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Monday, May 4, 2015

CARLY FIORINA-HEWLETT PACKARD SLAYER


Carly Fiorina brought Hewlett Packard to the bottom of the barrel with her style of management. She laid off 34,000 workers and then another 16,000 had to be let go. After six years and signs of her faltering business methods she was fired. NOW SHE WANTS TO BE PRESIDENT AND PUT THE WHOLE COUNTRY IN THE TANK. Where does the GOP come up with these people? Oh, by the way, she was an adviser to the John McCain presidential campaign in 2008. So far, she's batting 1000. Right now her major push is anti-Hillary, as if Jeb Bush, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, ad infinitum weren't anti-Hillary. Fiorina keeps saying, "I'm ready for Hillary," which I, and am sure millions more Americans, doubt very much. What's she's ready for is the pasture and it's time to put her there.

TED CRUZ CONSPIRACY MONGER


Anyone remember the movie, Viva Max, with Peter Ustinov, John Astin, Pamela Tiffin and Jonathan Winters? Ustinov, a Mexican General, along with his sidekick Astin, with soldiers march from their country to San Antonio, Texas, where they plan to retake the Alamo. It is a hilarious comedy of blunders from both countries with an eventual outcome...well, you should really see the movie. Ted Cruz, who probably doesn't even know what the Alamo is since he is actually from Canada, thinks the exercise called “Jade Helm 15” is a conspiracy against the people of Texas. The implication is the feds are holding these domestic military training exercises in Texas to implement martial law, seize Americans’ guns, and imprison political dissidents. His lunacy, along with other touched Texans, mimics the antics of Jonathan Winters in the movie, who plays a Brigadier General in the National Guard. The locals bumble through everything they do but the Mexican troops eventually return home. At least Peter Ustinov's threat was real, although a farce in the making. Ted Cruz wouldn't know a real conspiracy if it ran over him.

U.S. ELECTION LAW IS CRAP


Election laws have come under scrutiny for years but this approach takes the cake. Presidential hopeful Jeb Bush has decided to thwart campaign finance rules by raising tons of money before announcing his candidacy. It's legal, as long as he hasn't said he's a candidate. He can raise all the money he wants, any way he wants until then. It's farcical and I am sure another presidential contender by the name of Sen. Bernie Sanders would agree. He described billionaire money to finance elections as "vulgar." It's more than vulgar, it's obscene when big business can go out and buy an election so the recipients are in their back pockets. A classic example of this is the National Rifle Assn. who has bought Congress for years. 288 members of Congress have an "A" rating from the NRA, meaning they get top dollar from the organization. There are 535 members of Congress which means the NRA "As" equals more than 50% of those who represent us. The system is broken and needs to be fixed.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

IF GAY MARRIAGE LOSES SUPREME COURT LOSES


I am curious if there is any leeway in the process of a SCOTUS decision to hedge on the side of what's right? I mean if Chief Justice John Roberts leaned in favor of the gay issue once before, something must have urged him in that direction. And all of a sudden, even some anti-gun legislation that was blasphemy a few years ago has favored the gun control advocates. Plus, the feds are leaving the marijuana controversy alone for the time being. I mean, if you really want to find a loophole in the Constitution, SCOTUS is the one to do it. Gay rights should be a slam dunk though, based on the 14th Amendment. It clearly forbids "the states to restrict the basic rights of citizens or other persons." But, then, there's that Bible thing saying  "You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination." This is the conservative, radical, religious ideology that has been controlling the right of the Supreme Court for the last few years. It could be that SCOTUS senses the importance of being morally right today, as well as constitutionally correct, and their timing is right if they don't want to start a revolution

BERNIE SANDERS DOESN'T WANT THE "VULGAR" BILLIONAIRE BUCKS


Presidential contender Bernie Sanders says he neither needs nor wants the tainted money that comes from billionaire donors like the Koch Bros. I believe him, and here's why. In a post yesterday, we uncovered some 30-million potential Progressives in this country. There are another 40-million Democrats, not necessarily Progressive, but most of whom don't want to see another Republican president. If you hit all 70-million for $5.00 twice, that's more than Barack Obama spent on reelection in 2012. For those of you who question my numbers, sure, all 70-mil won't give but with $5.00 as a standard, the range could be anywhere from $1.00 to $100 or more and the total amount could be even higher. Sen. Sanders actual words about the issue were, "Frankly, it is vulgar to me that we're having a war of billionaires." This is the kind of statement Progressives have been looking for for years. Now that you have it, run with it.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

BERNIE SANDERS OUT-RAISES GOP OPPONENTS


In his first 24-hours in the race to be the Democratic nominee for president, Bernie Sanders raised over $1.5 million, outdoing all his Republican challengers. Hillary Clinton declined to release the figures on her first day. Now that's a good thing and very positive for someone who is relatively unknown, but Bernie has a long way to go. In 2012, Barack Obama raised $715,677,692 and spent $683,546,548. Mitt Romney raised $446,135,997 and spent $433,281,516. What his first day proves is that Sanders has an excellent base to which he can appeal and they are responsive. I do not know exactly how many Progressives there are in the U.S., but based on a series of reliable sources, I am projecting some 30 million. President Obama received a popular vote of 65,915,796 in 2012. So Bernie Sanders will need a portion of the balance of Democratic voters; some 40 million not necessarily considered Progressive. His chances are looking better each day.

WHO SAYS BERNIE SANDERS CAN'T WIN?


Sen. Bernie Sanders is running for President as a Democrat, when actually he is an independent from Vermont whose political philosophy is Democratic Socialism. Finally, a Progressive. An MSNBC article says it is important that he run, even if he can't win. I think he can win. Progressives have ultimately realized that the only way we can get what we want is to come out and vote to elect the President and Congress that will get it done. Actually there were 70 Democratic Socialists counted in the Congress in 2010, among them Raúl M. Grijalva of AZ, Dennis Kucinich, OH, Elijah Cummings, MD, John Lewis, GA, Ed Markey, MA, Charles Rangel, NY, Maxine Waters, CA, and of course Bernie Sanders. You can see them all here. Now that's pretty impressive and a good number to start with for 2016. What you Progressives have to understand is that you are not alone. Our views aren't anti-American like some conservatives would have you believe. They are right for this country and it is time that they are expressed nationally.

Friday, May 1, 2015

BALTIMORE RISING


Marilyn Mosby, Baltimore State Atty., has brought the Freddie Gray matter back into perspective for the city of Baltimore as well as the rest of the country. The 35-year-old is only in her fourth month on the job but she has acted quickly in charging six of the city's police officers from murder to manslaughter to assault. She found theFreddie Gray, arrest was even illegal since the knife Gray was arrested for was not a switchblade; it was legal. In reflecting on the riots now, there is justification for the unrest of the black community but not justification for the rioting. But when you think about it, tension builds emotions which have to be expressed, and often, these days, it all tends to go in the wrong direction. In Ferguson, MO, it was blatant racism from the police chief on down. If the white people of this country think the blacks are going to continue to take this without a more disastrous retaliation, they are going to be sorrowfully wrong.

WHICH VERSION OF THE BIBLE DO YOU FOLLOW?


There are hundreds of translations of the Bible and I would think that would be a nightmare for devout Christians, especially fundamentalists, although they say they don't take all scriptures literally. So if they pick and choose, what does that say about the Bible as a whole? Even Jesus said, "You have heard it said...but I say to you..." The site Biblica states there are two views on how the translation should be conducted. On the one hand the "translation should stick just as closely as possible to every word of the original Hebrew and Greek." On the other it, "should transfer the message, that is, the exact thought and emotion of the original text." For those who favor the King James Version, dating back to 1611, if you tried to interpret its scriptures literally you would be a lost soul. And then there is the Apocrypha (meaning hidden), a second set of booklets that were never included in the Bible nor talked of by Jesus and the Apostles. It is full of history and can be fascinating to read.

My point here is that no matter what version of the Bible you follow, you must face up to the fact that it was written by human beings, no doubt divinely inspired, so there is always the possibility of inaccuracies. Faith is a good thing, as long as it is tempered by facts.

INSTANT CITIZENSHIP-IS IT RIGHT?


It is one thing when immigrants who have been here for years, contributing to the U.S., become citizens through the legal process. It is another when an immigrant crosses the border into this country with her unborn baby with the express purpose to birth it here for citizenship. But the 14th Amendment clearly states, " All persons born or naturalized in the United States..." It makes no distinction to who they are or how they got here, it's an open invitation that GOP members of Congress are now questioning. As is the rage over the 2nd Amendment, we haven't yet heard the shouts about what the "Founding Fathers" meant. Just what Republicans want to do to put another barrier up against the Hispanic movement. And this whole issue would not be flaring up again in a completely new venue if the GOP would help pass immigration reform.

Incidentally, if you're in the changing mood, you should focus on the 2nd Amendment and either revise it drastically or get rid of it altogether.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

THIS POPE IS AWESOME


Pope Francis took a stand on homosexuality, although not endorsing it, rather, lightening the load on the church's LGBT community. He acknowledged climate change and the need to do something now. And his latest cause is to support women's rights to be paid the same as men. The homosexuality issue is progressing through the Supreme Court right now, climate change seems to be getting more attention, even around the world, but a woman's right to make the same kind of money as her male counterpart is going nowhere. Despite the Equal Pay Act of 1963, women working full time earn only 77% as much as the guy in the next office doing exactly the same job. How do you justify that in a civilized nation? You don't, you just write it off to those insecure bubbas out there who apparently aren't too sure about their masculinity.

FLORIDA GOVERNOR MORE EVIDENCE OF GOP BRAINLESSNESS


These Republican fruitcakes just keep popping up. Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) has decided to sue Obamacare for a deleted program the Affordable Care Act made unnecessary. He wants the money the ACA can provide for Florida's low income population but refuses to accept it in the name of Obamacare. The former policy, “Low Income Pools” (LIP), designed by Bush/Cheney to help hospitals actually funneled some money to Florida and now Radical Rick wants more of it, but only in the name of LIP. Kansas GOP Gov. Sam Brownback recently cut educational budgets in that state literally putting the future learning of that state's kids in dire jeopardy. Now Florida's Scott wants to do the same thing to his state's low income constituents needing healthcare. Pathetic!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

DONALD TRUMP SAYS PRESIDENT OBAMA RESPONSIBLE FOR BALTIMORE BURNING

It seems that dufus Donald has laid the blame for the recent Baltimore riots at the feet of President Obama. This ding-a-ling has also indicated he might run for president. Can you imagine this man in charge of the most powerful government in the world? Can you imagine this man in charge of anything? Yes, he is successful in business, a phenomenon I am sure surprises many people. My wife and I were in the Trump Tower in Manhattan a few years ago and it was actually somewhat run down. Here's a tweet from this fruitcake: “Our great African American president hasn’t exactly had a positive impact on the thugs who are so happily and openly destroying Baltimore!” Comments like this are shameful but no doubt will be picked up all over the world heaping more ridicule on the U.S. This moron should stick to his TV show where he can scare the hell out of his guests and where a double-digit IQ audience apparently eats it up.

DECIDING WHAT A PROGRESSIVE IS


Progressivism started as a social movement in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, eventually becoming a political movement. Teddy Roosevelt actually spearheaded the cause after taking office in 1901, mixing this with GOP conservatism. He said most everyone wants some progress but both Republicans and Democrats were slow to actually implement it. Roosevelt took it a step farther declaring he "always believed that wise progressivism and wise conservatism go hand in hand." Progressivism was highlighted in the Industrial Revolution, later when technology completely changed the way we do business. It was recently in 2014 that Andrew Tillett-Saks described a Progressive in Counterpunch, as one believing in a restrained free market, trade unions, taxing the wealthy, the nationalization of essential social needs such as education and healthcare, strong public welfare programs, higher minimum wage requirement and increased unionization, and the support of the poor.

The difference between a liberal and a progressive, at least as far as I see it; first I would extend the free market restraints to serious regulations on corporations. As far as taxing wealth, liberals have been way too lax on this in recent years. And liberals have been far too conceding on the establishment of private schools at the sake of the public school system. Bleeding liberals open welfare to the point of dispensing money without any control which I think is counterproductive. There hasn't been a sufficient drive in liberal politics to increase the minimum wage and to do more for the poor, both of which Progressives feel would improve the economy. And then there is my favorite of all, gun control, which some liberals even vote against.

Believe me, there are other differences that reside on an individual basis but the key factor here is that Progressives aren't saddled with a radical ideology like the Republican right. That's why we're called Progressives.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

HOW DO YOU BREAK DOWN $13.5 TRILLION TOTAL U.S. INCOME...FAIRLY?


Okay, so I'm a Democratic Socialist who believes in spreading the wealth. Apparently I and that philosophy have failed miserably when a man can work for the U.S. Senate, earn only $360 a week, and is homeless. We're not in a 3rd -world country and this is taking place on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol, a symbol of equality for all. So much for symbols and so much for the founders of this country who couldn't possibly have imagined this would happen. Why is it the norm to neglect others on your way to being successful and wealthy? So here's my solution to the whole mess. Total annual U.S. income is around $13.5 trillion. There are 116.7 million households in this country. If my math is correct, that is $114,000 for each family. I can hear the mansion and yacht folks screaming now but I can also see the smiles on those kids' faces who haven't eaten in a couple of days.

YAHOO EXPOSES NRA TAX FRAUD BUT IRS STANDS MUM


This list says it all. Out of 25 non-profits, the National Rifle Assn. is the only one not complying with the IRS. In this extensive Yahoo investigation, there are so many violations to the tax code it is hard to understand why there is not a full Senate and House investigation of the organization. Yeah, that'll happen. What this all boils down to is the fact that the NRA is not supposed to use donations for political campaigns, unless they first tell the contributor, or the special PAC within the NRA receiving the money is set up as a political entity. Apparently the NRA thinks it is above the rules and does just what it wants to. Like snubbing its nose at the IRS, telling them to take a walk. The inference here is that the NRA is raising money to promote the hunting industry when in fact those dollars will be going to a politician in some state who will strongly support the NRA in Congress. These members are classified with an "A" rating by the organization and the last time I checked there were 242 in the House, 46 in the Senate. They are solidly gun-pro and that explains why there is no IRS or any other federal investigation of the National Rifle Assn.

Monday, April 27, 2015

8 % OF U.S. GUN DEALERS SELL ILLEGAL GUNS USED IN CRIME


When a criminal wants a gun he or she doesn't steal it like cops and the National Rifle Assn.tell us. They obtain it through a legal straw purchase, which means getting someone else with the right credentials to buy it for them. The next source is legally licensed but corrupt at-home and commercial gun dealers. And these same Federal Firearms Licensees (FFLs), also report lost, missing or stolen firearms every year, a total of 23,775 since September of 1994. National Public Radio also reports that people arrested for a crime using a gun say, "it is easy to obtain guns illegally." What this tells us is that there are a lot of irresponsible gun owners out there buying guns for criminals. Plus almost 10,000 corrupt gun dealers willing to sell guns to anyone, including criminals. And the National Rifle Assn. insists we need even more guns on the street.  

CAN IOWA CAUCUS BE RELEVANT AFTER JONI ERNST?


For years the Iowa Caucuses were received as the first real test of a presidential candidate. Until Joni Ernst. Since she was elected to the Senate in that state, I am not sure how this will affect the normal opinions of those who follow this political event. But it is for sure that at least some of its credibility is shot to hell. If the same people who elected Ernst are the ones who vote in the caucuses--and that must be the case--the results of their ballots have to be considered as looney as their support for the latest Tea Party fruitcake. Iowans are usually level headed with a lot of
common sense and that is the reason presidential candidates seek their backing. But the whole process seems to have derailed when the Tea Party moved in and slipped this radical lunatic through the cracks. It is my guess that she won due to a low voter turnout when the triple-digit IQs stayed home. It goes without saying that too much of this is happening in this country and I just hope it is not too late when the American public realizes it.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

SCIENCE SAYS BIBLE AND FUNDAMENTALIST CHRISTIANITY ARE OUT OF DATE


Earlier this morning I posted on scientific studies that prove homosexuality is not a choice, rather, is more likely inherited through an interaction of our genes. And then a few days ago I posted what the Bible said about homosexuality, "You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination." So here we are this afternoon with science clearly rebutting the Bible. I go with science since it has the credibility of extensive research behind it. The Bible, well, it was written a few thousand years ago and has been handed down through the ages with several revisions and updates. The Bible is based on faith. Science is based on facts. There's nothing wrong with faith because it is the foundation of our beliefs, but then there is a point at which we must face the facts. Ted Cruz was in Iowa yesterday arguing that the Democratic Party is a home to 'liberal fascism' against Christians. It is this very kind of radical Republican rhetoric that makes Progressives wonder if the religious right has been completely relieved of its senses.

U.S. PAYS DEARLY FOR GUN NUTS' RIGHTS TO THEIR TOYS


You, the taxpayers, shell out some $12.8 million per day, "to cover the costs of gun-related deaths and injuries." And that's conservative, according to a recent report by Mother Jones on gun violence in this country. It all stems from the radical National Rifle Assn. gun nuts that insist on more guns on the street with absolutely no restrictions on who they are sold to. Wacky Wayne LaPierre, NRA head, is on an unconscionable drive to sell, sell, sell all the weaponry possible to keep the gun manufacturers happy. To hell with a moderate NRA membership that strongly favors universal background checks and a saner approach to responsible gun laws. The magazine says we'll never know the true cost due to the millions being spent by the NRA and other gun rights groups to keep the true facts from the public. This preventable gun violence increases your taxes for items like medical treatment, legal fees, long-tern prison costs, long-term medical disability, mental health care, emergency services, police investigations and security enhancements.

Wanna stop this crap? Contact Congress and tell your representatives you're not going to stand for this anymore.

House: http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/
Senate: http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm?OrderBy=state
White House: https://www.whitehouse.gov/contact/submit-questions-and-comments


STUDY PROVES HOMOSEXUALITY IS NOT A CHOICE

A fingerprint can determine who you are and so can your genes when it comes to being gay or lesbian. There was scientific verification in late 2014 from Michael Bailey, a psychologist at Northwestern University in Illinois, who said, "The study shows that there are genes involved in male sexual orientation." It all starts with an X chromosome called Xq28 and its impact on men's sexual behavior. There are other genes involved but the gist of it is through evolution men with genes linked to homosexuality pass this along to women, who then produce a gay or lesbian offspring. This link with the mother's side of the family led Dean Hamer, a scientist at the US National Cancer Institute, to study the X chromosome more closely and through 100 gay men found that homosexuality "tended to be inherited." Scientists in Bailey's report had tested the DNA of 400 gay men. Also discovered was the fact that, "levels of hormones a baby is exposed to in the womb" can play a factor in sexual orientation.

Michael Bailey's conclusion was, "Sexual orientation has nothing to do with choice."

Saturday, April 25, 2015

STARBUCKS COFFEE SHOPS...THE NEW SCHOOL HOUSE


Starbucks has become the place for young people to learn while they and their tutors enjoy their favorite beverage. That's right, these off-site teachers have taken over many of the tables at our local shops and apparently the chain encourages it. Equipped with lattes, or grandes, or chai tea, or one of a huge selection of drinks from the Starbucks menu, they enhance their regular school room activities with a person expert in the field where they need help. Of course it isn't free but apparently the parents of these kids are of that limited profile that is involved in their child's education. When you consider how school budgets across the country are being slashed, this may end up being the saving grace. As an example, Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey proposed cutting the state's education budget while setting up more private prison spending. Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback cut $45 million from that state's education budget and just about put the system in the tank. Republicans are more concerned with coming to the aid of big business than setting a higher stand of education in this country. What I worry about are those students who can't afford the tutoring.




























FREDERICK'S OF HOLLYWOOD GOES DOWN...BUT ONLY SO FAR



Okay, so this may not be the most political post of the year but what it has to say about modern sexuality is significant. You are looking at the store opened by Frederick Mellinger in 1947, that was later moved west down Hollywood Boulevard to larger quarters next to the corporate offices. I became associated with Frederick's in the early 1970s, while employed in Los Angeles with one of the largest general merchandise catalogs in the country. I made friends with Joe Nussbaum, their Marketing V.P. and this carried over into when I became a data broker later selling Frederick's names.

Joe was the classic example of the little Jewish, very family man that you'd never expect running a nudies catalog. In the early days when I first came on board, the girls were drawn with what attire they wore and there were no live models. I even had trouble getting an approval from some list owners that were hesitant about exposing the Frederick's catalog to their customers. Business was good and I was even invited to lunch one day with Joe Nussbaum and the man, Fred Mellinger. We talked about everything but naked girls at the restaurant of choice, the Musso and Frank Grill, just up the street from their offices on the boulevard. I considered it an honor but never saw Mellinger again as he quietly began retiring, leaving the running of the business to Joe.

The old catalog was cleverly drawn with emphasis in the right places. It worked but looking around the industry other catalogs were taking on the glossier look and most were using live models. The decision was made by Frederick's to switch and the planning began. Finally they were ready and I got a call one afternoon from Joe Nussbaum telling me that I should be in his office the next morning if possible. When I arrived Joe said nothing but, "Follow me," We went up to the next floor and entered this huge room where several models were running around in different stages of dress and undress. Some were completely nude in the process of changing undies.

My host had a grin on his face that said, "How about that?" However, the girls were completely unaffected by the would be voyeurs in the room. Joe said I was making history since this was Frederick's first live model shoot and I have never forgotten the honor. It was Fred Mellinger that started taking the clothes off beautiful women in the late 1940s, featuring the risque attire that would eventually introduce the mini skirt and hot pants in the 1970s. When you look at the women's fashion in 2015, you can see a little bit of Frederick's of Hollywood in many of them. But alas, everything must come to an end when Frederick's just announced it is closing all its retail stores. The only place you can buy their fashions in the future is from a catalog...with live models...and I was there first.

Friday, April 24, 2015

DICK CHENEY'S HALLIBURTON GETS RETRIBUTION, BUT...


Dick Cheney's Halliburton which mopped up in the Afghan and Iraq wars is suffering due to the low oil prices. That would normally be admirable based on their lousy reputation as a less than desirable company. However, the "BUT" is the fact that it has resulted in them laying off 9,000 from its payroll, innocent souls from a corporation with a long list of bad reps. I Googled "halliburton bad reputation" and came up with 34,200 hits. It dates back at least to 2005, after Cheney had left the company to become Geo. W. Bush's Vice President. In that year H exposed military and civilian personnel to contaminated water in Iraq. In another instance, they pled guilty to destruction of critical evidence after the Gulf of Mexico oil spill in 2010. The list goes on and on. Long before Bush bombed Iraq, H worked secretly with VP Dick Cheney for his alma mater to control the world's second largest oil reserves. In 2013 H made it into the top ten list of the worst companies alongside the worst of the worst, AIG.

So retribution is certainly due, although it is too bad it can't have more of a major impact on Dick Cheney.

ARIZONA SHERIFF JOE ARPAIO ACCUSED BY OWN DEPUTY SERGEANT


It is possible that the toughest sheriff in the country will be taken down a couple of notches. Maricopa County Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio has been exposed by one of his deputies, a sergeant no less. "Sgt. Brett Palmer testified that Arpaio had personally instructed him to continue enforcing federal immigration law after Judge G. Murray Snow had prohibited the practice," according to the Arizona Republic. The blustery Arpaio has repeatedly denied targeting Latinos in his county for meaningless charges simply to shake them down as illegal immigrants. Palmer also said, "the emphasis within the department was focused on public perception because 'it’s our duty to make the sheriff look good to the media and the public.'” Well he looks like crap right now and that undoubtedly will get worse when Judge Snow makes his final decision. Arpaio's reelections are a result of the hate in this state for illegal immigrants but this litigation could wake up some of the dufuses that have voted for him in the past. He runs for his 7th term next year.