Republican Threatens Liberal Donors

A Republican with deep pockets has mailed 11,000 letters to liberal contributors with a very clear threat:  continue giving money to liberal interest groups and he’ll out you in your local community and, perhaps, insure you face criminal charges.

Vote suppression doesn’t get any uglier than this folks.  Ben Smith broke the story at Politico:

Your name has been put in our database. We are monitoring all reports of a wide variety of leftist organizations. As your name appears in subsequent reports, it is our intent to publicize your involvement in your local community. Should any of these organizations be found to be engaged in illegal or questionable activity, it is our intent to publicize your involvement with those activities. You should know that instances of coordinated voter fraud are surfacing all across America and investigations into possible criminal coordination are underway.

The letter was signed by Howard Rich on behalf of Americans For Limited Government.

Note:  this is unacceptable from either side of the ideological divide.

Captain Renault Comes to PA

Captain Louis Renault of “Casablanca” fame has arrived in Harrisburg and is opining on the hypocrisy surrounding BonusGate.  Quoting the famous movie character’s shock of discovering gambling going on at Rick’s cafe Americain you’ll recall this:

“I’m shocked, aboslutely shocked, to find there’s gambling going on in this establishment!”

Similarly Attorney General Tom Corbett is shocked to find there’s political campaigning going on in the state capitol!

The good Captain has launched a blog to show his outrage.  His statement:

The oftentimes cynical reporters and editors who cover politics in our state haven’t done much to point out the hypocrisy and double standards in the “Bonusgate” story.  Most of the Main Stream Media (MSM) here refuse to believe that politics could be injected into the justice system.

But Captain Renault knows better, and so do you.

In fact, we have seen this particular movie before and it’s a bad one.  For nearly two years, the MSM refused to take seriously the charges being made (mostly by bloggers) against the US Justice Department and Attorney General Alberto Gonzales that politics were running rampant in what were supposed to be the halls of justice.

The bloggers would not let up and the MSM finally could not ignore the story any longer, and we know how that movie has ended.

Captain Renault was inspired by the bloggers who covered the Alberto Gonzales story.  As Bonusgate developed over the last 18 months or so, Captain Renault watched and read the developments like everyone else.  The longer the story went on the more clear it became that hypocrisy and double standards were ruling the day.

Planning the Palin-Johnston Nuptials

I’m thinking the Palins haven’t gotten their pregnant daughter married off to the father because Sarah and her shotgun are busy at the moment.  Since none of us wants the specter og Republican Family Values producing a bastard I’m going to take the liberty of planning the wedding for the Palins.

First I think the appropriate venue for the ceremony is the Wasilla Church of God which invited the leader of “Jews For Jesus” to preach at the altar.  Since there’s no such thing (aside from Joe Lieberman) as a Jewish Republican this shouldn’t cramp the guest list.

The reception will be at the hockey rink Sarah had built at a cost of indebting her town $20 million and where young Levi made his mark (the other one).  Each table will include a centerpiece featuring a key to the outhouse out back.

Because the colder weather is beginning to settle in in Alaska each guest is asked to wear their best moose coat.

Entertainment will be a helicopter wolf shooting contest.  Please bring your own rifle.  No bag limit.

The meal will be wild bear meat with sides of salmon salad (with plenty of oil), baked beans and greens.  No dairy products will be available since the Governor privatized the dairy and it’s now too expensive.  China has kindly consented to provide some Cadbury chocolates for dessert however.

A gas pipeline will be built to provide guests with relief from the baked beans.

Guests are requested to bring gifts for the bride and groom.  Special requests include:

ammunition

gunpowder

snow plows (since the Guv vetoed them in her budget)

baby clothes

crib

stroller

pacifiers (for the Governor, actually)

condoms (for the next time)

contributions to the teen moms center Sarah cut funding for

hunting clothes

shotguns and rifles

barbecue grill

Sears catalogs for the outhouse

GOP Voter Supression in Bucks Boils Over

Democrats in Bucks County have been furious over Republican efforts to move a polling place.  The poll at Creekside is heavily Democratic in a neighborhood with many elderly and poor residents.  Most don’t have transportation so the Republican County Elections Board moved the polling place a mile.

This was done after letters requesting the change were sent to the Board from two Republican Committee people.  One said she signed the letter but didn’t actually write it.

Democrats allege voter suppression efforts since many voters would be unable to get to the new polling place and that was the intent of the move.  The case is now in federal court and the Bucks County Elections Commissioner in protective custody due to harassment from her fellow Republicans.

Board of Elections Director Deena K. Dean, a pivotal witness in a federal lawsuit over a Bensalem polling place, testified that a county lawyer berated and intimidated her before a recent deposition, and that Republican county commissioners tried to inhibit her from doing her job impartially.

Dean, a Republican who has run the Board of Elections office since 1992, has been under an extraordinary federal protection order since last week. The order, issued by U.S. District Judge Patrese B. Tucker, forbids any employee, official or attorney for Bucks County from having contact with her while the polling dispute is pending.

Republicans Kill “Country First”

Republicans are blaming Nancy Pelosi for the failure of the Emergency Economic Stimulus Bill yesterday.  Apparently twelve members of Congress decided to act like four year olds and refuse to accept personal responsibility for their failures and hurt the country instead.  Again.

I suppose it isn’t bad enough that their failed economic policies killed our economy but now, as they strangely refuse to accept accountability for their own failures, they’re blaming Pelosi.

I always thought personal responsibility was a key hallmark of being a Republican?

Here’s what the Speaker said:

It is a number that is staggering, but tells us only the costs of the Bush Administration’s failed economic policies-policies built on budgetary recklessness, on an anything goes mentality, with no regulation, no supervision, and no discipline in the system.

So what about those words was so offensive they cost American investors $1.2 trillion in the stock market in one day?  It’s true.  Republican budgets, refusal to regulate markets and industries and unbridled deficit spending have put the nation on the brink of disaster.  So they voted against the plan.

So much for “Country First.”

State Senate Candidate Embarrassed Because He Didn’t Do His Homework

A candidate’s forum last evening on BCTV in Berks County exposed Republican Steve Fuhs as seriously ignorant on the central platform of his campaign.  Fuhs is running against Minority Whip Mike O’Pake.  His central theme is supporting Rep. Sam “The Crazy Fundie” Rohrer’s failed Commonwealth Caucus Plan.

Unfortunately for Fuhs he obviously didn’t read the bill.  Or the legislative summary.  Or even peruse Rohrer’s slide presentation.  All of these are readily available on Rohrer’s website.  

Rohrer’s heavily amended plan now includes a 28% increase in the personal income tax and requires businesses to continue paying school property taxes.  This means business owners not incorporated will pay both.  The .85% increase in the state income tax is never mentioned by Rep. Rohrer but is listed openly on his website.

Steve Fuhs has, obviously, never read the bill.

How do you run for a position like State Senator and base your campaign on a bill you haven’t even taken the time to read and comprehend?  Sen. O’Pake called him on it at last evening’s debate and Fuhs called him a liar.  O’Pake knew the bill and Fuhs didn’t.

Here’s the exchange as reported by Mary Young of The Reading Eagle:

O’Pake said his plan for a graduated personal income tax would put the burden on the people who could afford it – those earning more than $100,000 annually.

The latest version of Rohrer’s proposal includes a 28 percent increase in the income tax, he said.

“That’s not true,” Fuhs, 57, accused.

“Yes, it is,” O’Pake replied.

What does this say about Steve Fuhs’ ability to be a State Senator if he didn’t do his homework on his signature issue?  It says he’s incompetent, unprepared and not qualified.

Yes, Mr. Hoyer, nothing is an option…

( – promoted by John Morgan)

…and it has been a frequent one for the Congress you’ve sat in for years now, especially in the last 6 or 8 of those years.  

Congress has become infamous and gained an ugly notoreity for seemingly doing “nothing” as a means of governing.  

Now, in the midst of the reality check that has been bouncing all over the place in the financial markets, because of doing “nothing” when you all should have done “something”, we are now left with a situation where “nothing” is exactly the “something” we all need.  

The economic/financial sector of our country have played fast, loose, greedy, recklessly, and capriciously with their fortunes and the fortunes of millions.  The consumers in our economy have by the droves bought into this set of credit and mortgage schemes, because we all love a “good deal”, and greed is no stranger to any walk of life.  

You fusspots in Congress want to know what to do now, so that you all do “something” in this time of natural consequences taking their toll, and not a day too soon.  I’ll tell ya what you all can do: Plan.  Yes, starting planning and crafting a new incarnation of how American companies, financial companies, especially, and banks do business and what will pass muster and what will not.  Show the lobbyists of the banking and financial industries to the door, shove them out of the discussions and lock the door behind you, save for some honest to goodness experts, who can truly help you all put some sensibility back into our American economy and global market in turn.  I pray that some of those people still exist and that they are willing to truly help out.  I’d offer my own input and views, but I am not a highly trained economist, just a thinking man and someone who gives a damn about where we go from here, not how we “bail out” Wall Street to keep the carnival going again.  

Any plan that you all put forth that involves any amount of money MUST include integrated and carefully crafted regulation and oversight and regular reports and updates.  Part of the larger problem of the mortgage crisis stems from the skyrocketing price of homes as compared with wages of average citizens and that is owed to both corporate greed among the top executives and out of control costs of building in most areas of the country.  Sadly, local governments won’t do much to curtail the prices of homes, because for them it means more tax money and with Washington sending less money back to the states to help fund local needs through transfer payments, they have little choice but to take this course.  

The credit card companies have become the loansharks with legal authority and they need to be reigned in hard and fast.  Consumers need to be educated and held to account for their own role in the choices that helped to pave this road to hell with their intentions of “wanting it all” and not having the means to pay for it.  Yet, I ask you, what are people supposed to do that need housing and for those people whom the government encouraged to have families and to take on home ownership and the programs you all passed to make that easier.  

Members of Congress look to the deportment of your own bad deliberations, look to the welfare of your fellow citizens, and realize that what this is going to take will be far more than some high-priced “bail out” plan.  So, do “nothing” when it comes the current belly-aching of Wall Street, but do plan and plan well “something” to begin the process of rebuilding America.  The carnival is over, the tent needs to come down and it is time to return to the life left behind when this whole fiasco started and learn once more why you do not allow business and finance to operate in such a manner.  

News & Notes

The judge in Vince Fumo’s trial has been replaced.  Judge Yohn began suffering illness during jury selection and the trial was postponed.  Now a new judge has been appointed to get things moving.

Gov. Rendell has frozen paroling of prisoners pending a review of the process.  A Philadelphia police officer was killed by a recently paroled prisoner.  Of course perhaps the prevalence of guns on the streets due to the inability of the legislature to track traffickers may also be at fault.

Is Wyomissing based Sovereign Bank the next big financial institution to bite the dust?  I’m wondering if my meager funds are safe after their stock fell 70% yesterday.

A water and sewer referendum will be on the fall ballot allocating $400 million in borrowing.  It would upgrade many crumbling systems.  It strikes me as woefully insufficient in a state the size od Pennsylvania.  It is a start however.  Our crumbling infrastructure needs major attention and could be a way to create jobs and hold off recession.