Saturday, December 29, 2012

Suggestions to improve Congress.

As time goes by complacency sets in. We think change is impossible. If enough people become aware, if they become upset, they can change things. Here is a list of things to remove elitism from the US Congress and in so doing help the flow of legislation. Not all need to be done, but all will help. We do have the Internet and social media now. American Spring!

1. Make all members participate in Social Security and Medicare. Do away with any other retirement programs.
2. Take  away the rule that says any person retiring can keep their last campaign chest.
3. Invoke term limits. One term for senators. Three for the house of representatives.
4. Reduce all congressional pay for members by 50%. Reduce staff expenses.
5. Limit campaign spending to some reasonable amount.
6. Block the techniques of gerrymandering. Fix the districts to a standard geometric shape.
7. Suggest a federal template for early voting and get it adopted in each state.
8. Empower the federal government to supply a plan to standardize voting across the US.

Please make corrections or suggestions in the comments section below.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Does Social Security Add to the Deficit?

Progressives say Yea! Tea Party says Nay!

1. Center for Economic Policy and Research
2. The American Prospect
3. The Daily KOS
4. Social Security Trustees Report

The truth is I found as much material suggesting Nay as I found for the Yea side. But the Yea side has a more clear explanation. It also exposes a truth. Tea Party folks want those funds designated for Social Security to be redesignated for DOD and spent in the republican war machine. You know the one that Eisenhower warned us about. Middle class funds, Mr. President. Not Tea Party funds!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

CEO’s are the Albatross of the American People.

The Albatross was a sign of good fortune to sailors on the high seas.  Those becalmed and adrift with no wind to move the ship would look for signs of wind.  With a seven foot wingspan an Albatross doesn’t fly far without a lot of wind, very much a good sign for sailors.  But in the Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner the albatross is killed, and becomes a symbol of dashed hope, as though killing the bird killed the wind. 

Likewise the overpaid leaders, some of whom lobby congress for cuts out of someone else’s pocket, were once looked to for hope to lead the country but have instead become a dead weight around our necks.
Corporate CEO’s and leaders of large institutions are today's Albatross.  The American People look for second and third jobs to get a little wind under their sails before retirement.  In the past the middle class would look to rich CEO’s, especially the ‘came from nothing’ as the great hope for the future.  But the modern version of that idyllic concept suck up millions of dollars in salary's, return little to the investors in the institutions they work for  and pull millions (if not billions) away from the economy.

It’s fair to say that we can now see why the middle class is losing ground.  Taxation increases while state government pay increases astronomically in the most bankrupt states.
  Tuition jumps 9.7% for students while University presidents make over a million at public school.  Employee wages are stagnating while CEO compensation skyrocketsCompensation is apparently a zero sum game, those at the top take it, and those at the bottom give it up.  The balance sheet of the U.S. has been tilted towards those in power.

When will we learn that these people do not bring us hope?  They hoover up vast amounts of resources and tie them into single balance sheets.  Pay for performance is a scam of those already in power, to hold hostage those who aren’t.  How can you allow a CEO to make 580 times more money than their average employee and keep supporting that company?  Stop eating at Mc Donalds.  Think twice before attending Ohio State University.

This posting written by Ezra McDuffee

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Mother Jones Article

This teaser is from Mother Jones No Fiscal Cliff!
"[S]pending is not out of control. Entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare are rising gently as the baby-boom generation retires. All other spending, including that for the military and domestic discretionary programs, falls—with the notable exception of interest on the debt. Interest rises sharply as the deficit rises, principally because the G.A.O. assumes that revenue will not be permitted to rise above its historical average—as Republicans continually insist." Bruce Bartlett Economist, Conservative

Friday, December 14, 2012

Susan Rice: Winners and Losers !

It's clear a couple of aging good old boy's won one for the Tea Party. McCain positions himself to be on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee after being "term limited" out of ranking member of Senate Armed Services. He traded the good of the country for self gratification. Makes sense. No one else will mention it because he's a hero but he has grown much smaller and craftier of late thus forgetting about loyalty to the Navy and thereby the country. Not a hero, just a self gratifying old man. Lindsey Graham was always a jerk, we can expect no more from him now, save that he is now labeled a McCain follower.
The President gets a push with me. I am waiting for him to reward Rice's loyalty with something else. Where can a great woman have the most effect. There is a new member on the banking committee. Maybe some way here to test "too big too fail" now that the election is over.
Scott Brown might be considered a winner and thereby the Senate Republicans, if he can win a special election. Pundits from inside the beltway say there is no real competition. Lawrence @msnbc says Ed Markey has $4M and SB has $400k. Republicans can fix that though quickly. Another shoe to drop?
On his Sunday Show Brian Williams asked Susan Rice why she was picked to talk about Benghazi when others might have had more direct responsibility. Rice took the high road defending Hillary but I think she protests too much. Was that damning with faint praise? Did Hillary use her aircraft to bounce all over the world to hide too well during the last days of the election and thereby display a weakness. Is wanting the job too much a weakness? Is being too old a weakness? When did Reagan fall apart?
So another Rhodes Scholar with a steady quick mind bites the dust. Women are losers here. The country is a loser here. It's just politics, except that someone I thought well of in the past has once again displayed his weaker constitution.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Shale Oil Map of the US

Here is Wikipedia's Map of the lower 48 shale oil deposits in the US. (map of US shale oil deposits). Lot's of information is available now about fracking and it's potential negative impact. God knows the oil companies understand the positive impact, profits. I also sense the republicans understand the impact of too much regulation by government. The map causes me to think about money and it follows, fewer regulations, more profits and middle Americans getting left out. I have no idea if fracking will ever be safe. But since those drilling rights belong to the country, therefore to all Americans, why not use some of that money as a bribe to the American people by the oil companies (they are used to that kind of talk) to educate all our college kids. Thus helping to solve two of our growing problems. A better education for young folks will pump health into our economy through people, creating an economic pump.The college folks won't carry as much debt. (a financial crisis growing daily).
I believe that ultimately fracking in some form will be carried forward. I'd like to see it done safely and with Government supervision. The lions share of any potential benefits should go to solving problems for our country and for a change,not introducing new unpaid for calamities that the US taxpayer needs to clean up later.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

FCC should stop media consolidation efforts

Bernie Sanders and Bill Moyers FCC stop it!

Edshow theme: Pressure! On the cliff!

At three AM I woke up and couldn't get back to sleep. It happens some nights. No particular reason just "wide awake". Edshow on MSNBC Cable TV News was on. Ed was using the show to make a point. Me, being an acute observer of the obvious, think I got it. He led with Emanuel Cleaver. A Methodist Pastor from Kansas City, Mo and the current leader of "The Black Caucus" (44 members) in the House. Pastor Cleaver said, when the Bush tax cuts expire that's 950B toward the deficit over 10 years. We have already set aside 1.2T and if "'Means Testing" of the most wealthy is applied to Medicare only then we have enough. He further reiterated, Social Security is not available for discussion. The "Black Caucus" leader supported the position of Nancy Pelosi the Minority Leader in the House. She wants to kick ass and take names. (excuse me Rev, I was paraphrasing) He seemed to be speaking to both participants in the negotiation but added more pressure to President Obama's plate.
Ed trotted out Sen Bernie Sanders of Vermont who is always willing to review his position. No on SS, No on medicaid and not much on Medicare. Sen Sanders is an independent and one of the best voices in Congress for the Democrats. I thought his pressure was heaped on both Boehner and Obama.
Then Ed had a crazy union leader from Michigan rail against the Republican Governor for forcing through a right to work law in spite of stiff opposition. This section didn't deal with the cliff negotiation but it does serve to remind voters of the election that voted in Obama and so many senators.
I wanted to say thanks Ed for the pressure. You are using your time wisely and reminding all parties of what is at stake and what needs to be done. President Obama won the election, Speaker Boehner you are probably going to loose your gavel anyway, here's a chance for you to gather credibility with many Americans, just not the Tea party. Let's "Get to work!"


Wednesday, December 5, 2012


In my life time the State of NH has had a "sesesh" movement more than once. During one term of Gov. Mildrin Thompson, I think we were supposed to align with Quebec and do something. He's the one that promoted "Live Free or Die" on our number plates. I would encourage all active military to find a way to "live" and not to die. We need you all.
Now on the current "sesesh" movement, I'd like to address all those folks in states that are promoting these unthinkable ideas. Please go here   Please examine in detail the corpses of Gettysburg. They were some of the first and most moving photos ever taken of the aftermath of war. Take close notice of the massive amount of death.  Bear in mind that these folks, some of whom, may have been your great grand parents friends, died because we once tried to dissolve the Union and then seriously fought over it. George Santayana said, "Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it."
During my time in basic training I roomed with two guys both from Alabama. Carl is black. The other guy had been a freshman playing for Bear Bryant and just wasn't good enough. He was big as a house and a white guy. Both Carl and football player understood each other. When it came to me, neither of them could understand me, nor could I understand words they would say. We learned to speak together just fine in a few months. Basic in the USAF wasn't all that tough back then. I still remember them and think of them as friends.
You can believe in States Rights. You can sing songs about the old south and even wish it to rise again if you must. But don't come to me with any other flag, but ours! No more talk of secession! Tell me how you'll make the Union better, stronger! This country doesn't just belong to the current generation, it belongs to a whole lot of families and people and tribes that have fought over it for a long time. No jokes about secession, there will be hell to pay!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Get it together!

Dear GOP,
  1. On your watch you started two wars that added to the deficit.
  2. Your answer was to reduce taxes that added to the deficit.
  3. The group that takes advantage of your tax reductions the most is now the top 2% of those with wealth.
  4. To ensure their continued success you gave the deductions that brought their percentage below 15% tax rate.
  5. You employ huge sums of money gathered from those most wealthy to favor laws on your behalf.
  6. You precipitated the most recent financial crisis in the US by creating valueless instruments to distribute credit and sold them as valuable. Later you “shorted” them and made money on their inevitable downfall. You subverted any efforts, which were few, by the US government to restrict financial activity. Finally, you relied on the FED Government to bail you out. Most recently the bailed out banks have considered legal action to disput their interest rate.
  7. You lost an election that would have put your man in charge. You have few women in congress, few blacks in congress and no respect at all for hispanics or gay people.
  8. Beyond that, you haven't produced a decent candidate in primary or general election in years.
  9. Now I am telling you; protect social security, improve the efficiency of medicare, and save medicaid for your own good. You are “killing the golden goose”. You don't have to like us. You just have to listen to the ever growing majority and get in line.
  10. Truth be told, I'd love to see your party healthy and producing resonable conservative ideas presented by rational candidates. Make it hard for the middle folks to choose. Do that or disappear.

Monday, December 3, 2012

What is fair is fair!

Let's review:
1. We have endured the "financial crisis" using public funds to save banks and autoworkers. The banks used the money to pay bonuses while ignoring any significant mortgage relief. Ultimately we found the banks caused the FC with credit swaps designed to make them some real money even as they were protected by us.
2. During the election we voted for the guy least likely to screw us and more capable of leading the country than any other contenders. He won!
3. Now Boehner says destroy social security even though it's funded through 2033. BTW the baby boom bubble will be receding then. And for God sake don't unfairly tax the wealthy.
4. Let's work on the definition of fair. Fair to me means leaving social security, medicare and medicaid alone. Fair means getting more revenue for the government by taxing the top 2%. I would suggest removing all deductions for those earning over $275k per year just to make the plan simple.
5. Since dividends from long term capital gains are really discretionary income let's put those rates back at 90% like during the Eisenhower time period.
6. Eliot Spitzer is pushing a good idea let's levy a tax on Wall Street transactions of 1 or 2% to penalize all those who contributed to the financial crisis!
7. #my2k, #AARP @berniesanders @maddowblog @thefix @thelastword
8. There will be no peace for GOP members of congress if SS or medicare are deminished.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Morning Joe 0, Sam Stein 10

Morning Joe! A microcosym of the American debate this morning. Mika, Richard Wolffe, and Sam Stein for the Dems. Mark Halperin, Harold Ford, and others for the Reps. I enjoy the show. I yell at the TV when I disagree and appologize to no one if I am too agitated.
In a sales course I took years ago inspired by folks at HP I learned about different buyer types. One was called the "court holder". JS is that guy! What a pompous ass. The panel is individually smarter than you, yet you brow beat them with questions designed to inflate your ego! It's a well worn stage play, but I know you are just doing it to provide the constructs for the American debate, right. No ego involved.
For those of you on twitter saying Sam Stein got bullied, I'd like to suggest an alternative image. He kept his head and ego in check. He tenaciuosly pushed back on Joe's criticism and exposed the older mans lack of thoughtfulness without rancor. Sam Stein is the real deal. Joe is an inflated windbag!
Why would you walk into that negotiation, Boehner v. Geitner/Obama, after this election, and drop your pants Joe? Obama wonnn! But Sam would correct me here to say that it was just to provide a point to begin to talk from.
Joe, talk less, ask small questions, seek big answers. For God's sake stop asking leading questions to make yourself look good.  Harold Ford was embarrassed for you! 

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Tax Avoidance not a loophole, but it should be.

"@ChasMcDuffee: @jaazee1 @MemoBeacon Offshore accounts not loop holes #nhpoltics" You don't seem to understand, assets declared,taxes paid!

from Plainsboro, NJ Collapse

a twitter comment above and my responce below.

Yes, you have got me pegged. I don't seem to understand those who use any form of technicality in IRS laws to avoid paying taxes. I am sure you are correct that my calling it a loophole is wrong on my part! I'd say a majority of Americans, a slim majority agree with me, though. You do agree, don't you, that Mr. Romney's offshore account activity may have hurt him just a little in the last election. He certainly didn't want to discuss it very much, so I assume it was not something for which he was proud. More correctly! He didn't want to look bad in the eyes of 98% of the people. By 98% I mean those who pay their taxes and don't employ avoidance techniques.
I understand that you will now be thinking of my free right to do the same. Except, I do not have the discretionary income to participate. I would not quibble with these techniques though until we find that people are using their offshore protected money to buy elections and thereby increase their lobbying power. God you guys must hate the one person one vote thing! One person, regardless of property, gets a vote. Must seem like a bitter technicality.

Below please find a reference that explains “tax avoidance” and clearly supports your point! You folks need to find a way to cover it up better.

@jaazee1  I have picked on your comment here, but I value your point of view. You are out there explaining to folks about what you believe in and though I disagree with some of your views, I am glad you tweet a lot and say what you think. Keep it up. Our disagreements have value! Thank you.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Lindsey Graham is right!

  1. Let's use the Mitt Romney “bucket” approach to all deductions in reverse. Let's exclude all deductions for people over 275k per year. I'll be fair, all deductions apply to everything up to 275k per year. That way, we will be “closing some loopholes” and the tax rates may not matter as much! You see the top five deductions for all Americans benefit the rich more than those with less.
  2. Government should identify all offshore accounts and enforce IRS laws for taxation. All loopholes should be closed.
  3. Let's redefine the words “entitlements”. Entitlements are not something you have paid for all your life. “Entitlement funds” (like social security) owned by the American people are not funds that should be borrowed from by Congress to defer the costs of wars. You see wars cause the use of bullets (and much other stuff) that lines the pockets of the few at the expense of the many.
  4. Medicare costs are healthcare costs. Medicare is too expensive because healthcare is still too expensive. Get those ideas linked in your head and you can see why Obamacare (Romney inspired) is a great idea. Let's continue to find ways to lower healthcare costs.
  5. These comments were inspired by Lindsey Graham who clearly has seen the light! He is a great conservative leader and will forgo even his alliance to Grover Norquist for the American People! (In all fairness Grover points out, it's not a pledge to him but to the American People, so even he doesn't own it!)

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Norquist Pledge was always a sham!

The Grover Norquist pledge is a sham perpetrated on the American people by Grover and his lobby and implemented by the signers. A few days ago Grover disowned the pledge by saying it's not to him, it's to the American people. Well, we don't want it.

We don't want anything from special interest from either side.

Let us review. If you served in the military you took a pledge. When you serve in Congress in either the lower or upper houses you take a pledge. These are pledges you swear to God to implement. Why then do you need to additionally take any other pledges to augment those you have already made? For those of you who take the Bible seriously please go read Ecclesiastes again completely for a reference on vanity. All who have signed that pledge to GN, his lobby or anyone beyond those taken in support of our country should renounce commitments. We need serious people in Washington to deal with critical issues, not game players!

Norquist signers list.

the pledge text

The Hill Norquist Pledge takes an election hit...

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Morning Joe Discussion by conservatives.

Digbys Blog on Morning Joe discussion. Everyone should listen to these guys. Winners, losers, right, left, con, dem. David Frum's new ebook is described. Read the entire article. Listen to the video. Consider with Digby the amount of time he was allowed to speak. Consider the amount of time others ignored him. Mika was not there this particular morning. There is a reason they call it Morning Joe. Maybe they could change the name to Wake up Joe.

Friday, November 9, 2012

NH House Flips, what's next?

Let's be clear on the hard right Tea Party view. Mainstream America doesn't buy it. You drove moderate Republicans out of the party. You don't really like folks of any color and you are not into rights for gay people. I agree that there was no war on women, you just don't believe they have rights either.
If you think that last paragraph was hard, and it makes you want to call me names then you need to rethink how you communicate with a majority of Americans. Keep on your current path and you will not be a party much longer than 2016.
I would prefer that all state and federal congresses be balanced. That conservative and liberal ideas be blended into a more steady governing course. You need to learn about compromise and learn quick or you really will be out.  

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Difference Makers in 2012 media.

The Maddow Blog and Show, The Edshow, The Last Word, The Cycle on MSNBC, Morning Joe, Up with Chris Hayes, The MHP Show, The Fix @ WP, The Bill Press Show Radio and TV, The Stephanie Miller Show Radio and TV, Hardball, Politics Nation, Now with Alex Wagner, Joy-Ann Reid, Ed Rendell, Nia-Malika Henderson, Senator for Ohio Tina Turner, Karen Finney, Ari Melber, Mark and John and Steve Schmidt, Michael Steele, Howard Fineman, EJ and Eugene, Chris Cillizza, MSNBC VP Richard Wolffe are all people that got out the word, moaned cajoled and preached for the truth as they perceived it. Chuck Todd and Ezra Kline (Wonkbook @ WP) for charts and numbers. Nate Silver is exonerated! We watched you all and read your stories on the Internet and you expanded our view. We knew a little bit more about why we should vote the way we did because of you and all the production people that make the talent look good. So for THE LAST Word let me get UP NOW with Morning Joe to watch Hardball. Can someone please restrain Ed, take the chart from Ezra, no Rev I don't want to buy a bridge, Chuck step away from the presentation machine. Rachel is after all a troublemaker! Grats! OFA 2012.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

NH Obama crowd

The first stop of the second-to-last day of the presidential campaign brought with it a new political record in the politically-rich state of New Hampshire.
The Obama campaign drew 14,000 people to an outdoor rally in Concord. That was the biggest crowd for a campaign event in Granite State history, the Obama campaign said.
The prior record seems to have been the 8,500 people that Obama drew to an Oct. 27 rally in Nashua. Following that rally, WMUR political analyst James Pindell reportedly said it was the largest campaign gathering the state had ever seen.
Obama's Sunday morning event -- which featured speeches from both him and former president Bill Clinton -- shattered that total.
New Hampshire is a small state. The capital, Concord, has a population of less than 43,000. But it has also witnessed its share of campaign moments, owing to the tightly contested primaries every four years and its status as a toss-up state in the general election. So for Obama to have set the record there says something about his continued appeal in the state, especially since he has had difficulty drawing crowds of the size he drew as a presidential candidate four years ago.
For the record, the weather in Concord on Sunday morning was cold, but not painfully so for that part of the country. At the time that Obama started speaking, had the temperature at 48 degrees Fahrenheit.
-- Sam Stein of Huffington Post

Thursday, November 1, 2012

One long war causes debt!

Rachel Maddow, I have slowly read to finish “Drift”, your book is an eye-opening, sometimes eye-popping, look at the military in the US from Eisenhower forward. You seem to suggest that we go to war more easily than ever before. That we may be shading the war powers act and we are way out on a limb regarding the use of a privatized augmentation to our standing forces.
The last part was the most dramatic. As an aside I ask you, (How important to Americans was the freedom of information act?) Miss-placed,  lost, and unguarded nuclear weapons, and exploded dirty bombs. Your final sentence says it all. I am paraphrasing now, America is a peaceable country, that's not just our inheritance, it's our responsibility. My father is gone now, he served in the Army. My mother is 88 and she was a waitress in a cafe in Portsmouth, NH at the shipyard during the war. Mom's brothers (four) and some of their friends were with the Army in a Maine regiment that fought in many of the island landings in the Pacific. My Uncle Merle got a Silver Star and three purple hearts serving as a medic with Mark Clark in Italy, they would all like your book. None of them liked war, none of them were conscripted. They all volunteered. 
Oversight is not red tape or too restrictive a set of regulations. It has it's purpose. In an ideal congress where legislation flows and compromises on both sides occur there will be time for Congressional Oversight. First though, we need to fix congress by cleansing it of graft. De-emphasizing lobbying power. We need a debate on term limits. Then to strengthen the war powers act or interpret it better so that energized presidents can't act without congress.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Des Moines Register for Romney!

I was talking with my son on the phone. How bad is the hurricane? He described something like it is here. Then he asked, "What are you folks up to?" I said, I am looking up who owns the Des Moines Register. He laughed. He said my wife is doing the same thing. He also said it has been 40 years since the Register had picked a republican. I asked who was that? Richard Nixon. Oh that was a good pick! So take heart Mr. President, the last time they went this way look at what we got! A near impeachment saved by another republican that pardoned him. We should go into the background of the Romney advisers.  Were any of them clerks for Richard Nixon? Ahh! too much I guess.  

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Thanks Bob Shrum!

Bob Shrum, I caught your Face the Nation appearance this Sunday Morning. Thank you for your consistent level headed analysis on the talk shows for the past decade. I have watched often and you have aggressively presented the progressive point of view with a smile. I enjoy the frustrations other slick speaking opponents demonstrate as they try to deal with you! Keep it up! And don't let that Bob Schieffer off the hook either!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Following the money...

The election tempo has picked up. The President will visit here today. My wife is figuring out how to get to and from work with the least amount of traffic impact. New Hampshire is a swing state, let's hope it swings toward women's issues, towards an efficient and reasonable way to govern, towards Hassen, Kuster and Shea – Porter to run NH.
I have very slowly been reading Rachel Maddow's book Drift. One factoid popped out at me. (There are a lot of eye popping facts in the books all multi–sourced.) 874,000 people will be getting new top secret clearances to support the war on terror. At I they estimate a background investigation for a TS costs between $3000 and 15000 dollars. One might use $9k as a rough figure. So that's 874000 times 9000 dollars each or $7.8B just for the background investigations.  I wonder who gets that money? Who does those investigations?
Now I am not picking on Bush for starting this program or Obama for continuing it. It may be justified. But to those who wonder about the deficit consider the cost of these investigations in the grand scheme of things. We are changing the way we gather information about perceived enemies, inadvertently about ourselves, let's make sure we are still the US of America after this transition.

Friday, October 19, 2012

John Sununu Sr.

John Sununu Sr. a few years ago I had a chance to shake hands with your son. He told that story of how to spell Sununu, something like banana substitute u for a and like that. He was charming in asking for our vote. Many years ago you came to Hollis Town Hall with then VP George H Bush, my sons shook hands with you both, you asked for our vote for VP Bush to be President. You both seemed like good people and you served GH Bush well and in an important position. You mattered to me and my sons, you had influence.
So I'd like to ask what happened to you to turn you so completely into a drone for Romney? I am not asking you to agree with President Obama, not asking you to like him even, just respect his office for the good of New Hampshire, good of the country and for your own personal integrity  If you can't win by making a reasonable case for your guy, then fail gracefully, but this current series of lies and personal slams on the President only makes you look like an old fool and hurts the candidate you claim to support. Cool it for your own name because right now you look pretty weak!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Drift by Rachel Maddow a book review.

I am a baby boomer, was married in 1972 in a suburb of Washington, DC and have always viewed WDC as our second home. Our first home has always been New Hampshire. You can form some opinions about my point of view from my age and where I live. So as I read Rachel's book Drift, I find myself thinking about where we were and what we focused on at a corresponding time in our lives. We were dating in DC when the offices at or near the Watergate were broken into. The metro was just some huge holes in the ground. We moved back to NH due to job location and I worked the second shift and could watch the Watergate hearings on TV during the day. We grew through apartments to condos to our first home surviving gas shortages then lack of bank money to borrow for mortgages. We got kids, became successful, and had our first house built. I changed jobs a lot, traveled for work a lot. The family grew up. Not much of a book review is it?
Well how can people live through those things and be aware of the incredible shift, no drift, taking place in our countries government. We also saw the news only through the distribution given us by CBS, NBC, or ABC. I read the Boston Globe and of course disliked the Union Leader like my father and grandfather before me.
I thought Nixon was wrong and he was a crook! Ford did OK to pardon him and get things moving again. Carter was smart but got a bad deal with the Iranian hostage crisis, so did the hostages. Reagan was just what we needed a shot in the arm, then feeble at the end. I watched the North hearings and remembered Watergate. Couldn't really ever understand much but we had a family. I liked 41 even thought Sununu OK (my how times change), liked Clinton in spite of the fact that he was a caught philanderer and hated 43 and that he had used Clinton's personal life to help get elected.
We didn't know much. We raised our family voted when we were supposed to, didn't interactively affiliate with any party, you can do that passively here in NH by voting in general elections and just saying you are one or the other party.
A lot of Rachel's book is me sitting there with my mouth open, so to speak. It corroborates stories I have been told along the way by people I thought were fantasy theorists. My wife read Howard Zinn's History of the United States and said Drift reminded her of that. Rachel's book is an unvarnished look at the way we have re-framed our view of the war powers manipulation by the presidents to get us to do the right thing. Their right thing, some more ruthlessly than others. I note Rachel has sources for all she has written so if you don't trust her, go to the back and read about the sources first. Then use the Internet to validate all of them, or just realize she's a great American with a left leaning point of view that tells the truth, and read her book! Read it slowly and take notes. We need, as a nation, to get better everyday. Now I see why you dedicated this book to Vice President Cheney he deserves so much of your focus! 

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Social Security a failed program, says Paul Ryan!

It's official, the "baby boom years" according to Wikipedia as demonstrated in a chart on US births was from  1946-1964. That's the bump in population that will challenge all our social programs. Paul Ryan says it's a failed and soon to be bankrupt system.
I remember attending parties when I was younger and everyone agreed that SS was there for our parents but would be gone by the time we needed it. Well, I need it now and it's here for me so far. The financial crisis hit us, like so many other Americans, in many areas. It destroyed the value of our homes. It cut in half anything we had in retirement funds. I had done well earlier and many years maximized social security payments. So we are surviving economically.
Here's the thing, Mr. Ryan, if social security goes away because you are panicking then so does our income. So does the security portion of the program for our children and grand children. Social Security is too big to fail sir. Just like Bank America and others. President Obama and congress have infused social security with funds that will last out through the year 2033.
My question is this Rep. Ryan;  if I add 18 years to 2012 that's 2030. Social Security will be solvent till 2033. Where is the crisis? Second part, by 2015 half of us will be gone, further unloading the system. I repeat where is the crisis?
If we had a privatized system for social security in place in 2007 how would Americans be doing now?
One more final question: If you and Gov. Romney are elected how can we be sure you will leave social security alone? I wonder if Grover Norquist has any pledge language available for that?

Friday, October 12, 2012

The Hill Website and Blog

The Hill Website  US federal politics and how it relates to NH and other states and countries.

Global Affairs Blog at the Hill  An interactive look at details of US foreign policy.

Think Progress debate analysis!

Thinkprogress Hangout on Google Plus

A complete analysis of the debate with fact checking and explanations of each discussion point. Someone stayed up all night at TP. Thank you!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Mother Jones: Are You a Taker or a Maker?

This chart is offensive in nature, the author looks down their nose at middle class Americans. I find the entire concept in line with my low opinion of the republican party, I'm sorry, the Tea Party lead remnant of the republican party. Those of you who attend church should read the red sections of the new testament. Then compare that to what you currently support. Those that want governance to prevail after the election should ask do you think you can really rely on Romney. He sure looks like your winner now! Right. He was very effective as governor in Massachusetts. Right? See Youtube videos.

I wanted to place this comment on you blog but your login precedure required me to give too much control to Motherjones of my Twitter Account. You need a better system for login.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Plan for Taking Back the House

'The Rachel Maddow Show' for Wednesday, September 26th, 2012

September 26, 2012 Guest: Nancy Pelosi, The Minority Leader of the US House of Representatives speaks to RM and this is an except from that exchange.
PELOSI: Well, first of all, the fact that President Obama is on the 
ticket will get more people to the polls. On many of the races, the 

battleground states that you showed earlier, are just a few states. We`re
in more states than the president. So we`re basically on our own, Texas,
California, New York, Illinois, Maryland, Washington state, Arizona,
although it may become a battleground state, because the opportunity might
be there for the president.
And we expect to win about 20 seats in the states I just named. Then
we go where the president is, Florida, Ohio, Colorado, Iowa, Nevada, states
like that, to take us, oh, I want to go beyond 25. I`d like to have 35.
But the -- it`s a very discreet races, some states have blue patches
that we want to win back. There are 66 districts that are held by
Republicans that were won by President Obama and about a third of those
were also won by John Kerry. And so, we think there`s real opportunity.

Full article URL here!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

What I'd like to see in a president.

A list of attributes for a President: ( Pick a few from the list not all are mandatory.)
These are in addition to the Constitutional prerequisites.
  1. An understanding of US and World History.
  2. The ability to speak effectively to a large audience.
  3. A professional appearance.
  4. The practical age range of 40-50 years.
  5. Strong ability to write effectively.
  6. Great listening skills.
  7. Ability to learn quickly, retain the detail, and correlate the learning into a plan of action to be written out or explained.
  8. Empathy for all others.
  9. Love of the US, it's Constitution and it's Rule of Law.
  10. Previous committed service, in some form, to the country.
  11. A world view that is synonymous with the majority of the American people.
  12. Steadiness in time of great disturbance.
  13. Steadfastness when he or she believes in their own correctness.
  14. More personal focus on what is good for America than what is good for his or her career.
  15. A tendency to say the truth, as she or he sees it, to take actions that are fair to the American people, and a temperament of control when faced with opposition.
  16. If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue. Or walk with kings –- nor lose the common touch.” Rudyard Kipling

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Why Romney is not winning.

With about forty days to go people are asking why is Romney not doing better. The economy has rebounded but not for people with out jobs. Companies are making profits and wall street is happiest of all because they made money going down and coming back. There have been no prosecutions for improper credit swaps and I am guessing now that's because no laws were broken. The main reason for going to Afghanistan was to get Bin Laden. Mission accomplished, but we are still there. That should be enough to get Obama out of office right?
No. Romney is gaffe prone because he is making bad political decisions. Pandering to the tea party is a failed idea. They will return to trickle down in the absence of any other plan. The fundamentalists have a huge role for Romney to pander to so they attack abortion, women's health, and and ultimately a woman's right to choose. The destruction of any kind of safety net including medicaid, medicare and social security. Letting that video get out was the single biggest mistake ever in politics, but letting his ideas be known to the money people was bigger. If Romney had not talked so condescendingly about the 47% he might have recovered.
Bottom line. This campaign includes ineptitude, bad old weak ideas that have failed, and no solutions to any of our countries problems. It's counting on lies, deceits, voter suppression, and political trade craft to trick people into voting republican. But vote me in and I'll explain the details then.
You have energized women in this country who are smart, vocal, intrepid, and  running for office in greater numbers than ever before. Jesse Jackson used to talk about a Rainbow Coalition, well they are energized against you. Even five or six old white guys (wasps for Obama) will vote and work and support Obama. Seniors do not know your name. They do know you will end all forms of social health network for all Americans and they don't like it. Union people just naturally dislike you. All we have are voters, and all you have is money. How do you like them Apples!!
ps The right bought out media in this country and had a free run of it till about four years ago. Cable TV, the internet, blogs, Twitter, Facebook have allowed different versions of the truth to be displayed. Adds on-line resonate with younger people, for that matter all people. I hope it has marginalized your money advantage.  

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Stench (Hoax and Mistake)

Some questions about the references to "Stench":
1. Isn't this stench gate unprofessional? Has there ever been a campaign where the VP candidate  attacked the Presidential Candidate, so early?
2. Haha! Rachel Maddow you can't claim you had a hand in this one.
3. I see the cute smile of Stef Cutter somewhere in the background.
4. Twitter Search "stench" and read for a while.
5. Ann Coulter, we like your style, your prescience, you look like many Rinos, Switch over to the liberal cause! Signify by switching to MSNBC.
6. Well I am off to try "stench" search on google+.
7. Will Ryan ever get another opportunity to run for major office again?
8. Thanks Alex Wagner, John Heilemann and others for discussing this a bit on Alex' Show at noon.
8. Ezra McDuffee described it as a "nuclear meltdown" to me on the phone. Those are expensive to clean up!
9. These comments above, may be about a satirical piece written in Politico two days ago. Please See
Talking Points Memo explanation. I will continue to clarify. If this is an error it is a big one for me and for a a lot of other people.
10. The hard lesson is I have been a Lemming! Here is the correction. Mia Culpa I was totally wrong! The explanation can be reached by pressing the previous line. I will write on the great black board of the Internet three hundred times, check your source! Maybe there is some way I can retroactively adjust my mistake!
12. Good catch to all those who made comments!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Tax Filing is arbitrary?

I always believed all candidates were vetted. It seems reasonable that the vetting includes a look at the tax filings of the candidate. When someone new gets a Top Secret clearance a back ground investigation is performed by OSI. The vetting and the BI seem like an automatic call to me.
So my question is simple, in the case of the President of the US, who vets, who does the BI, who specifies that a candidate has no police record. Who protects the American people.
This year has been excellent at defining who pays for elections. Who pays for legislation. Who drives voters toward the polls and who drives them away. I would really like to know we are not relying on some political party for these administrative functions.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Romney the Truth Hurts Doesn't It!

I retired after being laid off at age 60. It shames me to think it but I am one of those 47% people that you are speaking of Mr. Romney. To be clear, I've dropped the use of  your title as you don't deserve the courtesy. Your observations, your disdain for average Americans stressed by job loss and potential home loss is a potent reminder of what it takes to run a company like Bain. Good to know you stand by your words and are clear about who is responsible for them.
So is this correct? While at school you bullied other classmates, when you reached draft age you used deferments to run away to France instead of serving in the military, while at Bain you destroyed businesses to make money, as Governor of Mass you crept away leaving the state worse than when you arrived and lately you have been running your presidential campaign into the ground?
I am glad the hard line base of the Republican Party think you are a clown. Fox News would rather a stronger candidate and will barely support you, and many republicans here in the state of New Hampshire are worried you would really screw up as president. Please don't bother trying to act like a NH citizen either, we don't want you here. Good news though, some days, not all, Rush Limbaugh is on your side.
You can't be President of the US, you are a coward, bully, child who has never changed and never will. We need someone other than you. I hope the videos have really hurt your campaign. Oh yes! The truth does hurt doesn't it? Thank you for making it so clear.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Hardball Criticism for Chris Matthews

Brian Lamb will always be for me the best interviewer I have seen on television. On the grand scale between length of question and length of answer Lamb asked little and therefore got a lot from the person he interviewed. Ask little, listen big! He came to interviews prepared and when required read passages from papers or books written by the person he was exploring. He wanted to know what they thought.
Hardball brings experts on to answer questions. I assume they have some idea of what will be asked of them. Chris please I beg you, just ask little questions once. Try it. You might learn something. Give the person speaking some courtesy and not (for once) interrupt them.
We agree politically and I applaud your enthusiasm for your topic. It's not really Hardball, it's really just you forcing your presence on your panels and on your viewers. I can't watch you anymore. We have a choice now and can switch to Current for an hour. I am sorry man, but your game is Hardball and you need to let someone else pitch. Your ego is writing checks your reputation can't cash!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

How many watermelons in a hot air balloon?

David Wessell author of "Red Ink" at Politics and Prose Bookstore, WDC NE
delivered by Booktv

David Wessell's home site

More questions than I have seen for any author lately delivered by a largely senior crowd. Mr. Wessell neutralized his answers to questions that were partisan left or right. He talked plainly and understandably about the budget and how it works. We need more of this from the written media. We also need to know who is delivering what message (agenda). Use some listening and reading time to consider this review and read the book!

Who said?
Millions = golf balls, billions = watermelons, trillions = hot air balloons?

I note;
1000 golf balls = 1 watermelon
Mitts net worth projected at 250 watermelons.
Some say he may be worth one hot air balloon.
That's 1000 golf balls times 1000 watermelons and mostly off shore!
This sounds like MaddowMath or EKMath.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Too big to control companies.

Google is easily my favorite company. Who could argue with their tremendous success. I use their product, support their business model, and cheer the good effects they have all over. Google may be Americas best company. America has quite a few great companies. See this article in the Washington Post It talks  about Google's decision to manage blocking access of Muslim countries to the Youtube Video that has irritated Muslim's across the globe.
We should not be mixing private companies and the companies rights to free speech, with the free speech rights that each American receives from God or government. People are not companies. Companies are not human beings. Companies have business plans that often interfere with the agenda of the US. If you feel you are an American, if through many means you qualify as an American, then you must understand your responsibility to our government. Our government first, our companies second. Free speech is a right we get from our government.
Here's the problem. The Internet does not belong to America. People of all ages (congress, US SCOTUS) need to understand this. I am quite sure folks at Google do truly get this point. But folks at Google do not speak for the US. Google is subject to US law. Now I am only stating the problem. This problem shows up in multinational companies in many different ways. We could change focus and talk about British Petroleum. They are subject to US Laws when they operate here I suppose. They have a huge stake in the US. They are not a human being. They are were not legally formed or started in the US.
The US Government needs to make decisions and control content that potentially can hurt US Government interests. Even if it conflicts with Google. Google should cooperate with the US Government wishes. Not evaluate if their rights of free speech have been violated. We have too big to fail banks. We do not need too big to control companies.

“The end of democracy and the defeat of the American Revolution will occur when government falls into the hands of lending institutions and moneyed incorporations.”
― Thomas Jefferson

Friday, September 14, 2012

Not 999, but Train, Train, Train (wicked wink)

People are discouraged and need work. They are dropping out of the job hunt because they know they've been out of work too long. There is a recent example of how to fix the problem.
1994, 5, 6 were interesting years. We were coming out of a recession. New electronic networks needed to be installed, serviced, designed. Federal money channeled through the states helped local entrepreneurs start certified training centers. The businesses got employees with subsidized salaries. These certified training centers educated and certified employees for a new business segment. Novel and Microsoft invoked training programs and benefited greatly. The economy improved people got work, we sent our son to college and things became normal again. These are empirical facts. They can be checked and were repeated many times. I taught for a local business and for a major college. Demand was very great for instructors and students.
A new platform is released by Apple as I write this. Google will counter soon I am sure. An industry of app development is happening all around us. Why don't we train, train, train people. It doesn't matter where the programs are established, but that we understand that training is a way out. Vocational schools, federal money, state involvement with job programs, and major private companies are all needed for the solution. Good God! It worked before!
Any references to HK are because he's likable, not because he could run a country. (wink)

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Israel and US relations

Benjamin Netanyahu is a brilliant politician and a powerful Prime Minister for Israel. He has years of experience serving as different ministerial posts and as member of the Israeli Army.      He has a relationship with Gov. Romney and they both wanted to take advantage of it. Gov. Romney is so eager to become president that he sought his friends endorsement. Mr. Netanyahu saw some advantage in it and cooperated. But can you be friends and run countries with separate agendas? Probably, like Churchill and Roosevelt were friends as they struggled to deal with Joe Stalin. Churchill was either upset about being ignored at Yalta or feigned being upset. So Roosevelt talked to Joe sans Churchill. There was a flap I think. 
Let's try to see it from Netanyahu's point of view. Who would he rather deal with a liberal or a conservative. His "needy so called friend" or Obama. Well, you'd never be able to push Romney around he's tough, look how he handles the Tea Party. Obama is a somewhat enigmatic academic that thinks America first. Clearly Mr. Netanyahu is correct, Gov. Romney, his friend, is the better choice for Israel.
In this election Mr. Netanyahu has no vote, no endorsement, and hopefully will have no impact on US Israeli relations other than that of Prime Minister of a great ally. His personal relationship with President Obama will come around when it needs to. Maybe he can hit three pointers, I wouldn't be surprised.        

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Embassy Duty

A long time ago I was assigned to embassy duty in the middle east. It was a Muslim country and the US had a large presence there. Things have changed a lot since 1969, I'll allow. I remember asking myself on a few occasions what possessed me to get into this spot. You feel remote and you are in a different culture. You meet great friends and you meet hostile opponents. Some days get violent and you need rely on the local police and military to defend you. Your confidence develops doubts. I was in the USAF and extremely thankful for the Marines!
A Sgt. in the USAF does not meet the Ambassador nor understand nor think about our foreign service policy with that country. I did know and respect many of the leaders in our embassy and the folks that made it work.
Foreign Service Officers are committed to running and protecting the part of the US that is local to the country in which they are located. They spend their lives translating our US culture into one that makes sense to the local country. They are to a person, dedicated to the US and her image abroad. They never get enough credit till something happens like yesterday in Libya. Our heart goes out to the families that lost people in the attack.
This is not a time for political machinations. I hope everyone understands that!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Photo at 7:30 am Hollis, NH outside polls

                                                  Primary Day @ 7:30 AM Hollis, NH

Voting Interferance

1. Women couldn't vote here in America in the past. After many folks fought over the subject women gained the right to vote. They had already earned the right a long time ago. See Abigail Adams.
2. We had poll taxes and they fell into disfavor and were removed. 
3. We had laws stopping black folks from voting and we corrected that. See the 1965 Civil Rights Act. No one should alter this law, hear me SCOTUS.
4. Now we have a political party with the will and forethought to deliberately implement a strategy to increase the length of voting lines, to interfere with the voting access for senior citizens, to target voting constituencies who don't vote right. No one should interfere with the rights of people to vote.  
6. If a party needs to build a winning strategy on voter suppression and deception then it must have no governing plans worth considering.
7. Isn't this why some founding fathers favored no parties. Parties like corporations are not people.

Sweet Baby Jim

Greg Mitchell 

Primary Day in NH!

It's 6:30 am and we need to go to the High School to vote for the NH Primaries. This is for the down ticket stuff. You know, who will be on the ticket as Governor. Who will manage state and local details of government. The polls open in our town at 7 am and stay open till 7 pm. My wife and I need to go early because we are sharing her car today. My son has gotten back to work and is borrowing mine. I wonder what the turn out will be like for NH today? Will that have impact in November? I doubt it will serve as any kind of bellwether, but I'm not that sure of these things. Will let you know what the polls were like in a bit.

Monday, September 10, 2012

NH is a battleground state 4 electoral votes

There are nine clear Battleground states: NH 4, VA 13, NC 15, FL 29, MI 10, IA 6, OH 18, CO 9, NV 6 that pollsters have identified as a toss up. I live in NH and can expand a little on this state. Have lived in Colorado and Virginia in the past and know much less about them.  
NH was a red state. Left leaning people lived in Manchester, Nashua, Concord. Small towns tended to be Yankee republicans. The Manchester Union Leader Newspaper was ultra right wing led by the Loeb family. My grandfather and father read Mr. Loeb's paper daily and grumbled since they were New Deal Democrats. I married into one of those small town families from farther north and they were republicans. When we first married I got great jobs with companies like Intel and AMD, life was good and we had early commercial success. Today we are just beginning the retirement stage. We want to vote for the person who wants to govern and that we agree with the most. We have listened to the stories from the right leaning media. We have endured Fox News and we tried hard to listen to Rush L but found him too incredible. If you are a right leaning person but a little on the ropes please give a fair listen to MSNBC. Decide which candidate will better support the ninety nine percent. Did you ever have a family member benefit from a Pell grant or federal loan guarantee? Who better to guarantee medicare payments, the US Government or a random insurance company. What would have happened to your medicare during the last financial crisis if it had been sold out as a voucher system? Consider watching Rachel Maddows' Show keep an open mind only if you have doubts! God Bless New Hampshire and the US.  

Ms. Romney we don't dislike your husband.

Dear Ms. Romney, 
We don't dislike nor demonize your husband. We have listened to the speeches at both conventions, we have listened to FOX and MSNBC talking heads. We have perused the varied opinions on Twitter and Facebook. We have even read Chris Cillizza and other oped folks.  
We find it hard to disagree with his policy positions because he is not detailed enough. We mistrust him when he says he wants to save Medicare as it appears to us a voucher system is a step toward removal. We have noticed his penchant for taking positions that are most opportune for his current campaign need.  
We would really like to see those tax filings so that we can believe he is truthful. He's not a demon but he's not doing things we like either. Respectfully Submitted. (except the crack about Cillizza)  The Fix 

Good Citizenship !

A long time ago, when I was in junior high we had Civics class. I am sure I gave perfunctory attention to the definition of "good citizenship". A Google search for GS got me to Wikipedia and an article with a reference to a group called "Good Citizen". From the Good Citizen Website I got the list below.
3. Vote.
Above is a list all Americans can do locally. But others might be added. I shall attempt to add a few more in no priority.
Join the local volunteer fire department or ambulance service.
Attend as much school as you can.
At the proper age enlist in a US military service of choice. (USAF is clearly best)
Help folks when they need it.
Read Kipling's poem "If" (consider his references to male gender to include women) Then analyse each verse.
Work for a town, state, or federal government in any capacity.
Become a nurse, doctor, police officer or spiritual leader.
Become a teacher, or even a principle, and I suppose superintendent too.
Show up for jury duty without an excuse.
It's unfair to note that none of these things mention becoming wealthy at all cost. None mention reading "The Virtue of Selfishness". All require teamwork and cooperation. 

These folks are the leaders of society. Politicians just get them organized.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Disappointments and confusions for the simple minded:

1. I retroactively hate the repeal of Glass Steagall thus removing many controls on our banking institutions. It was the wrong decision and I offer the financial meltdown as proof! Mergers of banks in general should be very controlled or disallowed as well.
2. Any entity that is too big to fail should be broken up. (We can get past it, we survived the breakup of Ma Bell.)
3. The Supreme Court reversed, striking down those provisions of BCRA that prohibited corporations (including nonprofit corporations) and unions from spending on "electioneering communications" This action is the Bain of my existence. Money to finance campaigns should be fixed and controlled. One person, one vote, one donation of fixed amount or your breaking the law.
4. Regardless of tradition, term limits should be imposed on members of both houses of Congress.
5. All perks, monies, gifts, payments of any kind to Congresspeople should be regarded as bribes because that's what they are!
6. Some incentives should be provided for Congresspeople to move legislation through the respective wings of Congress.
7. No oaths should exceed those taken to serve the American People. Military people take oaths, Congresspeople should be able to honor theirs. ( This one is a crime already in my view!)
8. Gerrymandering should be eliminated and districts should be a uniform recognizable geometric shape. No ability to favor one party over the other should exist.
9. Official voter ID's should be made available for all citizens. They should be called draft cards and be available throughout ones lifetime so that all citizens understand they have common responsibilities.
10. Any party adopting s strategy to constrict or limit voting should not be allowed to register candidates for office.
11. A commission of technologists lead by Google, Electronic Security Engineers and supported by voter registration, voter management people, from States across the country should look into a national wide area network voting system.