Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Linda Urban running in Wilkes-Barre

From her Facebook page:

I filed my nominating petitions today for two Wilkes-Barre City elected seats. I am an Independent candidate for Wilkes-Barre City Council District D. All registered voters regardless of party affiliation can vote for me this coming November 3.
( District D encompasses sections of Parsons, Miners Mills, East End and the Heights.) I also filed today for Wilkes-Barre City Controller. I ask that my family and friends support me in my effort by voting for me on November 3. I promise to serve with ethics as my guide and will work for the betterment of our city families.

Linda has  run for office a few times before as a Republican and will face incumbent Bill Barrett in District D who won the Democratic  nomination. There is no Republican on the ballot.

The only other Controller candidate is Democrat Darren Snyder.

Sunday, August 02, 2015

Joe Biden for President

All the Sunday morning talking heads show were abuzz about this NY Times story that Vice President Joseph Biden may after all run for President. In a normal year he would already be running and be the front runner. But this is not a normal year when the guy that finished second in the GOP primary last time, Rick Santorum (R-VA), is an afterthought and a guy that shoots from the lip, Donald Trump, is leading the pack.

Most of the "experts" said this shows how weak Hillary is because Bernie Sanders is drawing crowds and she is just another scandal away from imploding. I think Hillary will probably live through any real or imagined controversy as she has proved to be one tough cookie.

I've read many comparisons to past campaigns that say things like this will  be like 1968 when Gene McCarthy (Sanders) knocked President Johnson  out of the race only to have his VP Hubert Humphrey pick up the pieces after RFK was murdered to win the nomination and came close to sparing us from Nixon. Well things have changed since 1968 because of early filing deadlines for the primaries and it would be almost impossible to mount a campaign after Iowa and New Hampshire vote. 

So if Joe Biden is going to make a run he has to decide very soon.

I actually love the guy and think he would be a great President as does my pal Omeed. In 1988 I was working for his campaign in New Hampshire until the Dukakis campaign was able to torpedo him over the Neil Kinnock thing.


Thursday, July 30, 2015

Medicare and Medicaid at 50

    Many of the gloom and doom predictions about Medicare in the 1960's have been repeated about the Afordable Care Act (Obamacare). Of course none of that came to pass. Doctors can still live and practice where they want to and it has not lead to a Socialist takeover the the means of productions.  If anything programs like Medicare and Social Security have increased the freedom of senior citizens by not being dependent on family or charity.

Many Republican candidates are now floating ideas to replace Medicare with voucher plans which I think is disingenuous since the most reliable Republican voter is over age 60. They tell them your benefits will be fine but  we will take them away from your kids and grand kids because the system isn't sustainable. That is not true as Kevin Drum points out :
Ten years ago, Medicare was a runaway freight train. Spending was projected to increase indefinitely, rising to 13 percent of GDP by 2080. This year, spending is projected to slow down around 2040, and reaches only 6 percent of GDP by 2090.
Six percent! That's half what we thought a mere decade ago. If that isn't spectacular, I don't know what is.

 Medicaid is another matter because it is a means tested program that people don't pay into like Medicare so it's easier to attack as a handout to the undeserving poor. What people don't know is that big chunk of Medicaid money is spent on nursing home care. My mom is in a nursing home and we sure don't have the $9000+ a month to pay for it.

I have an Uncle (WWII vet) who gets all of his medical care from the VA  and can't believe I'm not a Republican until I told him that I won't vote for a party that wants to close the VA Medical Centers.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Mike Marsicano for Congress

From his press release:

Former Hazleton Mayor Mike Marsicano announced today his candidacy for the Democratic nomination for Congress representing the 11th Congressional District.

The announcement was made before a large crowd of enthusiastic supporters on the steps of the former Hazleton High School. The school, a historic local landmark, was slated for demolition during Marsicano's tenure as mayor. Marsicano led a community wide effort to save the building, at one point refusing to issue permits for demolition work. His actions resulted in the building being saved and restored and is now in use as both an elementary/middle school as well as the site of the Wiltsie Center for the Performing Arts.

Marsicano stressed the themes of bipartisanship and the restoration of a more congenial approach to governing. He indicated his intention to knock on doors in every part of the 11th District to bring his campaign directly to the voters, and will begin to do so immediately in Carbon County. His full announcement and biographical information is attached.

Issues positions can be found at the campaign website www.marsicano.net

 From the TL:

HAZLETON Michael Marsicano, former Hazleton mayor and a pilot who flew key players in the Kids for Cash scandal to a Florida where their condominium was located, announced his bid Sunday for the seat held by U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta.
Marsicano read from a prepared text and did not take questions from the media in the brief announcement on the steps of the former Hazleton High School from which he graduated in 1966.

Mark Guydish really clobbers him:

Marsicano lost his re-election bid after four years. Having entered office with a small surplus, he left the city $1.4 million in debt.
He returned in 2007 to run for mayor anew. Unopposed in the Democratic primary, Marsicano lost. I’m not kidding. Incumbent Mayor Lou Barletta mounted a write -in campaign for himself as Democratic nominee and beat Marsicano.
Through all this, Marsicano repeatedly pushed for a freight-only airport outside Hazleton that several experts said was unneeded. At one point he joined Gladstone Partners, with Powell and Greg Zappala, to push the idea. Powell and Zappala were co-owners of the PA Child Care juvenile facilities at the heart of “kids for cash.”

Are there no Matt Cartwright's in that district. This is a tough district for the Dems as Romney won it by 10 points in 2012 but they can surely come up with a better candidate than this guy or the disbarred lawyer they ran last time. 

I'm sure my good friend McGruff could add more information with a Hazleton perspective  if he wasn't so busy cooking and eating too much.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Another knee jerk reaction from Lou Barletta

Well he got his Sanctuary Cities bill through the House .  Now he wants to micromanage the armed services about the rules that govern when some one can carry a firearm on base.


Barletta Urges SecDef to Allow Weapons for Service Members 

I was in the military for 8 years and there were very strict rules about when someone could carry a weapon and where. FOR GOOD REASONS!

You almost never   hear of some " gun accident"  happening on a military base. 

Ask any base commander who is probably a Colonel in his 40's if he want's a bunch of his 18-20 year old troops running around with loaded guns on post. Think about it, what could possibly go wrong?

Nobody reads Blogs on Saturday

Except Alex Milanes. So I'm not going to post anything until later.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Katie McGinty for Senate

Clark Van Orden | Times Leader File Photo 

I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around this one. The press has been reporting forever that Democratic politicians are so pissed at Joe Sestak for taking on Arlen Specter in 2010 that they can't forgive him. After all they went through a lot of trouble to get him to switch party affiliation for the 2010 election then he lost the primary to an actual Democrat. For all the inside baseball criticism of Sestak that he ran a poor campaign he came within 2 points of knocking off Toomey in very Republican year. One of the arguments for her is that with Hillary at the top of the ticket it would be good to have a female candidate ride her coattails. Tell that to the last heartthrob Josh Shapiro. We will leave Ed Pawloski out of this.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Vindictive Little Prick

Like most political junkies I'm enjoying the latest Donald Trump reality show that has somehow morphed into the Republican Presidential primary. You all know about his comments about Mexicans and John McCain that everybody this side of Rush thought was beyond the pale.

Today he shot back at Lindsey Graham for calling him a "Jackass" by giving out Graham's cell phone number. How Petty. Somehow this reminded me of something that my inspiration and mentor the Blogfather  once said about Mayor McGroarty. "He's a Vindictive Little Prick."

Graham's response was great.

Probably getting a new phone. iPhone or Android?


Sunday, June 29, 2014

I'm a proud Liberal

The last few years right wing types have been successful in turning the word liberal  into a pejorative. They are dismissive of the opposition often referring to them as the democrat party instead of the Democratic Party  I would counter that today's so called conservatives are not conservative at all but are right wing anti-government anarchists. This argument started on the Yonk' s FB page

It's about time that Democratic politicians take back the mantle of Liberal instead of the wishy washy progressive nonsense. 

Some times it takes a TV show to remind us of what we believe in. via  Simply Left Behind

 "Liberals got women the right to vote. Liberals got African-Americans the right to vote. Liberals created Social Security and lifted millions of elderly people out of poverty. Liberals ended segregation. Liberals passed the Civil Rights Act, the Voting Rights Act. Liberals created Medicare. Liberals passed the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act. What did Conservatives do? They opposed them on every one of those things...every one! So when you try to hurl that label at my feet, 'Liberal,' as if it were something to be ashamed of, something dirty, something to run away from, it won't work, Senator, because I will pick up that label and I will wear it as a badge of honor." -- Matt Santos, The West Wing