama and Leader Reid and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Lord Rothschild: Video: The Situation Room: Michelle Bachmann Debates Bernie Sanders

I don’t know why anyone takes Representative Michelle Bachmann seriously on anything. Except when it may come to satire or what is stupid in the world today. I could just concentrate on the fact that she spends her time repeating Tea Party talking points that are completely false. The Obama War on Women to use as an example, the Obama War on Success or the Obama War on Energy. Are just a few examples and the fact that CNN brings her to debate someone as serious as knowledgeable as Senator Bernie Sanders whose also a gentleman and let’s people speak, is beyond me.

You want to know why CNN’s ratings are down and they are actually losing viewers to that joke called a news network MSNBC, I’ll tell you anyway. Because Wolf Blitzer and other’s at CNN bring on Michelle Bachmann and people just as ignorant and rude as she is. And just basically let her talk the whole time and when they have what they call debates with her there, she not only get’s to speak as long as she wants to, but get’s to take the person’s she’s debating with time as well. Not stopping her awful interruptions and as a result viewers have to listen to all of her garbage. That doesn’t get questioned or turn to another channel.

As far as poverty in America, I actually watched the entire video of the interview of the poor single mom. And what she was said was that she needs additional skills and education so she can get herself a good job and not need public assistance at all. Because she knows she simply can’t support herself on public assistance or working a minimum wage job with public assistance. Which has been one of my main points when it has come to the so-called War on Poverty in America.

CNN: The Situation Room- Michele Bachmann Debates Bernie Sanders

Source:CNN-  U.S. Representative Michele Bachmann (Republican, Minnesota) debating U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (Democratic Socialist, Socialist Republic of Vermont) on CNN.


From CNN

Hell must be going through a deep freeze right now, because I actually agree with Representative Michele Bachmann on something. 

The reason why Scandinavia has almost no poverty there, is because they are deeply rich in natural energy resources like oil and gas. Two energy resources that Senator Bernie Sanders supporters would probably like to ban in America and Scandinavia uses that energy revenue to pay for their social welfare states. And they also have small populations. So they have lots of energy for an area of only 25 million people.

I hate to break it to Senator Sanders and every other American Socialist (in and out of Congress) but that everything that government does, comes with a price for anyone who receives those services, one way or another. 

You can also see this post at The Daily Times, on Blogger.

David Pakman Show: 'MSNBC Interrupts Congresswoman on NSA for Report on Justin Bieber'

Source:MSNBC- "Top story of the day: pop star Justin Bieber arrested for drunk driving. On our back page: America under attack by terrorists." Well, you have to give people what they want to hear, otherwise they won't watch your news. At least that seems to be the message from MSNBC.

"--MSNBC interrupts a Congresswoman Jane Harman, while she is discussing the NSA, to report on Justin Bieber

--On the Bonus Show: A ghost ship full of diseased cannibal rats, A Kansas court rules that a sperm donor must pay child support, A map of publicly funded schools that teach creationism, more... 

From David Pakman 

MSNBC- "This just in Justin Bieber arrested for drunk driving which of course is our top story today. Also in the news on our back story, New York City has just been hit by a nuclear missile attack. Hundreds of thousands of people reported dead. Several of our staff are here at NBC News World Headquarters including reporters and producers, have been unable to check in to give us a full report on that yet. Luckily our reporters and producers on the Bieber story were here all night working non-stop to give you the first breaking news footage of the Bieber story.

Our real news reporters and producers are only human and needed to go home before coming back to work. We hope to bring you coverage of the NYC nuclear missile attack on our late night insomniac news coverage. If there isn't any Bieber related or other pop culture related breaking news. We are also following the latest Khloe Kardashian nightclub fight. And what shoes her sister Kim wore when she was out shopping last Saturday".

I already knew MSNBC was a joke when it came to news. They use Michael Moore as an actual news commentator and analyst and actually take him seriously. The prime time lineup is really nothing more than far-left commentary and a lot of their afternoon drive is that as well. And they really only seem to interested in what anti-corporate, anti-capitalist Socialists in the country think about news. Even though MSNBC is as pro-capitalist and pro-corporate as they come. And I don't believe they are fooling a lot of people, but that is what they do.

The Justin Bieber story just sort of takes the huge monster size cake (to use an old expression) about what the so-called mainstream news media is about and interested and what the American people are interested in. And how our country and culture is so dumbed down now that they feel the need to know all about their favorite pop culture celebrities and as little about things that actually affect their real lives. Like their privacy, civil liberties, the ability to download, photos, videos, and other information of their favorite celebrities and whether their government monitors their online activities. And also little things like how much they are going to have to pay in taxes. (Just to use as examples) 

You can also see this post at The Daily Journal, on WordPress.

Newsmax: Video: Former RNC Chairman Michael Steele: "We've Got to Turn the Elephant"

Source:Newsmax- former Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele, talking about the future of the Republican Party.

"Michael Steele, the former chairman of the Republican National Committee, tells Newsmax TV during an exclusive interview that the Republican party must adapt to survive." 

From Newsmax 

The Ronald Reagan/Michael Steele wing of the Republican Party is the future of the GOP. If they are going to be a big party in power in the future. And I put Mike Steele in the Reagan wing of the GOP because President Reagan is a big hero of Chairman Steele. And he is a big tent Republican who can speak to people outside of the traditional far-right base of the GOP and can communicate a message that appeals to more Americans outside of the far-right base.

The future of the GOP will need to keep the economic Conservatives who aren’t interested in government telling them or other Americans how to live their personal lives. And bring in Americans who like conservative economic policies, but get turned off by the Religious-Right and Nationalists when they talk about such divisive cultural issues. And try to nationalize social issues, when traditionally the Republican Party has seen these issues as issues should be left up to the states to decide. 

The country is moving pass the Religious-Right and the Nationalists. And we are becoming a much more tolerant and inclusionary country. Something that only the far-right who still live in the 1950s culturally do not seem to understand. Who look at Americans outside of their base as Un-American and should go back to where they came from. As the far-right get’s even smaller and dies off, so will the GOP if they do not bring in new voters.  

You can also see this post at The FreeState, on Blogger.

VOA News: Thomas Mann: President Obama to Urge Action on The Economy in State of The Union Speech

“It’s The Economy Stupid!” President Obama should spend eighty to ninety percent of the State of the Union speech on the economy and this is what Democrats would do to jumpstart economic and job growth that benefits everyone. Including things like more education and job training for low-skilled workers and the long-term unemployed and making work pay more than not working. With a minimum wage increase to the point that a worker could make more with a job like that than not working. A new national infrastructure plan, things that in past at least garnered bipartisan support. There are a lot of good things that we could do for the economy right now that at least in the past not only brought bipartisan support in Congress, but good ideas from both Democrats and Republicans. And these are the things that President Obama should try to move Congress on.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Jason Kuznicki: Modern Liberalism and The Paternalism of Things

Modern Liberalism and the Paternalism of Things is the perfect way to describe what is called modern liberalism. Which is a bogus term because there’s only one liberalism and you are either a Liberal or not. Or perhaps have some liberal positions but not a full-time Liberal. But there really isn’t classical liberalism or modern liberalism. I use the term classical liberalism as a way to compare liberalism with a more state form of liberalism. That really isn’t liberalism, but a state form of leftist collectivism or socialism. That tends to get labeled as liberalism. But what is called modern liberalism is a state form of paternalism.

What is called Modern liberalism that I call collectivism is a state form of paternalism. That puts its faith in the state through the voting process to decide what is best for everyone, the society. Instead of letting people decide these things for themselves and being able to manage and govern their own lives. Collectivists tend to see freedom as a dangerous because they tend to see it as the freedom to make mistakes. Instead of good decisions and that it needs to be regulated to the point that people can be protected from making too many bad decisions with their lives that the society has to pay for.

Liberalism in its classic and modern form is not about the state and that society needs to decide for everyone what is best for each individual in how they should live their own lives. But about the individual and that an educated public is much more qualified to make their own decisions. Because they have the knowledge to do so and when you also have an educated public you have the best and most productive society as possible. Allowing for an encouraging everyone to be as successful as possible.

Firing Line: The 1988 Republican Presidential Candidates With William F. Buckley

The Bob Dole intro was the most impressive to me because of how real it was and how real he is. Talking about his parents and family and his background and where he came from. Coming from such modest roots and serving in World War II and being able to go to college on the GI Bill. And having the opportunity he needed to be successful in life and taking full advantage of those opportunities. To the point where he became Leader of the U.S. Senate. The rest of the group other than maybe Jack Kemp and Pat Robertson, were essentially country club Republicans, who were born with essentially all the opportunities needed to be successful in life. Not having to work their way through school, or having to serve their country before they were given the opportunity to be successful in life.

Associated Press: Today in History For January 26th

1998 the year that could’ve been for President Bill Clinton that instead turned out to be the year that wasn’t. Because a fifty-year old man couldn’t get enough of a White House intern. A year where he wanted to reform and shore up entitlement programs, expand pensions and health insurance. He had a very big agenda going into 1998, but that all gone because of an affair he had with an intern. Just goes to show how stupid he was to have this affair and everything that he cost himself and his party as. A result that again going into 1998 probably had an opportunity to win back the House of Representatives. Bill Clinton similar to Richard Nixon had more than his share of enemies in the opposition party. People who were simply looking to bring them down. Where Nixon and Clinton made mistakes was to give them the hammers to hit them with their own personal behavior.

Bill Clinton, I don’t want to say is the Jack Kennedy of his generation when it came to his sexual appetite. Because lets face it, JFK was a morbidly obese man when it came to sexual activity. Had he not had this little job as President of the United States, perhaps the only thing he would’ve had done was to have sex. And maybe there would be a hundred little JFK’s running around today with perhaps a hundred different mothers, with the Jack being the father of all of them. Bill Clinton (at least as far as we know) didn’t have sex with a different women every time he was out-of-town on his own, or when Hillary went out-of-town on her own. But when President Clinton saw a women and in Monica Lewinski’s case, a teenage girl as far as how cute she was and maturity level that he liked, he made his move.

And without the Paula Jones bogus lawsuit, I mean seriously why would a man as handsome, charming, funny and intelligent as Bill Clinton, want anything to do with Paula Jones. Especially when he already had Jennifer Flowers which was a real affair. But putting that all aside for a minute, without her lawsuit against the President, Monica Lewinski’s name is probably never famous. She didn’t want this story to come out. And President Clinton for obvious as water is wet reasons didn’t want this story to come out either. The whole Monica affair just reminds me of how stupid even the most brightest and politically gifted people can be when they don’t have discipline. And that is one thing that Bill Clinton will always have in common with Jack Kennedy.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

The McLaughlin Group: The State of The Union, Economic Mobility, Syria, Liberal vs Progressive

Source: The McLaughlin Group - John McLaughlin 
Source:The McLaughlin Group 

As far as the State of the Union. If I’m President Obama or he could hear my advice for him, I would say use this speech to kickoff the 2014 Campaign to Save Congressional Democrats. Keeping the Senate majority and keeping the House Democratic Caucus at about where it is right now.

“And this is how we are going to do that by making 2014 all about the economy and the liberal democratic vision to move the country forward economically.” If he’s successful in doing that, he could take sixty percent of the country with him who tend to like Democrats more on these issues than Republicans.

Economic mobility is about making 2014 about the economy. Again the liberal democratic vision.

1. Extend Unemployment Insurance so people struggling so hard just to go back to work at least have some income while they are doing that. And what we are also going to do is expand job training for these unemployed workers, but also for low-income low-skilled workers. So they can get the skills they need to either go back to work at a good job, or get an even better job from what low-income low-skilled workers are doing right now.

2. Create going to create a ten-dollar an hour minimum wage to make work pay more than not working. And so these workers can purchase more which will help drive consumer spending and economic growth.

3. Going to create a National Infrastructure System and actually add to that. With a national public/private corporation or National Infrastructure Bank with the simple task of prioritizing infrastructure projects that either have to be rebuilt or built. That would reward contracts to private construction companies to do the work and bring in private investors to pay for the projects.

What President Obama could say to Congress that is the Republican House that isn’t really interested in doing anything that may need Democratic support to pass. And a Democratic Senate that has a Republican minority that is only interested in winning back the Senate. “I’m offering my hand and if you want to be my partner in helping to put Americans back to work and jumpstart the economy. You can either work with me on this, or I’m going to do as much as this by myself as I can. In case you try to stonewall me with the Republican House not doing anything. Or Senate Republicans trying to block anything that the Senate Leader Harry Reid brings to the floor to address these issues.”

As far as Syria the United States lost whatever opportunity it had a year ago or two years ago to knock out the Assad Regime. And at least give the Syrian Opposition a fighting chance to not only defend themselves, but to try to do the job themselves. And now as a result we are at a point where we are trying to prevent the worst from happening with Bashar Al-Assad still as President of Syria. And both sides already know this.

Liberal vs. Progressive or even Social Democrat (as I prefer to call so-called modern Progressives) Is really about the two Democratic economic visions coming from the Left. Liberals want to empower Americans who need it to be able to create their own freedom for themselves. Which is why President Obama is going to focus so much on education, job training and infrastructure. Today’s so-called Progressives are essentially saying that, “the wealthy have too much and what we really need to do is take a lot of money from them so the Federal Government has enough money to take care of everyone else.”

Thom Hartmann: 'Time to do Away With The Second Amendment?'

Source:Thom Hartmann- with a look at the 2nd Amendment.

"Thom Hartmann says Second Amendment was added to keep Virginia from backing out of ratifying the U.S. Constitution.

If you liked this clip of The Thom Hartmann Program, please do us a big favor and share it with your friends... and hit that "like" button!"  

From what I’ve read over the last two weeks and blogged about, I’m starting to get the idea that I should write a new section or create something called something to the effect The Big Government Report. Or This Week in Big Government or Today in Big Government. The last two weeks alone I’ve read a Far-Right blog The American Thinker arguing in favor of tobacco prohibition. And that link with a counter reply to it is on this blog and why that would be a brain-dead idea. Last weekend I read a piece in Salon arguing for nationalizing the news in America. Another brain-dead idea and I wrote the counter reply to that which is on this blog. And now a proposal to outlaw the Second Amendment. 

As far as outlawing the Second Amendment and by the way good luck with that and I’m sure Thom Hartmann has much better things to do. And won’t spend much time on this losing cause. Because the Second Amendment is popular in liberal democratic states as well. Not just country bumpkin redneck states. And I happen to live in one of those liberal democratic states. The Free State of Maryland and also keep in mind the United States Constitution is a liberal democratic document.

But for the hell of it why don’t we imagine the Second Amendment get’s repealed. Perhaps the whole country, or all of our state legislatures are drunk when this happens. Why not because that might be what it takes to accomplish this. Next what will come from these big government far-leftists is repealing firearms in the hands of private citizens and institutions. And leaving only government which has never had and will never have the resources to defend everyone. With any ability to defend the people from violent criminals and acts of crimes.

Keep in mind American government at the federal, state and local levels, all have histories of using violence against their own people. As well as covering up violence against their own people. Look no further than the civil rights movement and we could also go back to slavery in this country. Is this really the big government collectivist state the Far-Left in America wants to create? Where we are all dependent on the big state for everything. Including law enforcement that they aren’t capable of providing everyone with. Which is a reason why we have the Second Amendment. 

You can also see this post at FreeState MD, on Blogger.

Los Angeles Times: A New Way to Attack Social Programs: Pay For Performance Projects

Source:Los Angeles Times 

Here’s an area where the public sector can work with the private sector and it is in the area of self-improvement for convicted inmates. So they can build up their lives and have a real shot at succeeding on the outside making a good living legally. And never needing to go back to jail or prison. It is pretty clear that locking up prison inmates and simply just keeping them there until their sentence is over, or just simply releasing them on the outside expecting to fit back into civilized society on their own, does not work. And that we need a new approach and this is where a public/private partnership could work.

If you want to talk about what happens to ex-inmates once they get out of prison as far as empowering them to build a successful life for themselves, we should say that all ex-inmates upon release from prison would then have to serve at a halfway house at their expense. Which would be like an apartment building or hotel for ex-offenders where they would stay and get help finding a job. And whatever rehabilitation service they may need as well so they can function successfully in society. Where they would have an outside job while still staying at the halfway house. Plus having a job inside the halfway house to help keep the place running.

The way this would work would be pretty simple. A prison releases inmates and then finds a halfway house for those inmates based on applications these places send to prisons. And then they get rewarded with the contracts to manage these ex-inmates in their houses. Until they are completely ready to be independent and live completely on their own. And the beauty of this approach is that the ex-inmates would pay for these services themselves. With money they get paid from their jobs outside of these homes.

Channel 4 News: 50p Tax Rate, Do Britons Think it Will Make a Difference?

I guess New Labour is going back to being Old Labour and talking about fifty percent tax rates. If you think taxes are too high in America whatever income level you are at, try living in Britain and you’ll think the taxes in America are almost nothing. Top tax rate in the United States currently is thirty-three percent. United Kingdom it is somewhere in the forties right now and then you add up all sorts of other taxes to pay for all the public social services in the country all run by the national government there and you could be paying as much seventy percent in taxes if not more. Even Britain which is one of the most socialist democracies in the world, puts limits on how much they want government, especially their national government doing for them and how much they’ll pay for it. As we’ve seen in the last four years of the David Cameron government there.

John F. Kennedy Liberal Democrat

John F. Kennedy Liberal Democrat
Source: U.S. Senator John F. Kennedy in 1960