Corporate Greed

11 06 2008

Obama is currently looking for a running mate. Sharon Cobb has a comprehensive rundown at her place this morning about the pros and cons of some of the front runners.

Cobb says this may be the biggest decision he has to make and I can’t help but agree.

Although I have played armchair political pundit on this, I can’t help but think whoever he chooses is going to have to be chosen to be the best advocate for this country in the Middle East. Our economic situation, in my opinion, has so much to do with the Iraq War. We are borrowing money from China, people are doing without but we haven’t hit that moment of outrage yet but I think it will come and, of course, we’ve hit $4 a gallon so isn’t it just a matter of time before we start anticipating warily $5.

Let’s look at China. With the devastating earthquakes that have hit that country, they are going to need more fuel to rebuild. We owe them. Let’s think about that. I don’t know the answer but it’s a reality. The world needs petro not just the United States.

In a story from ABC, we get this:

Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill says their profits have quadrupled since 2002.

“Last year ExxonMobil made $83,000 a minute,” Senator McCaskill said.

“What nerve does it take for us to give oil companies $17 billion in taxpayer money with those kinds of profits?”

Of course, Senate Republicans blocked the Democrats Monday on the windfall tax for oil companies.

For every one thing we think we know, there are five hundred different things lurking in the murky waters of government. With Obama looking at a V.P to campaign with him this summer, the vice-president is very important. Whoever he chooses, I hope that that person’s interest is in the American people, our global community is not tied into corporate greed. It’s corporate greed that ultimately got us in this mess we are in right now in the first place.





McCainiac

10 06 2008

The McCain Girls are back.

I’m not saying that’s a good thing, but they are back.





Post Of The Day

5 06 2008

Grandefille doesn’t talk about politics much at her blog much, but when she does, I’d recommend you listen.

But for the love of your country and your children, don’t flounce off in a huff and vote for the opposition just for spite.

ETA: Well, this is a bit more reassuring to me. As I think I’ve mentioned elsewhere, I’ve long been of the opinion, as this campaign has draaaaagged on, that whichever one is in the Oval Office and whichever one is in the Old Executive Office Building isn’t going to matter a whit; they’re both going to have their hands full fixing this horrorshow.





Unifying A Party

4 06 2008

Last night I missed all the fanfare in a monumental day in history. I was sitting in a local, very emotional board meeting that I’m not going to talk about here. I usually talk around the items that happen in my day job anyway and just write about my reaction to what I do for a living. It’s called a blog where we get to navel gaze about our lives.

So I missed the speeches and probably won’t get to watch them until later today when I have some time.

With that said, I have read the reaction of how folks perceived the last day of the democratic primary. I find that people usually deal with politics from an emotional level. Be it locally or nationally.

I read with great disappointment these posts from Aunt B. Left Wing Cracker and Mack regarding Tennessee Guerilla Women. That blog has won national kudos and has done a great deal for communicating the ongoing battle for women’s rights. I don’t want to take that away from TGW but I must say that as a woman in my 40s there is one thing that I’ve realized as the gray at my hairline becomes a bit whiter and that is not everyone who disagrees with me is out to get me. Sometimes it’s just a different philosophy.

Was there misogyny in this race? Yes.

As a woman, I cringed at moments where Hillary Clinton was asked about her pantsuits and pictures were photoshopped making her into some sort of wicked witch. I hated that.

Was there a covert, and sometimes blatant, thread of racism in this contest? Yes. I felt the nasty sting of Bill Hobbs’ attack on Barack Obama and I have listened to some rather nasty words thrown at the candidate.

And although I don’t always write about feminism here doesn’t mean that I don’t live a life of being a professional woman in a male-dominated world.  During my career in news and social work, I’ve had some rather nasty words thrown at me as well as other women have as well.

I try to let my actions speak louder than my words. People that know me know that I’m more than this blog.

So speeches were given last night and in internalizing the immediate needs of my particular community, I find my concerns about this country are more than just race and sexism which can’t be fixed in a day but should be fixed nonetheless. I don’t want my nieces listening to the nastiness that I have on occasion. With that said, there has to be a unified effort to make sure they are okay. And taking our toys and going home because our candidate of choice didn’t win doesn’t cut it for me. I just want something different from the last eight years.  This country has had a rough run. And I don’t want those same nieces to ever go through something like this ever again.

My concerns, for right now at least, are about the economy and the war (where women and people of color die too), about a recession in my community that has no access to rural public transportation and where gas prices have created such hardships where I’ve seen people reduced to tears choosing between milk and getting to work. Jackson Miller posted this yesterday and that’s what I’m talking about.

Politics are emotional and I don’t care what anyone says, it is. But there has to be unity in fixing some of the things in this country that are impacting regular people. It’s the only way.





Did John Edwards Say Him?

9 05 2008

A little bunch of nothing which started making the rounds this afternoon. Or is it something?

Did John Edwards say at the end of this clip from Morning Joe “I just voted for him on Tuesday?”

You decide.

No official endorsement but interesting.





John And Elizabeth Edwards

7 05 2008

Nice interview at the Ticker this morning with John and Elizabeth Edwards. I thought it was interesting but they say a lot without saying anything.

When it comes to Hillary Clinton, John Edwards praised the New York Democrat for her tenacity, saying she “shows a real strength that’s inside of her.” But the former North Carolina senator also said Clinton represents a “lot of the old politics.”

Meanwhile, Elizabeth Edwards said she is a strong proponent of Clinton’s healthcare plan, though is disappointed the New York senator accepts donations from lobbyists.

As for Barack Obama, John Edwards said he wants to “see more substance under the rhetoric.” But he gave Obama praise for wanting to “bring about serious change and a different way of doing things.”

Elizabeth Edwards said she is impressed by the fact Obama has “motivated so many young people to be involved,” though she does not like his healthcare plan and said his advertisements on the plan have been “misleading.”

John Edwards later added he thinks it’s a “great symbolic thing to have an African-American who could be president.”

That sentiment, People reports, caused Elizabeth Edwards to roll her eyes:

“What about the great symbolic thing about a woman?” she asked.

I like the banter between them though. They seem very comfortable. I like that. In many ways, they have become the first couple of the Democratic Party. Not bad.





Indiana Primary – 40 Years after Kennedy

6 05 2008

This is not only a really fine bit of writing but it’s also a lesson in history.

The talking heads of the TV babblerati certified it to be true — this is the first time in 40 years the Democratic primary election in Indiana has been important. That would be 1968, and Robert Kennedy had just jumped into the race for the Democratic nomination after Lyndon Johnson had just bowed out.

I know. I was alive. And I was there — in Indiana, the weekend before the primary election.

Read the rest of it. It’s amazingly good.





Real Conversations By Real People About Politics

19 04 2008

I’ve talked quite a bit about how I wish we were having a more “adult” presidential campaign right now. It makes me cranky listening to all the political rhetoric when there are more important issues to discuss.

I realize that it’s just not “sexy” to have conversations these days about politics when you aren’t looking somebody in the eye. That’s part of what is missing, I think.

When I’m sitting talking to friends and acquaintances I have who have and will vote differently than I will in November, I find that we never raise our voices, yell obscenities at each other and start threatening to throw fainting goats at the other’s family promoting a riot of some kind here in Hoots.

We have adult conversations. Not always perfect, mind you, but pretty decent.

I find we agree on what needs to be addressed, we just have different ideas on how to fix it and our ideologies on who the best candidate is to take over a government that appears to be nuts right now. Why anyone would want to be president right now is mind-boggling. There is no quick fix.

Where we agree is that the economy is in the toilet, the war in Iraq is a mess and when are we going to have to repay our debt to countries we’ve borrowed money from. Credit card companies will call you when they don’t get paid. We keep wondering when the United States is going to get that call, from let’s say, China.

I wonder what the interest rate will be? I wonder who’s going to pay it. Oh, wait …

We agree that the middle-class in many ways is not the middle-class anymore. We talk about rising gas and food costs. We talk about having health insurance (most of the people I know do) but that we really can’t use it because our health insurance companies won’t let us and the deductibles are killing us when we have to go to the doctor.

So, I mentioned earlier this week about how terrible I thought the Gibsonopolous debate was for both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. They waited nearly an hour to ask about the economy?

Politics is like a chess game. But real people with real problems don’t want to be pawns.

They just want to know when they are going to see light at the end of the tunnel.

I’m usually an optimist about most things, but right now, I’m worried. And if you sit down and look your neighbor in the eye and talk like an adult about the issues this country is facing, regardless of who you think they are, you will find out they are most likely a bit worried too. Or this has been my experience. Sometimes it’s talking to one person at a time where we see our similarities and can put aside our differences.





Introducing Keith R. Judd

18 04 2008

So in our news of the day, I introduce you to Keith R. Judd. No relation to the singing sensation of the 80s known as The Judds to my knowledge.

If you were having doubts of who to vote for president, Mr. Judd would like you to consider him for the highest office in the land.

Of course, Judd is in prison until 2013 in Texas, but that didn’t stop Idaho from putting him on the ballot.

A federal prison inmate got himself listed on the ballot for Idaho’s May 27 primary as a Democratic presidential candidate, the state’s top election official said.

Keith Russell Judd is serving time at the Beaumont Federal Correctional Institution in Texas for making threats at the University of New Mexico in 1999. He’s scheduled for release in 2013.

Judd, 49, qualified for the ballot by submitting a notarized form and paying the required $1,000 fee, state Secretary of State Ben Ysursa said. As a result, Democratic voters will be able to choose between Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Judd.

“We got conned,” Ysursa told The Spokesman-Review of Spokane, Wash.

Yes, I believe that con is a good enough word for what happened here.

Here, my friends, is the government taking care of business.

Betcha five bucks he even gets some votes.





I’m Leaving It To The Popular Vote

16 04 2008

Mabel’s campaign for president has been challenged by Happycat.

I’m going to let you choose. Here are Mabel’s issues.

It’s up to you. There are no superdelegates. There is only a canine or a cat that can lead our country to greatness again.

It’s up to you, my friends.

Mabel would also like to point out that HappyCat can’t spell. (It could get dirty.)





Could This Change The Democratic Race Up?

15 04 2008

Will Bunch interviewed Barack Obama and this is what he said:

Tonight I had an opportunity to ask Barack Obama a question that is on the minds of many Americans, yet rarely rises to the surface in the great ruckus of the 2008 presidential race — and that is whether an Obama administration would seek to prosecute officials of a former Bush administration on the revelations that they greenlighted torture, or for other potential crimes that took place in the White House.

Obama said that as president he would indeed ask his new Attorney General and his deputies to “immediately review the information that’s already there” and determine if an inquiry is warranted — but he also tread carefully on the issue, in line with his reputation for seeking to bridge the partisan divide. He worried that such a probe could be spun as “a partisan witch hunt.” However, he said that equation changes if there was willful criminality, because “nobody is above the law.

What are your thoughts? The war, spying, excessive government, constitutionality and more are on the minds of many citizens? Is it enough? The question is could this, in this 24-hour news cycle I keep talking about, be something that could change things up.

Talks amongst yourselves.





What Russ McBee Said …

12 04 2008

What Russ said:

Although his words may have been chosen inelegantly, he was nevertheless absolutely correct. People whose lives have been upended by the loss of good-paying jobs crave some kind of anchoring principle to make it all make sense; they seek any enduring truth or absolute that can give them focus and clarity. History is filled with examples of populations turning to religious fundamentalism and/or nativist chauvinism in times of turmoil. The temptation to rationalize a complex situation (such as the destruction of America’s manufacturing industry) with simple answers is an ordinary human trait, and it’s no great mystery. It is also nowhere close to “elitist” to acknowledge the fact that people whose jobs have been shuffled off to Mexico or China will be left behind wondering why, and they’ll be looking for something solid in their lives to give meaning and context to such an upheaval. Fundamentalist religion, nativism, xenophobia, and anything else that promises to simplify one’s understanding of the problem is a strong attractor for those facing uncertainty.

And there’s more.





Mike Gravel’s New Video

9 04 2008

Sharon Cobb had this video up this morning and I must say “WOW!”

Mike Gravel intrigues me to no end.





Mabel For President

3 04 2008
mabelastroheadertwo.jpg
Mabel has been to the moon (sorta.)
juramabel.jpg
She has negotiated tricky international policies with evil overlords.
mabel-in-chair.jpg
Mabel Can Read (sorta.)
download.jpg
She likes cats and is open to new ideas.
mabelholiday.jpg
Mabel is a very presidential looking dog.
More presidential than George Bush when you get right down to it. Don’t you want to have a beer with her.
“Today, Mabel announces her candidacy for President of the United States. As candidates are not paying attention to the needs of citizens and the infighting has gotten to the point that the future of the United States of America is threatened with the lack of diversity and tolerance for our fellow man, Mabel has decided that if Washington has gone to the dogs, put a DOG in the White House.”
She’s female, she’s old, she’s black and she’s white. She’s got it all.
Can we please move past those things?
mabelforpresident.jpg
She doesn’t talk about the issues.
She’s just like the rest of the candidates these days.
What do you have to lose?
I really had hope when this race started.




Finally …

28 03 2008

Something odd is happening. I thought it wouldn’t but then again, the presidential candidates did something yesterday so unusual and fascinating that I couldn’t help but have to sit back in my recliner and weep tears of joy.

They actually talked about things other than each other.

Praise the Lord and Pass the Cheetos! I had gotten so disillusioned in the past couple of weeks with all of the static that I thought seriously of going and getting a cat so I could cat blog. As you know, I’ve never really owned a cat. I hear they own you. I guess I’ll stick with Mabel.

From USA Today:

Obama was in New York City, where he was introduced by Mayor Michael Bloomberg, a Republican-turned-independent. Obama reiterated his proposals for helping homeowners faced with foreclosure, including a $10 billion fund to keep some mortgages afloat. Bloomberg rearranged his schedule to be at the speech, but Stu Loeser, a spokesman for the mayor, said his boss’s courtesy doesn’t constitute an endorsement.

Clinton campaigned in North Carolina on the start of a six-day, three-state tour focused on the economy. She proposed a five-year, $10 billion program to help displaced workers get job training.

 

Whaaa!?! Get OUT!

The Dems are finally talking about the sorry state of the economy in this country? Seriously, I thought it was all about faux sniper stories and Obama and the preacher but after this I think Clinton will knock it off.

By sniping at each other, both candidates put me off and I’m a political junkie. I have heard people, just common folks here in Hoots, that have been so disgusted with it that they are talking more about that then the actual race as they look at the gas signs screaming $3.39 a gallon at them.

Howard Dean has got to get this together and keep on task. From yesterday:

Democratic Party chief Howard Dean is expressing concern about the angry tone of his party’s presidential campaign.

Dean says Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and their supporters should beware of tearing each other down, demoralizing the base and damaging the party’s chances of winning the White House in November.

About time, Howard. With this said, damage has been done. But it can be fixed.

Talk about the issues and the party’s mission. Unity good, BS bad.





Bill Richardson

22 03 2008

Bill Richardson has endorsed Barack Obama. I’m a day late and a dollar short here because I realize the blogosphere has moved on and new LOL cats are available to look at as they are bright and shiny.

But I think it’s more significant that some of the Right might think. Sharon Cobb talked about it at her place and she makes some good points.

The obvious reason that it is significant is that he used to work in the Clinton Administration. He is friends with the Clintons.

But I think there is one thing about Richardson’s endorsement that is highly significant and that is Richardson is grounded and seems to be a voice of reason in this dead period before the next primary. I would have said the same thing if he had endorsed Hillary Clinton.

Richardson is not a drama queen. I tend to pay attention to what’s going on with him.
Let me tell you, when I would take those political tests that every website had back when the race was filled with candidates that was supposed to be one’s perfect match, I took several and I realize they were basically meant very little but I always got Mike Gravel, Dennis Kucinich and Bill Richardson.

Ahh, I miss the early days of this race where the mission statement of the Dems was more important than who had their picture taken with who and people weren’t throwing sand at each other daily.

James Carville said in a New York Times article that Richardson’s endorsement of Obama was an “act of betrayal” but there is more in the Times write-up which is good stuff. I’m sure it stings but on the other hand because both of the last candidate’s standing have been whined and dined for their sway. And apparently now the endorsement is causing more of a stir, but Richardson is directly dealing with the backlash.

Chris Dodd is endorsing Obama too but it didn’t make as many waves as Richardson’s did. Richardson’s means votes.

I’m interested to see what John Edwards does now.





Barack Obama Gets Rolling Stone Endorsement

9 03 2008
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He got Rolling Stone’s endorsement. I can’t help but wonder if it will make a difference in the long run, but it’s still kinda cool.
I can remember reading Hunter S. Thompson when I was a kid and thinking there was a much bigger world out yonder.
How many times do you type the word “yonder?” Yeah, hush.




Obama/Clinton or Clinton/Obama?

9 03 2008

I’m randomly looking about at political news this morning afternoon (I slept until noon. An old broad has to get her sleep but I never do that so I’m somewhat surprised myself.)

A couple of things crossed my mind as I sipped my first cup of coffee for the day.  First of all, Dennis Hastert, of course, resigned and his seat is now held by a democrat. This is bigger news than you would think.  Bill Foster won the seat and will head to Washington.

But there is an underlying issue here that is impacted by national politics. Obama campaigned for Foster, John McCain campaigned for Foster’s GOP opponent, James Oberweis. It may appear like a small matter but it’s not. Hastert’s old seat was rooted deep in the middle of Republican country. And apparently Obama pulled more weight with voters than McCain. Oberweis was apparently well-known in this part of Illinois although he had lost in the past. But the thing is, in politics, there is this old thing sort of like the Academy Awards where people feel it’s that candidates “time.”

He, in all honesty, should have won. He had more money (1.2 million from the GOP and only $620,000 for the Dems) and more face recognition.

He didn’t.  And now it’s in the hands of the blue.

It goes without saying that every vote is necessary right right now. Obama won Wyoming yesterday which halted some of Hillary Clinton’s momentum, but it just created more of a speed bump. You guys know where I lean and I’m watching this.

It’s because every vote counts.

These elections are like driving on a back road covered in hidden ice this year. You don’t know which way your car is going to go as it could either way. But the most interesting thing from yesterday from a national perspective is what Bill Clinton said.

In Mississippi, Clinton brought up a Clinton/Obama ticket. I don’t think this is going to happen but the big question is why? Why is the former president bringing this up?

He said:

“You look at most of these places — he would win the urban areas and the upscale voters, and she wins the traditional rural areas that we lost when President Reagan was president,” he said. “If you put those two things together, you’d have an almost unstoppable force.”

Clinton moved then to take another question, before he returned to the subject, saying he didn’t blame either candidate for not wanting to put the matter on the table now. “Nobody wants to give up the top spot until the voters get done voting,” he said. “[But] if you got the assurances of ultimate unity, then it’s a great mistake for other people to try to shut this process down early. I mean, the last primary is June the 7th. I didn’t get the votes in ’92 to be nominated until June the 2nd. We don’t need to be in any hurry, let everybody vote.”

I don’t see it. But then again, I thought Betamax machines would still be around in 2008. I find this interesting. I don’t think it’s going to happen because would Clinton be alright with an Obama/Clinton ticket? I’m thinking not.

But Bill knew this would get some national play. And a Clinton never says anything without there being some reason behind it.

Interesting.





Stagflation

4 03 2008

I don’t know about you guys, but I know I’m suffering a bit from political fatigue.

Today will be the day that will set the tone for the rest of the race. I’ve been paying far too much attention to this race, because, I don’t know. Could it be that the last eight years have been the worst in my memory? Probably.

I was talking to Big Daddy not too long ago and for the first time in my history, he and I seem to be on the same page. You know, we are all discussing stagflation except we are calling it “Crap, I don’t have enough money.”

Let me break it down for you because stagflation sounds like some sort of staph infection that you get on your face.

But it’s a different kind of infection, campers, that tears at the seams of our personal financial freedom.

Yeah, we can look at unemployment rates but people are making less money. You can have jobs out there, but some of those jobs are p/t at 20 hours a week. Gas is more expensive. Until they get public transportation here, then I’m stuck driving a car to get to work and toodle about doing my job. The last time, which has been months, that I filled my car up was in December. It was roughly 45 dollars. I just put in what I need right now. Food is more expensive. Goods are more expensive. Anything brought into whatever area you live that needs gasoline to have it transported there, well, that means those costs are handed over to the consumer.

Yet, many of us are making the same amount of money we did two years ago. Or, at least, I’m speaking for myself here. As I just paid my property taxes, I’m a little broke and my car needs work. SQ and I have taken on second jobs to keep our heads above water.

We make due and we realize we are lucky.

When our country is borrowing money to be in a war and I have tons of people who used to have manufacturing jobs (not any more, the plants are gone, campers) willing to work for minimum wage to just have a bit of money in their pockets, to feed their kids, then when I hear about employment numbers, I flinch. It’s fuzzy math.

So, of course, I’m watching what’s happening on a national level. I honestly don’t think anyone can fix this immediately. The damage done in the past few years will take more than a new president to repair this mess.

I go back to it’s one person at a time.

Today, four states are going to the polls with an amazing amount of delegates up for the taking. I hope whoever wins them remembers there are people’s futures attached to each one of those delegates.

And I hope they remember that.





Ned McWherter Quoted In Washington Post

24 02 2008

Obama (Ill.) posted big wins over Clinton in caucuses in Plains and Mountain states such as Kansas, Nebraska and Idaho, but Republicans in those states scoff at the suggestion that victories in the small universe of Democrats there translate into strength in November. In Tennessee and Oklahoma, Obama lost by wide margins to Clinton, who lived in nearby Arkansas. He narrowly won the primary in the swing state of Missouri, but did so thanks to the state’s solidly Democratic cities, losing its more rural, and more conservative, areas to Clinton.

“If he’s the nominee . . . he’ll start off with a good urban base, but he’ll have to get out and develop these other areas,” said former Tennessee governor Ned McWherter, a Democrat and Clinton supporter.

Read the whole thing here.