In support of Fact Check: Mitt Romney’s Convention Speech,
the worst in my opinion is claiming unemployment of 23,000,000 when the
Department of Labor and Industry doesn’t calculate it that way - no
matter who is sitting in the chair. I am well aware what politicians on
both sides of the aisle pull but the last thing we need is mass hysteria
that things are getting worse than they really are and that there is
some puff daddy who is going to fix them up all pretty and nice because
he knows how to run a business. Running a business does not equate to
running a country. When candidates get to the podium they are speaking about their
vision - not what they can accomplish in 4 years. Not one president has
ever accomplished all he has set out to do during his term. It irks me
to no end to hear ‘We need to take this country back and make it great
again’.. A CEO has the power to make decisions within his organization that
the head of state and head of government has no authority over. His
constitutional job is mainly to carry out the policy of Congress.
He controls only a limited amount of funding for combat troop engagement as Commander in Chief.
Congress has the power to over-ride his veto power.
Congress must approve his personnel choices.
The presidency is not really a policy-making position.
One thing the president does have very much in common with a CEO
is the job of cleaning up the prior administration’s mess as best he
can in 4 years while trying to move the country in a positive direction.
Perhaps a more befitting title would be Country Manager or even
Sanitation Manager. What point in time would you have the country taken back to exactly?
It has been at war almost 90% of its existence and its economy depends
largely on the global war machine.
Would you go back to the American Revolution with no money to pay
soldiers and ridiculous amounts of death and loss and no antibiotics or
reasonable anesthesia? How about mass murder of indigenous peoples?
Perhaps the time of slavery? Pioneering in a wagon making your way out
west in the heat and dust? The Prohibition Era, Black lung death from
coal mines? The Great Depression? The war times since WWII and leading
to the present day?
Perhaps the best time in our history was a short period of time from 1865 - 1873 during The Gilded Age, from 1865 - 1900 which saw the greatest period of economic growth in American history. Eight whole years of incredible advancement and increased prosperity. Or maybe the nine-year period during the Roaring 20’s, until the Wall Street Crash of ‘29.
The truth is that the prosperous times have been extremely rare in our short history as a nation, still very
young and volatile. We have not settled economically or sociologically
into our own. We haven’t gotten to the point we can say we should go
back to yet and to say such a thing is both extremely naive and
Our very violent ambitious beginnings - too often portrayed as
peace loving and tolerant pilgrims who ran away so they could pray to
God in their preferred fashion and eat corn pudding with red people
around a campfire - are not over.
We have as many hybrid, positive and desirable characteristics
as a nation and polyglot of peoples as we do negative, weak
and undesirable ones. Our non-homogeneous culture of owner-created
global superiority and mythological divinely chosen identity is nothing
but a fairy tale. We can think and say we are the best and be the
best patriots we are capable of. We are no more special or deserving or
ordained than anyone else on earth and perhaps only when we realize
that will we come to terms with who we really are.
As a nation, we will continue to struggle, grow our still budding
culture, grow into our big girl pants, and continue to experience
economic ebbs and flows for the unforeseeable future. It is the
forethought of the framers of the flexible living Constitution we
inherited that will allow us to prevail over time. It’s not Obama or Romney, just like it wasn’t Harrison or Taylor.
Join Karla and the rest of the fab 4 for Blogcon , Saturday , September 29th at LCCC at the god awful time of 8AM. Hey, I'm a night shift worker.
Alex put together a great event last night to watch Mitt Romney accept the Republican Party nomination to be President. About 60 people came and went before Romney took the stage but only 20 or so actually hung around for his acceptance speech.
Before we joined the fun at Mulligans Irish Bar I popped into Boscov's to buy a new blazer for Blogfest. It was great to see all the businesses open in downtown Wilkes-Barre. A few years ago Public Square was a ghost town after 5PM.
The first person I ran into was my 2nd favorite back cracker, recovering politician turned radio talk show host Dr. David Madeira. You can catch his act weekdays 6-9AM on 94.3FM. Luzerne County Controller Walter Griffth told me he loves his job despite being shorthanded because of budget cuts and spoke highly of county manager Bob Lawton. He said he will definitely be running for reelection next year. It was good to see past candidates Gina Nevenglosky and Joyce Gebhardt. Kingston Mayor Jim Haggerty said he suggested one of the names for the AAA baseball team, the Blast. It was great to meet the Right Wing Fringey guy.
I asked some people in crowd what they liked about Romney. Lynette Villano said he has the business experience that will help turn the economy around. She is planning a big luzerne/Lackawanna County GOP dinner and is looking for a headliner. I suggested Rick Santorum. Lori Vandermark also cited Romney's business experience and added that he managed a successful Olympics. Luzerne County GOP chair Bill Urbansky said he was an American success story. Walter Griffith said "I have to hold my nose to vote for either of them" but he likes Paul Ryan. Host Alex Milanes critiqed his party on several issues saying "I think the Republican's are on the wrong side of history on gay rights." He thinks if the party loses this election it needs to reinvent itself and he won't jump ship but will try to build bridges.
Bill Wellock covered the event for the CV and Steve Mocarsky quoted me in his write up for the TL. I was expecting to see Andrew Seder but Bill told me he works bankers hours.
All my MAC fans are beating me up because I decided to stay with a Window's machine. Anyway I have new tower with a faster CPU and 4x the RAM. Not all of my programs are loaded but I'm working on it, any help you can offer is greatly appreciated.
Many thanks to Bob,Sr. and the crew at Custom Computers in Kingston for building a machine with the features I wanted. The best thing about dealing with a local company is when I need help or have questions I'm calling across the river not the other side of the world.
My computer has some serious hardware and software issues so I'm going to be out of action for the next few days because my new tower is ready and the good folks at Custom Computers need to transfer my data from the old machine.
ask for the patience of my regular readers and the people who find
Gort42 by accident. We hope to resume regular programming by the end of
Carney, Commissioner O'Brien, State Rep. DePasquale & Congressional
Candidate Cartwright to Join Mass. State Legislators Clark and Sanchez
on the Romney-Ryan “Wrong For Pennsylvania” Bus Tour in Scranton
Event to Highlight How Romney-Ryan Plan Would Devastate Scranton By Raising Taxes On The Middle ClassAnd Slashing Education Funding
Wednesday, August 29, Congressman Chris Carney, Commissioner Corey
O'Brien, State Rep. Eugene DePasquale, and Congressional Candidate Matt
Cartwright will join Mass. State Rep. Katherine Clark and Mass. State
Sen. Jeffery Sanchez on the Romney-Ryan “Wrong for Pennsylvania” Bus
Tour at the Lackawanna County Court House.
Participants will discuss how the Romney-Ryan budget plan would be
disastrous for middle class families, women, seniors, and students –
raising taxes on the middle class, cutting funding for veterans programs
and education investments, and turning Medicare into a voucher program
to pay for tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires.
tour is traveling throughout Pennsylvania, highlighting the disastrous
consequences that the Romney-Ryan plan would have on the country and the
middle class throughout the state. President Obama is fighting for an
economy built to last by investing in the resources we need to rebuild
America from the ground up – like innovation, education and job training
– to keep our country moving forward. Previous bus tour stops include Erie, Pittsburgh, Altoona, State College, and Harrisburg.
Romney-Ryan plan would give the wealthy more budget-busting tax breaks
and raise taxes on the middle class and small businesses. Paul Ryan’s
extreme budget would also cut an average of $810 in college scholarships
for 313,000 Pennsylvania students, and Mitt Romney would repeal Obamacare, take away a woman’s right to choose and “get rid of” federal funding for Planned Parenthood.
Former RNC Chairman Michael Steele is looking like a genius for scheduling the Republican National Convention in Florida during hurricane season. The storm has missed Tampa probably because Pat Robertson prayed it away but is headed right for New Orleans as the 7th anniversary of Katrina approaches. They already cancelled Monday's activities and might have to cut the whole thing short.
120th Republican HD candidate Aaron Kaufer is in Tampa and is writing up his experience for the Times Leader. So far he reports that Chris Christie disappointed him and Lou Barletta was greeted like a rock star. Governor Tom Corbett and PA House Speaker Sam Smith are also attending. Surprisingly there is a dust up about abortion after the Aiken comments and PA Senate candidate Tom Smith equating having a baby out of wedlock to rape.
About 50 people attended the Luzerne County Republican Party Pre-Convention Rally / BBQ at the family farm of Chairman Bill Urbanski in Mountaintop. Going down the road to place I was glad I drive an SUV with 4 wheel drive. Many candidates and staff are in Tampa for the convention like Lou Barletta and Aaron Kaufman. They should have sent a surrogate.
Bill said he promised a hurricane free picnic and he delivered. You have to hear him sing. The only statewide candidate to make it was Attorney General hopeful David Freed who dismissed the naysayers who think Mitt Romney can't win Pennsylvania because there are more Romney signs in SW PA than Obama signs. Talking to rank and file I was surprised by the pessimism of winning the Presidential race and down right hostility to Mitt Romney. I won't name names. 17th Congressional District candidate Laureen Cummings complained about Obamacare then told me that the NRCC polled the district and thinks she has a good chance of beating Matt Cartwright. State Rep Karen Boback bragged the she secured both nominations and asked for support. I hate uncontested elections, The back mountain Dems need to get their shit together and get a candidate in 2014.
I finally got to meet assistant deputy dog of some county department Art Bobbouine. Try to pronounce that last name. My pal Jim O'Meara dragged Laureen off to another event, he is her campaign manager. A real pleasure was meeting Jason Fitzgerald of Penn Strategies. He helped Marino win in 1010 and is now working for Freed and other candidates.Lynette Villano was taking the money and selling the chances for the prizes as she always does. She told me of her frustrations with lone wolf Steve Urban (R to D)when she was county chair. I think I saw Norton the Blogger lurking about but there wasn't a VW micro bus parked or any sign of Buzz let alone a Univac 3000.
On my way out I told David Freed that I thought the AG's office would be in good hands whoever won. He said he felt the same way after the primary. He respects his opponent.
“It is no secret that I am upset over the cuts in educational funding
that have been a part of the budgets for which Representative Toohil
has voted,” Young wrote. “…When I read the notice about unpaid school
taxes, with the knowledge that Ms. Toohil not only lives with her
parents, but also uses their property to manage her campaign, I became
even more upset. I could not understand how an adult child would allow her parents to become delinquent over such an important issue.
“In my response to what I perceived as yet another slap in the face
to the education of our children, I inadvertently, and with sincere
regret, allowed Mr. & Mrs. Toohil to be caught in the middle. I will
continue to fight for our children’s education, and no doubt will cause
Ms. Toohil some discomfort with the facts; however, I regret that
anything I may have said was perceived as a personal attack on Peter and
He should have just said he was sorry for such a boneheaded move and left it at that. Instead he issues another attack.
Political campaigns can get down and dirty between the the candidates but I have always taken the position that spouses, children and other family members are off limits as long as they don't inject themselves into the campaign.
On Sunday I received a press release from 116th State Rep candidate Ransom Young (D) implying that Tarah Toohil's parents were behind on the property taxes on their home that she lives in. Yes I'm a partisan Democrat but I declined to post it because I thought it was an unfair attack. Toohil's parents are not running for office and I didn't know why they were behind in their tax payments. After the crash of the economy in 2008 many people are having trouble paying property taxes. You can read the release on Ransom's Facebook page dated 8/20/12.
Tarah is rightfully pissed off: “I demand that Mr. Young cease and desist from telling lies about my
parents,” Toohil said in a statement. “A public apology to my mother and
father is in order. My mother and father are good people and they are
not part of the public eye.”
Young doubles down:
“When you’re an adult living with your parents you step up and help
out your parents in a time of need,” he said. “… I have nothing to gain
by them not paying their taxes. The only thing I have to gain as a
township supervisor is having more money for the township and the school
district having more money to pay their expenses.”
Kathleen Kane today called on the Corbett
Administration and the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General to remove
roadblocks to efforts determining whether Pennsylvania’s new Voter ID
law violates voters’ constitutional rights.
“The U.S. Attorney
General is authorized under the Voting Rights Act to investigate whether
political processes discriminate against the voting rights of
minorities,” Kane said. “Rather than stonewalling, Pennsylvania should
be making every effort to fulfill the Department of Justice’s request to
ensure that no Pennsylvanians are disenfranchised by this law.”
It was reported earlier this week that the
Corbett Administration is resisting a July 23, 2012 request of the
Department of Justice to compile and send information about the Voter ID
law as part of the Department’s examination into whether the new law is
“The Corbett Administration claims that DOJ does not have authority to seek this information. That argument is just not legall
valid.” Kane added. “Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, which
prohibits voting practices or procedures that discriminate on the basis
of race or color, requires examination of the ‘totality of
circumstances’ in determining whether a violation has occurred. This
request for information to determine the totality of the circumstances
is a reasonable and responsible inquiry by DOJ. “The Administration
should stop playing politics and comply.”
Aaron Kaufer to challenge Rep. Phyllis
Mundy (D-120) to a series of debates
to be held over the next two months
Kingston, Pa. -- Aaron Kaufer, the Republican candidate for state
representative in the 120th District, has challenged Democratic
incumbent Phyllis Mundy to three debates. Kaufer sent a letter to Phyllis Mundy
stating a request for the debates. Kaufer said that if Mundy accepts, the
debates would be held in September and October in the weeks leading up to the
election. In an effort to reach the most voters, Kaufer said he wants the
events to be held at specific locations within the Wyoming Valley West, Wyoming
Area and BackMountain regions.
“Debates are vital in having a
well-informed voting populace,” Kaufer said. “This election represents two
visions for our area, and I look forward to the opportunity of discussing my vision
and what I hope to accomplish. I am confident that the voters of the 120th
district are looking for new solutions to the same old problems.”
Phyllis has always debated her opponents and I'm sure she will work it out with Aaron just like last time when she debated Tim Mullen and Bill Goldsworthy.
I asked Phyllis for her response and will publish it as soon as she gets back to me..
UPDATE: Phyllis responds
I strongly agree that debates are important to an informed electorate. I
have always participated in debates throughout my tenure as State Rep.
I am out of town babysitting my grandchildren at the moment, but as soon as I return I will ask the League of Women Voters of the Wilkes-Barre Area to be the debate sponsor. I will leave the date, time and format in their capable hands.
U.S. Rep. Tom Marino joined the growing Republican chorus Tuesday
demanding that Rep. Todd Akin drop out as the party's candidate in the
Missouri Senate race because of his comments about rape.
"The wounds that victims of rape and their families suffer never
completely heal. Whether he meant it or not, Todd Akin's comments were
insensitive and cruel," Marino said in a statement. "It is a shame that
over the past days victims of rape have had to contemplate his comments
and relive their ordeal....There is no gray area in rape," he said. "In the eyes of the law, the
line is rightly drawn at 'no' regardless of the situation."
Rep. Lou Barletta, R-Hazleton, was more subdued in his response.
Renita Fennick, his district director, said Barletta disagreed with
Akin's comments, "but believes the decision to stay in the Missouri
Senate race is up to Rep. Akin, his family and his supporters."
KP: What was offensive about Todd Akin’s comments wasn’t just the suggestion
that women’s bodies have some special secretion that knows how to kill
rapists’ sperm. What was offensive was that he was marshalling this fake
science in the service of the argument that women who get
raped shouldn’t have legal access to abortion. Not all Republicans
believe the phony science, but they are all running on the platform that abortion should be illegal in all circumstances, with no rape exception.
Tomorrow the Luzerne County Young Republicans will meet at 7pm at Grotto Pizza by the Wyoming Valley Mall. RSVP on the Facebook event page.
The Plymouth Kielbasa Fest is scheduled for Friday and Saturday. Check out the Plymouth Alive website for information and the entertainment schedule. It's not a political event but expect to see many politico's there. I won't be able to make it this year because of a full schedule which is bumming me out. My favorite activities at the fest is munching on the tasty East European delicacy and meeting the nice people we hook up with for the impromptu pub crawls. If you are familiar with Plymouth you know that there are more than a few places to obtain a libation.
State Senator John Yudichak has a shindig on Saturday at the Catholic War Veterans Pavilion 175 Old Ashley Road, Ashley 4-8PM. Yuddy is not up for reelection until 2014 and at this point looks unbeatable.
On Sunday the Luzerne County Republican Party is hosting a Rally / BBQ on the eve of the
Republican National Convention in Tampa at Urbanski Farms - 3130 Church Road, Mountaintop, PA Traditional summer picnic
foods will be served. There will be Live Entertainment, Horseshoes,
Volleyball, Softball, and Kids Games.The Softball game sounds like fun so I will take my MITT. Thanks to my Republican friends for the many invitations. Dress appropriately.
And don't forget that it is just one month until Blogfest at Rooney's Irish Pub, 67 South Main Street, Pittston on Friday, September 21 starting at 6PM. Since its inception two years ago, Blog
Fest has been described by many people as the best political event of the season, No speeches are
allowed, and the rule is "agree to disagree, but don't be
disagreeable." Many local and statewide candidates will be attending. Check out our Facebook page.
Dingman, PA - Last August, U.S. Rep.
Tom Marino went on a 9-day trip to Israel with all expenses paid by the
special interest group the American Israel Education Foundation,
according to a recently filed U.S. House ethics disclosure form. These
revelations come on the heels of Marino and his staff being caught with
conflicting stories about an appropriations vote that would "eviscerate
funding" to the region largest employer and cost the area hundreds of
to a POLITICO report, the FBI probed events on the trip that involved
drinking, numerous freshmen lawmakers, congressional staffers and even
several intoxicated members and staffer (plus a nude member of Congress)
swimming in the Sea of Galilee.
sounds more like a frat party than a respectable congressional
delegation," said Will Sharry, Phil Scollo's campaign manager. "The
people who Rep. Tom Marino represents deserve to have questions answered
about this trip, starting with: why were dozens of members of Congress
partying it up at a $1000/night resort in August 2011 when the U.S.
unemployment rate was at 9.1% and Pennsylvania families and seniors were
struggling to make ends meet?"
questions for Marino: Was Marino or staff contacted during the FBI
investigation? Did they ever received persons of interest letters? Was
Marino and his staff at the dinner event in question? Were they drinking
excessively at it? Did Marino or staff swim in the Sea of Galilee? How
much per night were rooms they were staying in at this resort (reports
were that rooms were up to $1,000/night)?
local and national media outlets are beginning to question the
competence, seriousness and sincerity of many freshman lawmakers,
including Marino, given the recent spate of bad behavior, economically
crippling votes and conflicting explanations.
Marino and his freshman buddies are clearly out of control and not up
to the job of representing their constituents. They are looking more
like college kids drunk with power and out of the house for the first
time every day," continued Scollo campaign manager Will Sharry. "The
people of northeast and central Pennsylvania deserve someone who is
focused on what matters to them - not someone who goes off globetrotting
with special interest money while cutting the jobs that are the very
lifeline of our area."
The whole POLITICO story on the FBI probe is available here:
Just to remind you about Mitt Romney's animal abuse.
Romney strapped a dog carrier — with the family dog Seamus, an Irish Setter, in it — to the roof of the family station wagon
for a twelve hour drive from Boston to Ontario, which the family
apparently completed, despite Seamus's rather visceral protest.
He put the dog on the roof of the car! What kind of an asshole does something like that? The dog was literally scared shitless.
This story immediately reminds you of the scene in Vacation
when Chevy Chase drives away with the dog tied to the bumper and when I
first read it I didn't believe it. I found it hard to believe that
anyone would treat their dog like that and his family would let him get away
Que up my Republican friends who will point out that Obama ate dog meat when he was a little boy.There is a difference between a child eating what is put in front of him and an adult man hosing a dog that had to ride on the roof.
Paul Ryan has said that his favorite band is Rage Against the Machine.
Maybe I'm just overreacting to the latest news that that the US Secret Service served subpenas on the Wilkes-Barre Area School Board again but I have never understood why we elect a group of people to run our schools. They don't get paid and in our neck of the woods 3 of them have gone to jail just in the W-B Area district. The primary purpose of members of school boards seems to be to get their relatives hired as teachers and other positions and in some cases taking a gratuity to help someone get a job.
I understand that the primary funding for schools in PA comes from the property tax so local people should have a say on how the money is spent.
So I propose that the funding mechanism for schools be taken over by the state by reforming the property tax system by exempting the first $250,000 of assessment and raising the income and sales taxes to cover the difference. Then hire professional educators and administrators to run the schools many of which are already in place.
I know that many details of my proposal needs to be worked out but I think we really need to have a discussion on school financing and administration.
As we pass through another summer without enough holidays I want to remind everyone of my proposal to make August 16th a day of celebration. This is the day both Babe Ruth and Elvis Presley died.
We need a day that celebrates our penchant for excess and what cultural
icons embody it better? The Babe had a robust lifestyle that is well
documented and the King himself expired on the throne. For some reason
my letters to members of Congress proposing this holiday have never been
answered but maybe I'm aiming too high and we should start with a local
event. Babe Ruth once visited Artillery Park and a commemorative plaque
is planned. It should be unveiled next August 16th with a festival in
Kirby Park where people would play baseball while being serenaded by
Elvis impersonators. I'm sure it would catch on nationally.
Why don't we have more summer holidays? Memorial Day starts the
summer and Labor Day ends it. The only mid summer holiday is
Independence Day. We have 6 holidays between November and February. Why
couldn't Washington, Lincoln and MLK Jr been born in the summer? Columbus should have left Spain in May and
they certainly could have called off World War I a few months earlier.
Despite the Secretary of State stating that she didn't even know what is in the law and the Commonwealth couldn't cite just one example of in person voter fraud and hearing countless testimony of people who would be denied the right to vote a Republican judge denied a preliminary injunction to prevent it from being enforced in the upcoming election. It will be appealed to the PA Supreme Court which is now split 3-3 because Republican Joan Orie Melvin is awaiting trial.
So we are stuck with this law and the Democrats better get on the stick. I got an email from the PA Democratic Party Today's decision by Commonwealth Court Judge Robert Simpson clears the way for the Voter ID bill to take effect. This is not good news for Pennsylvania voters.
The Voter ID bill passed by Harrisburg Republicans is an expensive and unnecessary piece of legislation. t's a solution without a problem....We already started an aggressive field plan to make sure PennsylIvanians have the IDs they need to vote in November. Then they asked for money.
Our local Democratic legislator's are quoted in Bill O'Boyle's story in the TL saying they are reaching out to constituents to educate them about the new requirements. Estimates are between 500,000 and 1 million people in Pennsylvania on the voter rolls don't have the proper identification. Getting an acceptable ID is not the easiest thing to do as PBPC documents. PennDOT is just not ready to do this!
The logical thing to do is to phase in the implementation of the law like many other states, like Georgia, did but that is not going to happen.
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has put up a Website, Facebook and Twitter account to help comply with the new law which will sure help the people who can't afford the intertubes or are old enough not to care about it..
Wilkes-Barre, PA—Lou Jasikoff, former Chair for the Pennsylvania Libertarian Party, blasted today’s challenge brought by the establishment Pennsylvania Republican Party to keep Libertarian presidential candidate Gov. Gary Johnson from appearing on the November ballot as patently un-American. “Every registered Republican in the state of Pennsylvania should hang their head in shame over their party leadership’s actions,” Jasikoff commented.
“We have men and women fighting and dying all over the world in the name of democracy and yet it is easier for an Independent to get on the ballot in Russia or Iraq than right here in Pennsylvania. The American public is sick and tired of these same old political games. For the Republican Party to trample the very cornerstone of our democracy is an affront to our military, our Constitution, and every fair minded voter,” said Jasikoff.
Jasikoff continued, “I call on all Independents, Tea Partiers, and conservative talk show hosts to halt all support for Pennsylvania Republican candidates until they publicly denounce the PAGOP's most recent actions. Forget the Health Care Bill, balanced budgets, or deficit fights, what does it matter if the candidates you are supporting cannot decry the most basic of all rights which is the ability to appear on the ballot and for voters to have a choice.”
“The Republican Party is already attempting to suppress the voter turnout in Pennsylvania, and now they want to make sure they do not have to compete in the arena of ideas as well. We cannot allow the PAGOP to use the courts and dirty tricks from keeping Libertarians from appearing on the November ballot,” added Jasikoff.
Jasikoff concluded, “I call on Mitt Romney himself to show some backbone and exhibit that he really stands for the Constitution, the military, and freedom of voter choice, not by what he says, but by the actions he takes. If he does not step up and denounce this this cowardly action taken by the PAGOP then he himself is complicit with such actions and is not fit to serve in public office.
Meet Rayburn Smith, a retired postal worker from Clarion County
who is running as a libertarian. He collected enough signatures to
appear on the November Pennsylvania ballot, although they are being
challenged by the state Republican Party.
Former Congressman and recent PA Attorney General candidate Patrick Murphy was on MSNBC yesterday discussing the Catholic view of the election. I hope he makes it to Blogfest on September 21st
From the inbox:
The message came across loud and clear - the nuns, priest and bishops all believe the Ryan/Romney budget is immoral. Reading from Archbishop Dolan's letter to Ryan about listening to the cries of the poor to refute the Bush-Cheney operative was priceless, there was no comeback. The three takeaways were:
1) As a social justice Catholic, the bible couldn't be more clear, "Whatever you do to the least of my people, you do onto me." Matthew, Chapter 25
2) Ryan/Romney budget guts Medicare and Medicaid by $2.8 Billion, and after kicking off 31 million Americans from Medicare and Medicaid, their plan amazingly turns around, not to pay off the debt, but spends $2.9 trillion for an additional $265K tax break for the wealthiest 1%
3) The tax rate under the only Catholic President, John F. Kennedy, was 70% -the tax rate under Reagan 5 of 8 yhanks for your help today. The feedback about Obama and the Catholic Vote on MSNBC hit has been fars was 50%, the rate under Clinton was 39% (the same rate Obama-Biden want it to return to) but Romney-Ryan want to cut it again to 25% and pay for it on the backs of our most
vulnerable is immoral
It looks like Mitt Romney has done the impossible by picking Paul Ryan as his running mate. Many Republicans and Democrats alike are thrilled with the choice. Republicans have wanted to destroy Social Security and Medicare since the inception of the programs and Ryan has had the balls to put it in writing sacrificing them on the alter of ever bigger tax cuts despite the fact that taxes are lower as a share of GDP since 1950. It's not about balancing the budget as his famous plan doesn't do that for a generation.
I think Romney has decided that this will be turnout election and picked the person that will most excite the Republican base because many of the true believers just don't trust the guy. Romney has always impressed me as the worst sort of politician, someone that doesn't want to do something but be somebody. When he ran for office in Massachusetts he was a liberal on the hot button social issues then repudiated those positions when he ran for President in 2008.
The Democrats are running a hardball campaign this time out and have had Romney on the defensive over Bain Capitol and his tax returns among other issues. He needed to change the narrative and did so by picking a running mate early but that won't last. I give it a week for the glow to wear off.
Hazleton, PA – Today, Lou Barletta issued the following statement
regarding the selection of Paul Ryan to complete the
Republican presidential ticket:
and the economy are the number one concern of voters across America.Paul Ryan and
Mitt Romney understand the need for pro-growth strategies that will get our
economy back on the right track.
Romney-Ryan ticket offers a clear contrast to the failed policies of President
Obama that have only made our economy worse.The team of Governor Mitt Romney and Representative Paul Ryan has the
expertise to offer idea after idea on how to fix our economy, cut Washington’s
red tape, right-size federal spending to deal with our deficit, and save
important federal programs that so many rely on.
worked with Paul Ryan, I can say no one in the House of Representatives knows
the federal budget better than he does.He will be an invaluable resource to the ticket and the American people
as their next Vice-President. At a time when our country is heading for a
fiscal cliff, there could not be a better team for the future of America than Gov. Mitt Romney and Rep. Paul Ryan.”
Old Forge, PA – “Today, Mitt Romney announced Paul
Ryan as his running mate. Ryan is a talented and experienced fiscal
conservative who understands the challenges facing our country. His selection
confirms that the Mitt Romney is committed to turning America around,” said Laureen Cummings,
Republican candidate for Congress in Pennsylvania’s 17th District.
“The ‘R & R’ team promises America some badly needed “r&r” from the
irresponsible, job killing policies of the Obama Administration. Paul
Ryan is the right choice at the right time and I commend Mitt Romney on his
Mooslyvania- Congratulations to Mitt Romney on his choice of Congressman Paul Ryan as
his running mate. President Obama has declared that this election is
about “two fundamentally different visions” for America. Goodness, he’s
got that right. Our country cannot afford four more years of Barack
Obama’s fundamentally flawed vision. We must now look to this new team,
the Romney/Ryan ticket, to provide an alternate
vision of an America that is fiscally responsible, strong, and
prosperous – an America that understands and is proud of her exceptional
place in the world and will respect those who fight to secure that
exceptionalism, which includes keeping our promises to our veterans.
Pennsylvania Greens, Elated to Appear on General
Election Ballot, Thank Volunteers, Stein/Honkala.
Party also condemns Republican challenge of
Libertarian and Constitutional Party.
For the first time since
2004, the Pennsylvania Green Party has put candidates on the Pennsylvania
General Election Ballot. Wednesday’s 5pm
deadline for filing a challenge to candidate nomination papers passed with no
challenge to the Greens. The result is
that the Green Party Presidential team of Jill Stein and Cheri Honkala will
appear on this year’s ballot. .
“We are thrilled,” advised
Party Chair, Carl Romanelli.
“Considering the history during the past eight years, we are a little
surprised to see that the Democrats chose not to challenge our nomination
papers. However, we view this decision
as more strategic than benevolent. Our
party retained a lawyer and we were prepared to defend our papers and the hard
work of our volunteers,” Romanelli continued. .
During recent years the
Greens have been challenged by the Democratic Party in nearly every even
numbered year. In 2008, as a result of a
Grand Jury investigation, about a dozen employees of the Pennsylvania House of
Representatives were indicted, then later convicted or entered guilty pleas,
for using millions of taxpayer dollars in the effort to remove Romanelli from
the 2006 ballot. The same scenario was
played out in 2004, regarding the challenge to Ralph Nader’s Nomination Papers
in that year. Stephen Baker, a York
County Green, said “We turned in quite a volume of signatures, the most since
2006. It would have been difficult for
the Democrats to proceed with a challenge as it would have required expending
considerable resources and would have re-opened the embarrassing criminality of
the bonusgate scandal. The process for
achieving ballot status, for third parties in Pennsylvania, is unjust and
wasteful. Ballot access laws in this
state must change.”
Romanelli reminded that
many individuals contributed to the Greens collecting about 35,000 voter
signatures. “We had so many of our
longtime members working since early March to collect signatures, but we also
had many skilled petitioners who did not participate, as the hard work in
previous years was nullified by our candidates withdrawing from the challenge,
rather than to defend it. This is
clearly due to the regressive practice in Pennsylvania of assessing legal fees
and costs on challenges not defended successfully. In addition, the excitement of our strong
presidential ticket of Stein/Honkala assured we would obtain a suitable number
of signatures.” .
“The Stein campaign
invested resources into Pennsylvania in order to augment the amount of
signatures during the past month. Cheri
Honkala, of Philadelphia, was a key organizer and was the inspiration of
volunteers working the Philadelphia area,” offered coordinator, Hillary Kane. .
“Things looked grim in
June, but the energy and hard work of Jill and Cheri clearly put us over the
top. These candidates are not only
incredible organizers, but their message resonates with many working class
voters. In fact, our candidates were
willing to be arrested in order to expose the predatory foreclosure practice
employed by Fannie Mae and big banks, to the detriment of families. We are delighted that Pennsylvania voters
will have another option this November,” Kane continued.
Despite its success this
year, Greens were quick to condemn the challenges brought by the Republican
Party, against both the Constitution Party and the Libertarians. “It is clear that the Republican Party of PA
will go to any length in order to manipulate the vote. For example, the petition challenges this
year, combined with the passing of Voter ID in a close, partisan vote; shows
just how determined the Republicans are to mute dissenting voices. Between both of these actions we see nearly
one million Pennsylvania voters being disenfranchised. We find that shameful and believe any party
worth its rhetoric would not engage in such machinations,” suggested Romanelli.
The Green Party, as well
as the Constitution Party and the Libertarian Party, are co-plaintiffs in a
federal lawsuit challenging the practice of assessing fees on candidates in
petition challenges. The parties are
seeking to have such a practice voided as unconstitutional. The Greens pride themselves on the fact they
will not take special interest money, but rather accept only donations from
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or
prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of
speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to
assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
Self elected Luzerne County Republican committeeman Steve Smith is back in the news. He want's to have a hatefest in a park in Moosic but the the locals say he and his ilk are not welcome. The headliner is to be s Merlin Miller, the
presidential candidate of the American Third Position Party. Not on the
ballot in Pennsylvania, Miller believes the U.S. is "degenerating from a
predominantly white, Christian nation" and turning into "a third-world
tower of Babel" because its minority populations are growing, according
to his campaign website. ( I won't link to it).
The Town father's of Moosic are trying to block this relying on a technicality that Smith is not a resident and lied on his permit application but a real resident could apply for a permit.
This reminds me of a controversy in Skokie Illinois from my childhood when some Nazi's wanted to parade in a predominately Jewish town that the Supreme Court ruled that they could do it.
Moosic should defuse this controversy by letting them have their picnic instead of fighting it. Assholes on parade will do more to discredit the haters than letting them drag it through the courts.
Republican freshman Congressman Lou Barletta and Tom Marino are taking heat for voting for a Defense appropriation bill that will cut funding for the Tobyhanna Army Depot which is the largest employer in the area. Barletta spokesperson Renita Fenick says he voted for the bill but later discovered an accounting error.
Their Democratic opponents are having a field day with this.
From Phil Scollo: How
could he have possibly voted for a bill that does so much damage to his
own district? How could he have voted to cut hundreds of jobs in his
own district when we are already struggling to reduce unemployment?
Rep. Marino either doesn't care about local jobs or is just plain clueless.
Gene Stilp: “This is a huge bill and a major bill, and for Mr. Barletta to not understand,
at least, how it would affect people in the newly redrawn 11th District shows he
still has a lot to learn about how Congress works. He certainly could have
proposed an amendment to the bill that would have held it up and protected a
leading employer like Tobyhanna. With an economy like this, you have to be aware
of things like this.”
Meanwhile, Marino could not be reached for comment.
I don't think that Barletta and Marino would knowingly vote to cut funding for Tobyhanna but that's the problem, they voted for a bill not knowing what was in it. I remember some Tea Party types demanding that members of Congress should read every bill that is voted on. These guys didn't read the bill but they should have staffers that should spot a problem for their constituencies.
But don't panic, Senator Bob Casey will get this fixed in the conference committee.
It is understandable that Barletta missed the details of the possible disaster because he is busy with other issues.
People who live there tell me that Forty Fort is a nice place to live but like most small towns it has financial pressures. It is still waiting for Wilkinson to forward the half million dollars it collected in the borough's name that has resulted in curtailing overtime and the council will forgo their paychecks until they get the money. Former councilman Andy Tuzinski raised a stink over $50 and Mayor Boyd Hoats broke a tie to keep Chacke as council president then again cast the tie breaking vote to eliminate the short sighted idea of cancelling the agreement with Kingston to provide joint fire and ambulance services. Then Tuzinski attacked what Chacke does for a living.
Joe has impressed me over the years as a common sense Republican. A rare commodity these days. He ran for State Rep in 2006 in 2006 but came up short. When the Barletta immigrant fervor was sweeping the area he was a cooler head when some idiot proposed a similar law and an English only ordinance.
A solution in search of a problem
I make the argument all the time, what are we here for? We're not
elected to Council to debate illegal immigration, we're here to address
the real local issues like police & fire protection, road paving,
snow plowing, zoning, etc
Never for a second during her seven-minute performance did a hoof stray
dangerously mouthwards, nor did she do anything at all to offend or
upset the host nation. From the moment she entered the Greenwich Park equestrian
arena at 12.15 on Thursday afternoon, the most famous political horse
since Caligula toyed with making a consul of Incitatus seemed in her
Short of mocking Shetland ponies over their lack of stature or laying
into zebras for their failure to make a significant contribution to the
world of equine culture, Ann Romney's horse Rafalca was always going to struggle to match the sheer incredulity that her husband managed to provoke on his recent overseas trip....
The Phils win 2 in a row against the 1st place Nationals. I was sorry to see Shane and Hunter go but 2 of the players they got back did well last night. Nate Schierholtz went yard and Josh Lindblom didn't give up a run.
When I was 13 or 14 I read book that changed the way I think. That book was Burr by Gore Vidal. It's a historical novel written from the point of view of one of the most notorious figures in American history, the 3rd Vice President Aaron Burr who is remembered for killing the 1st Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton in a duel in New Jersey.
The American history I was taught in grade school and junior high made the founding fathers into almost godlike beings that were mostly infallible,
then I read Burr. Vidal cut them all down to size. George Washington an incompetent general with an enormous rear end; Thomas Jefferson, ,a hypocrite who schemed and bribed
witnesses in support of a false charge of treason against Burr after
almost losing the 1800 election to him; and Alexander Hamilton who spread false rumors about his relationship with his daughter according to the fictional Burr memoir in the book.
This book opened my eyes and helped me to think critically and not accept everything I heard in a classroom as fact.A few years later a teacher kept saying one of the causes of the civil war was about states rights. I kept asking what states right other than owning another human being did they go to war over. She couldn't answer that and wasn't happy with me.
After Burr I was hooked. Julian was a great novel in the same format about a Roman Emperor after Constantine who tried to restore the Pagen gods and Creation which includes Zoroaster, Socrates, the Buddha, Mahavira, Lao Tsu, and Confucius.