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Thursday, September 30, 2010

10 QUESTIONS FOR OUR COUNTRY

As I look over the state of our nation today, with 15 million still unemployed, our infrastructure crumbling, the level of quality for our pundits and politicians at its lowest point ever, I ask myself the following questions:

CARLY FIORINA? California, are you serious? You're toying with the idea of electing her Senator? The woman Michael Malone, columnist for the Wall Street Journal and abcnews.com, called "the worst CEO in [Silicon] Valley history"? Whom Jeffrey Schoenfeld of the Yale School of Management said "...sliced shareholder wealth in half and and had a reign of terror that was infamous for its scapegoating, finger-pointing culture" during her disastrous tenure as Hewlett Packard's CEO? The woman who laid off 20,000 workers there but who unhesitatingly took a $21 million golden parachute when her board finally asked her to leave? California teabaggers and Republicans, you'll run ANYBODY for office, huh? By the way, Carly, YOUR hair doesn't look that good or today, either!

GLENN BECK? The guy who lost scores of sponsors after his comments about the President being a racist who hates white people? The vain little guy with the 1955 image who concocts all kinds of crazy conspiracy theories and tries to sucker unsuspecting fools into buying overpriced gold coins from one of his few remaining sponsors? THIS guy is STILL on Fox "News" and still has viewers?

KEN BUCK for Senate? Say it ain't so, Colorado! You're thinking of electing a guy who called Social Security "horrible, bad policy", and who further questioned its constitutionality? A guy who, according to the Colorado Statesman “emphasized his conservative values, expressing his opposition to the principle of separating church and state” at a forum at Colorado Christian University? What about the constitutionality of THAT, Buck?

MEG WITMAN? For GOVERNOR, California? The former CEO of eBay who knowingly lied about employing an illegal immigrant housekeeper for 9 years, denied that she had, and then was proven to be a liar on televiosion with a document signed by her husband that the housekeeper's attorney dug up and produced? The candidate who cut this servant loose and told her that if anyone ever asked about her having worked for her, she would deny ever knowing her? Man, you California teabaggers and Republicans WILL take ANYBODY, won't you? I'm hoping California VOTERS will be a bit more selective, though...

MICHELE BACHMANN? REALLY, Minnesota 6th District voters? You're going to re-elect this motormouth who is constantly making insane statements and accusations? The woman who has advocated getting rid of the minimum wage? Who has urged constituents to not fill out their U.S. Census forms? Who has said she wants voters "armed and dangerous" to descend on the nation's capitol? THIS eccentric lunatic?



SARAH PALIN? THIS woman STILL has a sizable following, even though she quit her responsibilities as Alaska's Governor in mid-term so that she could make more money for herself on book tours and in speaking apperances? THIS woman, who knows next to nothing about history, geography, law, and world events but who nonetheless thinks she's qualified to be President? WHAT???



CHRISTINE O'DONNELL? Delaware, you CAN'T be serious, can you? You're contemplating electing to the U.S. Senate this bimbo with no work experience, who can't control her money, uses campaign donations for personal expenses, and who has repeatedly and deliberately misrepresented her education level? This person who believes science is creating rats with human brains? Have you lost ALL your standards, Delaware?


RUSH LIMBAUGH? ARE YOU kidding me? This liar who hates the President, minorities, immigrants, anybody not just like him (everybody, I guess) --- this guy is still on the air? This buffoon, who makes insane statements like the President is going to force all males to be circumsized, and that he is going to outlaw fishing? THIS blabbering bag of hot air still has listeners who follow him and believe what he says is true?


WHAT IN THE WORLD IS GOING ON IN THIS COUNTRY?


HAVE WE COMPLETELY LOST OUR MINDS???

Monday, September 27, 2010

THE SELLING OF THE CONGRESS: 2010

"Corporations are NOT people! Money is NOT speech!"
- TomCat, Politics Plus -




Nick Coleman, a contributor for the Minneapolis Star Tribune whose writing I greatly admire, had the excellent piece below in that paper's Sunday OpEd section. While it centers primarily around the Minnesota's Governor race, it is also tremendously relevant to the midterm congressional elections. I have taken the liberty of bolding and capitalizing for emphasis certain points he makes. His piece was titled "Elections are for Sale, and that Stinks". It is italicized below, and my own comments follow beneath it after its conclusion.


What should we call people who want to influence the outcome of elections without having to disclose campaign contributions or allow their behind-the-scenes maneuverings to be revealed to voters?

How about "cowards"?

If that seems too strong, well, it's not as bad as the term that used to apply. That term was "criminals," as failing to disclose most campaign contributions was illegal, or becoming so, during the halcyon days of campaign finance reform that began in the 1970s. But the reform era ended with a crash in January when a derelict U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that corporations can spend as much money as they wish to support -- or oppose -- a candidate.

History often takes decades to render a verdict on the bad effects of mistaken decisions. But the rank odor of the decision in Citizens United vs. Federal Election Commission signaled a foul mistake right off the bat:

"The Supreme Court just put our democracy up for sale to the highest bidder," declared Common Cause, the organization that started the crusade for campaign finance reform and open government in 1970 (IT WAS FOUNDED BY A REPUBLICAN, JOHN GARDNER). The decision by a recklessly "activist" court, Common Cause continued, opened "the floodgates to out-of-control political spending by the wealthiest special interests."

We are now seeing how wealthy special interests -- including billionaires who dabble in and promote kooky ideas about climate change, human evolution and unchecked exploitation of natural resources -- are trying to buy the 2010 elections.

And these are the kind of people who expect to get what they pay for.

In Minnesota, giant companies such as Target, Best Buy and 3M have put hundreds of thousands into partisan efforts to support the Republican candidate for governor, Tom Emmer, and to defeat DFL candidate Mark Dayton. HOW THESE CORPORATIONS BELIEVE PUBLIC EDUCATION AND HIGHWAYS WILL BE FUNDED IN A "CUT GOVERNMENT" EMMER ADMINISTRATION, THEY DON'T SAY. But they have caused many consumers to think about what their Post-it Notes and gift cards are financing.

At least those corporate contributions, unwise though they may be, are public information. Other interest groups have gone to court to challenge a Minnesota law requiring them to disclose their contributions, and they also want a ban on political disbursements from corporate general funds overturned.

In essence, their argument is that pirates should get to use their booty as they see fit.

Although unions, too, are putting money into many campaigns, labor spending is a small fraction of the corporate spending that has been unleashed. If you think the University of Minnesota's (since-reversed) decision to pull its imprimatur from "Troubled Waters," the documentary about river pollution, may have been motivated by big money, you ain't seen nothing yet. Last spring, a federal judge struck down state spending limits on political contributions from corporations, siding with the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce. The remaining safeguards against unreported spending are being challenged by the anti-abortion group Minnesotans Concerned for Life, and by the Taxpayers League, which, as you may suspect, is more interested in avoiding than paying taxes.

(We have arrived at that Orwellian stage where the true meaning of things often is completely opposite from the name given. If you are approached this election cycle by anyone who says they represent Americans for Mom, the Flag and Apple Pie, grab your mom and run for the hills. Take your pie, too.)

In the freshest example of the high-stakes shell game going on, the New York Times reported Friday that a group calling itself Americans for Job Security (its only employee is a 20-something Republican operative) is a front for wealthy conservatives to skirt campaign finance laws and pour unreported money into attacks on Democrats. Jobs are not on the agenda. Political domination is.

The Tea Party movement, too, is financed by hidden interests, as was reported in an Aug. 30 New Yorker magazine article by Jane Mayer. Mayer detailed the wacky beliefs and ruthless political strategies of David and Charles Koch, oil billionaire brothers (they own the Flint Hills Resources' Pine Bend Refinery in Rosemount) who have given unknown millions to further right-wing causes surreptitiously while spending more millions fighting environmental initiatives and pollution laws.

"If we want to keep a government of the people and by the people and for the people, we better start paying attention," says State Sen. John Marty, whose failed campaign to win the DFL endorsement for governor last spring marked one of the only efforts to make campaign finance reform an issue in Minnesota. "We're turning elections into auctions. There's no way to sugarcoat it. Our government is for sale."

So. One more question:

What should we call voters who passively stand by as our elections are taken over, furtively, by billionaires?

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Let's face it, everybody: the Supreme Court is NOT infallible. Its two worst and most unjust decisions of all time have both given concentrated capital (in the form of corporations) an unfair and indefensibly elevated position far above that of individual citizens. They were the notorious 1886 Santa Clara County vs. Southern Pacific Railroad (which granted the abstract entity of the corporation the same legal rights as a living, breathing, individual human being), and 2010's abominable Citizens United vs. Federal Election Commission, which gave corporations the right to make unlimited campaign contributions in political races. These atrocious decisions blatantly favor the wealthy over the poor and middle income, and also business owners over workers and the unemployed. Congress, already unduly influenced by the huge growth of corrupt, cash-doling lobbyists since the Reagan era, needs no further influx of cash from the "economic royalists", as FDR once called them.

Do you feel that Washington is out of touch? That it does not understand and is not delivering on your very real needs?

This, ladies and gentlemen, is the natural end result of your unrestricted "free market" in action. It is big money attempting to buy big favors, and it is often succeeding, at YOUR expense. This, too, VOTERS, is what the Tea Party movement and the ultra-conservative Republican Party is pushing: unrestricted "free market" access to government and resultant control over your economic life. It is a strongly conservative and pro-big business minority which now holds the balance of power in the Roberts Supreme Court. That same mentality CANNOT be allowed to dominate Congress and the White House! Voting in Tea Party and Republican candidates now and in 2012 will only increase Washington's unresponsiveness and will further increase the strangehold corporate money has on our government and judicial system. Independents and progressives, that is why I keep harping:

YOU MUST NOT STAY HOME THIS ELECTION, AND WE MUST NOT VOTE FOR TEA PARTY AND REPUBLICAN CANDIDATES!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

DEFEAT THIS INSURGENCY!

The corporate media we are unfortunately plagued with in this country has spent countless hours over the past 6-7 years covering "insurgency" - first in Iraq, and now in Afghanistan. They were quick to identify and report on those attacks from a virulent minority in other countries, but they have been very slow to recognize our own Tea Party phenomenon for what it really is, though: a radically destructive domestic insurgency which is more threatening to our existing institutions and way of life than the Taliban or Al Qaeda could ever hope to be.

Antidemocratic plutocrats like Dick Armey, David Koch, and Rick Scott have helped create this mythical grassroots movement called the Tea Party. They have cynically capitalized on widespread voter frustration with the Great Recession they themselves helped create, and have preyed on typically apolitical and elderly voters' ignorance of the way government actually works. They have fed the public a steady diet of fear through lies and propaganda. They have successfully vamped this anger and frustration into a force of hatred against President Obama, his majority Democratic Party, and even the government itself. This movement's aim is to render the federal government tiny, weak, and ineffective, completely powerless and unable to regulate or oversee corporations and banking. They are accomplishing this by hijacking the Republican Party and forcing out all of its remaining moderate members, replacing them with far, far right candidates who either agree with their ultra-conservatism or who will be compliant stooges in carrying out that agenda. They aim to politically destroy the President so that they may achieve a bloodless coup-d'etat to seize effective control of and rechannel the government into a subservient tool for big business and big money. If they succeed, oversight and regulation as we have known it will disappear. The ability of the individual to protect oneself from abuses and excesses of concentrated capital will vanish forever. Workers will lose even the limited leverage they have at the moment and will effectively become modern-day serfs of the corporate domain. Diversity and social freedom will be replaced by rigid conformity and oppressive social conservative dictates. The poor will grow in number and all vestiges of a safety net will vanish altogether.

This, voters, is an insurgency from within AND without our government. It must be defeated before it can fully implement its malevolent agenda!

Let's take a look at some of the principal players behind this insurgency and examine just why they are so potentially dangerous.

Republican South Carolina Senator Jim DeMint is paid $174,000 per year in YOUR tax dollars for the privilege of serving as a U.S. Senator. WE are paying his salary. What are we getting for his "service"? Obstruction, lots of it, and a pledge to shut down the government which employs him, to paralyze it in gridlock if Congress fails to extend George W. Bush's massive tax breaks for the wealthy, due to expire in 2011. This is a direct quote from an interview he gave Bloomberg Businessweek: "“I’ve been told by businesses that if we would stop the tax increases the best thing that could happen for business after that is complete gridlock. At least gridlock is predictable,” he said. Like most conservatives and teabaggers, DeMint HATES taxes and wants those tax cuts to remain permanently, even as he declares himself in favor of a balanced budget and reducing our current deficit. He has actively supported insurgent Tea Party candidates in primaries where they have been facing moderate Republican officeholders. Mr. DeMint is under the mistaken notion that he represents only the wealthy and "business" sectors of the country, and not the majority of his constituents, who are poor, working, and middle-income citizens.

Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) has actively encouraged citizens to revolt against the federal government, saying "I want people in Minnesota armed and dangerous on this issue of energy tax...", and "we have to rise up and say : 'No more! Not on my watch!'", and "Thomas Jefferson told us: 'Having a revolution every now and then is a good thing.'" Of her role in Washington, she has said "...now in Washington, I'm a foreign correspondent on enemy lines". Just like Jim DeMint, Michele Bachmann favors continuing tax cuts for the rich and hates government too. She has urged people to not fill out the Census (DEFINITELY an act of insurrection) and has no understanding of the needs of the poor and unemployed. She once said "Literally, if we took away the minimum wage—if conceivably it was gone—we could potentially virtually wipe out unemployment completely because we would be able to offer jobs at whatever level." Ms. Bachmann obviously does not grasp that incomes below the current minimum wage would be below the poverty level. She, too, has supported far-right Tea Party types in their bid to take over the GOP. For all of this, she should be replaced by her district's voters, as she does not truly understand or represent them.

Tea Party candidate Sharron Angle defeated her Republican rival in the Nevada GOP's primary for U.S. Senator. I covered her extensively in my September 3 post "Why Sharron Angle Must NOT Be Elected Senator From Nevada". She wants to abolish the Department of Education, repeal the recently-passed health care reform bill and return us to the abominable system we had before, and has stated she can understand citizens "taking Second Amendment measures" against members of what she views as an oppressive government. Another of these far right types who want a weak federal government, she, too, wants the Bush tax cuts to stay in place. She also refuses to speak to the press unless she can be certain the interview will be a soft one which helps her further her views. This crazy woman doesn't understand that a free press is supposed to challenge and question those running for and those in office. Arrogance, perhaps?

Hoping to be Delaware's next Senator, Christine O'Donnell is, much like Michele Bachmann, a ocial and economic conservative who wants a weak government and takes extreme positions on many issues. With the backing of Sarah Palin and the Tea Party Express, she bumped off long time moderately conservative Republican Mike Castle in that state's GOP Senate primary. And, like Sarah Palin, O'Donnell loves being in the spotlight and even sports Palinesque mannerisms. Also reminiscent of Palin, she has ethics violations swirling around her. Former aide David Keegan has put forth an affidavit alleging that O'Donnell used more than $20,000 in campaign funds for personal use (food, rent, and even a bowling outing), and watchdog group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington has asked the U.S. Attorney for Delaware to open a criminal investigation. CREW has also asked for the Federal Elections Commission to audit her campaign expenses. O'Donnell's financial disclosure form listed only $5,000 in earned income between March 2009-June 2010, an unbelievably low figure in a fairly expensive state like Delaware. Apparently O'Donnell believes as Palin did, that she can do whatever she damn well pleases and that rules and regulations are merely unnecessary inconveniences. Like both Bachmann and Palin, O'Donnell often shoots from the hip and offers shallow, absolutist, and poorly researched, poorly-thought-out opinions. Some of her gems include [distributing condoms is] "just going to further the spread of AIDS", "there is a gross disproportionate allocation of funds going to AIDS treatmentand prevention in relation to resources dedicated to combat heart disease", and "I just came back from the Middle East and it was refreshing...not to be bombarded with smut all the time." She has also stated that former President Bill Clinton hosting a daytime TV talk show would be a bad idea and "a threat to our national security." O'Donnell claims "American scientific communities are cross-breeding humans and animals and coming up with mice with fully-finctioning human brains." She has advocated pre-emptive military action against Iran, saying "you can't negotiate with the devil." Like most religious right and "values voters" types, she wears her religion on her sleeve, but also admits to having "dabbled in witchcraft." Her obsession with sexuality and her moralistic stands have led this blogger to start referring to her as "Prisstine" O'Donnell. Her work history is sketchy (she has NEVER held a steady full time job), but she nonetheless thinks government should get off the back of business and is therefore an expert (she thinks) on what is best for working people and the economy in general. She has absolutely no plan for job creation. "Unqualified" is far too kind an adjective to describe her suitability for holding the office of U.S. Senator. One Palin and one Bachmann are two too many; this country does NOT need another flake in high public office like Prisstine O'Donnell!

Alaska Senate-hopeful Joe Miller is another Sarah Palin hand-picked Tea Party candidate who seemingly rose up out of nowhere to knock off two-term Republican incumbent Lisa Murkowski in Alaska's Senate primary. Miller has said that the federal government has acted unconstitutionally by passing unemployment compensation, Social Security, and Medicare programs that have supposedly bankrupted the nation. He believes that we have all been brainwashed into having an entitlement mentality by thinking "it's the federal government's role to get in there and provide for the general welfare, to basically provide for the solvency particularly of states and other entities -- what, auto companies, the banks -- everything else that fails, the government should be involved in bailing out." This is a typically simplistic and cold-hearted attitude which obviously comes from a guy who has never suffered unemployment or the collapse of a business himself. It is also evidence that he does not understand that it IS the government's responsibility to enact policies which protect its citizens from needless economic hardship.

Kentucky's Rand Paul is one more ultra-conservative candidate running for a Senate seat. He is yet another of those who believes the government is too big and too controlling and wants to see its scope and power tremendously curtailed. He has stated that he believes private businesses and organizations should not have to conform to civil rights laws. He, too, opposes the recently-passed health care reform bill and also greater regulation on business, especially those in the field of energy. This stance, coming from a man who resides in a state where hundreds of coal miners have lost their lives due to less-than safe coal mines, and after we have all witnessed the BP oil drilling disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. Sorry, Mr. Paul: at NO time should a greedy business' pursuit of profits trump worker and public safety!

The Queen Bee of them all is Sarah Palin, the former and half-term governor of Alaska who abandoned her responsibilities of office to make herself more money on book promotion and speaking engagements. It is no small coincidence she fled office at a time when she was coming under increasing attack and scrutiny for numerous alleged ethics violations while in office. Ever the opportunist, she has been riding this manufactured Tea Party wave for all it is worth, staying in the spotlight and sneakily trying to not only capitalize on this phenomenon but also attempting to position herself as one of its prominent leaders. By doing so, she will be putting her own personal stamp on the Republican Party, exercising power and influence she doesn't deserve. She is likely also cementing relationships and creating IOUs that may propel her to the GOP nomination for President in 2012. At the very least, she will remain in the spotlight and enable herself to make more money. For, to Sarah Palin, this is only about her. She cares nothing about the unemployed, jobs programs, rising poverty, or decaying infrastructure. SHE HAS NO PLANS OR SOLUTIONS FOR ANY OF THESE PROBLEMS, NOR DO ANY OF HER TEA PARTY INSURGENTS. That neither she nor her like-minded followers know next to nothing about history, geography, world poltics, international relations, economics, or even our fedral government and how it actually works won't matter at all to these fired-up and ill-informed Tea Party reactionaries. They have bought into the fallacy that she is full of common sense just like them and therefore knows what is best for the country. If she and they are successful and can achieve the type of power and influence they crave, it will be a case of the ignorant blind leading the ignorant blind, and its consequences will be disastrous.
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Republicans: you have been blindsided by a destructive far-out-of-the-mainstream aberration of your party. Like killer bees, they want to eradicate all in the hive who are not exactly like them. Lisa Murkowski and Mike Castle know precisely what I am talking about, and so should you. This Tea Party movement is an insurgency that will destroy your party, and our democracy along with it, once and for all. Destroy IT instead, before it devours you! Moderate Republicans, do NOT vote for these Tea Party types! TAKE YOUR PARTY BACK by pushing THEM out and reaching toward the CENTER of the electorate!

Independents: Do NOT be fooled by these Tea Party types! Their idea of good governance is to turn this country back to the 1890s, the time of the robber barons, when government was weak and totally handicapped by banks and dominant industries. They will accelerate the unhealthy trend toward the eradication of the middle class and the re-establishment of a nation of only two classes: haves, and have-nots. They claim to be dedicated to restoring freedom by destroying the government, but their "freedom" will mean freedom ONLY FOR THE WEALTHY AND PRIVILEGED. The middle class, poor, and elderly will suffer immeasurably if they gain power and their agenda is adopted!

Democrats and Progressives: You must NOT sit this election out! The Tea Party-dominated Republicans must NOT capture control of Congress in November and must NOT take the presidency in 2012! A mediocre, blue dog Democratic Congress and President is VASTLY better than a Tea Party government implementing its 1890s agenda and rolling back all the gains that have been attained through progressive blood, sweat, and tears since the 1930s! Do NOT aid and abet this Tea Party/conservative Republican enemy through apathy and inaction! You DON'T want privatized Social Security and Medicare! You DON'T want unemployment benefits taken away! You DON'T want a return to insurance companies being able to exclude you for pre-existing conditions or cancel your coverage when you get very sick. But that is exactly what you'll get if you stay home, don't vote, and allow these killer bee Tea Party conservatives to grab power!

DEFEAT THIS INSURGENCY, BEFORE IT DESTROYS THIS COUNTRY!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

AN UNENDING ONSLAUGHT OF CONSERVATIVE REPUBLICAN LIES!

In my last post, I pointedly asked conservative Republicans and Tea Party candidates why they lie so much. Some glaring examples of the types of lies they tell are shown below. Most (but not all) of these examples come the marvelous site PolitiFact.com (http://www.politifact.com/), a non-partisan site which analyzes public political statements made by office holders, candidates, commentators, and anonymous emails. They rate the statements with their "Truth-O-Meter", classifying each as to how true or false they are. Categories of classification include "True", Mostly True", "Half True", "Barely True", "False", and "Pants On Fire" (as in the old Castaways' song: "liar, liar/ pants on fire/ your nose is longer than a telephone wire"). Of the lies shown here from PolitiFact.com, nearly all came from their "pants on fire" category. You may remember some of these lies. There are many, MANY others far-right spokespersons have told over the past few years, but here is a partial list of some real doozies. This should serve as a warning for voters in November: think twice and INVESTIGATE before accepting what Tea Party/Republican candidates or their viral emails tell you!

House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) has claimed there are "two main problems hampering job creation" and defines them as "excessive government spending and the uncertainty Washington Democrats' policies — especially their massive tax hike — are causing small businesses."
TWISTED LIE! The Bush tax cuts, which Boehner is referring to as "massive", will expire in January BECAUSE Republicans (himself included) VOTED FOR THEM TO EXPIRE IN JANUARY. That's right---JOHN BOEHNER VOTED FOR THEM TO EXPIRE! Majority Democrats in Congress don't have to do a thing in order for the Bush tax cuts, which Boehner voted for, to expire in 2011.
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Sarah Palin
"Democrats are poised now to cause this largest tax increase in U.S. history."
LIE! REAGAN raised taxes higher than the real Dem plan.
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Chain e-mail
Under the new health care law, "all real estate transactions will be subject to a 3.8% Sales Tax"
LIE! Chain e-mailers just won't quit- NO such provision has ever existed!
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Rep. Randy Neugebauer (R-TX)
"Ninety-four percent of small businesses will face higher taxes under the Democrats' plan."
LIE! Neugebauer's statement is problematic in several ways. First, it implicitly assumes that the Democratic plan is to let all of the tax cuts lapse, when, in fact, Democratic officials have consistently said that they intend to raise taxes only for the wealthiest individuals. Second, two independent studies that looked at the impact of the Democratic proposal on small businesses found that only between 2 to 3 percent of tax filers who report having what can be thought of as small business income will be affected. One of those studies came from the very source that Neugebauer incorrectly cited. Finally, reporting business income doesn't equal owning a small business, and data from the Tax Policy Center confirm that in the top tax bracket, only about a third of the tax filers report having at least 50 percent of their income from a business. We looked and looked for a shred of truth and couldn't find one, so we rate this Pants on Fire.
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Arizona Republican Governor Jan Brewer
"Our law enforcement agencies have found bodies in the desert, either buried or just lying out there, that have been beheaded."
LIE. Dead bodies (desert heat victims of thirst and/or hunger, and old skulls have been found, but NO evidence of beheadings!)
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Russell Pearce, Arizona Republican State Senator who authored its controversial immigration law
"Sixty percent of the Hispanics" support the Arizona immigration law.
LIE!Not even close...A national poll released in June by the Quinnipac University found that 54 percent of Hispanics disapprove of Arizona's immigration law!
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Chain e-mail
A transcript released by Occidental College proves that Barack Obama was an Indonesian citizen.
LIE. No such story, no released transcript
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Rick Barber (R-AL)
"Without representation, (the IRS) can increase taxes."
LIE! This is utter nonsense.The IRS has does NOT have the statutory authority to increase taxes. That's entirely up to Congress. Gather the facts first.
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Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC)
"Ninety-four percent of the bills that pass the Senate have no debate, no vote, no amendments, no reading of the bill, no online disclosure."
LIE. Stacking the deck. 56 percent (a FAR cry from 94!) of non-trivial, binding bills, received no debate and were passed by unanimous consent. And the Senate, often referred to as "the world's greatest deliberative body", would hardly have obtained that nickname if all it did was rubber stamp and shove bills through without discussion.
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Chain e-mail
Starting in 2011, "you will be required to pay taxes" on "the value of whatever health insurance you are given by the company."
LIE. Private insurance will NOT be taxed next year.
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John Boehner (R-OH)
The Democrat-backed health care reform plan "will require (Americans) to subsidize abortion with their hard-earned tax dollars."
LIE. Direct federal funding of abortion is strictly prohibited by law.
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Michael Savage
Elena Kagan is "a New York City radical, Marxist lawyer through and through."
LIE. Writing a history thesis about socialism does not a Marxist make
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Bill O'Reilly
"We researched to find out if anybody on Fox News had ever said you're going to jail if you don't buy health insurance. Nobody's ever said it."
LIE. Apparently, the research wasn't thorough enough. PAUL GIGOT, host of the Journal Editorial Reports, Oct. 3, 2009, said: "Democrats want to require you to buy health insurance or pay a penalty. But they don't want you to call it a tax. Under the Baucus bill, the so-called individual mandate would require everyone to buy health insurance or pay as much as a $1,900 fee. If you don't pay up, the IRS could punish you with a $25,000 fine or a year in jail." And GLENN BECK, on his Fox show, Nov. 12, 2009: "But if you don't play by their new rules on health care -- oh, here's a new little twist. Have you heard this? You're going to be looking at a fun little stint in jail."
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J.D. Hayworth
"The Massachusetts Supreme Court...defined marriage as simply, quote, the establishment of intimacy ... I guess that would mean if you really had affection for your horse, I guess you could marry your horse."
LIE.Mr. and Mrs. Ed? Hayworth is talking about a landmark 2003 case in which the Massachusetts Supreme Court ruled, 4-3, that gay couples have the right to marry under the state's Constitution. We took a long look at the 45-page decision in the case, Goodridge vs. the Department of Public Health. Since Hayworth suggested that he was quoting the phrase "the establishment of intimacy," we searched for that first. It's not there. The word "intimacy" appears five times in the 45-page decision (actually six times, but one is a duplicate), but never in the context of being the sole definition of marriage.
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Chain e-mail
A data-storing microchip "would be implanted in the majority of people who opt to become covered by the public health care option."
LIE. No, and the health insurance exchanges won't turn you into a zombie, either.
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Glenn Beck
"In the health care bill, we're now offering insurance for dogs."
UTTERLY RIDICULOUS LIE! No public option for Bo!

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Rush Limbaugh
People "can't go fishing anymore because of Obama."
UTTERLY RIDICULOUS LIE! Obama isn't confiscating rods and reels!



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Virginia Foxx (R-NC)
"The economy began its nose dive when Democrats took control of Congress in January 2007."
LIE! Is it a nose dive if it's delayed by a full year? The economy didn't tank until DECEMBER, 2007, and the Democrats passed NO significant economic legislation between January and December of 2007. This is pure partisan BUNK!

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Republican strategist Nancy Pfotenhauer
The president's health care proposals will cause "most Americans to have their premiums increased, not decreased, and hundreds of millions of people lose their current insurance coverage."
LIE! Pretending clarity while distorting...health care reform does NOT increase premiums and boot people out of their coverage!
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Michael Steele, chair of the Republican National Committee
The Department of Veterans Affairs has "a manual out there telling our veterans stuff like, 'Are you really of value to your community?' You know, encouraging them to commit suicide."
LIE. The VA does NOT encourage suicide!
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Americans for Prosperity (a front group set up by oil billionaire David Koch)
A government panel that didn't include cancer specialists says women shouldn't receive mammograms until age 50...If government takes over health care, recommendations like these could become the law for all kinds of diseases."
LIE! The amendments assure mammogram coverage for women over 40.
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Rush Limbaugh
There are "high administrative costs" when you donate to Haiti relief through the White House Web site.
LIE! No, there's no Pay Pal on the White House site



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Orly Taitz
Birthers have obtained a copy of Obama's Kenyan birth certificate
LIE! The "birth certificate" was an obvious forged phony! PolitiFact.com takes this stuff seriously so the rest of us don't have to.
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Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN)
ACORN will be a paid partner with the Census Bureau and "they will be in charge of going door-to-door and collecting data from the American public."
LIE! ACORN had absolutely nothing to do with the Census; was never supposed to (and never did) get any federal money for the Census; and was collecting NO data for the Census.
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Newt Gingrich
A recent Obama executive order could "lead to a number of investigations by Interpol in the United States, potentially aimed at American officials."
LIE! Interpol just doesn't work that way.
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Chain e-mail
Maj. Nidal Hasan, the man accused of the Fort Hood shootings, "was an ADVISOR to the Obama Administration."
LIE! Once upon a time, he attended a conference. End of story.
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Dick Cheney
President Obama "doesn't ... want to admit we're at war."
LIE! Except for all those times he's said we're at war, DICK!
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Christopher Monckton
If President Obama signs the Copenhagen climate change treaty, he "will sign your freedom, your democracy, and your prosperity away forever — and neither you nor any subsequent government you may elect would have any power whatsoever to take it back again."
LIE! Freedom and democracy will be unscathed, and we could back out if we want to, anyway.
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Rudy Giuliani
"We had no domestic attacks under Bush."
LIE! What about 9/11, which occurred in part because Bush ignored a warning he got on 8/6/01, while on one of his many extended vacations in Crawford, TX? Did Rudy get amnesia?

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Chain e-mail
You must list all your guns on your 2010 tax return.
LIE! Far-right gun-happy crazies are just blaming Obama for an idea that died nine years ago!
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Chain e-mail
The Obama White House is renaming Christmas trees "holiday trees."
LIE! No such letter — and White House still calls them Christmas trees.
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Scott Brown
The stimulus bill "didn’t create one new job."
LIE!Despite grim employment numbers, the stimulus HAS created jobs, and saved hundreds of thousands of others!
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Rush Limbaugh
"President Obama . . . wants to mandate circumcision."
LIE! No one's mandating circumcision, including Obama. I think Rush had the wrong head trimmed when HE got circumcised!


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Republican Party of Florida
Schoolchildren across the nation "will be forced to watch the president justify his plans for government-run health care, banks, and automobile companies, increasing taxes on those who create jobs, and racking up more debt than any other president."
LIE! We didn't realize studying hard was socialist ideology.
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Roy Blunt
"I'm 59. In either Canada or Great Britain, if I broke my hip, I couldn’t get it replaced."
UTTER NONSENSE! You're nowhere near too old for a hip replacement, Congressman, and that was a complete LIE told to confuse the public about and make Americans fear the government-run health care systems in those countries!
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Sarah Palin
Seniors and the disabled "will have to stand in front of Obama's 'death panel' so his bureaucrats can decide, based on a subjective judgment of their 'level of productivity in society,' whether they are worthy of health care."
A COMPLETE AND UTTER LIE! Sci-fi scenario not based in reality
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VOTERS: This is but the tip of the iceberg regarding the unending onslaught of conservative Republican lies! There will be even more lies coming your way from this point forward, now that the Supreme Court has permitted corporate and special interest money unrestricred access to campaigns. Far-right toadies for the rich, like Dick Armey, and wealthy oil billionaires like the Koch brothers, will be sppon-feeding you lies through naive, unsuspecting, and unqualified novice Tea Party candidates like SHARRON ANGLE in Nevada, CHRISTINE O'DONNELL in Delaware, and JOE MILLER in Alaska. These candidates, if elected, will "take this country back" and hand it right over to big money institutions and corporate plutocrats who will then cheat working people and ship jobs overseas like never before. If you are interested in bettering and strengthening this country, do NOT vote for the types of people who are shown here in this post. Do NOT take what you see on Fox "News" or hear on Rush Limbaugh as gospel truth! Instead, do the intelligent and ethical thing and CHECK OUT THE FACTS BEFORE YOU VOTE! The following sites are excellent sources for FACTUAL information on candidates (Democratic OR Republican), their positions on issues, and the claims and statements they make (regrettably, these are NOT hyperlinked for you):
1). PolitiFact.com (http://www.politifact.com/)
2). FactCheck.org (http://www.factcheck.org/)
3). Snopes.com (http://www.snopes.com/)
4). themiddleclass.org (http://www.themiddleclass.org/)
5). ontheissues.org (http://www.ontheissues.org/)
6). Open Secrets.org (http://www.opensecrets.org/)
7). Source Watch.org (http://www.sourcewatch.org/)

You may wish to bookmark these sites and save them for future reference. You will be doing yourselves, your country, our world, and even future generations a huge favor by not accepting lie as fact, and by knowing exactly what you are doing while in the voting booth! Tired of politicians lying to you? This is the SMART way to DO something about it!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

QUESTIONS EVERY TEA-PARTY AND REPUBLICAN CANDIDATE MUST ANSWER!

OK, conservative Republicans and Tea Party activists who march lock-step with you: you are licking your chops in anticipation of taking control of the House and Senate in this year's mid-term elections. As of this writing, though, you have provided no specific answers or suggestions as to why you, and not the other party, are the ones best suited to shape the nation's policy and solve its many problems, especially those concerning the high number of unemployed we still have. If you really think you are capable of solving the great many problems we face, please PROVE this to us by answering, in specific detail, the questions posed to you below:

WHY DO YOU PRACTICE OBSTRUCTION AND COMPLETE NON-COOPERATION WITH THE PRESIDENT AND HIS PARTY? No person or group is right or wrong ALL the time. Why, then, do you persist in blocking or stalling virtually everything this President or his party has put forth for consideration? Why do you hate the President so much? He has extended himself to you far more than did his predecessor toward the Democrats. Why must everything be "my way or the highway" with you? Why do you choose to block legislation, or even shut the government down, rather than openly and HONESTLY discuss and give real consideration to proposals? Why won't you try to compromise and collectively forge new legislation? Is it because you are rigid, too doctrinaire, and put your own desires far in front of the overall public good, or what?

WHY DO YOU EXAGGERATE AND LIE SO MUCH? Why do you and your spokespersons (your party leaders, your PACS, your talk radio and Fox "News" hosts) make ridiculous statements such as the President is a socialist whose programs like the auto bailout are designed to have the government take over American business? GM, for example, is now free of government control and is once again issuing stock. At NO point did the government take control of GM's bank account, or put its board of directors on a controlled public payroll. How do you explain that? Why did you say the Obama health care plan is a government-run plan, when it isn't, and why did you say it would put the elderly in front of "death panels" that would encourage euthanasia? None of this was true. WHY DO YOU LIE SO MUCH?

WHY DO YOU PORTRAY YOURSELF AS THE PARTY OF RELIGION AND MORALITY? You hold no monopoly on morality, and some of your biggest advocates of "Christian values" are poor moral examples like "conservative" office holders David Vitter, John Ensign, or Mark Sanford, who either frequent prostitutes or conduct sordid extramarital affairs (sometimes even at taxpayer expense). Or former Representative Mark Foley, who sent repeated sexual emails to teenage pages? Jesus preached love and taking care of the poor. Why, then, do you preach hate (against immigrants, gays, and Muslims), and try to use the government to deny them certain rights? Why do you oppose and even cut funding for programs fwhich help the weak, poor, and needy? Are you Pharisee hypocrites, or do you simply think it is more important to aid only the rich and powerful with huge subsidies and unneeded tax cuts? What's that, you say? Churches and charities should be the ones tending to the needy, and not the government? Nice idea, but only the government has the scope or resources to properly do THAT job. And, since you have supported the export of American jobs and economic policies that favor only the rich, we have now reached the point where the middle class (the major supplier of funds for churches and charities) can no longer afford to fund these groups as they have in the past. Most importantly, though, God the Father and Jesus laid down voluntary-compliance laws for humans to live by. They never appointed ANYONE to be Moral Police to force others to comply. Why, then, have you taken this role on yourselves? Who do you think you are, anyway?

WHY DO YOU COMPLAIN ABOUT DEFICIT SPENDING ONLY WHEN THE DEMOCRATS ARE IN POWER? We hear you screaming about the national debt and our budget deficit non-stop these days, but only 5-8 years ago, when YOU had total control of the White House and Congress, you and President George W. Bush turned a $127 billion SURPLUS into a $455 billion DEFICIT. You did this by cutting taxes for billionaires who didn't need the extra money and by conducting an unnecessary and fraudulent unfunded war in Iraq using private, non-bid military contractors. Your own Vice President, Dick Cheney, said "deficits don't matter." If deficits didn't matter to you then when YOU were in power, why do they matter to you now when you're not in power? Is it because much of today's deficit is money being spent on people and jobs instead of going almost exclusively to millionaires and the military/industrial complex? Who do you think you're kidding?

WHY DO YOU KEEP CLAIMING TO BE "PRO-LIFE"? Opposing abortion but supporting the death penalty, as most of you do, is certainly not "pro-life". Supporting a pre-emptive war where hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians are killed (some even by mercenary contractors you funded) is not "pro-life." Forming and joining armed militias, as some of you have, for the sole purpose of someday killing agents of the government to "protect freedom", is hardly "pro-life." Supporting protection of an infant in the womb but opposing government aid for it once it is born is not a "pro-life" action; certainly not a pro-quality-of-life action! And, most of all, if you're REALLY opposed to abortion, why did you not outlaw it altogether during the early and mid-Bush years, we you had complete control of the legislative and executive branches of government, and de facto control of the Supreme Court and judicial branch? Could it be that you really don't care about abortion at all, and only want to use it as a political tool against Democrats?

WHY ARE YOU SO PARANOID? Why do you fear and distrust Muslims, African-Americans, Hispanics, Europeans, intellectuals, the poor - anybody who might be a bit different than you, or who may disagree with you on something? Why do you feel that members of the aforementioned groups must be kept "in check" and under control? Why don't you accept them or get to better know and understand them? Why do you lash out at those who disagree with you by calling them inflammatory names like "socialist", "communist", or "terrorist"? And why do you infer that your opponents aren't patriotic? Why is your party almost overwhelmingly white and affluent? Why are you so cynical about humankind? You trust the abstract "market" to always do the right thing and correct itself by itself, yet you don't trust government of the people and instead want to keep that government tiny, impotent, and ineffectual. Why? Is it because you, yourselves are untrustworthy? Why do you support pre-emptive, aggressive war, and want to dominate the entire world? Are you afraid of EVERYBODY?

WHY DO YOU INSIST THAT FURTHER TAX CUTS FOR THE WEALTHY WILL CREATE JOBS, GROW OUR ECONOMY, AND BALANCE OUR BUDGET?You claim you want to balance the budget, but you paradoxically support continuation of huge tax cuts for the very, very rich. You claim these tax cuts will lead to the creation of new industries and new high-paying jobs here. But such was not the case when you cut taxes for the rich last time under George W. Bush. Instead, millions of jobs were sent outside our borders (along with entire plants), and working wages here were frozen or CUT. Those were the biggest tax cuts in history, yet the Bush administration produced the LEAST number of jobs of any Presidency since Herbert Hoover! Where are the jobs THOSE tax cuts were going to produce? Why will it be different THIS time, and why should we believe you on THIS?

WHY DO YOU INSIST THAT THERE MUST BE LESS REGULATION OF BUSINESS AND FINANCE?Why, after lax mortgage, stock market, and finance regulation led to the Great Depression, $4 per gallon gasoline, and the mortgage banking collapse which plunged us into our current Great Recession, do you insist we need less regulation? Regulation did not cause these disasters, nor did it cause the recent devastating BP oil spill. Rather, it was LACK of enough or proper regulation that caused these tragedies! Much the same with the increasing incidences of lethal e-coli and salmonella outbreaks occurring in our beef, pork, poultry, and vegetables. You love to say government is the problem and not the solution, and that the free market will correct itself and correct its mistakes. But the government didn't cause these bad occurrences---greed (i.e. the "free market") did. So why do you keep calling for l;ess, rather than more, or better, government oversight for public safety?

WHY DO YOU KEEP SAYING YOU WANT TO "TAKE THIS COUNTRY BACK"? Take it back from WHOM? The government of, by, and for the people? And who will you give it TO? The wealthy, powerful, and privileged? To Sharron Angle, who mistakenly thinks people have a right, guaranteed them by the Constitution, to shoot agents of our government when they aren't doing exactly what we want? To Sarah Palin, who doesn't even know past history, current events, or what a Vice President's job is? To Michele Bachmann, who thinks there are anti-American elements in Congress, and who believes the wealthy should be protected from the people instead of the other way around? To Rand Paul, who thinks that private busuinesses and organizations ought to be able to exclude whomever they want without outside interference? To multinational corporations, who care only for their own profit and nothing for this country or its inhabitants? Sorry, teabaggers and Republicans - it was YOU who stole this country away from the majority of the population, who are average working people.YOU stole it away and turned it over to big business and the military/industrial complex. Government regulation directed at those entities is the only recourse and protection from them the average person, the MAJORITY, has. To insist otherwise is CRAZY!

WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO SPECIFICALLY TO HELP PEOPLE WHO NEED HELP THE MOST? Will privatizing Medicare and Social Security make life better or more comfortable for our elderly? Of course not---life will become WORSE for most, and better only for the wealthy. Will ending welfare clean up our decaying cities, build and repair bridges, and raise the nation's standard of living? DEFINITELY not! We already know that more tax cuts for the wealthy does not lead to job creation. So what specifically will you do, that President Obama and the Democratic Congress have not already done, to create jobs and raise the country's standard of living? Will you involve us in a costly new war? Is THAT your plan? Do you REALLY have a new set of practical solutions to solve our many problems, or...




...will you just be feeding us your same old _ _ _ _ ?




I'm pretty sure I already know the answer.