Monday, July 28, 2014

Using Congress to bash us...


... the wealthy love it. 

  Between the gerrymandered House and the filibuster-clogged Senate, the Kochs and their cronies have us over a Congressional barrel.  That barrel was created by right-wing central, and they're riding it hard for all they are worth.

Right-wing central knows that Congress is the key.
  Unfortunately too many of the people on our side of the table only concentrate on the presidential outcomes of elections.  Because of that we often end up with a decent president who just can't get anything done for the American people.  That's because of no support from a double-dealing (and really a  motionless Congress.
  At least thirty years or so ago, the far-right began mapping out a  conspiracy that would let the rich take over the government.  However, they plan for their eventual takeover to be done in such a way that most of us won't see that it's actually happening.  Therefore (they plot) we will fail to sound the alarm and will not recover our government from the rich right-wingers in time to swat them down politically, harness, and control them.
  The far-right plan (the conspiracy) is heavily concentrated on the control of Congress.  They know that a Congress without a president can still be extremely successful, especially when voting to defeat positive results.  So since they don't want government to succeed anyway, they campaign to defeat any useful programs that would help the American people.  
  An electorate with only a president in hand will not be able to accomplish much of anything that will work for everyday Americans.  On the other hand the electorate that controls Congress can be amazingly successful in stopping anything positive from happening that would have clearly helped the American people.

Let's reassess our assets 
  We know that we have a majority of Americans who would truly be far better off if the Republicans were not running the show.  The fear displayed by some right-wing pundits (like David Brooks) that we might overrun the country with our thoughts of fair income levels and positive benefits from a government that is truly in partnership with the people has not only not come to pass, it has not even come close.
  Why not?  Primarily that is true because the rich have used their money to grab control of the microphone and the daily "reality" that a majority of apolitical America listens to*
 * If you want, check out an earlier posting from this blog (January 14 of this year, entitled "Like Cigarette Smoke,") where I admit that when I was thirteen I almost got roped in by the everyday reportage (the rich money had really overfilled the airways) into wanting the Republicans to win.
   (As you can tell from the current gist of this blog, that was not a permanent conversion on my side.)

  In spite of the fact that people like us are far and away better served by having a ruling party be one that is focused on jobs, a strong economy, and a government that is a strong partner with the people, the wealthys' grabbing of the microphone has to at this point have been carrying the day.  
  However, look at the basic numbers that we have.   There are far, far more of us in America.  They've just bamboozled too large a number of us into voting with the rich guy (and too many loudmouths, like the tea-partiers, into giving those rich guys noisy lip-service.  Of course they're using their considerable money to keep adding to the "money wins" factor on our democratic elections.

The 21st Century rich (Koch led) are much nastier
  Unfortunately that is the case.  The old robber barons wanted to make as much money as possible, but they did not grab the wheel to make gratuitous full turns, thereby injuring masses of ordinary people.  These newer guys don't even give that a second thought.
  These new, nastier guys have learned tons more about how to use their wealth, their mercenary shills, and their manipulation of the ambiguous little "soft spots" in our Constitution to keep progress from getting done.  Having learned that, and with their incessant burrowing into many key spots in our government, these loathsome guys are poised to do us some real damage soon if we can't get that momentum turned sharply around.

  I won't recount all of the places where they are close to really screwing our government up in extremely damaging ways in the House, the Senate, and the Supreme Court.  [Good to mention the Supreme Court issues in addition to the Congressional constipation.  The malevolent jester who is currently wielding the gavel at the Court might as well be a damned tea-partier.]

However, it is urgent that we 
Take control of Congress 
 from Koch-town now..

..And keep it!   


  Guys, wishful thinking just focusing on the president is not going to get the job done.  We have to hammer in and get as many Congressional candidates across the states elected as possible.  Yes, it's still important to get the right president, but that's almost more of a defensive position (for instance it helps to keep more stupid appointments away from the Supreme Court) than a forward, progressive movement that can create more jobs and move the country ahead.  So we've got a job to do: whether it's campaigning, writing, giving a few bucks, knocking on doors, or whatever.

Taking control and keeping it
   Way more than just the presidential elections, we need to move forward resolutely on both Congress and president.  Having both branches in hand will allow us to finally start doing something positive about jobs, the economy, and dozens of other critical needs that are facing us.

Taking control  -  hell, it doesn't have to just be my way.
  The blog's readers know who I am backing for the next presidential ticket.  I won't bore you with repetition here on that score.  What I will insist on, though, is that the ticket carry two strong people who can stand up to the Koch bludgeoning and give it right back to them.
  There will be several strong reasons for the two people that I am recommending, but I'm not going to take us through that whole argument just yet.  The main issue is that we do get two strong fighters, and that we make sure we give those two a Congress that wants to move this country forward.




  We've got to include Congress as well as the president



  

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Why the timidity? Playing it TOO safe on gender and politics.

Why must we be limited to only one woman 
On the ticket?
 
  I recently read a quote from a Democratic Congresswoman where she said, referring to a Clinton/Warren ticket, that we just, "couldn't have a ticket comprised solely of two women."  I am completely perplexed by such timidity.
   I almost don't need to spell that out for any of this blog's readers.  However, if we were to turn this one on its head and apply it to two men on a ticket, you see how quickly such an assertion becomes ridiculous.   
  But before we take the obvious step of applying that feeble statement about "two women" into the corresponding statement using "two men" on a ticket, let's remind ourselves just what it is that we are trying to accomplish here with the two people I have in mind.

With apologies to that Democratic Congresswoman
  I realize that she is only applying her political experience to the election equation.  She does not want to appear to be, "taking too much of the pie."  So, if there is already one woman solidly on the ticket, does prudence dictate that you can have only that first woman on your ticket?
  However, what do you do when your two best political fighters happen to be women?  Do you cripple your best ticket because you're afraid that having those two best fighters of the same gender on the ticket will be seen a too much of a grab?  Do you forgo your best possible line-up of warriors because someone might think you are tilting the types of troops that you have in a way that they might not be completely comfortable with? 

Oh jeez, we can't have two men on the ticket...

(See how silly that sounds) 

  I'm not going to insult you by going blow-by-blow through such an argument.  It's not a question of which gender your favorite candidate may be.  It's a question of whether that candidate brings the skills, articulation, and yes, the pizazz that will get that candidate elected.  Obviously, when elected, that candidate must fundamentally possess the skills, the grit, and the bravery to tackle and overcome the hardships of actually boosting the American people to succeed against the incursions of the rich.





We have two such candidates.
Both strong,
With complementary skills



They can cover each other's back. 
Why don't we let them go at it? 



 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Kochs: "too liberal." Liberals: "not liberal enough." But my money's on this ticket!

We don't have to pit Elizabeth Warren 
against
Hillary Clinton


These two are 98%+ in agreement..
..and will make a marvelous team.


OK, the Koch loudspeakers will try to divert you
  And of course the Kochs don't care which argument they use, as long as they try to move their far-right agenda forward.  For instance with regard to Ms. Warren, their tea-party screamers will try to make numbers of Americans fall for the deceit that, "she's too left wing!"


Yeah, she's about as left-wing as Teddy Roosevelt
    
  Ms. Warren has vigorously championed a fair shake for normal Americans within the messed-up economic and employment system that's been devised by the rich boys for the rich boys.  If wanting everyday Americans to succeed in spite of a system that's been heavily tilted to favor the rich is someone's definition of left-wing, then that someone needs to....

... think again!

(Teddy R. would not call that left-wing.)

  With the Koch brothers formula for deciding who is "extremist", both you and I would get steamrolled into that little canard of theirs that says everyone who is to the political left of David and Charles is, "a left winger!"  That flimsy libel by itself wouldn't make that much of a difference, but the Koch loudspeakers are amplified by their multi-billions; so they get to make far too many millions of Americans have to listen to their far-right diatribe for far too long and at far too much volume.  Apparently just the droning repetition of those loudspeakers, funded on-and-on by the billionaires' unending money-vaults can bring about our exasperated answer that says, "OK (already) up must be down; now if you'll just shut up!"    
  If "radical" is a measure of how off-center politically someone may be, Ms. Warren, although very clearly liberal, is a hell of a lot less radical than Ted Cruz (or for that matter, less radical than the nitwits that were "elected" by the 2012 gerrymander of the House elections).  Since 2012 those radicals have been in total control of one of our houses of Congress (and they've been setting new records for stupidity in government.)

Ms. Warren understands how finances work.  
She knows that stuff cold!  Far better than most
 of those working at the Treasury Department. 


--

  Ms. Clinton was one of the first of us to recognize how the alarms should be sounding back in 1998.  She sensed what we were up against when the Republican Congress was working itself into a tizzy trying to impeach her husband. She was one of the first that I heard to use the term - "vast right-wing conspiracy."  That was before I even had any idea that there was such a thing.  As you no doubt can perceive from the gist of this blog, I have been very much more alerted to the far-right scheme since Hillary's first alarm in  1998.  


But let's get to the liberal crux regarding Ms. Clinton:  
  In the Senate in 2002, she voted to approve Bush's hoked-up case for launching the Iraq war.  Although my own liberal tendency would have been to do everything possible to avoid that war, Ms. Clinton, under the environment of the weapons of mass destruction flim-flam from George Bush, voted to allow Bush to go ahead with his intent to go to war if necessary.
  
Did I think that was a good idea at the time?     No!

Do I think, now that it was a good idea?     No!

But, did we end up with the kind of combative liberal we would need to successfully take on the onslaught of the Kochs?     

Absolutely yes! *

  * Winston Churchill was a Tory politician in Britain during the rise of Hitler in Germany.  It soon became clear that the more peace-loving liberals in Britain would be no match for Hitler's juggernaught, so they brought in Churchill.  Although Churchill was by no means the the only successful measure opposing Hitler, he was extremely effective in holding Hitler off until the United States was propelled into the war by the Pearl Harbor attack.
  Politically I would not have advocated for Churchill under any other circumstances.  However, in this case the wolves were baying at the door, and the world needed someone willing and able to take on those wolves.  
  [If it had not been for Churchill, we might all be speaking German now.]
   So what does this mean for Hillary Clinton?  Ms Clinton is another combative leader who is willing and able to take on these later 21st century wolves.  Although they haven't yet started killing multitudes of us using bombs and bullets, stick around.  The Kochs and their cohorts are on an avowed path to to put all of us under right-wing subjection, and would use any means to achieve that.  They'd prefer not to use bloodshed, perhaps, but with their religious fixation on power and money, who really knows?


I believe Ms. Clinton can be our 21st century Churchill  

  She will be the best at holding the fort until we in America can come to our political senses, and we can toss the pillagers out of office.  She might not be as "pure" a liberal as some of us might want in many cases, but my take is that she's exactly what we need for these trying times where the Kochs are baying at the door. 


---



So why do I say that Clinton and Warren should team?

  Because as you look around, there aren't two better fighters in the land who can bring to the table what we need to both oppose the  massively financed forces of greed, and to effectively and intelligently upgrade the well-being of the average American.  
  In addition to being two excellent fighters, they each bring skills that can be brought to bear on this current outrage of the incursion by the Kochs and their cohorts, plus skills that can effectively be focused on the economic improvement of the American people, and the American infrastructure, and the American environment.
  I believe that their teaming can get us back towards the successful teaming of the government and the American people that we last enjoyed during the Eisenhower and Kennedy administrations.



Can Clinton and Warren
guide us back to the
 happy days of
Eisenhower and Kennedy?
   


 

Friday, July 11, 2014

Our money's there! The rich just have it stashed away...

Many of us don't remember...
(or are too young)
...the primary Eisenhower/Kennedy
 investment in the American public.

  Too many Americans are misguided by the Koch loudspeakers into believing that there is not enough money for American government to operate, nor for government to do what it was intended to do, which is:
  
Protect and strengthen the American people.
 
       Well people, --
 - those Koch loudspeakers are full of bull.
- our money's there, it's always been there
 
  With the higher tax rates that both the Eisenhower and Kennedy administrations had, that public money was both visible and usable.  It was there to be put to use by the American people.  The average American family benefited tremendously by having a much more favorable shift towards a government that was determined and able to use its money and clout to help everyday Americans be successful and prosperous. 
  The key to the falloff from the well-being of citizens back then to the current horrors of our Koch reality, was triggered by the massive, and the very ignorant, tax cuts that were put in place by two of the most blundering presidents in our history, Reagan and Bush.
 On the other hand, the higher tax rates employed during the Eisenhower and Kennedy administrations were indispensable to the economic success enjoyed by both the average Americans and the overall economy.  During the era of the much higher taxes of Eisenhower and Kennedy, a much higher percentage of Americans were employed in jobs with good pay.  That higher performing economy was not only possible in spite of the higher taxes, it was enjoyed because of the higher taxes.  

  Unfortunately, with the advent of the enormous tax cuts enacted by the birdbrains, Bush and Reagan, our economy has since tanked. 
 

Hogging the loudspeakers

  The damn rich have hogged the loudspeakers for so long that they have a pretty large contingent of Americans who are not rich mindlessly mouthing all the rich guy's slogans and supporting their greedy grabs. 


 Our money's there!
It's always been there!

  Too many Americans have been conned by the Koch loudspeakers into believing that our economy just doesn't have the funding to pay for roads and bridges, or for schoolbooks and teachers' salaries..... We've got to get a lot smarter, and stop swallowing the Koch bible, hook line and sinker.  We've got the money to do what we need to do, so why don't we just blow by these Koch-heads?  That would make perfect sense, and also be extremely satisfying.
  However, with their damn massive tax cuts (yes, courtesy of the idiots, Reagan and Bush) they manage to make it look like the government doesn't have the money.  With their burrowing into the processes of our government, they've got a lot of our bills tied up to make it look like the government is somehow out of money.


We are not out of money!




 [Oh, maybe we'll need to win a Congressional election or two to make it stick, and to make sure the billionaires put our total back on the books.  But that's doable.  We just need to get our chutzpah together.
  How about we start with the 2014 Congressional elections now, and then carry that forward into the 2016 elections?  I'm pretty optimistic about electing a good president, I'm more concerned about how we do on Congress.]




Bore-sight on an intelligent Congress, for once