News & Notes June 1, 2011

U.S. military intervention in Libya has been illegal now for more than a week because the 60 day War Powers Act authorization expired.  President Obama didn’t even ask Congress for express permission to continue operations in that theater until after the 60 days.  

Texas Gov. Rick Perry is rumored to be considering joing the GOP presidential field because he thinks all the current crop is saddled with serious baggage.  Hmmm, like embracing secessionism?

Congresswoman Hochul was sworn in today to represent New York’s 26th District.

In Wisconsin recall elections will be held against six Tea Party State Senators.  They illegally voted to remove collective bargaining rights from state workers.

In various LGBT news President Obama recognized June as Gay Pride month and the San Francisco Giants released a “It Gets Better” video:

Illinois became the eleventh state to authorize civil unions.

New York’s Attorney General is suing the federal government over shale drilling:

The federal government should conduct a full environmental review that weighs potential damage to the welfare of people in the Delaware River watershed and the drinking water quality for millions of New Yorkers before allowing natural gas drilling in the region, the state’s attorney general said in a federal lawsuit filed Tuesday.

A domestic terrorist was arrested in Wisconsin for trying to assassinate a Planned parenthood doctor in Madison.

A private citizen running around in a bus has been dangling the media like puppets and they insist on playing along.  I won’t fall for her tricks and give her any publicity.  The moronic former Governor known for her sinister vengeful streak visited Philadelphia and Gettysburg.  She isn’t the first secessionist to leave that town a loser.

NJ Gov. Chris Christie used a $12 million state helicopter to fly to Bergen County (my birthplace) so he could watch five innings of his son’s baseball game.  A limo drove him the 100 yards from the copter to the field.  Is it just me or do others think the exercise might have done him good?

The Obama Administration is getting tough on health insurance executives whose decisions on Medicare and Medicaid patients flouts the law.  They’re going after them personally not just the companies.  

Now, on top of fines paid by a company, senior executives can face criminal charges even if they weren’t involved in the scheme but could have stopped it had they known. Furthermore, they can also be banned from doing business with government health programs, a career-ending consequence.

Rep. Anthony Weiner won’t answer queries about a lewd picture Tweeted to a college student.  He claims someone hacked his account as a prank.  Andrew Breitbart is attempting to slander him by publishing the underwear picture though it is obvious it was a hack job.  The Congressman could end all of the media hype simply by answering the simple questions.  Not doing so makes him appear guilty.

Isn’t it hypocrisy when Tea Party people keep clinging to the constitution then turning around and trashing it?  Sen. Rand Paul complained bitterly, correctly, about the civil liberty infringements authorized by the USA PATRIOT Act then turned around and claimed Americans shouldn’t have their First Amendment right to free assembly and free speech:

PAUL: I’m not for profiling people on the color of their skin, or on their religion, but I would take into account where they’ve been traveling and perhaps, you might have to indirectly take into account whether or not they’ve been going to radical political speeches by religious leaders. It wouldn’t be that they are Islamic. But if someone is attending speeches from someone who is promoting the violent overthrow of our government, that’s really an offense that we should be going after – they should be deported or put in prison.

What is it tea baggers, do you support the entire constitution or merely parts?

The Center For American Progress has an excellent list of Pentagon items ripe for elimination.  If we’re going to slash spending everyone has to bear the brunt:

While we must always adequately fund the military and honor our servicemen and women, Congress can save up to $1.4 trillion over the next 12 years by eliminating overbudget and unnecessary defense programs, revamping military health care, and consolidating and capping spending across the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, and State. None of these actions will compromise national security.

In a new CNN poll 58% of Americans don’t agree with the Ryan Plan to dismantle Medicare.

“Half of those we questioned say that the country would be worse off under the GOP Medicare proposals and 56 percent think that GOP plan would be bad for the elderly,” says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. “Opposition is highest among senior citizens, at 74 percent, suggesting that seniors are most worried about changes to Medicare even if those changes are presented as ones that would not affect existing Medicare recipients.”

News & Notes January 28, 2011

The Judge in Sen. Orie’s corruption trial ruled yesterday that evidence collected through search warrants can be presented when her trial begins February 7th.  This is one day later than originally scheduled due to the Super Bowl game on the 6th.  I suppose they’re assuming the jurors will all be hung over.

President Obama is coming to central Pennsylvania next Wednesday.  I don’t have any further information as yet but I will be on a White House conference call about it at noon.

Update:  The President will be at Penn State University.

WASHINGTON- On Wednesday, February 2, President Obama will travel to the Penn State Campus at University Park in State College, Pennsylvania.  As part of the Administration’s strategy to win the future through new investments in research and development, the Department of Energy has launched Energy Innovation Hubs across the nation.  Penn State will provide overall leadership for the Greater Philadelphia Innovation Cluster for energy-efficient buildings that will be located at the Navy Yard in Philadelphia.  

While at Penn State, the President will tour labs focused on energy-efficient building solutions and deliver remarks on the importance of  investing in innovation and clean energy to put people back to work, grow the economy, and win the future.

State House Republicans are acting like schoolyard bullies after Democrats tried to add many amendments to their reform legislation.  In a snit fit they closed the session, went into caucus and decided to punish the Dems for using normal, regular parliamentary tactics.  As a result all committees now will have one less Democrat.  Instead of a ratio of 15 Republicans to 10 Dems it will now be 15-9.  Of course adding amendments is a time honored tradition and is part of governing.  In fact House Republicans did it constantly to slow down or stop the Democratic majority the past four years.  

Speaking of reform Gov. Corbett finally presented his plan for reforming state government.  Let’s just say we’re quite underwhelmed.  After all that hot air last year it amounts to little.  No blanket campaign finance reform or lobbying restrictions.  Until those are implemented anything else is window dressing.  C’mon Tom this is the best you can do?

Sen. Pat Toomey again embraced the Tea Party when he met with them in the Senate and provided his stamp of approval.  If you walk like  tea bagger, talk like a tea bagger, meet with the tea baggers, court the tea baggers and embrace the tea baggers guess what?  You’re a tea bagger Pat.

Campaign for America’s Future has a great blog post up at OurFuture.com (I’m paid by CAF to blog there) about reality checks.  Filled with informative graphs it is must reading.  Go take a gander.

Egypt is on fire as protests and demonstrations rock the nation in the wake of the takedown of the government in Tunisia.  Planning events through social media people have taken to the streets and faced down water cannons, billy clubs and every other violent measure concocted by the government to suppress their rights.  Now the internet has been silenced and Mohammed El Baradei arrested.  It’s time for Hosni Mubarak and his repressive regime to fall.

Sen. Rand Paul is proposing legislation outlawing the 14th Amendment.  He wants to restrict birthright citizenship.  Of course any sane person would understand you cannot void a part of the constitution by simply passing a law.  Amending the constitution is a rather laborious process and his futile attempt, while pathetic, tells us the man is simply a fool.  The acorn doesn’t fall far from the oak.

The Senate has defeated attempts at filibuster reform.  That hope and change you worked for in 2008?  Republicans filibustered it to death.  The remains are rotting in the Oval Office.

The number of Wall Street thieves, bank fraudsters and others prosecuted so far for collapsing the economy?  None.

New accounting rules enable banks to keep tricking investors into thinking they are solvent.  Instead of valuing assets at their actual value they can pretend mortgages and the real estate backing them up are still worth what they were in 2008.  Anyone investing in the markets right now is a fool.  The Fed is buying so many stocks to prop up the market they’re creating another bubble.

As if being gay in Uganda weren’t already horrible thanks to people like Joe Pitts and The Family an activist there has been murdered.  Words and actions do have consequences Congressman.

News & Notes May 20, 2010

Its a good thing I get up early on Thursdays because I wouldn’t have had a choice today.  Trucks began piling up outside to repave a road and starting at 6:15 AM the incessant beeping noise from reverse alerters awoke the entire neighborhood.  Had this been yesterday when I got to bed quite late I’d have been calling the police.  What was Ruscombmanor Township thinking, that no one sleeps later than 6?

Gov. Rendell, as we reported a few weeks ago, established a task force to implement health insurance reform in Pennsylvania.  Of course if Tom Corbett is our next Governor there won’t be any reform established here.  No exchanges, no possible public option, nada.

In another interesting primary for Senate voters in Kentucky are replacing former screwball Senator Jim Bunning and Rand Paul, son of screwball Ron Paul, won in a fractured Republican field.  The Tea bagger then revealed he doesn’t think restaurants should be forced to feed Black people and that disabled people should be limited to jobs on the first floors:

I’d like to see him tell that to an Iraq War veteran, someone who was sent there under false pretenses, you know, to rid Saddam Hussein of those nukes he was going to use to destroy an American city, got his legs blown off and now has to deal with the like sof Dr. Paul who thinks he doesn’t deserve ramps and elevators.

Tom Corbett is facing some heat this morning over his move to silence a critic.  CasablancaPA is being hit with the threat for having the temerity to criticize the Attorney General for abuse of power.  Corbett then turned around and became Exhibit A for that abuse of power.  Here’s a question:  on what legal basis did Judge Barry Feudale issue that subpoena?  You cannot exercise such abuses of power simply to silence a critic.  We have something called the First Amendment…still.  I suspect CasablancaPA is now getting multiple times the site traffic they had prior to this.  All stupid Corbett did was give them tons of free publicity.  Now all of Pennsylvania can read about his hypocrisy and the writers there conveniently gave new readers a short primer today.  Go for it!

Watch your food costs skyrocket if the efforts to rid the country of foreign undocumented workers succeeds.  This morons don’t realize it is migrant farm workers who do the hard labor required of agriculture.  If you like to eat you be thanking these undocumented workers.  From the mushroom industry to picking fruit and produce your costs for food would be tremendously higher.  Americans refuse to do these jobs for the pay and conditions offered but they love to eat the results.  They’d be the first to begin screaming about increased food costs though.

Speaking of cry babies the Tea Party failed miserably in Tuesday’s election.  Their only success was in unseating incumbent Republican House member Karen Beyer in Allentown.  They didn’t come close in any race and even failed to win the 12th CD race against a corrupt Democrat.  The Tea Party is in hot water.