GOP Celebrates the Oppression of Big Business

The Republican National Convention has been nothing short of a huge celebration of the power of Big Business.  Fueled by about a dozen billionaires, one of whom has pledged to give $100 million to defeat the President, they have orated for two days about the horrors of Big Government.  That’s because Big Government is the only check to Big Business.  The Gilded Age II is what they want to restore, a time of monopolies, no worker rights, massive profits and oppression of the people.

Paul Ryan spoke last night about crowning the Reagan Revolution.  Its aim was to starve the federal government through massive debt until they could justify cutting all social programs for the poor, minorities, the elderly and children.  Ryan’s Budget does just that:  30 million thrown off health care by repealing ObamaCare, another 30 million tossed out of Medicaid, veterans benefits slashed, food stamps, home heating and housing assistance would all see the chopping block.  

They say they’re doing this because we have to.  Wrong.  By ending the wars, repealing the Bush Tax Cuts and reviving the economy we can afford to take care of the poor.  We do not need to rob from the poor to further enrich the rich which is what Paul Ryan’s policies do.  As many have labeled it Romney Hood, these folks want to take away the safety net, give more tax cuts to the 1% and explode the deficit once again.  Ryan does not pay for his latest round of tax cuts which give the rich a 1% tax rate.

Conservative prevaricators have been flooding the letters to the editor columns with lies about the Ryan Budget plan for Medicare.  He slashes it by $716 billion to give more tax cuts to the rich.  No one age 54 or under will get Medicare even though they’ve been paying into the program for years.  Those over 54 get to remain in the successful and popular program but when they die off it disappears.  That’s getting rid of Medicare.  One you attain the age of 67 (yes, that age of eligibility increases under Ryan) you get a voucher for $6,000 to go out and purchase a policy costing $12,400.  Maybe they’ll accept your pre-existing conditions but probably not meaning you’re on your own.

The theme of the convention is “We Built This.”  Yes, Republicans built this disaster.  Even as Paul Ryan bemoans the fact his Party caused all the problems he doesn’t want to take personal responsibility for it.  Ryan voted for the unfunded wars, he voted for the Bush Tax Cuts and he voted for Bush Budgets which exploded the deficit.  He voted for failed economic policies but he won’t accept responsibility for those actions.  So much for personal responsibility in today’s Republican Party.

They have a huge Deficit Clock going in the Center, built with 62% government funding.  A banner saying “we built this” should hang over it because the GOP created this deficit.  Ronald Reagan increased the debt by $1.9 trillion, George H.W. Bush by $1.3 trillion and George W. Bush by $5.1 trillion then passed along a failed economy which created another $5 trillion hole.  They want to blame Barack Obama for their mess though.  We’ll see exactly how stupid America has become on November 6th.

GOP: Kill Medicare & Medicaid

Paul Ryan to the wheel of the GOP bus yesterday and drove it off a cliff.  All of the presidential wannabes were on board.  The Republican platform for a major election year now proposes to end both Medicare and Medicaid.  Lost in all this is their promise in 2010 not to cut Medicare.  I suppose eliminating it is different from cutting benefits?

Ads throughout the 2010 election cycle ran by Republicans attacking Democrats for cutting Medicare, something which didn’t happen.  No Medicare benefits were cut.  Now they have betrayed those voters with a sweeping proposal to turn the program into ObamaCare.  Aren’t conservatives opposed to ObamaCare?  This new voucher system does the same thing the Affordable Care Act does:  provides subsidized vouchers to people who then go into the private, failed health insurance industry to get coverage.  The same industry whose death panels determine if someone gets contracted medical care or not.  The same broken system with skyrocketing costs due to the ever growing number of uninsured and under insured people.  Somehow they believe that by throwing tens of millions more Americans into the ranks of the current 59 million uninsured, this will fix the problem.

The GOP plan has no cost controls and how will senior citizens be able to get private health insurance?  Unfortunately most of us have pre-existing conditions and we all know what the GOP thinks about pre-existing conditions…no coverage.  Millions of seniors and disabled citizens rely on Medicaid.  Only 12% of benefits are paid to cover adults.  Long term care gobbles up 62%.  As families are forced to begin taking their parents into their homes from nursing homes we’ll see a dramatic increase in the death rate, lost jobs in that industry and serious tensions and stresses forced onto middle aged people.

The elderly and the poor are the classes covered by the two programs and this proposal commits them to short, miserable lives.  It will actually increase the federal deficit in the long run.  Most important of all it condemns millions of people to death.  Access to medical care is a basic human right.  There is no freedom without life.

The bus is going over the cliff and the GOP is taking all of us along for the ride.  Are we going to take this sitting down  or storm the cockpit?  Let’s roll!

News & Notes September 3, 2010

Former RNC Chair Ken Mehlman finally came out of the closet this week.  Mark Segal of Philadelphia Gay News calls him out for his past:

Ken Mehlman, former chairman of the Republican National Committee and co-chair of President George W. Bush’s 2004 re-election campaign, who ran what was arguably the most hate-filled homophobic campaign in American political history, came out last week in a slick public-relations campaign-type interview served up by The Atlantic magazine. His actions as head of the Republican Party created antigay laws, including antigay-marriage constitutional amendments in numerous states, gay baiting, harassment, hate crimes and even LGBT youth suicides. We have not seen his type since Roy Cohn. This man has no shame. But that is not the end of the story.

I couldn’t agree more.  Coming out doesn’t negate his sorry, inexcusable actions against his own community.  Mehlman is a gay Uncle Tom.

The right wing noise machine is already calling the expiration of the Bush tax cuts for the rich “the biggest tax increase in history.”  perhaps they shouldn’t have put an expiration date on them when they were passed if they weren’t meant to be temporary.  These cuts created a huge hole in federal revenues and are one of the principle contributors to the deficit.  You cannot fear monger on the deficit and support the extension of these cuts simultaneously.  Allowing the cuts (which benefited the richest 2% of the country) to expire isn’t raising taxes.  Passing a specific bill raising taxes is raising taxes.  Several turncoat Democratic Senators are now saying they support a continuation of tax cuts for the rich.  These traitors to working people and the middle class need to find new jobs.

Here’s why:  more and more Republican Senatorial candidates are going on record saying they want to repeal Social Security.  This time they aren’t even trying to hide their agenda behind “privatization” but are simply saying the program for our elderly, disabled and orphans must be ended.  Their argument is that we can no longer afford it.  Of course their argument is based on the federal deficit which Republicans created expressly as a basis for getting rid of Social Security, Medicare and welfare programs.  They want to make their cake and eat it too.  I fear this extremist position may stoke class war.

Another oil rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico yesterday.  Meanwhile BP, which proved beyond a doubt it cannot be trusted, says that without new drilling permits in the Gulf it will not be able to pay the reparations they promised.  Sounds as if they’re headed to bankruptcy then.  BP pledged in countless television ads they would make everyone affected whole.  Of course this was nothing more than a PR campaign but this time let’s hold them to their word.  BP is simply trying to scare the U.S. into, once again, trusting the unworthy.

Pat Toomey said his idea of gun control is a steady aim.  I’m sure that’s real comfort to the surviving relatives of every Pennsylvanian killed by gun violence, especially our police.  Has this cold and uncaring man lacking any empathy for others realize what happened recently in Pittsburgh when a deranged man driven crazy by folks like Toomey killed four police officers?  This man doesn’t deserve any support.

President Obama is considering cutting Social Security, enacting more tax cuts and extending the Bush tax cuts.  He has eliminated a second stimulus plan which doesn’t make economic sense.  remind me again that he is a Democrat, you could have fooled me.  Actually he fooled millions of Democrats into believing he was one of them.

No wonder Pennsylvania Democrats are staying away from the polls like they are carriers for cooties.  I see five or six PA Congressional Districts turning red this year.  Critz, Dahlkemper, Altmire, Kanjorski, Carney, Murphy and the open Sestak seat are all in danger of going Republican.  If Dave Argall manages to raise any money Tim Holden could join them.  I predict another bloodbath for Democrats in November, two in a row.

The only bright spot I see is Joe Sestak who is now defining Pat Toomey for voters in the fashion he did Arlen Specter last spring.  Barack Obama will come campaign for him September 20th.

Send the “Drillers” to the Gulf

Remember the Republican National Convention when the GOP delegates chanted “drill, baby, drill” endlessly?  Why don’t we ship every one of their sorry asses tot he Gulf to clean up the oil spill?  We know who these delegates were so why not make them witness for themselves what they have wrought?  We can start with Michael Steele:

Then Sarah Palin is up:

Then there’s Rudy Giuliani:

Here’s what that misguided, deceptive policy brought us:

Of course the oil industry owns the GOP.  Dick Cheney’s company Halliburton was a central player in the environmental catastrophe now facing the entire Gulf of Mexico.

How did this happen?  The Bush/Cheney Administration led by the two oil men refused to enact safety regulations, refused to enforce existing regulations, and officials of the Minerals Management Service were in bed with the industry.  I mean that quite literally.  In 2008 a scandal erupted around 13 MMS officials who rigged contracts, accepted gifts from the industry and had illicit sexual encounters with oil industry representatives.

This is what all those Republicans were applauding at their national convention as they chanted drill, baby, drill.  Were they referring to the likes of BP, ExxonMobil (which paid no taxes last year), or was it their cohorts getting laid by the oil industry?  Unfortunately we’re the ones who got screwed.

President Obama announced a division of the MMS this week which will separate the agency which is charged with collecting royalties (of which the industry is woefully way behind paying) with those designated to enforce rules and regulations.  

Its toolate to save wildlife, the seafood industry and the massive tourism industry, both of which are threatened by this disaster.  This is what happens when morons are brainwashed by industry propaganda, led by irresponsible criminals on the take to the industry and those who think cheap gas is more important than preserving our world:

This is a massive cleanup so why not require the same morons who brought it to us to clean it up?

ACORN

ACORN’s reputation has been destroyed through a comples conspiracy to denigrate, trap and destroy the most powerful voice for African Americans.  It began in the past two presidential elections when GOP talking points began criticizing ACORN and accusing it of voter fraud.  ACORN has never been convicted of voter fraud.  In fact the community organizer group bent over backwards to assist prosecutors in preventing fraud.  

State election laws, including here in Pennsylvania, require any voter registration effort to register every person who wants to register and requires that every voter registration form be turned in to government officials.  The reasons for this are obvious:  adherents of any political Party would like to only register their voters and would like nothing better than to turn away other voters or not turn in their forms.  In fact Republicans have been prosecuted for voter fraud for refusing to turn in registrations they collected from Democratic voters.  ACORN has not.

ACORN segregates every questionable registration form and tells local election officials they suspect they are fraudulent.  That is called cooperating with the process.  The GOP has lied to Americans with their vast propaganda machine to persuade people ACORN is a corrupt organization.  Why?

Because ACORN is the most powerful voice for millions of Blacks, Hispanics and urban and rural poor.  Poor people don’t tend to vote Republican for obvious reasons.  Over 90% of Blacks vote Democratic, for obvious reasons and the attacks on ACORN underscore why:  the overt racism of GOP leaders and followers.  Destroying ACORN has been a major goal of the RNC for several years.

ACORN stands for the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now.  It has been in the forefront of issues facing the poor.  Affordable housing, predatory lending practices, “red lighting” mortgages to keep Blacks in certain neighborhoods, and other racially charged practices have all been attacked and confronted by ACORN to protect the poor.  Payday lenders such as Tom Knox have been exposed and ACORN was first to warn about the evils of the sub prime lenders and the flood of foreclosures.  They fought for fair lending practices, against foreclosures caused by fraud and many other illegal and unethical business practices aimed at fleecing poor people.  For this they became a threat to the Republican business establishment.  ACORN had to go.

Fox News has been leading the way on this with assistance from Rush, Glenn Beck and others.  They violated Maryland law going into a Baltimore ACORN office and recording ACORN staffers in a widely seen video.  These weren’t Fox employees and had no journalism shield for their activities.  It was the actors who violated the law but we haven’t heard much about that, only a highly edited video which may or may not, show misconduct.  ACORN fired the employees and retrained their staff.  Fox did not.

An ACORN employee smelled a rat when more actors tried trapping her and she played them for fools and exposed Fox News’ failure to fact check their stories.  Big news there…

Remember the goal for all these attacks on ACORN:  they are designed to destroy a reputable organization which fights hard and effectively for the poor, especially African Americans.  It is a group which is a threat to their vested interests so they create false stories with which to attack and destroy ACORN.

I interviewed Wade Rathke, co founder of ACORN on Democratic Talk Radio about a month ago.  We discussed numerous ACORN initiatives in Philadelphia which have been very successful in rescuing the poor from predatory lenders, rapacious bankers, fraudulent mortgage brokers, overzealous sheriffs and others.  The organization has been quite successful and so presented a threat to powerful business interests.  Their efforts at registering urban voters was also a threat.  ACORN was effective so it had to be destroyed.  Let us not allow that to happen.  Shame to every Democrat who voted against ACORN.  Shame.

How can you help?  ACORN is a membership organization and you can join ACORN and show your support for them in a time of serious need.

Saluting Ensign

In the Navy few people salute Ensigns.  It simply isn’t that important a rank.  Sen. John Ensign’s staff did more than salute however, they put out.  The handsome Republican admitted having an affair with the wife of a staffer who worked for his “charity.”  How many of these sham “charities” are we going to tolerate before we eliminate them?  These are no more than fronts for politicians to receive kickbacks.  Here in New Mexico Gov. Richardson is being investigated and in Pennsylvania both Rick Santorum and Vince Fumo got caught with their hands in their charities’ cookie jars.

Ensign’s sins kept growing all week as it was revealed he doubled his mistress’ salaries and hired her 19 year old son as a policy expert.  I’m curious about the “expert policy” a 19 year old young man was able to offer Sen. Ensign.  Perhaps he knew some of his mother’s favorite positions?  The Republican National Committee paid the young man since Ensign was head of the Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee.  During his tenure the GOP lost a slew of seats.  Perhaps now we understand why…he was somewhat distracted.

The one consolation for Americans is that Republicans screw more than just the country.  It is time for Sen. Ensign, who has loudly condemned sexual improprieties in others, to do the right thing and salute his ranking officials by resigning.

The GOP Pissing Contest

The pissing contest between Rush Limbaugh and Michael Steele was great to observe.  The radio follower and his Dittoheads made mince meat of the RNC Chair.  Following Steele’s inelegant apology everyone clearly understands who controls the GOP:  Rush.  Steele called LImbaugh “incendiary” and “ugly” after his lengthy address to the CPAC meeting last weekend.

We all know Limburger is ugly and incendiary.  He made no apologies for stating he wishes President Obama to fail and expounded on that once again.  The leader of the Republican Party is calling for his cohorts to obstruct progress and do everything in their power to regain power rather than deal with the country’s serious problems.  No more can any Republican have the gall to use a slogan as false as “country first.”

Steele said he didn’t say what his was thinking when he used the words “incendiary” and “ugly.”  What does that say for the RNC Chairman?  He isn’t capable of articulating his thoughts coherently?  No wonder he doesn’t have a nationally syndicated radio show.  Limbaugh’s job isn’t to move the country forward, raise money, help candidates win or build the Republican Party.  Those all fall to Michael Steele.  Rush’s job is to entertain his dittoheads three hours a day.  That’s a lot of time to fill and he does so with incendiary and ugly remarks.  This is the racist who first spread the “Barack the Magic Negro” prejudice after all.

The face of the Republican Party is clearly Rush Limbaugh.  That is exactly why they are doomed to be a minority Party of 00rich people, corporate executives and racists.  Until they get a leader with the balls to go after Rush they remain as such.

Saltsman Is the GOP

I’m sick and tired of the talking heads on TV saying Chip Saltsman isn’t representative of Republicans.  The former Huckabee (let’s remember this when Huck runs again) campaign manager is running for Chair of the Republican National Committee and sent an overtly racist cd to RNC members over the holiday.  The music included the Rush Limbaugh “Barack the Magic Negro” outrage and another song titled the “Star Spanglish Banner.”

I interviewed many Republicans at McCain-Palin events this fall and can say, without doubt or hesitation, that this racism IS representative of the GOP.  The Republican “big tent” these days is nothing more than an oversized Ku Klux Klan hat.  I found no one at these events who wasn’t a racist.  Many were proud of that characterization.  To discover that Saltsman, a candidate for their highest Party office sent such a racist item out to his voters did not come as a shock or surprise.

When I outed Adam LaDuca (Pennsylvania College Republicans) as a racist not one Republican official even made a public comment.  When Rush Limbaugh first aired “Barack the Magic Negro” no Republicans condemned the act.  When Mike Morrill and I taped racist Republicans at McCain-Palin events no Republicans responded here condemning their actions.  The pattern is that Republicans tolerate this shit.  Don’t go on CNN and try and tell me this isn’t representative of the GOP when it is.