Darwin on Today's Economy

 Business, Congress, Corruption, Featured, Places, Politics, Presidency, Society, Tampa  Comments Off on Darwin on Today's Economy
Apr 102008
 

Reuters has a report from The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities and Economic Policy Institute showing that, “Since the late 1990’s average incomes have declined 2.5 percent for families on the bottom fifth of the country’s economic ladder, while incomes have increased 9.1 percent for families on the top fifth.” The report goes on to say that middle class hasn’t fared very well either, as income for the middle class has grown only 1.3 percent in nearly eight years.

“The report’s bottom line is that since the late 1980’s income gaps widened in 37 states and have not narrowed in any states,” said Jared Bernstein, one of the report’s authors. “In fact, we’ve found that the trend toward growing inequality has accelerated during this decade.” Continue reading »

You Say Decision Maker, I Say Constitution, Let's Call the Whole Thing Off

 Congress, Constitution, General, Politics, Presidency, War  Comments Off on You Say Decision Maker, I Say Constitution, Let's Call the Whole Thing Off
Jan 262007
 

Apparently the President still doesn’t get this Democracy/Constitution thing with the co-equal branches of government and checks and balances. Poor George has repeated his “I’m the Decider” declaration, amending it slightly to “I’m the decision-maker.”

Dear Mr. President:

We’ll make this simple. No, you’re not. In fact, according to the Constitution you don’t even get a vote.

Article I, Section 8 reads as follows: “The Congress shall have Power … To declare War … and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water.” What part of “The Congress shall have power to declare war” don’t you understand? That’s a sincere question. We know you’re not much of a reader. We’ll all be happy to talk you through this if you like. (And be advised: They may revise your instructions regarding Iraq.)

Here’s something else you’ll find in Article I, Section 8: “The Congress shall have power … to make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces.”

Declaring war? Making rules that govern and regulate the armed forces? That’s their job.

Now here’s your job. From Article II, Section 2: “The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States.” That’s a lot of responsibility. You have to carry out their decisions to the best of your ability. (Think of them as your Board of Directors.) As for executing their decisions on a day-to-day basis, you have as much leeway as they care to give you. You can even wear a flight suit on an aircraft carrier, although that’s not spelled out in the Constitution.

But here’s the deal: In order to keep the job you have to follow the rules. And the rules say Congress makes the decisions about matters of war. You command, they decide. Now do you want to follow the rules and obey the law or not?

Decide that. That will determine where you live and work for the next two years. Sure, it’s not as neat and orderly as a dictatorship – or as your Vice President prefers to call it, a “unitary executive.” But it’s the law. And, to quote the man you called the finest Defense Secretary ever: “Democracy is messy.” Deal with it.

Hunting Always a Fun Time In Texas

 Fun Stuff, Legislature, Places, Politics  Comments Off on Hunting Always a Fun Time In Texas
Dec 122006
 

Well, we can always count on Texas for fodder for the blog. A Texas State Legislator has introduced House Bill 308 which will allow for blind hunting in Texas.

We don’t mean blinds as in camouflaged places to hide (as in duck blind) waiting on your prey to wander by. We’re talking here about allowing blind people to hunt with loaded guns. Not only that, but just to level up the playing field with the game, they get to use special lasers that cause the prey to freeze.

Now how would you think someone would justify a bill like this? Well, he’s just ending the discrimination against blind people. “This opens up the fun of hunting to additional people, and I think that’s great,” said Republican Rep. Edmund Kuempel, the bill’s sponsor.

Well, maybe Dick Cheney can get a job as a gun safety instructor in Texas after 2008.

Love Isn't Better Than a Male and Female Couple

 Religion, Right Wingnuts  Comments Off on Love Isn't Better Than a Male and Female Couple
Dec 072006
 

As you’re probably now aware, Darth Cheney’s lesbian daughter, Mary, is great with child. Naturally, there is a lot of reactions to this, and of course the AmTaliban are just beside themselves.

I found one of the most despicable and disturbing quotes to be from Carrie Gordon Earll, (not surprisingly) a policy analyst for the conservative Christian ministry Focus on the Family. According to Ms. Earll, it’s just not important whether or not the child is loved, so long as it is born to a heterosexual couple. Said Ms. Earll, “Love can’t replace a mother and a father.”

And who is Carrie Gordon Earll? A doctor? A researcher? Nope. She has Masters of Arts degree (a 30-hour program) from Trinity International University – a conservative religious school with no graduate level science programs.

Let me tell you something, that is just the biggest bunch of bat-shit crazy wingnuttery I think I have ever heard. I have personally heard a seven year old observe about his heterosexual parents, “I’d be better off without them, and they’d be better off without me.” This is a kid who’s not hungry or homeless, and is loved and cared for by an extended family, but has come to realize his actual parents could care less about him. Let me say again, I heard this first hand, and if that doesn’t rip your heart out, nothing ever will. (Lay or I go to St. Pete to help him with his homework, because his parents can’t be bothered.)

But according to Focus on The Family, the only requirement for having children and being good parents is heterosexuality. Love’s just not important. This is genuinely a sick bunch of people.

Love Isn’t Better Than a Male and Female Couple

 Gay Issues, Religion, Right Wingnuts, Society  Comments Off on Love Isn’t Better Than a Male and Female Couple
Dec 072006
 
This entry is part of 35 in the series Gay Marriage

As you’re probably now aware, Darth Cheney’s lesbian daughter, Mary, is great with child. Naturally, there is a lot of reactions to this, and of course the AmTaliban are just beside themselves.

I found one of the most despicable and disturbing quotes to be from Carrie Gordon Earll, (not surprisingly) a policy analyst for the conservative Christian ministry Focus on the Family. According to Ms. Earll, it’s just not important whether or not the child is loved, so long as it is born to a heterosexual couple. Said Ms. Earll, “Love can’t replace a mother and a father.”

And who is Carrie Gordon Earll? A doctor? A researcher? Nope. She has Masters of Arts degree (a 30-hour program) from Trinity International University – a conservative religious school with no graduate level science programs.

Let me tell you something, that is just the biggest bunch of bat-shit crazy wingnuttery I think I have ever heard. I have personally heard a seven year old observe about his heterosexual parents, “I’d be better off without them, and they’d be better off without me.” This is a kid who’s not hungry or homeless, and is loved and cared for by an extended family, but has come to realize his actual parents could care less about him. Let me say again, I heard this first hand, and if that doesn’t rip your heart out, nothing ever will. (Lay or I go to St. Pete to help him with his homework, because his parents can’t be bothered.)

But according to Focus on The Family, the only requirement for having children and being good parents is heterosexuality. Love’s just not important. This is genuinely a sick bunch of people.

The Dark Heart of Darth Cheney's Daughter

 Books, Culture  Comments Off on The Dark Heart of Darth Cheney's Daughter
May 052006
 

I was flipping channels last night and came across the Mary Cheney book seller’s interview with Diane Sawyer. Whatever else she might be I think I can safely say that Mary Cheney is selfish. When asked about her perspective on Bush?s call to ban gay marriage, Mary said that in her view she and her partner are already married. They’re just waiting for state and federal law to catch up. Well, that’s fine, Mary. You just go ahead and wait. Even though you have resources and a level of access most people can only dream of, don’t put yourself out. Even though people still die alone in ICU units because their partners are denied access, even though a foster child is ripped away from the gay couple that has been their parents for 15 years, even though committed gay couples are denied over 1000 tax-related benefits enjoyed by legally married folks, don’t bother getting up. You have yours. That’s all that matters.

The biggest thing that got to me was when she said “I do not have the luxury of being a single issue voter.” What she should have said was “I have a lot of privilege that I don’t want to give up.

Mary Cheney “doesn’t have the luxury”? She has every luxury. If she wasn’t already, she’s now the poster child for those who just want those slightly icky gay people to keep their sex lives to themselves. You know — “Mary Cheney doesn’t throw it in our faces, why do you have to?” — as if demanding equality somehow equates to having sex in public.

Final Word on Attorney Season In Texas

 Constitution, Corruption, Crime, Politics, Presidency, Society  Comments Off on Final Word on Attorney Season In Texas
Feb 202006
 

Here’s my final word this truly a sorry scandal. I think what happened is pretty clear:

Cheney and his friends sat around the ranch having a few drinks Saturday, then decided to do a little shooting. The VP shot a guy. Cheney’s handlers cover the situation by arranging for Dick to be interviewed by the local constabulary the next morning.

They didn’t release info immediately because if the guy died, they would want to find someone else to pin the shooting on (That’s why Mr. Whittington has been receiving care from Cheney’s very own doctors). It also probably means the guy is injured far more than anyone wants to admit.

The story leaked much to their disappointment. Maybe they were trying to set up the ranch owner to take the fall, and she wasn’t buying, but who knows.

Cheney has never understood the essence of public life (it’s public). He still sees himself as the biggest of the corporate big-whigs, and as such, not answerable to American Citizens. (We just keep getting in his way.) He doesn’t care whether Bush knew or not. Bush isn’t the man, Dick is. W reports to him. He’s certainly not interested in a heart-felt apology, because we know the guy’s heart is dead (not only physically, but spiritually as well). Although he talked on Fox about how tragic this is, and how sorry he is. It was only ONE of his worst days. I’m not sure about you, but I think if I shot someone, especially a friend by accident, it would probably go right to top of my worst day list, and I’ve had some bad ones.

It is another travesty in this lost democracy, and certainly just another example of the arrogance and lack of accountability by the people in this administration. I detest them all as much as anyone, and am sick that they do stuff like this and get away with it.

I think we can all stipulate to the above. However, Dick Cheney getting drunk and shooting someone while hunting is the least of our worries. While the Press has been looking the other way, the Bush Administration has managed to pretty much derail any Congressional Investigation of the domestic spying scandal. Bush is sneaking Healthcare and Social Security privatization into the budget. I think the war in Iraq, the coming war in Iran, the Constitutional violations by the Administration, and the federal budget are issues that have far greater impact on each of us.

Dick screwed the pooch big time, tried to cover it up, got caught, is arrogant and doesn’t believe he has to be apologetic or take responsibility for anything. We can rant and rave here all we want, it will NOT change who Dick Cheney is, and does nothing to protect our Country. We must remain focused on limiting the damage Cheney and team can do to our democracy. Don’t let them sidetrack us with things like extended discussions of the spread characteristics of birdshot, and what time the sun set in Texas that day. It does nothing to protect our Democracy.

Please…Let’s get back to the important stuff. (Karl Rove is loving these threads.)

Dead Eye Dick

 Politics, Presidency  Comments Off on Dead Eye Dick
Feb 132006
 

By now, I’m sure most everyone has heard about the Vice President shooting his "friend" Harry Whittington. I’m sure accidents can happen, but a whole lot of this story sure does not add up.

Let’s run down the list. Of course the VP’s office is blaming the mishap on Whittington. He supposedly walked up on the VP without the VP knowing it. So, what’s the Secret Service for. This would mean the Secret Service allowed a man with a gun to sneak up on the Vice President of the United States.

The owner of the hunting ranch, and an eyewitness, was supposedly told by the Vice President’s office to be the person to release the information the press. But of course, not until after she got a late night call from Karl Rove. And then, despite the guy being in the intensive care unit after having taken nearly 200 pellets in his face and torso, she describes it lightly by saying he merely got "peppered" pretty good.

During lunch today I watched Presidential Press Secretary, Scott McClellan’s, press conference. Despite the whole thing happening at 5pm, McClellan says the President wasn’t told that Cheney was the shooter until late in the evening, and McClellan wasn’t told until 6am Sunday. His excuse…they were gathering the facts. Come on, the Vice President shot someone, and no one was sure what happened?

A deputy sheriff was not allowed to interview the VP at the time, and oh, these were two married men on a hunting trip with two women, not their wives. The Secret Service arranged to have the Sheriff interview Cheney Sunday morning.

So my guess is that the VP and his party had been doing some drinking. They might have even thought they just wouldn’t admit that Cheney was the shooter. I’m thinking that Whittington was more injured than we’ve been lead to believe. He was flown out by helicopter. I think they were all afraid he might die, so no one was willing to take the fall for Cheney. So the first report was that someone in the VP’s hunting party got shot, but apparently they weren’t even telling the White House who did the shooting. I’d say they didn’t want any record of having admitted it was Dick until they could try to get one of the other people to take the fall.

No one would step up, and maybe they even pissed this Armstrong lady off in the process, so she went to the press. Then Karl called to smooth things over, so she softened story. I’d say it wouldn’t be a good idea for her to go hunting again with the Vice President.

Cheney Criticizes Dean–Of All The Nerve

 Politics  Comments Off on Cheney Criticizes Dean–Of All The Nerve
Jun 122005
 

According to an AP report, Dick Cheney said in a Hannity & Colmes interview to be broadcast Monday that Howard Dean is "over the top." Dick (fuck you) Cheney call the Democrat’s chairman, "not the kind of individual you want to have representing your political party."

"I’ve never been able to understand his appeal. Maybe his mother loved him, but I’ve never met anybody who does. He’s never won anything, as best I can tell," Cheney said in an interview to be aired Monday on Fox News Channel’s "Hannity & Colmes."

Dean was elected governor of Vermont five times between 1992 and 2000.

Hey Dick, Dean signed a law to give gay couple civil unions. He respects gay people….unlike your party. So, to quote the current VP: Go Fuck Yourself. Oh yeah, and how’s your daughter doing? The lesbian one you and your party betrayed?

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