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.

Proposed term limits for Congress

Dead on arrival? Back in May, Representative Ron DeSantis (R-Fla) introduced legislation imposing term-limits for Congress. Under his proposed bill House members could serve a maximum of three terms. Senators could serve a maximum of two terms. (Six years and twelve years.) The bill would not impact any incumbent which DeSantis believes would make the bill more appealing. “reconciling the self-interest of members of Congress with the public’s desire to see these changes enacted..” The bill also has three sponsor’s all Republicans.

This is yet another attempt by a few to change the Constitution establishing term-limits. In 2013, a Gallop poll had 75% of Americans supporting term-limits.  Though considering we have heard nothing on the subject in the past two months we would have to assume the bill is dead. As for the bill, exempting those already in Congress would make any meaningful change a long way off.  In 2014, 96.4% of incumbents were re-elected to Congress when they had just a 11% approval rating. (politifact.com)

So it begs to ask the question> if 75% of Americans support term-limits and are unhappy with Congress, why are we re-electing them at a 96.4% rate? 

My theory is two-fold. 1> not enough people vote. 2> the people that are voting don’t know the candidates.

So do we need term-limits? Or do “We the People” need to get a little smarter with our vote?

Recent poll shows income divide is no problem for GOP

A recent Quinnipiac University poll among potential IOWA caucus participants shows 70% of Republicans believe the government should do nothing about the income divide in the United States. The Democrats surveyed, 91% believe the government should act. The poll totaled 1427 participants. The poll discussed other issues such as immigration (illegal), ISIL and sending in ground troops and candidate experience questions. The section of the poll that is interesting is the income divide question. I guess first and foremost we must assume that the majority of Republicans polled are not among those at the bottom of the economic ladder. How the questions are asked and the issue framed, a second factor in what is and will be the largest issue in the upcoming election.

Again how the question is framed.. so let’s say the question includes the government intervenes in the income slide of the 99%. In their intervention, they create good paying jobs that can support a family. Jobs that will afford the government collection of new taxes. Jobs that would eliminate people from the social welfare system. More tax revenue, less dependence on social services. Would the same 70% of Republicans still say for the government not to intervene?

Poll’s how you frame the question, very important. I would hope that if the question on income divide was asked in my suggested fashion that number would go down. That is unless they are all in the TOP 1%.

Chris Christie joins crowded GOP field

Chris Christie 2016, the 27th candidate to join the GOP field. Being a New Jersey native I have seen close up the  horror of his leadership. As recently as last week,  Christie single handily wrecked the future of New Jersey. The state legislature sent Christie a budget that would firmly address the state pension system (as in paying the bill). Christie promptly got out the pen and line vetoed the remedy. Why? Because of his continued belief that taxing the millionaires less will bring investment and jobs. Christie’s NJ  ranks near last in job creation, and is near the top in unemployment. Christie has stuck with this system of giving the top 1% tax breaks through his entire time as governor. So despite the failure of the states economy, Christie has remained consistent for the past 6 years. (Isn’t this the definition of insanity?)

As for some of his past: have we forgotten the use of the State Police helicopter for his personal use? Christie did pay back the taxpayer but it brings into question judgement, does it not? Or the more recent bridgegate. Though no direct connection was made to Christie, it is under his watch, his administration. We may consider his treatment of others during “town hall’s” when someone disagree’s with him. Yelling people down, calling them stupid!?

This and much more awaits those who have interest in getting to know the candidate. You can search in our tag cloud on our homepage  Christie and find plenty on his time as New Jersey’s governor.

The fact is that Christie is a failure as governor of New Jersey. He has shown he cannot budget, or fix the ailing economy of the state. Christie is a JOKE. How long will it take the nation to figure this out? With 26 other candidates to chose from, I expect it won’t take too long. Maybe after Iowa he will be done.

The GOP 2016 candidates list continues to expand

The GOP candidate list, how big is big enough? And what does it mean? Well, as for the list, I can’t imagine it getting much larger but who would have thought it would be as big as it is!? Currently we have  twenty-six (26) Republican hopefuls with the recently added Donald Trump and Bobby Jindal. While some may think this is good for the Republican Party (as in choices), I do not.  After Iowa (possibly before) you will see some or many of these “candidates” disappear. Money will vet out most of the 26 and maybe 6 will make it beyond Iowa. So those who are declaring 26 candidates great, think of this. In the 2012 Iowa Caucus there were 120,046 votes cast for Republican candidates. Rick Santorum the winner with 29,839 votes (24.56%). Six candidates competed in the GOP caucus. projecting roughly the same amount of voters, how many will it take to have a winner? 8,000 votes? A far cry from getting a pulse on what a national election will look like. So is 8,000 a measure of the pulse point of what a national election would be like?

Their names in the limelight oh just so briefly, this is STUPID beyond comprehension. Thank god for IOWA they can vet out the stupid and bring the number to a reasonable list, say 3.

As of today the candidates:

  1. Skip Andrews
  2. Michael Bickelmeyer
  3. Kerry Bowers
  4. Jeb Bush
  5. Ben Carson
  6. Dale Christenson
  7. Ted Cruz
  8. Brooks Cullison
  9. John Dummett
  10. Mark Everson
  11. Carly Fiorina
  12. Lindsey Graham
  13. Jim Hayden
  14. Chris Hill
  15. Mike Huckabee
  16. Bobby Jindal
  17. Michael Kinlaw
  18. George Pataki
  19. Rand Paul
  20. Rick Perry
  21. Michael Petyo
  22. Marco Rubio
  23. Brian Russel
  24. Rick Santorum
  25. Jefferson Sherman
  26. Donald Trump

The Confederate Flag a symbol of history, very bad history.

The debate, what does the Confederate flag mean to you? The recent church massacre in South Carolina has exponentially increased the debate. Flying the flag on government property, this should not be of debate at all. We in the United States have just one flag, the Stars and Stripes. The second flag, one of the 50 states that you live in. There is NO DEBATE. One country and one state. The government(s) do not need to comment, or explain this position. (period with emphasis) It is time for these politicians to make a stand where the Confederate Flag is in use.

The discussion that some type of pride exists around the confederate flag? Which is also associated with the Nazi flag. How can it be denied that the Confederate flag represents slavery.The support of slavery and the war that was because of slavery? Those of us who believe in the confederate flag either do not know history or are ignoring it. Or maybe they really believe in it? None of these three thoughts are good. Meaning our country has not moved forward in the least. You cannot learn from the past if you are not willing to accept what really was. Let’s stop being stupid.

God Bless the Stars and Stripes.

americanflag

 

The end of UNIONS via Scott Walker-R or at our own hands

Scott Walker-R Wisconsin, the governor that brought Right-to-Work to the state and now, the hopeful presidential candidate that will bring RTW to the nation. The quote below comes from a piece that I wrote after Walker won his recall election and is based off the breakdown of the demographic of the voters. (link included to entire post)

“As for the union movement, they will also have to wait for rock bottom, sad to say but becoming more evident with each passing day. Educate, you can provide the information but how will you get them to listen or read?”  http://defenderofthemiddleclass.com/scott-walker-and-unions-the-people-have-not-hit-rock-bottom

Walker champion’s “a smaller federal government, with the exception of involving it in Right to Work.” Walker has stated he would put his support behind efforts in states where legislators support RTW. This obviously bad for the working man. But what effect did it have in Wisconsin? Since Walker signed into law RTW, the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) membership has went from 63,000 members to 20,000. This loss of membership at the hands of Walker? Or the union members themselves?

The answer to the above is, THE UNION MEMBERS THEMSELVES. The automatic collection of dues is lost and the closed shop is lost to RTW. THE MEMBER, must voluntarily pay the dues and for that matter be a union member. Why has the membership vanished? keep in mind, the UNION must still bargain for the NON-MEMBERS as well as the remaining members. So the blame rests at the feet of the former membership, who also reap the rewards of union protections.

The reality> The 43,000 who chose to be NON-MEMBERS are freeloading scumbag’s. Taking advantage of the system by accepting the rewards of UNIONS and not paying for them. This will come to an end if Walker and Republicans have their way. We will not be talking RTW and NON-Members if it becomes national. The unions will lose far too much membership and dues to continue to exist. The Republicans and big business will win. Then all of us, current members and these non-members will begin the remaining journey to the bottom. All because far too many of us want something for NOTHING.

 

 

Governor Christie, Courts, screwing the worker yet again

When Governor Christie first took office he bullied his way through the state legislature in pension reform. Today, with the affirmation of the court(s) Christie once again will bypass this obligation. The result of this inaction will further put those who participate in the program in deep peril. What will lawmakers and Governor Christie do? This question you can answer yourself by reading the first sentence again, specifically the last two words “pension reform”.

The time has long passed to hold our ELECTED OFFICIALS accountable to those they represent. The debacle that is now the State Pension System is quickly approaching BUST. And this skid has been caused by ignoring payments. Obviously, Christie can’t be trusted, as pension reform was supposed to be handled with increasing future payments.Christie promised to make the full payment(s) under a 2011 law he signed to put the pension system back on solid financial ground. Lawmakers promised to make increased annual payments to the fund after years of governors short-changing it. In exchange workers have paid more for their pension and health benefits. Last June, the state courts backed Christie’s deceit when it ruled that Christie could cut that year’s payment from $1.58 billion to $696 million because the revenue shortfall had created a fiscal emergency. Tuesday, the State  Supreme Court has also continued to back Christie’s play with a  5-to-2 decision to not properly fund.

First and foremost the fiscal emergency was created by Christie himself was it not? His budget, his projections and tax policy. Christie who some believe is a potential presidential candidate has failed in all areas of budget management. He has not adjusted his views on taxes and revenue. This is why the pension system is shorted yet again. So what’s the next step? Increase the pension and health care contributions for state workers? Or what is very likely kick the can a bit further down the road until its complete collapse. Sounds like the Federal Governments plan for Social Security.

Pope Francis teams with Aramark to hawk keepsakes

Long before Pope Francis arrives in Philadelphia his image will be all over the city of brotherly love. In the name of keepsakes. Tee-Shirts, key-chains medals and tote bags. Even a Pope Francis doll. Aramark will be distributing the products, the Philadelphia based food and facilities company. (I first became aware of the deal listening to Philadelphia’s KYW 1060) The Pope related items are now on sale with prices starting at just $5.00! You can get them online by …………..

I wonder how many of us might struggle with the idea of selling the Pope on tee-shirts, key-chains, etc. Is this what Jesus would have done? Or would he enter the online store, turn over the tables, and destroy the merchandise? I wonder???

I am not judging, but wonder how many of us believes it demeans his position as the leader of the Catholic Church, Jesus’s #1 on earth.

 

Democratic field getting larger with Martin O’Malley entering race

Martin O’Malley has announced his candidacy for the 2016 Democratic nomination for president. O’Malley the two-term Maryland Governor certainly has plenty of experience to run on. And also lose on.

O’Malley is a left-democrat, signing into law, same-sex-marriage,  and granting discounted tuition for some illegal immigrants at universities. O’Malley repealed the states death penalty and was the steward of stricter gun control. What O’Malley is really known for is raising taxes. During his time as Governor of Maryland, he raised the states sales tax, income tax on high earners, the gas tax  (first time in 20 years), and increased the corporate tax rate.

Increasing the states minimum wage occurred under O’Malley. Violent crime was reduced. Education spending was increased with the help of the state welcoming in the casino industry.Crime was down, education spending up, minimum wage increased all good qualities. In regard to O’Malley being a tax and spend democrat, he did inherit a $1.7 billion budget deficit in 2007.

“Opinion:

Discounts on education for “some illegal aliens”? I would be against this  anywhere in the United States. We have hard-working American’s who cannot afford to go to college. We also have hard-working American families scrapping by to send their kids to school. Giving discounts for illegals is not taking care of our citizens. O’Malley gets a F grade on this. “

In regard to O’Malley being a tax and spend democrat, he did inherit a $1.7 billion budget deficit in 2007. O’Malley drastically increased taxes but also slashed spending in the elimination of 6000 state jobs. Based off just what we do know of O’Malley he doesn’t seem all that far left (as he has been labeled) with the exception of his positions on some social issues.

O’Malley’s record was not a winner for a democratic successor in Maryland. The win went to the Republican Larry Hogan, the second Republican to win in the last 48 years.  This might be a big factor moving through the primary season as O’Malley works to line up big donors.

 

 

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