Texas Liberal

All People Matter

Spahn & Sain & What Many Hold To Be True Will Often Rot Your Brain

Baseball fans may be aware of the saying “Spahn and Sain and pray for rain.”

(Above–Spahn on the left and Sain on the right.)

These words are about the 1948 Boston Braves. Warren Spahn and Johnny Sain were two starting pitchers on the ’48 Braves team that won the American League pennant and then lost the World Series to the Cleveland Indians.

The Boston Braves, after a stop in Milwaukee for a few years, are the current Atlanta Braves.

The words are, as I have learned in researching  this post, from a poem written by a Boston sportswriter named Gerald Hern.

Here is the poem—

First we’ll use Spahn
then we’ll use Sain
Then an off day
followed by rain
Back will come Spahn
followed by Sain
And followed
we hope
by two days of rain

The poem conveys the idea that the only decent starting pitchers for the Braves where Spahn and Sain. It suggests the only way the Braves could win was to have Spahn pitch one day, Sain another day, and then hope for rainouts that would get Spahn and Sain back on the mound without having to use other pitchers.

I’ve been aware of this saying since I was a kid. I suppose I’ve long-believed it reflected the truth.

The thing is—It is not true. I was looking up some baseball facts the other day and I came across the 1948 Braves. I saw that the famous poem was not true.

This  made me grumpy. Why do we often believe in things that are not true?

It is not true that Healthcare Reform comes with so-called Death Panels. (Read here about all the helpful aspects of Healthcare Reform)

It is not true that Barack Obama’s trip to India cost $200 million a day.

And it is not true that the 1948 Boston Braves had only two decent starting pitchers.

Sain was a great pitcher in 1948. He pitched a number of innings, did not allow many runs to be scored, and won a bunch of games. Warren Spahn, however, did not in 1948 stand out from the other two pitchers in the Boston rotation.

Braves starting pitchers Bill Voiselle and Vern Bickford had solid seasons in 1948. Bickford was better than Spahn. Though Bickford’s superior performance was muted by the fact that Spahn helped his team by pitching over 100 more innings than did Bickford.

(Below–Vern Bickford baseball card. Bickford seems to have been a decent guy. He died of cancer at age 39. It is good we can recall him.)

Here are the pitching statistics for the 1948 Braves. Look it up for yourself.

Spahn had good years leading up to 1948 and he went on to a Hall of Fame career. However, in 1948, he was just one of three reasonably effective starting pitchers in the shadow of Sain.

People have been believing this story about Spahn and Sain for over 60 years.

I know this is a small matter given all the troubles we face in the world.

It is just that what we hold to be true is so often incorrect.

This is true in what we think about the world and it is true in what we think about the things in our personal lives.

Or, as the rap band Public Enemy once put it—Don’t Believe The Hype.

(Below–Bill Voiselle.)

November 22, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Incoming Republican Congressman Wants His Government Healthcare—Learn About HCR Yourself

Incoming freshman Republican U.S. Rep. Andy Harris of Maryland is upset there will be a 30 day gap before his health care benefits begin.

This despite the fact Dr. Harris ran against Healthcare Reform in the recent election. Dr. Harris is an anesthesiologist.

Dr. Harris wants government benefits for himself. If you want government to help with your health care though you are a socialist.

Read here about the real benefits of Healthcare Reform.

Decide for yourself if this program might help you, your family and the nation.

Do you want to go back to when there were lifetime limits on polices and to when you could be kicked off your policy for getting sick?

Anger at government will be a cold comfort when you need help.

November 17, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 2 Comments

Red Light Cameras Turned Off In Houston—Let The Killing Begin!

Because the public has spoken, all red light cameras are being turned off in Houston.

As we allow our smart phones and personal computers to  track us for the good of commerce, we surely can’t allow government to know when we were running a red light at a Houston intersection.

Anybody who drives in Houston knows our roads are filled with crazies.

Now, because we as a community lack the character to obey the law and to conduct ourselves with others in mind, the carnage will get that much worse.

And just to make certain you’ll die if you’re not killed in the accident, we here in Texas will work to repeal Health Care Reform and to pull Texas out of Medicaid.

Pro-life all the way!!!!!

(Read here about all the ways Health Care Reform helps average working people. Do you want to go back to lifetime limits on policies and to when you could be kicked off your policy for getting sick?)

Let the killing begin!!!!!

(Below–The Grim Reaper will be making some extra stops in Houston. Drawing by MesserWoland. )

November 15, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Republicans Focusing On Everything But Job Creation In Week Since Election

Since prevailing in the U.S. House, gaining Senate seats, and winning significant victories at the state level, what have Republicans done since last week’s election that will likely create jobs?

Nothing. What they have done instead is talk about political conflict, and eliminated forward-looking rail infrastructure projects that would have created jobs.


* Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has said that job one is to make sure Barack Obama is a one-term President. It appears that the next two years about going to 100% about politics if Republicans get their way. How will this help the nation?

* Republican leaders in the House of Representatives plan relentless investigations of President Obama. Would this effort not be better spent on helping fix the economy?

* Incoming Republican Governors refuse to create  jobs with an offer of federal dollars for high-speed rail. An ideological minority may not want government to do anything that helps people, but what people want are jobs.

* Republicans plan to offer ceaseless attacks on Health Care Reform that prohibits lifetime dollar caps on policies and that prohibits insurance companies from kicking you off your policy if you get sick. Anger at government is not going to be of value to you when you are sick and have no place to turn.

Many people voted Republican last week because they are frustrated with the harsh economy. What they may find over the next two years is that the people they voted for are more focused on political advantage instead of  working for America’s best interests.

It is incumbent upon those who are concerned with the nation’s course to discuss these matters with friends, family, and neighbors as we move ahead.

Our future can’t be left to the frustrations of the moment.  This is the case no matter how understandable these frustrations may be.

November 10, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

Ohio Endorsements From Texas Liberal

(Blogger’s Note–With Election Day tomorrow, I’m rerunning my Ohio endorsement post from last week. I lived in Ohio for many years.)

While I live in Texas today, I lived in Cincinnati, Ohio for 18 years. I left Ohio in 1998.

( Above–The flag of the great State of Ohio at Lake Erie. Photo taken by Matthew Trump.)

Since I still have a number of connections in Cincinnati, I’d like to offer up a brief slate of Ohio endorsements.

In the race for Governor, I encourage all to vote for incumbent Democrat Ted Strickland. Governor Strickland has moved up in the polls in recent days and appears to have a shot at winning. Governor Strickland will help President Obama carry Ohio again in 2012, and will make a big difference in redistricting Ohio’s many Congressional seats for the decade ahead. After so many years of a Republican Governor in Columbus, Mr. Strickland has restored priorities that benefit average Ohioans.

For the United States Senate from Ohio, I endorse Socialist Dan La Botz. The idea of a Socialist U.S. Senator is not as odd as it may seem. Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont is a self-declared Socialist. His presence in the Senate has not caused the Republic to fall.

Mr. La Botz offers the hope of an alternative to the two major parties that will take the needs of working people into greater consideration. Many elected Democrats are decent people. But the role of big money in our politics has become such that an additional option merits a look. Continue reading

November 1, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Endorsements For The Great State Of Ohio—My Home For Many Years

While I live in Texas today, I lived in Cincinnati, Ohio for 18 years. I left Ohio in 1998.

( Above–The flag of the great State of Ohio at Lake Erie. Photo taken by Matthew Trump.)

Since I still have a number of connections in Cincinnati, I’d like to offer up a brief slate of Ohio endorsements.

In the race for Governor, I encourage all to vote for incumbent Democrat Ted Strickland. Governor Strickland has moved up in the polls in recent days and appears to have a shot at winning. Governor Strickland will help President Obama carry Ohio again in 2012, and will make a big difference in redistricting Ohio’s many Congressional seats for the decade ahead. After so many years of a Republican Governor in Columbus, Mr. Strickland has restored priorities that benefit average Ohioans.

For the United States Senate from Ohio, I endorse Socialist Dan La Botz. The idea of a Socialist U.S. Senator is not as odd as it may seem. Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont is a self-declared Socialist. His presence in the Senate has not caused the Republic to fall.

Mr. La Botz offers the hope of an alternative to the two major parties that will take the needs of working people into greater consideration. Many elected Democrats are decent people. But the role of big money in our politics has become such that an additional option merits a look.

There was a time when many Americans voted for Socialist candidates. The Socialist candidate for President in 1912, Eugene V. Debs, won 6% of the popular vote. The 1912 Socialist platform called for such things as a minimum wage and progressive income tax.  Sometimes it takes an outside voice  to call for what the people need most.

The Democrat in the U.S. Senate contest, Lee Fisher, appears to have little chance of winning. Make your vote count by sending a message that no matter how nasty our politics have become, you can still imagine a better future.

In Ohio’s First Congressional district, please consider voting for Democrat Steve Dreihaus. In sharp contrast to my Senate candidate, Mr. La Botz, Mr. Driehaus is a moderate to conservative figure.

We live in a nation of 310 million people that has only two major political parties. While the Republican Party has moved to the extreme right in almost all cases, Democrats still welcome many views.

Mr. Driehaus did the brave thing and supported President Obama’s Health Care Reform. Health Care Reform has already helped many Americans by stopping insurance companies from booting you off coverage because you get sick and by stopping the practice of lifetime limits on policies.  Mr. Driehaus should be rewarded for his vote with another term .

For the Hamilton County Commission, please vote for Jim Tarbell so that Democrats can retain control of the commission. It took Democrats so long to win the commission, it would be shame to lose it back.

Lastly, I encourage Ohio liberals and all Democrats to be certain to vote all the way down the ticket in the state legislative races.  The next legislative session will take up redistricting. It is important that Democrats have a major say in how the lines are drawn.

As a fellow Ohioan, I urge all Buckeyes to consider new options on the ballot and to please vote in a way that offer hope for our future instead of anger or resignation.

(Below–Picture I took last summer of Downtown Cincinnati. I’m glad to say that I still make it to Cincinnati twice a year.)

October 24, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Finding Work When Over 50 In A Changing Economy—Ice Delivery Did Not Last Forever


Bud Korbee died recently in the Cincinnati area.

Mr. Korbee was one of the last people in Cincinnati employed in the job of delivering ice to people’s homes.

Above you see a picture of Mr. Korbee.

Here is a portion of Mr. Korbee’s obituary from the Cincinnati Enquirer—

“Bud Korbee, who was born to a butcher shop owner and homemaker in Norwood, joined his uncle’s ice delivery business while still in high school. His uncle died during Bud Korbee’s senior year, and the young man decided to keep the family business going instead of going to college. “It looked like a good business, like it would last forever,” said Harold G. “Hal” Korbee, his oldest son, a lawyer in Cincinnati for 45 years. In its best times, the little ice company employed seven workers, including family members like Hal Korbee, driving three ice trucks. They would stop, put a burlap sack on their shoulder and, using large tongs, pull off a 25- pound, 50-pound or 100-pound block of ice, which they’d carry to houses, businesses and apartments, sometimes up four or five stories.”

Mr. Korbee thought that maybe the ice delivery business “would last forever.” Imagine that.

You don’t have to be an advocate of ruthless competition and tearing the social safety net to shreds to realize that you have to be ready for what may come next in life.

The good news in this case is that Mr. Korbee did have another skill. And, in addition to this other skill, he was able to find an employer who would hire him.

From the obit—

“One of Bud Korbee’s hobbies became his next career as his ice business was dying. Bud Korbee loved gardening and kept a rose garden at home. He became a residential and commercial landscaper for Bud Jones & Sons Inc. from 1957 until he retired in 1980.”

I’m glad it worked out for Mr. Korbee.

The thing I wonder about today is will those who have lost jobs in the recession be able to find a decent job again?

While the obit does not give a birth date, based on his age Mr. Korbee must have been born in 1905 or 1906. He took the job with the gardening firm in 1957 just as he was turning 50.

Here is a recent New York Times story where people 50 and older who have lost their jobs voice concerns that they may not be able to find full time work ever again.

From this story—

“… older workers suspect their résumés often get shoved aside in favor of those from younger workers. Others discover that their job-seeking skills — as well as some technical skills sought by employers — are rusty after years of working for the same company. Many had in fact anticipated working past conventional retirement ages to gird themselves financially for longer life spans, expensive health care and reduced pension guarantees. The most recent recession has increased the need to extend working life. Home values, often a family’s most important asset, have been battered. Stock portfolios are only now starting to recover. According to a Gallup poll in April, more than a third of people not yet retired plan to work beyond age 65, compared with just 12 percent in 1995…. in the greater Seattle area, a fifth of those claiming extended unemployment benefits are 55 and older.

If average people think they won’t need help from government in the economy of the future, they are in for a rough surprise. You can talk about small government all you want, but people are going to need help.

One way people are being helped is with Health Care Reform. HCR reform means you can’t be kicked off a policy for getting sick and it eliminates  lifetime limits on polices. Already, and in the years, to come it will expand access to health insurance for millions of hard working Americans. Click here to read about how HCR will benefit working Americans.

Technology has been changing how people work for a long time. Mr. Korbee lost his job in ice delivery in the 1950’s because in-home refrigeration became accessible to almost all people.

I wonder how Mr. Korbee would have done if he lost a job today due to new technologies.  It seems that he might have had a tougher time than he did in 1957.

I know this—Reflexive bashing of government is not going help anybody get a job or get through hard times.

October 11, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

I Follow Our Laws And I Follow Baseball—Fight back And Take Charge

As I’ve stated before, I carry a copy of our U.S. Constitution with me at all times.

This is in case I am randomly accosted by somebody asserting that Health Care Reform has no basis in the Constitution.

I’ll tell these crazies—“I got you commerce clause right here.

Click this link to see all that Health Care Reform will do for you and the American people.  Do you want to go back the days were you could be kicked off your insurance for getting sick and where there are lifetime caps on policies?

These reforms are just the start of Health Care Reform’s benefits for the American people.

Above you see the Constitution with a baseball I bought at the Houston Astros’ game a few days ago.

It seems that the Astros ripped off the Obama logo to design that ball.

I am all-American. I follow our laws and I follow baseball.

Don’t let right-wing extremists define our laws and our  nation.

Fight back and take charge of our future.

October 6, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | 4 Comments

Morality Is In Large Part About Our Views On Public Questions

My friend David Jennings, a top conservative blogger and reflexive mouthpiece for the so-called Tea Party here in Houston, wrote the following in his blog Big Jolly Politics a few days ago–

“Remember folks: these vile, vulgar, angry bigots on the left HATE YOU because you try to live clean lives and do right by other people. No amount of coddling to their wishes will change that.

The post was about a liberal blogger in town that Mr. Jennings feels is off the mark in a variety of ways.

I’ve been thinking for a few days about these two sentences from Mr. Jennings.

I live a clean life by conventional standards. I’ve been married for ten years and have never cheated on my wife. I don’t do any drugs. I don’t smoke. I drink in moderation. I go to work five days a week and I pay my taxes. I vote in every election. Regular readers of this blog know I never use obscenities in the blog. Anybody who has ever shared a meal with me  at a restaurant knows that I’m as polite as could be and that I tip 20%. I am, in fact, quite conservative in many respects.

I live a clean life and try to do right by other people. And from what I know of Mr. Jennings, he values courtesy and hard work as well.

Here’s the difference between a conservative and a liberal —-A conservative likely favors repeal of the recently Health Care Reform that—Among many other helpful things— will help millions of Americans with the elimination of lifetime caps on policies, and the prohibiting of the practice of kicking people off insurance because they get sick.  A liberal does not likely favor repeal of Health Care Reform.

I’ll side with the person who puts human life over small government ideology.

Let’s say that a conservative  is in his or her own private life a wonderful person. I suppose this is possible. No type of person has a corner on right living. But what good will the private conduct of someone on the right do for our fellow Americans when health insurance is needed? Or when we need social security? Or when we need parks and libraries that are sufficiently funded?

Lot’s of really bad people love their spouses and love their kids.

Politics is about how we will run our society. It is about far more than private life.

In addition to how you live your private life, a test of character is are you willing to pay the taxes required for a decent society and not just for your own perceived gain?

The right wants to privatize every aspect of our lives. A view of good conduct that stops at private conduct is an insufficient view.

Character is about how you view the public sphere just as much as about how you conduct your private life.

We are obligated to each other by the simple fact that we exist.

Of course we must work if we are able. We must be kind to the people in our lives.

We must also see that morality involves progressive taxation, needed investment in our schools and parks, acceptance of people of all faiths, and Health Care Reform that will help millions of Americans.

These are aspects of morality just as much as how we live our private lives.

September 30, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Since He Won’t Debate, What Type Of Empty Chair Should be Set up For Rick Perry?

The League of Women Voters of the Houston Area and the Harris County Department of Education are hosting a debate for our Texas Governor’s Race.

This debate will be held at 6PM Sunday, October 3 at the Harris County Board of Education building located at 6300 Irvington Boulevard in Houston.

(Above–Incumbent Governor Rick perry refuses to debate this year. I think the League should set up an empty chair for the Governor. Above you see a Saddle Chair.  Maybe the Governor would attend if he could imagine himself a cowboy during the debate.)

The debate will be moderated by Melanie Lawson. Her name sounds familiar for those of you who live in Houston because she is an anchorperson on the TV news.

(Above–I think all Texans would enjoy seeing Governor Perry sitting in a Garden Egg chair. This chair was designed in 1968 by Peter Ghyczy.  Photo by Paulscf.)

The Democratic nominee for Governor—Bill White–-and the Green nominee–-Deb Shafto-–are scheduled to attend this debate.

The Libertarian nominee will be there as well. I don’t want to mention that person’s name. If you’re really a Libertarian, you’ll look it up yourself and not count on me to do that for you.

Though if you are a Libertarian, I bet you’ll take Social Security when it is time and I bet you’ll call the local fire department if your house is on fire. It is services for others that Libertarians don’t like.

( Governor Perry might attend the debate if chairs were set up in a palatial setting that reminds Mr. Perry of the $10,000 a month rental home he has been living in since the Governor’s mansion burned down. Picture taken by Hennrik Bennetsen.)

Incumbent Governor Rick Perry will not be at the debate. Mr. Perry is refusing to debate Mr. White and his other opponents.

It is not really so much that Governor Perry is afraid to debate Mr. White.  It is, instead, that Mr. Perry has a small lead in the polls and his base of supporters does not care if he debates or not. It does not serve the Governor to debate. The fact that a debate involving all candidates would serve the democratic process is not so important to the Governor. It is about that is best for Rick Perry instead of what is best for the people of Texas.

(Above–The League could bring a park bench in for the Governor.  Photo taken by James Perry.  Seeing a public asset, the Governor could seek to privatize the bench by selling it to a company that would charge a fee or toll to citizens who wished to sit on the bench.)

Listening to others in a debate can be difficult when your personal and political identity is often rooted in disliking people, and in being afraid of people not like yourself in our minority-majority state. This describes the mindset of many Tea Party/Republican voters in Texas.

By not debating and by refusing to meet with newspaper editorial boards, Mr. Perry helps his supporters live in their own private world.

It is world where Federal Health Care Reform is rejected even though so many in Texas have no health insurance.

(See here all that Health Care Reform does for hard working Americans. These are benefits that any American might require at any time.)

It is a world where treasonous talk of secession from our nation is okay.

It is world where the response to high school drop out rates, is to refuse federal education dollars that are correctly tied to maintaining a consistent level of education funding in upcoming years.

It is not such a nice world.

Hopefully, Mr. Perry will soon come to the realization that the people of Texas deserve to see all the candidates for Governor debating the issues on the same stage.

(Above—The chair Governor Perry merits most for his petulance. Photo taken by Yvwv.)

September 28, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Donation To Democratic National Committee—Consider What You Can Do As Election Nears

Above you see Franklin Roosevelt Action Figure, Andrew Jackson Action Figure, and George W. Bush Action Figure . They are standing with a $50 money order that they bought at the supermarket, and are going to send to the Democratic National Committee.

F.D.R.A.F. says that Health Care Reform is as close to a New Deal program that we going to see in our corporate owned nation. He reminds that HCR, among many helpful things, ends lifetime limits on policies, stops the practice of kicking people off insurance because they sick and offers free immunizations to kids. (Read about Health Care Reform on your own.)

Andrew Jackson A.F. says that in his day, slavery was expanded and Indian removal was aggressively pursued all in the name of expanded democracy and liberty. He says he would have done something about it all, but for the fact that he was in favor of all the bad things taking place.  Old Hickory says that in our day, the so-called Tea Party and the Republican Party use talk of expanded democracy and liberty to empower the rich even further and to make sure that millions won’t have access to health insurance. (A good to book to learn about the “evolution” of democracy in the first half of the 19th century is The Rise of American Democracy–Jefferson to Lincoln by Sean Wilentz. )

George W. Bush A.F. says that many of our problems are indeed his fault.

The donation does not change my view that the Democratic Party sometimes ignores the poor and urban voters who are often it’s most reliable supporters.

Nor does it mean that I’m any less frustrated with President Obama‘s failure to communicate effectively for progressive values.

But we are where we are, and we must move ahead past the upcoming election.

The Republican Party has from the moment President Obama took office said no to everything he has proposed. They never had any intention of saying anything other than saying no.

They have said no regardless of the severity of the recession, regardless of the millions without health insurance and regardless of the reality of climate change.

They don’t appear to care about the severity of these problems.

I suggest that you please consider what you can do to help Democratic candidates in the weeks ahead.

After the election is done, there will be plenty of time to discuss what comes next.

September 24, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

KIng Street Patriots, Tea Party & Republicans Have High Regard For Dead Black People

The so-called King Street Patriots, a local Tea Party cell in Houston, care a lot about black people when they are dead. It is just the living ones that they don’t worry so much about.

The King Street Patriots are taking part in an effort to clean the Olivewood Cemetery in Houston. It’s a campaign stunt by the Republican running against Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee in the 18th Congressional district of Texas.

Olivewood is a historic black cemetery in Ms. Jackson Lee’s district. Above is a picture of Olivewood that I took a few days ago.

At the same time they are tending with such respect for the dead, the King Street Patriots and the Republicans want to repeal Health Care Reform.

Here are some of the things that HCR accomplishes—

Insurers Will No Longer Be Able To:

  • Deny coverage to kids with pre-existing conditions. Health plans cannot limit or deny benefits or deny coverage for a child younger than age 19 simply because the child has a pre-existing condition like asthma.
  • Put lifetime limits on benefits. Health plans can no longer put a lifetime dollar limit on the benefits of people with costly conditions like cancer
  • Cancel your policy without proving fraud. Health plans can’t retroactively cancel insurance coverage – often at the time you need it most – solely because you or your employer made an honest mistake on your insurance application.
  • Deny claims without a chance for appeal. In new health plans, you now have the right to demand that your health plan reconsider a decision to deny payment for a test or treatment. That also includes an external appeal to an independent reviewer.

Consumers in New Health Plans Will Be Able to:

  • Receive cost-free preventive services. New health plans must give you access to recommended preventive services such as screenings, vaccinations and counseling without any out-of-pocket costs to you.
  • Keep young adults on a parent’s plan until age 26. If your health plan covers children, you can now most likely add or keep your children on your health insurance policy until they turn 26 years old if they don’t have coverage on the job.
  • Choose a primary care doctor, ob/gyn and pediatrician. New health plans must let you choose the primary care doctor or pediatrician you want from your health plan’s provider network and let you see an OB-GYN doctor without needing a referral from another doctor.
  • Use the nearest emergency room without penalty. New health plans can’t require you to get prior approval before seeking emergency room services from a provider or hospital outside your plan’s network – and they can’t require higher copayments or co-insurance for out-of-network emergency room services.

These are the facts. This is what the Tea Party/Republican Party opposes. And as the plan rolls out, millions will do not now have access to coverage will get access to coverage.

In 2007, 19.5% of black Americans had no health insurance. This was in comparison to 10.4% without insurance for whites. And these numbers were from before the recession.

Republicans had years to do something about the problem of access to health insurance in our nation. They did nothing.

Here is a story about average Americans who are now so much better off because they can get care.

The King Street Patriots, the Tea Party movement, and the Republican Party  have such regard for dead people, that they want to make sure we have as many dead people as possible from the lack of health insurance.

Yet you can bet your last dollar that just like with Social Security, these people will take the benefits of Health Care Reform when it serves their personal needs.

September 23, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

I Carry The U.S. Constitution With Me All The Time—I’ll Tell The Crazies What It Really Stands For

I’ve begun to carry the U.S. Constitution with me when I am out and about.

Above you see my copy of the Constitution being held and read by my friend Hamburger Wearing An Astros’ Hat.

I am walking around with a copy of the Constitution in case I am accosted by an advocate  of so-called “states rights” or I am confronted out of the blue by someone asserting that Health Care Reform is unconstitutional.

There are so many crazy people out there right now that Hamburger and I feel we need to be on the ready at all times.

For the states right crowd all I have to tell them is what part of ” In order to form a more perfect union” do you not understand?

The Constitution was written in large measure in response to the failures of the Articles of Confederation and the corruption of state legislatures.

As for Health Care Reform, The Commerce Clause of our Constitution allows extensive federal regulation of a variety of economic activities.

Click here to learn more about Health Care Reform.

A Republican is someone who wants to go back to when an insurance company could kick you off your policy because you got sick.  This is practice is now banned by HCR.

My copy of the Constitution is The Penguin Guide to the United States Constitution by Richard Beeman.

The book can fit in your back pocket or your purse and has both original texts and expert interpretation of our founding documents.

We can’t allow far-right extremists to misrepresent our past so they can steal our future. Learn the Constitution for yourself. Don’t get your notion from the ideological descendants of the same people who opposed Civil rights and who opposed the New Deal.

September 20, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Let Us Stay The Course

We keep hearing that liberals, progressives, and Democrats are in trouble in 2010.

But as Charles Blow writes in the New York Times, there is still hope.

From the column–

“Sure, some seats will change party control, but a landslide is hardly certain, particularly if Democrats can change their tune and energize their base. A New York Times/CBS News poll released this week asked respondents whom they would vote for in their own districts if the midterms were held today. Among those the poll determined to be likely voters, Republican candidates held a small edge. (Likely voter models are used to make predictions about the midterms.) However, among all registered voters, Democrats held a larger edge.”

We need to be upfront, as many Democrats running across the country are indeed being, about the accomplishment of Health Care Reform.

With HCR, there are no more lifetime limits on policies, you can’t be kicked off a policy because you get sick, and kids can’t be denied coverage because of pre-existing conditions.

These benefits are not nearly the entirety of HCR. Take the time to learn more about the program.

Ask people in your life who oppose HCR just why they feel the way they do.

As for the election ahead, let’s be like that ship you see above that is staying the course in Galveston Bay.

Just like that ship, let us all stay the course.

September 19, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , | Leave a comment

The Unattended Lifeguard Station—Tea Party America

Here is an unattended life guard station from the beach in Galveston, Texas. I took this picture two days ago.

This is the Tea Party/Republican view of our society. They feel we should all be left alone to fight the rip currents of life.

Under the Tea Party/ Republican Party, we’d have privatized social security that rises and falls at the whims of the markets. Is this what you want when it is time to retire? What happens when you want to retire after a lifetime of working and the market is down?

We’d go back to health care where you can be kicked off coverage because you get sick.  The new Health Care Reform bill prevents this from happening anymore.

We’d have schools and parks starved for resources even more so than now.

We’d have financial institutions deregulated and food safety regulations stripped. Do you want another financial collapse and more food recalls?

Do you think for a moment that the private sector will do the right thing without being watched over? Do you think for a moment that your hard work will matter when you get sick or when it is time to retire?

The current hard times are in good degree the responsibility of Wall Street greed, George W. Bush, and of individual citizens who bought more than they could afford.

The election coming up is about competing ideas as much as it is about individual candidates.  It is, of course, also about the legitimate frustration people are feeling in tough times.

We’ve got to decide how we are going to live. It may be satisfying to vent anger. But when all is said and done, how will that expression of anger serve you when you need the help you’ve earned through your work and your care of your family?

If we don’t look out for each other, and don’t have a government able to help those caught in an unexpected tide, then our economic storms and hard times may for many of us never let up.

September 17, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | 2 Comments