“Telling it like it is”, it’s time to quit Chris Christie

Is anyone paying attention to Chris Christie (R-NJ) and his run for president? Which more resembles a dive off a cliff. In the time it took Christie to decide to run he lost his remaining support. Christie should have never ran, I believed that and by the looks of his current support, (2-tier candidate at debates, less-than 1% ) I was not alone. Christie has little money to compete with about $1.3 million (1)left in his coffers.

So to steal his campaign slogan, “telling it like it is” I’ll tell you why he remains in the race.

For Chris Christie’s future!

Christie is hanging around with the hopes of somebody listening, albeit another candidate. He will need a job when his second term expires and maybe that top job is the top cop of the nation? Or some other capacity in a Republican Administration. That is if the R’s win naturally.

Chris Christie’s time is limited in this race. As long as the 1.3 million lasts he will remain in the race. After, he will make some speech from behind (partially behind) a podium somewhere in New Jersey. He will say some B.S. on how the campaign didn’t connect with voters. Which is not “telling it like it is”.  Promising to help in any way he can for the Republican nominee. Leaving out naturally the truth. That Chris Christie is ready to accept a cabinet position or job if anyone is offering.

It is time to quit!  “Telling it like it is” Chris Christie should have never started.

Source: 1>http://www.fec.gov/fecviewer/CandidateCommitteeDetail.do?candidateCommitteeId=P60008521&tabIndex=1

Superdelegate’s, Bernie and the establishment candidate

Recently there have been articles written in regard’s to Hillary Clinton wrapping up nearly 440 superdelegates and essentially the Democratic nomination. This all before the first primary vote has been cast? First I guess we should quickly discuss what a Superdelegate is. Started in the 1980’s they are unelected and are elected officials (Governor’s, Congressman, other party officials). Basically a  way for the Democratic party to take care of their political friends.

The question, “will these superdelegates go against the voters choice in the primaries? Not since they were created have the went against the public.  “Superdelegates have never tilted the nomination” http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2015-08-28/clinton-s-superdelegate-tipping-point.

I myself was disheartened when I read of the Clinton/Superdelegate commitments. It has been a concern in the past and was written about on the Daily Kos who quoted a piece by Mother Jones from 2013. http://www.dailykos.com/story/2015/07/02/1398743/-How-will-Bernie-overcome-the-superdelegate-problem

Could it be more of the media in their writing, supporting Clinton and ignoring Sanders? Would the Democratic Party endorse a candidate who was not the real winner of the nomination and the voters choice? Too many questions that are unanswered and won’t be until we get closer to the convention. So for those non-Hillary supporters…Now is not the time to quit! It all could be a ploy to shift your vote to the establishment candidate. Again, they have never tilted the nomination!


Predator’s for your money are everywhere

Recently I put an ad on Craigslist, selling an electric handicapped scooter. This was my first time at this platform and I found it rather easy to set up an account and put the ad on, including pictures! The ad was up for about 2 weeks with no respondent’s. When I finally did get one I was rather surprised, it came in a form of a text message.

“Hello, in regard to your wheelchair on craigslist, I would like to buy it because of my health situations. Kindly text me back or email me A.groh234@gmail.com to know more of its condition and last asking price. Ann “

The above was the first of a few text messages that went back and forth. I include the email so as YOU the reader may protect yourself from this individual.

What continued in the emails quickly led me to the conclusion that this individual was attempting to rip me off. Agreeing to purchase at a follow-up price, they stated they were going to have a shipper pick up the item. Stating with and following up with an official looking email, they sent the money to my pay pal account I specified and included the shipping. I was supposed to send shipping money through Western Union to a specified person (shipper). I did not agree to do this, especially considering the shipper was about 2700 miles away from my location. Calling them out on their attempted rip-off, I never heard from them again.

In thinking about this altercation, obviously there is money to be made doing such trickery. These “people” surf the likes of Craigslist looking for expiring ads. Assuming the sellers are becoming desperate after a few weeks of a listed ad, the seller would step outside of their comfort zone to make the sale? I wasn’t and I hope that telling my experience you won’t be either.

So be wary of anyone through the Craigslist platform. And as for “Ann” if that was her real identity. Here’s the phone number too! 718-765-5511

Socialism, Bernie Sanders, hate of capitalism, reality

Bernie Sander’s is a socialist and doesn’t believe in capitalism. Sanders has fought off this label and accusation with some success, but  the hits just keep on coming with no end in sight. If Sanders is a Socialist and hater of capitalism, is that so bad? Is capitalism all that great? These ideas have been sparked by recent personal events and a television commercial.

Emergency Card I carry noting placement of stents
Emergency Card I carry noting placement of stents

The personal event:

I have been on the mend now for five weeks after suffering a heart attack (that doctors said was major). I  had  stents (3) placed in the heart after it was found I had two blockages of 100%. I am only 49 years old. But like many American’s I have burned the candle at both ends. Ate basically whatever I wanted. Enjoyed alcohol, and cigarettes. Basically enjoyed many available capitalist products of American life that many of us enjoy. I blame nobody for my predicament but myself.

That is until I saw a Wendy’s commercial.

Junior cheese burger, 6 chicken nuggets, fries and a drink, $4.00.  Heck yeah that’s a lot of food  for the money. It’s also a lot of FAT, Calories and Cholesterol too! So in the capitalist society that we live in, it is okay to sell food that has more fat and cholesterol in one meal ( for $4.00 to boot)  then is recommended by the country’s health department in an entire day? Yes it is to many of us. Can you recall the anger and push back when New York City put limits on the size of selling  a soda? The Nanny State! Screamed the likes of Hannity!!” telling people what they could do and not do.” But  now post heart attack I feel differently. Could I have benefited if there was some government intervention when it came to my fast-food habits and other habits?

More on Capitalism>

From our wonderful capitalist system that allows to sell huge amounts of fat and unhealthy food to millions of American’s we have some winners besides the obvious, McDonald’s, BK and Wendy’s.

1> Health Care: The cost of 4.5 days I spent in the ER, ICU and getting surgery to put in the 3 stents? Roughly $195,000. Thank God for saving me and more importantly, blessing me with good health care.

>Nearly 800,000 Americans die each year from heart disease, 1 in every 3 deaths. By 2030 the cost of heart disease will cost $818 billion, with lost productivity exceeding $275 billion. (source cdcfoundation.org)

2> The drug companies. I am now on three medications with my cost for 3 month’s being $85.00. The insurance cost just for one month over $275.00

Can we blame capitalism for America’s poor health? Drug companies, hospitals and doctors are receiving windfall profits off of our poor health. Yet we hear many complaining of the rising cost of prescription drugs and health care. With politicians promising action! Is it that the politicians are too late? They really need to address the real issue (poor diets/health/habits) before the damage is done. This would include Senator Sanders.

What do I mean by address?

Federal standards on requiring all restaurants to supply nutritional information on their products. Packaging that clearly shows high sodium, fat or cholesterol.

A health tax on businesses/restaurants and food manufacturer’s that sell food that is unhealthy for consumers.  This tax will directly support medicare and health initiatives.

Hating Capitalism? It certainly depends on what parts of capitalism that you look at. Is the purchaser of products responsible for their purchases? Example:  McDonald’s serves a double quarter pound burger that has 70% your daily allowance for fat, add a large fry and you are at 94% ( nutrition.mcdonalds.com)   should they hold some responsibility to their customers health? Or maybe the federal government needs to step in as the government in NY City did and force business to comply to a healthier standard? 

Back to Senator Sanders and his alleged hate for capitalism. To my knowledge I have not heard him discussing any of the above. All huge profits for business! These profits made at the expense of us, all the citizens of the United States. Could we make different choices? Sure we could and many of us do. But many of us don’t and can’t or won’t. That is until it is too late, even then many of us don’t change. ( While in the waiting room of my cardiologist I heard a heart patient giving excuses to his doctor on why he couldn’t quit smoking. ) Tobacco companies have been held to some level of responsibility but still manufacture and sell their unhealthy products.

My position on Senator Sanders, he isn’t socialist enough and he doesn’t hate capitalism nearly enough. But maybe he’ll read this and add these issues to his presidential agenda.

Hate of capitalism? Balance is the key word, a balanced capitalist system is what we need for a happy, prosperous, long healthy life!



Sanders closing in on Clinton

Last nights CNN Democratic debate who won? Clinton who enjoyed frontrunner status coming in didn’t trip to lose ground to Sanders. Sanders did deliver his message and was a solid second. Candidates Webb and Chafee, let’s say now is the time to now out of the race.
O’Malley, answered the questions with experience. He was also uninspiring and in need of a personality infusion of some kind.
Clinton ran away from her TPP position flip. Sanders stumbled on his votes on the Brady Gun Bill.
What we learned from the first debate? It’s a three horse race with the third needing much help.
Sanders comments on Clinton’s emails? He should be going for her throat, she’s vulnerable.

NO Union endorsement for Trump

Are labor unions giving serious thought to endorsing Trump?  According to Sean Higgins of the Washington Examiner they are. Specifically the CWA and the Teamsters. In his 10-4-15 article Higgins discusses how the Teamsters put off their 2016 candidate endorsement and cited a Fox report it was caused by member support for Trump.  The same scenario for the CWA, as Chris Shelton CWA president stated “If our members come out with Trump we will endorse Trump.”  And from there an article is born and not born with much logic or sense.

The statement by the CWA’s Shelton, is merely a political one. What is he going to say if his union hasn’t endorsed anyone? If the membership wants Trump they can screw off we won’t endorse him? Shelton does have to win an election. The Teamsters, in their statement said very little on who they would possibly endorse. If Fox News reports that some in the Teamsters is leaning toward Trump? That is a possible news worthy article? Who did they interview or poll? One truck driver driving cross country on the roads of Nebraska in the middle of a corn field? Fox would be far from a reliable source in regard to unions. And this certainly smells of “spin”.

Higgins eventually ends the article with possibly some reality. That “union interest in Trump is a grassroots movement.” Again the one truck driver in Nebraska?

Could there be some in the rank and file that like Trump? Sure there is , we have stupid everywhere. Is it enough to get Trump an endorsement? That answer would be a resounding NO. Trump is no friend of Unions or workers. When he owned Trump Plaza in Atlantic City, how much did he spend to thwart the organizing drive (s) of his casinos? A good question for the Republican front-runner and one FOX or Higgins for that matter wouldn’t ask.

Stop misleading the public Mr. Higgins for the benefit of views.

Scott Walker ends run for president

Scott Walker (R-WI) has ended his campaign for president. With his anti-union, and from our perspective anti-family theme, Walker connected with few. This would make us wonder how Walker won in Wisconsin at all.

Lets say goodbye to Walker and by the grace of god may we never see him in National politics again.

John Kasich (R-Ohio) respects teachers?

“……and respect teachers” GOP Presidential candidate John Kasich in closing out his conversation on Meet The Press on 9/20/15 was referring to???? His love of teachers? Honestly, I have not spent much time following Kasich’s governorship. Additionally I have spent ZERO time following his run for president (as his polling numbers doesn’t inspire interest.) Speaking of “respect for the institution of teaching”, a very UN-GOP position caught my ear and interest.

So typing in Google, Kasich, Ohio and teachers, I found a litany of recent posts on Kasich and teachers. “If I were King I’d abolish teacher lounges” and many variations of Kasich’s “joke”. Kasich very well might respect the institution of teaching as long as the institution has only ONE member. Kasich would like to limit the public sector’s collective bargaining rights. Going as far as saying “break the back of organized labor in schools”.  Performance pay,  Kasich’s current budget requires this system in the school district if they are receiving federal Race to the Top funding.

Kasich, we have learned quite a bit about him and we can thank the Ohio governor. If it wasn’t for his attempt to misrepresent,  we wouldn’t have even thought about him. So I guess his statement worked. Even if it was just for a minute.

source: https://stateimpact.npr.org/ohio/tag/john-kasich/

Pope tickets on sale now!

It took just a mere 30 seconds for the 10,000 FREE tickets to see the Pope gone. And in mere seconds, some of the lucky recipients had them up for sale on Ebay, Craigslist. I heard on KYW 1060 News Radio that bundled  with transit passes, other opportunities to see the Pope and, a place to stay the price is as high as $5,000. Now this seems a bit high for a ticket that someone came in possession of simply by the luck of the draw. And considering the forum? Should they be profiting?

The fire of hell may be lapping at their feet! I find it repulsive and there is no other word. But I also find it repulsive that “licensed” items are for sale as well. Along with I am sure knock-off tee’s and other items to commemorate his visit.

So my idea is this….A tee-shirt: The Pope in all his official wear leaning over the edge of the rail at the Ben Franklin Bridge Walkway,,,, Puking over the side with the caption… Capitalism, profiting on my free tickets? Wait till the Pearly Gates.

Trump leading the GOP with plain rhetoric

Donald Trump’s campaign for president seems to be gaining some steam and he owes it to his policy ideas? Not exactly but it seems that throwing out wild statements with just a bit of an idea, is enough so far to keep on top. The latest being the “30 million illegal immigrants he will send packing.” Trumps number is a bit off according to the experts by about 19 million.  He must be getting his number from Ann Coulter. According to many experts the number is more in the range of 11-12 million.  http://www.politifact.com/florida/statements/2015/jul/28/donald-trump/donald-trump-says-number-illegal-immigrants-30-mil/

Trump has went on to say that the wall on our southern border will be built under his leadership and MEXICO will finance it.

Trump on the 14th Amendment? Birth in this country should not be the sole qualifier to citizenship. or as The Donald has stated: a pregnant woman about to give birth, drags herself over the border and gives birth and now that child is a citizen.” (anchor baby)

Trump’s comments which are pushing his polling numbers are now moving the  other candidates in conversation. Discussing illegal immigration when they were not. Is Trump wrong on the issue? He’s certainly wrong with his numbers and with his rhetoric. Realistically we are not going to deport 11 million (or to Trumps number 30 million.  And building a wall financed by Mexico? Rather difficult to imagine. Just as it was difficult to imagine 3 short months ago that Trump would be leading the GOP.


Bernie Sanders leaving Clinton in the dust

Recent polls show Senator Bernie Sanders ahead of Hillary Clinton in polls in New Hampshire 44-37 percent. http://www.bostonherald.com/news_opinion/us_politics/2015/08/poll_bernie_sanders_surges_ahead_of_hillary_clinton_in_nh_44_37

This the first time Clinton has trailed at any time during the campaign. Does it spell the end for Clinton or will she come out with a new theme? Connecting with voters, Clinton has not done. But more important in this race, the voters so far seem to be leaning toward anyone but the establishment candidate. As we see on the Republican side with Trump handily beating his opponents. And getting bumps in polling via the mainstream media’s attacks on him.

Despite  little media coverage from the major news outlets Sanders is getting his message out. What will happen when the major media outlets start giving him his just attention? Sanders has not and I hope he will continue his campaign on the issues. He has not attacked Clinton. Sticking with his vision of what America should be working toward. And it seems to be reflecting in his polling.

With roughly 15 month’s left, now is not the time to anoint anyone the winner.Confirmed by this particular poll.  At this point what is obvious is,  the over used word “change” is on the voters mind.


Trump taking commanding lead

The first debate of the 2016 Presidential contest is in the books. And the winner? Well it wasn’t the voters. The opening question of pledging support to the party if they weren’t the party choice,  was rather disingenuous. And as the intent to bait the front-running candidate,  Donald Trump flapped his jaws and revealed  what we already knew, he is not a party guy. But with that said, not being part of the party norm might not be a bad thing. The questions during the debate showed us the tired GOP and the same tired responses.  From the War on Terror to family values the debate could have been a rerun of any GOP debate of the last two decades. The importance of debate winners and losers will be made and in those the public will trend a candidate up  or down.

By no means is this post a recap  or will be.  What I saw Thursday was a Fox Entertainment program not  a debate. The losers of the debate? The voter, from the lack of substance, and the clear FOX plan to eradicate Trump from the race. The continued FLAP in the aftermath with the moderator Kelly? More of the continued push by FOX (with the Koch brothers in the shadows?) to move toward their candidate of choice.

The result’s since the debate has been Trump trending higher not lower. Could it be that the voters already know what Trump is? Could they already know that he is not politically correct? Could it be that the Republican is tired of the establishment candidate?






The Politics of Income Disparity

If you work long hours. Sacrifice time from your family. And WORK HARD, you can achieve the American Dream. This my friends is the GOP plan for you, me and the rest of the 99%. Some may scoff at this idea but how do you explain the GOP’s platform? They use statements as above, and other statements, labels, etc. They want to make you believe that the dream is within reach. But why would they use lies and deceit on their constituents? To get you to work harder for one, making their friends, BIG BUSINESS profits! And profits sure are up and where is our piece of the pie?

According to payscale.com America’s average CEO compensation is $155,350. The pay ranges from $72,766-$410,190. These numbers are far from the ones framed on news networks, where the numbers are in the MILLIONS. As is the case for Discovery Communications David Zaslav, who in 2014 made over $156 million. http://www.aflcio.org/Corporate-Watch/Paywatch-2014/100-Highest-Paid-CEOs

No wonder the Top 1% own 40% of the economy! http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2011/10/03/334156/top-five-wealthiest-one-percent/

Now what to do? Do we elect representatives that support capping CEO pay? I think most of us can agree that the average of $155,350 is not a ridculous amount of money. But $156 million? again that is just one person. And this would be where the GOP use these words in LOUD tones…income redistribution! They may possibly say “taking away the incentive(s) for people to work hard. And sadly too many of us are  not understanding their tricks. How many time have you heard someone say this and they aren’t even RICH? Our economy and the future wealth of the 99% is much like a lottery. Not tickets but who you are born to. If you are born in the richest like CEO David Zaslav family, you will have it made. If you are anywhere in the 99%, well you might just be playing the lottery or gambling at a casino in the hopes of getting rich. And many of us already are. In 2014 gross receipts of state lotteries totaled over $70 billion. http://www.statista.com/statistics/215265/sales-of-us-state-and-provincial-lotteries/ (Buying a dream?)

The majority of American’s have hooked on to a dream, “The American Dream”that is no longer in reach.  Good paying jobs are not in our economy. They have been shipped away to countries who can make products far cheaper, because labor is far cheaper. One may call it slave labor. And America’s future looks not better, but far worse with the Trans Pacific Partnership on the horizon. More lost jobs, declining wages so the jobs that would remain can compete!?

The only way our future can possibly look different is for the voters to become active. Understand the candidates and understand what/who they really represent. We can talk about limiting the terms of Congress, and we can demand it! But nobody in Congress will listen or vote for a bill that would cut their own throats. But we have the power to change this, in the voting booth.

What we need to remember is simple we need to ask WHY.  How did we get to the point where Social Security needs to be reformed? Because those we trusted did not pay the bill. Now we must? Why are most of America’s state pensions in the red and heading to insolvency? Because those states chose not to pay their bill. Why is America’s inter-structure crumbling? Because our government has chose tax-breaks for the rich over investment in our country. The list can go on but i am sure you get the point.

The politics of income disparity is complicated. But you and I will never fully understand the issue until we ask the question, “Why” to any of these. More importantly “Why did you let this happen and what will you do?” this is certainly not partial to just Republicans. All incumbents should be held equally to task to answer the TOUGH questions.


Desperate, I crossed the line into Walmart

Confused, lost, and in a foreign place; scared beyond belief. I searched for an alternative. Asked for help from strangers. But with time not on my side I had no choice but to enter Walmart. This the first time in my 49 years of breathing on this planet I entered the place I believe is the worst place for workers, business and humanity itself. I was in search of a tent to protect myself on the beach from the suns rays ( made worse over the years by capitalism’s pollution) Here is the story:

Out-of-State and with an outdated GPS in hand I was on day 3 of my beach vacation. My pop-up party tent that I brought was no longer usable. I needed a new or risk being burned beyond recognition over the remaining four days. I searched the local beach stores on the island to no avail. The regular beach umbrella’s is all they had and it was not what I was looking for. Each stop resulted in the same results, no tent, plenty of umbrella’s and the suggestion from the store(s) employee, “have you checked Walmart?” Each time I heard the suggestion I bit my tongue, thanked the employee and, dejectedly walked out. After four of these stops and no other stores in the area left I looked at my partner in the shopping adventure and said “what now?” She softly stated the obvious, “we have no choice, either get burned all week or head to Walmart.” She suggested that she would go it alone to save me from the horror of entering into a Walmart. I greatly appreciated the sacrifice but there would be no way Id throw her to the lions. (besides the tent would be far too heavy for her to carry).

We found the Walmart a few miles off the island. Parked took a deep breath, and headed for the doors. We entered looked around the Super Center for the tent and saw the same umbrella’s.  we needed to find a store employee to check if they had them and more importantly get out as fast as we could. The first employee took us to the umbrella’s where we just were. He did not know what we were looking for. Talking to a second employee, the Stores manager came up and offered his services. Realizing he did not have what we were looking for he strangely became angry at himself. “I hate when we lose a sale!!” Turning to his employees, “we need to get them in stock, we can’t lose a sale” Rather a strange reaction I must say. that is unless his life-blood (job) depends on these sales which they do I am sure of that. Apologizing more than a few times, the other employee suggested Lowes. I couldn’t get out quick enough! The Lowes, about 14 miles away.

Our experience with the employee’s at Walmart was just fine, friendly and more than willing to help us. Being inside, my skin crawled. Understanding what Walmart does to it’s employees, suppliers and ultimately to America’s consumers how could have I crossed the line?

Desperation will make you do things and go places where you might never go. It happened, but I did escape and Walmart still has not made 1 cent from me. I just hope that I am never in that place of desperation again. We have many American’s that are that desperate each day. To feed their families, to clothe them. For those who are not? Maybe just travel that 14 miles to spend your money elsewhere. LOWES did save the day, they had the tent.

GOP in disarray? Poll numbers indicate they are

Despite Donald Trump, Trump leads in GOP polls. Trump after his remarks about John McCain still maintains a lead, doubling second place Scott Walker. With a Fox sponsored GOP debate coming up August 6 in Cleveland, ranking is important. The planned debate will allow for just the top 10 of the 27 candidates to participate. Between now and the debate The Donald still has time to knock himself out. Unlikely even for him but, possible.

Is the GOP in disarray or is this just a brief period in their history (where the polled have lost their minds.) ? Early polls mean little. Do we remember the 9-9-9 plan??? That was the very brief GOP front-runner Herman Cain, who in the fall of 2011 was in the lead. By the end of fall 2011 Cain was out of the race, leaving Dec. 3, 2011. (wikipedia.org)

Early poll’s and will they impact the overall process? Well in the case of debates they most certainly will. Trump will have a spot on stage (most likely) for the first GOP debate. Candidates with some actual political experience will be left on the sidelines. (Kasich, Jindal, Pataki, and Santorum ).

So is this 27 candidate race for the GOP nomination good for the people if they don’t get to hear them on the issues? Poll’s mean little early but mean a heck of a lot to those outside of top-10.

Moving America Back to the Middle: Opinion on the Politics that Affect Labor, Its Unions and the Middle Class