Saturday, July 30, 2011

Congress Stop Being Stupid

The American people are tired and angry at you for your dumb and stupid political shenanigans over the debt ceiling. It's time to just pass a simple one sentence, one page bill raising the limit as has been done every time since, including 9 times during the GW Bush administration - and 18 times under Reagan. We don't want the other stuff you're trying to add for whatever reasons.

So, that's it. Simple. Just do it and get it done. Remember we get to vote in November 2012 and we will remember you.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Families Do Not Balance Budgets

Much to the chagrin of the Republicans and the Tea Party arguing that the government should do what families do, balance their budget, they don't want to see, let alone express the truth and reality. Simply put if families balanced their budget, here is what would happen because we would all have to live off our savings and cash.

Few, if any, families would buy a home, that takes a loan.

Few, if any, families would get a home equity loan, see above statement.

Few, if any, families would buy a car or cars.

Few, if any, families would put children through college or any higher education.

Few, if any, families would have a credit card, line of credit or personal loan account.

Few, if any, families would take a vacation, see above about credit cards.

Few, if any, families would have health insurance since they couldn't pay their costs.

Few, if any, families would have home insurance, since they couldn't pay their costs.

Few, if any, families would make large purchases, see above about credit cards.

Every family would only carry cash or debit cards but no credit cards.

Almost Every family would rent since they couldn't buy a home, see above about home loans.

And so on down the list. If government ran their budget like families..., wait, they already do. Government does what every family does, run debts, use credit, make payments, and so on using borrowed money from someone else or relying on someone else, insurance companies, to cover emergency costs, health insurance, home insurance, car insurance, etc.

So stop lying and get your facts right. Wait, you have never had your facts right, which is why you only know lying. And the real truth is government is not a family. It's government and debt and deficits are normal. Just like families but for all people than just our family. That's the truth and reality.


Update 7/28.-- The NY Times has a good article about Al Sharpton's new anchor position on MSNBC, and despite all the denials by both sides, the truth is evident. Al sharpton's support of Comcast's purchase of MSNBC through his organization, opened the door for him getting his own show on the network. And now the black community has a black anchor for a primetime news show.

Ok, now I understand. You disciplined and then fired Keith Olbermann and have disciplined other journalists for their political contributions to causes and candidates. And now Al Sharpton has a track record of supporting causes and candidates, but that's ok to you because of what? Expanding your audience? At what price or cost? In the end, though, I don't care because you still lost a viewer.


I like, and now liked, the Cenk Uygur show on MSNBC, and your sudden dismissal of him leaves me wondering what and why? Yes, I've read the news about the show, but I really like the show, or rather liked since he's been replaced with Al Sharpton, whom I dislike since his earlier days of being a spokesman for and on black issues. Nothing against the issues, just Al Sharpton. You've lost a viewer for that hour and all the shows around it.

I liked the Keith Olbermann show, but don't watch him much on Current TV. Not sure why, because I only find Lawrence O'Donnell ok but not sufficient to remember to turn the TV on. But aside from Keith I focus my viewing of MSNBC on the 3 hours from Keith through Rachael Maddow to Ed Schulz. Otherwise, since losing Cenk Uygur, I'm not a viewer beyond that anymore, and even that's just 3, sometimes 4, days a week.

I like people who fairly and honestly disagree and even criticize President Obama, when they present the facts of his lies and his movement from the democrat base after, as we see now as, pandering to it in the 2008 campaign. I don't like President Obama anymore, so I like news analysists who do likewise to show the president as his is now, naked without a stitch of democratic clothes on his political body.

And Cenk Uygur spoke the truth many people know. You expect Al Sharpton to do better? Or are you really after the black viewers for the 2012 election campaign? Will Al Sharpton do what Cenk Uygur did, or maybe that's not what you want, to appease the White House for your endorsement of the President next year? Quid pro Quo? You scratch their poltical interests and you get something in return?

In the end, you've lost a loyal viewer, and except for a few shows a few nights a week, I don't have the interest in your network anymore. Your decision, my choice, and your loss. You go figure, I won't.

A long Season

Update July 26th.-- Well after losing their 16th straight loss going back to before the All-Star game, and being 16 games under .500, the Mariners are seeing reality. The short period they were 3 games over .500 and only a half-game behind Texas for the division lead was wishful thinking. Just hope, now gone up in smoke.

The question is if the team from the owners to the players actually make the changes they need, like fire the President and GM for starters. Keep the manager, trade some players but not Ichiro, and then get out the check to build a team around a core of young players. You can't have another 2001 team which set the American League record of 116 wins again. They were good and lucky, and did I say lucky all had career years in the same year.

I will give them their due too. Their pitching is in the top ten in baseball and their fielding is also in the top ten, so there is the nucleus of a very good team. The problem is their hitting is the worst in baseball, a good 10 percentage points behind the second worst team. All the bats that were going to showcase their lineup has happened. The young players haven't hit and the experienced ones have equally not hit. And now all but a few players are playing for their contract to be traded, released or maybe return next season.

The April 4th post.-- I'm a Seattle Mariner fan. Have been since about 1990. So we Mariner fans are a lot like the fans for other teams who's hope of finishing at .500 let alone contending for the division lead and makeing the playoffs is the proverbial less than zero. And for the last 5 years since their record-tying 116 winning game season in 2001, they've be medicore at best and down right horrible most of the time.

And so this season appears to be no different than their 101 losing games season last year and in 2008. The 2009 year is an anomaly since it was the only winning season in the last 7 seasons and only their 9th in their 34 years in baseball. So it's easy to see after winning their first two games they've lost seven games in a row now, one to Oakland, three to Texas and now three to Cleveland.

The have promised all sort of improvements each year. They've gone through numerous managers in the last 5-plus years, brought in new, supposedly great player who only end up going bust before moving on and playing better (eg. Andrian Beltre), and revised both the infield and outfield so many times no one remembers who's on first any more, except Ichiro is always in right field.

There are problems hundreds of reasons the team doesn't win, large and small, direct and indirect, off the in the locker room and one the field. But it's always the many small thing do them in, errors, bad at-bats, and so on down the roster for every player in the lineup and on the bench.

They all contribute to the failure to win and win consistently, enough to contend if not win the division. And it includes the managers, from Eric Wedge to the assistant ones. No one is off the hook and everyone is on the hook. Fault is pervasive and persistent. Their own common practice.

And even after we, the taxpayers, bought them a new stadium, thanks to Ken Griffey Jr. and get filled now thanks to Ichiro. But since the 2003 season, and only one winning season in that time, it's always a wonder wher the owners (Intendo) and general manager heads are at knowing what to do to have and keep a winning time.

But it's generally they're simply too cheap and don't know how to build a team, because when they get great players, they go bust when they're here in Seattle and almost all of their minor league prospects don't make the majors and those who do end up being traded or leave. It's always a head-scratcher when they say they're doing good but the record doesn't reflect it.

So, I can hope for a good season, as all Mariners fans do, but in the end it's going to be a long season. A really long season. Again.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Sorry Mr. President

Mr. President,

While I will applaud you for your strategy, I won't applaud you for your speech or your "solution" to the debt limit. If you want a clean debt ceiling bill to raise the limit past the 2012 election, demand one and leave Congress to produce one. But don't sacrifice the middle and lower class, all those working people and all those families, for your political solution and re-election.

We're not the problem. We want jobs. We want a better life government provides state, communities and people. We want a future for our children with good public schools. We want good, affordable healthcare. We want the Social Security System set aside and restored to it's true funding, not stolen by Congress, for future generations.

Is that so hard to understand? Is that so hard to stand up and say? Is that so hard to support as our President? Apparently so by your speech and your words. Nothing for us and everything for the Republicans. Do you really think cuts alone will buy our vote? Do you really think progressive liberals to independents will see you as their president?

If you do, then you've been in the White House listening to advisors who have tasted too much of the inside the Beltway Kool-Aid. What's not to understand the rest of America is outside the Beltway? We're here in America? Apparently you think we're politically deaf, dumb and blind. Or so it seems from my seat.

You missed a grand moment to stand up for all of us, and you didn't.

Friday, July 22, 2011

No Mr. President

Mr. President,

In reading the news stories about the deals surrounding raising the debt ceiling limit I hear you stake out poltical position in the middle, trying to get the moderates on both sides on your side, and to get the support, and probably the vote in November 2012, of the independents who aren't particularly happy with either party. I'm not sorry to tell you the simple truth and fact that it's not working.

Independents are who they are politically because their views are a mix of both parties and often range the full spectrum of the views on the issues. While the vast majority of independents are individuals or member of small groups, the Tea Party is an extreme example of a larger independent group as are the progressive liberals, the majority of independent may share values with one of those groups but largely are in between the two.

I'm a registered democrat only because our state required you to select one of the two parties to vote in primary for that party (now changed to include everyone in a top two primary election with not party distinction), but mostly I'm an independent, a 1960's era progressive liberal with some moderate and even some conservative values.

While I generally side with the democrats and side against the republicans I will walk away and even criticize the democrats when they fail to meet my expectations or embrace my values on the issues. I do this when I see the democrats cave into republican pressure to compromise to the right of center, leaving the liberal and more so the progressive members of the democratic party standing alone with nothing so show for their effort.

And so that's my point. In your discussions with the Republicans, which I see you don't include the leaders of the democratic party, you have demonstrated you're not a democrat in any manner of the definition. You're a republican in a democratic suit, a sham and a shame to the democratic party and to the many who supported and voted for you in 2008.

You have sold the American people out for your political advantage of the moment. But Mr. President, we will have our moment in November 2012 and right now, you're not our candidate. Not mine, not since you abandoned the public option in the healthcare reform bill and law. Not since you have not only extended the Bush war on terrorism but sacrificied more civil rights and protections than the worst republican in that war.

Not since you caved to agree to extending the Bush tax cuts, if only for two years while we only got one year of benefits in the same bill. Not since you froze my annuity for two years and will freeze it again for additional years. My financial safety zone is now exhausted because of you.

I no longer have the discretionary spending to help the economy as you want. I no longer have the money to buy what you think would help the economy and create jobs. The money isn't there anymore thanks to you now. And you expect me to support and vote for you?

What's the saying? I think it's something Mr. Boehner said, "No! Hell no!" Yes, your fellow republican buddy. You've have screwed the American people for 2 1/2 years now for your own political agenda which wasn't what you promised in the 2008 election campaign. You lied to the American people to get elected, and now we see you are the old adage.

You are the democratic president with no clothes and shown to be a republican. You assume the democrats and the democratic party will stand behind you for your re-election campaign, and they will, not because they like and want you as their president and candidate, but because you are the lesser of evil. You are their republican democrat, and like it or not, they'll stand there with their fake grins and exress their words of support.

But don't assume that is true or real. It's not. But unlike the voters, they have to do that. We don't. We don't have to vote for your opponent, we simply don't have to vote for you. If we had a parliamentary government, you'd get a vote of no confidence and ousted from office for it. You're lucky, and you know it.

You've spent all your political capital and know you're asking for more, except we don't have any more capital, you stole it. You emptied our pocket giving it to the republican in your negotiations and rightwing compromises. You bankrupted us into debt while enriching them. And now you're asking for more.

Sorry Mr. President, as Getrude Stein said, "There is no there there." We have no more there to give. You're broke which is why you're running to the Republicans for help. You can't stand tall as a democrat, so you run cowardly to the republicans for help from your own party and from your own political base. And now we see and know it for sure.

You're willing to rob and even bankrupt your own political base for the republicans. Or maybe that was your plan all along? Maybe you never really cared for the democrats or the democratic party, and you, funded by corporations and wealthy individuals, sold us as a people's choice. The grand republican plan all along.

If the republicans didn't want John McCain as their president, why not elect one in democratic clothes. Except now the clothes are gone and you're naked for who you really are, not so much our president but their president. And sorry, now we can decide for ourselves, and will.

You will likely win because many will see you as the lesser of evils but don't mistake that as a mandate from us, but a warning, and which you, in your second and last term, can and will likely ignore. You'll be president and we'll have to fight to hold you accountable to real democratic values for this country and the American people. As you often say, "Make no mistake...", we'll be watching you.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Thank You Women's Soccer

Thanks to FIFA Women's World Cup soccer. The whole thing from the first group match to the final Sunday. Too bad it's only every four years, but then there is the 2012 Olympics next year.
Thanks to the US Team, everyone, for a great tournament and great matches. You did yourself, the team and country proud.

And thanks for the final match. Both teams played well and as soccer goes, skill and luck won the day. The Japanese team took home the winner's trophy to soothe the sorrow of a nation from recent events and tragedies. The American team took home the honor of doing their best against a very tenacious team playing extraordinarily well.

And while no one can soothe any player's hurt from the final match, you have our respect, admiration and love for doing your best and being great players, teammates and competitors. There always is honor in that. And the Japanese team knows they won against the best in the world. You still are the best in the world.

And there is 2012 and then 2015.