Monday, June 30, 2014

Five Catholic Justices on SCOTUS Rule Against Women and Unions by Tracy Knauss

If there's one group of people you don't want to piss off, it's women. The Supreme Court has now done it. All five members of the SCOTUS Gang of Five are Catholics who are not known for recognizing women's reproductive rights or any other women's rights to be precise. So it was no wonder the Gang of Five ruled against America's women, and disavowed the Constitution's Separation of Church and State clause. Women must lead the revolution to reverse the destruction of our nation by sectarian ideologues like Roberts, Scalia, Alito, Thomas and Kennedy.

The SCrOTUS said it was only a "narrow" decision. Right. Many of America's largest corporations are privately held: Koch Industries, Heinz, Dell, Bloomberg, etc. AND this opens the door to a veritable slip and slide of court suits over one's religious beliefs conflicting with those of our secular government. The Gang of Five kicked the Separation of Church and State clause in the face. Our Republic is in grave danger of succumbing to fascism. 

Sunday, June 29, 2014

America's Koch Problem by Tracy Knauss

Tonight, I'll be joining thousands of other Americans who want to plan a national campaign to end the Koch brothers' toxic influence on our democracy and our everyday lives, from the air we breathe to the interest rates we pay. The Koch Machine is the dominating force in conservative politics, including the GOP, the TEA Party and Libertarianism. We'll be gathering in designated living rooms across our land to view the critically-acclaimed film, "Koch Brothers Exposed: 2014 Edition." If you haven't already signed up, it's not too late. Go to the link below and see where the nearest gathering is to you. This is a battle we must fight, for us and for our children. 

Saturday, June 28, 2014

What a Great 'Meet and Greet' with Drew Leavens by Laurel Davila

What a great ‘Meet and Greet’ fundraising event for Drew Leavens (below), Candidate for the 45th California Congressional District, this afternoon at the home of Dinah and Cliff Frieden of Irvine! 

Dinah Frieden (below), is the President of the Democrats of Greater Irvine, and said, “Drew’s experience as a Mental Health Professional make him well suited to the challenge of working with our dysfunctional U.S. Congress. He cares about people and holds true to Democratic Values.” 

I'm sitting and chatting with Mimi Miller-McClurg (below), who is the Strategist/Fundraising professional for Drew’s campaign. She said, “In my humble opinion, we as a country need more Congress people in the House like Drew Leavens, to bring the real life issues to the forefront.” 

Teray Stephens (below), is Drew’s Campaign Manager, she noted that it says a lot about Drew that he has an all female campaign team (Liesl Thomas is his Deputy Campaign Manager). 

Drew (below) talked to us about the real issues facing Americans today, such as the need for comprehensive immigration reform, responsible gun legislation, women’s issues, climate change, taking care of our veterans, job growth, getting our kids to college without an insufferable amount of debt, and the importance of true leadership with a vision. 

Our former Mayor of Irvine, Beth Krom (below with Drew), mentioned that if everyone gave small amounts to the campaign, and created networks of friends whom we asked contributions of, that we could reclaim our power as Democrats in this District. Beth said, “Wouldn’t it be great if we could beat (R) Mimi Walters, with all of her money, and all of her arrogance?” 

If you'd like to make a campaign contribution please visit: 

Cult of GOP/Tea Party Ignorance by Tracy Knauss

A lot of you asked me to re-post this image. It's my rework of an illustration from circa 1965 that was used with an article by author Isaac Asimov pertaining to anti-intellectualism in America. I embellished the scene with an image from the Hubble Space Telescope and used font effects to help emphasize the main thoughts. In this day and age when our top public officials deny global warming, the Big Bang, the true age of the Earth, and when they hate science because it disproves their links to fundamentalism, and when "young Earth birthers" occupy key seats on congressional science committees, it's time we secular soldiers crushed their fictional fortresses with the plain facts. Our future depends upon it. Please share this meme. 

Friday, June 27, 2014

The Bizarre Just Got Stranger by Tracy Knauss

Bizarre events continue to surround the U.S. Senatorial race for the state of Mississippi in which incumbent Senator Thad Cochran narrowly defeated Tea Party candidate Chris McDaniel. The latest development related to the election is that Central Mississippi Tea Party officer, Mark Mayfield, (who was arrested and charged with conspiracy for photographing Cochran's bedridden wife, Rose, at a nursing home where she suffers from progressive dementia), committed suicide. Just days before the election, Cochran said in a campaign speech that when he was growing up, he enjoyed doing "all kinds of indecent things with animals." Adding, "I know some of you know what that is." This jaw dropping statement from Mississippi's senator should cause one to question his lack of sound judgment and consider voting for his Democratic challenger, former Rep. Travis Childers, this fall.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

"Democrats Are Too Damned Polite" (quote from Gail Mountain) by Laurel Davila

"Democrats Are Too Damned Polite"

by Laurel Davila 

I have the unique pleasure of working daily with a fine political activist named Gail Mountain. Last Sunday, Scott Henderson and I scheduled Gail to participate on Scott's Brass Knuckle Progressives Radio show featuring: THE POLITICAL ROUND TABLE; where she is quoted on this meme created by Occupy Democrats.

Gail is an Administrator for the Facebook group called Progressive Democrats - Moving Forward, Not Back, which is a team of Democratic Party volunteer clicktivists that I founded. We work social media to get out the Democratic Party political candidate message, and to educate the electorate in trying to get them to vote. She is one of my Editors on this particular Facebook Page.

The great Gail Mountain is also a hard hitting #PDMFNB and #UniteBlueTweeter from the account @GKMTNtwits, where she urges media journalists (mainly on MSNBC) to be responsible in their reporting, instead of, as she calls it, "divining" the news. She is an expert at moving between the four big social media platforms: Facebook, Google Plus, Twitter, and Pinterest.

Please take a moment to listen to the archived @BKPRadio show using the link below, where Gail passionately makes this statement about Democrats; and do yourself a favor by checking out her personal Blogspot at the link below.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Randa’s Ruling – Eviscerating Campaign Contribution Limits by Laurel Davila

Are we going in the wrong direction again? Do we really need more loopholes in campaign finance? Why is it okay for political candidates to circumvent the laws we have under the excuse it is in the interest of promoting “political speech”?

Per Huffington Post journalist, Paul Blumenthal: “An investigation targeting Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) for alleged illegal coordination with independent conservative groups during his 2012 recall election has been thrown into limbo by a lawsuit that could turn into the next big challenge to campaign finance limits. The case has the potential to blow a hole in anti-coordination rules in Wisconsin and beyond -- a hole that would effectively wipe away campaign contribution limits by allowing candidates to control the unlimited and secret contributions raised by not-really-independent groups.” 


Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Tonight's Primary Election Results! by Laurel Davila

Anxious for the results on the Primary races such as the Mississippi Senate; Oklahoma Senate; or the NY-13 U.S. House? Per our man, Darth Jeff, at the Daily KOS:

"Seven states are holding primaries or runoffs tonight. Our guide to the key races can be found here. Oklahoma will hold a runoff on Aug. 26 in races where no candidate wins more than 50 percent tonight. We'll be bringing you tonight's results as they come in, and you can keep track of all the winners just below:

Results & Poll Closing Times (all times Eastern):

Colorado (9 PM) | Maryland (8 PM) | Mississippi (8 PM) | New York (9 PM)
Oklahoma (8 PM) | South Carolina (7 PM) | Utah (10 PM)"

So, there you go folks! The Daily KOS is your one stop shop for the latest breakdown (commercial free) on tonight's Primary election results!

Thanks to FreeDumb Nation for the meme. 

Monday, June 23, 2014

New Study Shows Stress Affects Voting Behavior by Laurel Davila

There is a great article in Mother Jones entitled Want to suppress the vote? Stress people out written by Chris Mooney.

Chris reports that, “The United States has a voting problem. In the 2012 presidential election, only about 57 percent of eligible American voters turned out, a far lower participation rate than in comparable democracies.  That means about 93 million people who were eligible to vote didn't bother.”

Chris goes on to say that figuring out why folks don’t vote is important to those of us who care about democracy. Apparently there are plenty of studies that show that poverty and age demographic factors adversely affect voting, but now there is a new study showing individual-level biological factors also influence whether or not someone votes.

This new study published in the journal of Physiology and Behavior was conducted by a team of political scientists, psychologists, and biologists. They show a correlation between higher blood level cortisol levels (stress hormone) and voting behavior.

So, if the GOP is purposely creating stress in folks lives with methods of voter suppression ….then certain targeted people in the demographics whom they don’t want to vote …won’t vote.

This is good information to know, and to use in documenting voter suppression cases in the future. The author of the study suggests that voting by mail is a good alternative solution for stress related to voting. 

Friday, June 20, 2014

And Republican Voters Are On Your Side? by Malina Lobel-karimi

All right, so we need another reminder of THE LIST:
You want to abolish the minimum wage and republican voters are on your side? Great, have THEM working for whatever you're willing to pay.
You want to abolish abortions altogether and republican voters are on your side? Great, don't let your mistress have an abortion and don't let ANY republican have an abortion.
You want Obamacare to go away and republican voters are on your side?
Great, don't let republicans sign up for it! Don't avail yourself of the expanded right to keep your kids on your policy now till the age of 26.
You want to grant a private company like Hobby Lobby to NOT include birth control and republican voters are on your side? Great, do NOT let ANY republican use birth control (I know, the thought of them reproducing is repulsive). This includes ALL WOMEN minors and adults who use birth control at the rate of 99%.
You want this state expansion on gun rights and republican voters are on your side? Great, what about the sixty percent republicans polled who want SENSIBLE BACKGROUND checks? You're willing to ignore them and they're willing to BE ignored. So far, too many schools with kids too young to vote have been killed in states were republicans do NOT have a majority and that includes Virginia Tech since they regard universities as liberal institutions.
You want to believe in someone like Rick Santorum when he says "Obama wants everyone to go to college. What a snob!" republican voters? Keep in mind that Santorum has two college degrees and so do his five children. Great, if you don't believe in college and higher education, don't send your kids there! See how well they'll do without it.
You want them to believe that Obama will take your second amendment rights away and republican voters are on your side? Six years in and not only do you STILL have your guns...You have more of them! The only thing you've lost here, is whatever semblance of sanity you had to begin with.
You want to go back into Iraq and republican voters are with you? Great, all republican legislators go in first...Along with your families...Along with ALL republicans going in first...Along with corporate CEO's and their offspring going in first. Then, we will follow YOU. If we had listened to republicans on this, we would have had a face-off with Russia, challenged China, entered into Syria and North Korea. We would have attacked Iran.
You want corporations to flourish even more without paying their fair share of taxes and republican voters are with you? Great, then also check a history book or two and see what happens to a GREAT country when oligarchy or fascism sets in. When austerity is put in place for the many excluding the few...the wealthy.
You want to be against gay rights and republican voters are with you?
Great, then why was this topic completely (now) omitted from your republican conclaves when only two years ago, you ran vehemently against it. Now, you are completely ignoring this subject altogether.
You are against some sort of immigration reform and republican voters are with you?
Great, then why are you forgetting that we are ALL immigrants and ONLY the American Indian has a legitimate claim to this land? Not ALL Mexicans/Hispanics are hard working individuals? Then again, neither are all Italians, Irish, Germans, Asians, Israelis, Scandinavian and ALL OTHER blocs that have at one point or another landed here.
Obviously, we disagree on a few subject matters. Instead of me quoting Adlai Stevenson and saying...If the republicans will stop telling lies about the democrats, we will stop telling the truth about them, I would beseech you to CHECK YOUR FACTS. Check what you hear on fox news. Check what you hear from the Rush. JUST CHECK what democrats say about current events aforementioned here.
JUST CHECK ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING YOU HEAR...Then decide who is telling the truth. Who has the interest of the many and NOT the few. 

Thursday, June 19, 2014

A One Minute Clip of Claire Conner in “The Brainwashing of My Dad” by Laurel Davila

Have you had a chance to read Claire Conner’s book Wrapped in the Flag yet? If not – do yourself a favor and pick it up for a quick education on what the extremist Republicans are up to right now.

She knows what they are up to as perhaps few of us could – since she grew up in a household with the founding members of the John Birch Society.

I know Claire, as a friend, and I can tell you that without a doubt, her voice is what we Democrats need to amplify across social media, as she educates the electorate in an intelligent and unique style that is irrefutable.

In this one minute YouTube clip (see the link below), Claire is talking about the ugly conservative Republican concept of "Healthy Poverty" and the John Birch Society indoctrination in "The Brainwashing of my Dad." This is a short clip from a much longer interview:

Wednesday, June 18, 2014


Cheney's recent bizarre behavior confims why the Iraq War was so bad. Its "visionaries" were drunk on their own bloated egos with dreams of windfall profits dancing in their dark minds. In today's WSJ, Desperate Dick acuses President Obama of "misleading rhetoric." OMG! DIck Cheney is the King of misleading rhetoric. His lies misled Congress and the Ameican public into a nightmare of a war we're still bogged down in. Cheney's op-ed confirms the worst facts about the Bush Oil War. There was no rational reason for it. It was concocted out of lies and false pretense. Cheney headed the cabal of blood thirsty, profit hungry neocons who wanted Iraq's oil. The fact that Cheney is still loose and hasn't been held accountable allows him to foam at the mouth like some sick dog screaming for attention. Instead of being an elder statesman, like Jimmy Carter, Cheney leads the name calling. Instead of projecting American greatness, Cheney is throwing public temper tantrums. Now, is there any wonder the Iraq War turned out to be as bad as it did? No there's not. Here's a link to a story about Cheney's absurd oped: 

I'm Sorry If I Don't Believe In This Latest Poll by Malina Lobel-karimi

I'm sorry if I don't believe in this latest poll showing weak numbers when it comes to foreign policy for President Obama. IF that right-wing noise machine wasn't as nonstop and relentless against this man; if it showed one ounce of honesty in its implementation of information, then, I might believe it. Most people are unaware of so much that it's ludicrous to even half-halfheartedly take them or their so-called opinion, seriously.
Benghazi, which they're still biting at, will ultimately show to have been a mess but no different than any other middle eastern mess we've experienced. Why was Fox No-News so visibly silent when it came to Lebanon, Libya and Grenada? Thirteen embassy attacks alone during W's immortal, mortally wounded and eternally flawed presidency!
The capture of this Ahmed Abu Khattala, the 'mastermind' to Benghazi is equally questioned as convenient. Maybe there is some fortuitous timing. Too damn bad that when it came to Osama bin Laden's capture and kill, it was far from Obama's second campaign for president. No political operative has EVER in this country timed some event for their convenience? AND, if this president did it for convenience or expediency, what would that event look like? According to the eternal wrong, right-wing, he's never done anything of value.
For those who choose to watch and listen to ONE station that has repeatedly shown its bias, propensity for the conservative right with only disdain for the left, I'm sorry, you've lost any credibility with sane, rational and worse of all...INFORMED PEOPLE such as myself. 

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

YOU AGAIN?!?! by Tracy Knauss

No we don't want to hear what you think about Iraq. A lot of you have been tried and found guilty as WAR CRIMINALS. All of you falsely sold this trillion dollar fiasco, (the worst foreign policy mistake in American history) to Congress, the media and the public. You preemptively attacked a sovereign nation that had no WMD. Cheney and the rest of you lied. And many of you profited handsomely off the blood of our precious young people. You have overburdened our VA care facilities. But you don't care about anyone but yourselves and your wealth and your power and your obsessive egos. We saw how your decisions turned out. Dr. Rachel Maddow proved you went into Iraq primarily for the oil. That's a travesty. You will have the blood of thousands of American, coalition and Iraqi forces and citizens on your hands forever. So we have no interest in your CYA. You are the LAST people on Earth we'd want to hear from. Remember, we will never let you rewrite history. You dug your graves, now lie in them. 

Monday, June 16, 2014

Had We Not Ever Gone Into Iraq by Malina Lobel-karimi

Imagine if you will, had we not ever gone into Iraq. What would be different?
1.) We would never be $5 TRILLION into debt solely attributable to Iraq.
2.) We still would have gotten bin Laden.
3.) Hussein would still be their dictator and keeping Iran in check.
4.) That same debt may or may not have been used towards *preferred* uses like...infrastructure.
5.) We would not be hated in the middle east for decades to come.
6.) Exxon, Chevron, BP and all, would have had to negotiate with Hussein and we would have had to *convince* him to continue trading oil on the dollar instead of what he wanted; the euro.
7.) How many of our boys and girls would still be alive and in one piece NOT overburdening the VA hospitals.
8.) Needless to say that about one million Iraqis would still be alive.
9.) When Putin annexed Crimea, we would have had that higher ground now missing in saying No, Mr. Putin, you cannot do that.
10.) Dick Cheney would be about $40 BILLION poorer and Halliburton may have filed for bankruptcy...Just like George W.'s previous enterprises had.
It's hard for a country like ours to file bankruptcy but it can become a banana republic, instead.

So much for "Mission Accomplished" by Vic Meyers

It is sad to see Iraq falling back into chaos.  When I see the news reports about what is going on I can only think of the 4,489 U.S. men and women who died in combat to search for WMDs that never existed.

I remember Dick Cheney promising we’d be welcomed as liberators.  I also remember the 32,021 (official) wounded and the VA backlog.  

It’s fresh in my mind how Washington extremists didn’t care about making it worse with a government shutdown.  I recall the recent filibuster of a veterans jobs program. 

We need to take care of the wounded warriors we have before we create more.  There is nothing in Iraq that is worth giving one more American life when the Iraqis themselves are refusing to fight.

-- Vic Meyers is a husband, father, veteran and full-time worker in Trinidad, Colorado, who is fed up with how Congress fails veterans and everybody else.  He’s the Democratic candidate for Colorado’s 4th Congressional District and is running on protecting Social Security, passing Immigration Reform, investing in a 21st Century Infrastructure and doing better for our veterans.

Please consider donating whatever you can afford to Vic's campaign through ACT BLUE, because if we all pitch in just a little bit we can overcome the Citizens United ruling: ... or if you'd rather, you may mail him a check to: Vic Meyers for Congress, P.O. 1492, Elizabeth, CO 80107

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Why The Children Are Fleeing From Central America by William Boyle

All these people, including many young, unaccompanied children taking this terribly dangerous journey of thousands of miles through Mexico, entering the U.S. illegally, and then trekking across a deadly hot desert on foot -- it is all to escape the clutches of even deadlier gangs in their countries of origin.

However, many people do not realize that the problem of these Salvadoran, Honduran and Guatemalan gangs, has its origin here in the USA.

The problem of these violent gangs, got its start here in the USA, back in the 1970's and 80's, with the children of Central American undocumented single mothers, worker-women (office-building cleaning-ladies, janitors, house-maids).

These children grew up here in the USA, but because their mothers had to work 2 or 3 jobs, they had little or no home supervision... and these kids were a perfect prey for the US drug-gangs, which used them as street-vendors or school-drug peddlers, because as juveniles they were told that they would get little or no jail sentences.
However, when these children were captured, they were discovered as undocumented non-citizens and deported to El Salvador, Honduras, or Guatemala... during the 1990's and 2000's there were thousands of these teenagers deported to El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala - they got there, and many of them didn't even speak Spanish! The only occupation they knew was how to be ruthless gang-members, and sell drugs.

The law-enforcement system in these Central American countries was completely unprepared for this onslaught. At this time the gangs have completely overwhelmed and corrupted the police - and some say even the judicial branch, and the military in these Central American countries.

And yes - the main reason at present for the continued existence of these gangs in Central America also has its origin here in the USA - it is the insatiable and continued demand for illegal drugs here in the USA.

So now these 
Salvadoran, Honduran and Guatemalan gangs, are just franchises of Mexican drug-cartels, and yes, home-grown USA urban gangs.

I do find it hard to believe that extensive trafficking of dangerous and harmful drugs can happen without the complicity of police and political authorities - this is certainly a problem of the abuse of power of these political authorities.

Excerpt from the Washington Post: "U.S. officials are scrambling to understand and manage the surge of unaccompanied minors from Central America who have turned up at the southern U.S. border over the past few months." - 

The Right Was Once Again, Wrong by Malina Lobel-karimi

Does anyone other than me remember when President O came into office and spelled out his agenda? The right immediately sprang into action *suggesting* that he couldn't handle such an ambitious agenda.
Well, here we are six years later. Obamacare/ACA has passed. That single piece of ambitious legislation alone should have garnered him brownie points. Instead, the right unleashed all hell KNOWING it to be for the greater good; a la an FDR and therefore a lasting legacy that would GOD FORBID, lose them even more blocs of voters.

Obama's ambitious schedule has unfortunately been constantly set back by republican obstructionism or now, an ISIS insurgence and an Iraqi fallback. Iraqi troops didn't even TRY to fight off this much smaller terror group. Whatever made this arrogant country believe they could change thousand of years of a mindset is simply, staggeringly stupid.

So, apparently the right was once again, wrong. President O like his predecessors has been able to juggle an unprecedented number of pins. Not only those normal presidential juggling pins but adding right-wing conservative pins being thrown at you while you're busy juggling that first set.

Those naysayers, whose rhetoric and criticism hasn't ebbed one bit, only heightened, must be dying on the inside watching this slender, eloquent, tall, statesman from end to end carry on from day one without flinching.

Was it so much that his agenda was ambitious? I don't know. Tax reform. Raising of minimum wage. Same-sex marriage. Jobs program. College tuition reform. Winding down of two of this country's biggest mistake in wars. They were not grand plans but grand plans that were only met in opposition since reform and instituting them would have spelled disaster for the they saw it and infringement on the 1% they truly represent.

All in all, these six years, have seen President O's hair get grayer (as they all do), his daughters mature, his wife grow ever more engaging and the right; eating its own.
Not bad, Mr. O...Not bad at all. 

Review of President Obama's Book - 'Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance' by Laurel Davila

On this Father's Day, we wish our community a happy time of celebration with family and friends. Today, I took some time to read President Barack Obama's book about his father.

His book describes the complexities of the mix of culture and ethnicity, not only in America, but seemingly in the world itself. A man who had a father, yet did not know him that well. A man who had a culture, yet had trouble reconciling his experience in it. He describes his life, and loss, with a frankness that makes you at once cry ... and yet wonder at the same time how we could be so lucky to have him as our President.

President Obama: "We hold these truths to be self-evident." "In those words, I hear the spirit of Douglass and Delany, as well as Jefferson and Lincoln; the struggles of Martin and Malcolm and unheralded marchers to bring these words to life. I hear the voices of Japanese families interned behind barbed wire; young Russian Jews cutting patterns in Lower East Side sweatshops; dust-bowl farmers loading up their trucks with the remains of shattered lives. I hear the voices of the people in Altgeld Gardens, and the voices of those who stand outside this country's borders, the weary, hungry bands crossing the Rio Grande. I hear all of these voices clamoring for recognition, all of them asking the very same questions that have come to shape my life, the same questions that I sometimes, late at night, find myself asking the Old Man. What is our community, and how might that community be reconciled with our freedom?" - Page 437, Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance by Barack Obama 

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Between Two Stinging Wasps by Aziz Anis

Sunnis and Shiites hate each other and have been fighting it out since the death of their prophet Mohammed and will never stop fighting every opportunity they get till the end of time. No one, absolutely no one can ever reconcile them. Most important though they both hate America. Fighting each other for domination though, is far more important to them right now and consumes all their energy and their man power and keeps them preoccupied, with no time to plot attacks against us since their terrorists are involved in their own fight. Inserting ourselves between two forces who hate us bitterly is the height of folly from which we can only achieve more hate from both of them and turn their virulent anger, attention and fury towards us. It's like putting one's hand between two fighting wasps to separate them which can only lead to a nasty sting on both sides of one's hand. As a matter of fact the longer they fight each other the more they will weaken each other and make it less likely to plot a major attack on us. In plain English as long as they are killing each other the less time and energy they have to kill us. So why the hell do we want to stop them.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

What Happened In Vegas Not Likely To Stay In Vegas by Diane Straub

QUESTION du jour...When is shooting and killing people in cold blood while yelling "This is the start of a Revolution" NOT called terrorism? Answer..When it's carried out by homegrown right-wing radicals. To quote the Speaker of the House:

Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) was asked Tuesday if he considers the Las Vegas shootings on Sunday to be "an act of domestic terrorism."

"I -- I'm not sure how I'd describe it," he responded to reporters in the Capitol. "But clearly we had a couple of sick individuals who engaged in a horrific crime. And our hearts go out to those families, especially the families of those two officers who went down."
(TPM Blog)

Hmmm.."sick individuals"..We can all agree they were indeed that. But there are lots of things "sick individuals" might do as an outcome of their deranged way of thinking. And these things would in fact be highly individual. But the Millers actually were expressing themselves based on a strong identification with a particular brand of groupthink.

"The Millers spent years of frequenting right wing websites, posting support for right wing terrorists and spouting right wing propaganda. They were white supremacists and bought everything else the Tea Party is putting out there. They also spouted the propaganda to neighbors in the apartment complex they lived in, according to the Las Vegas Sun. Richard Mack, another right wing nut job who shares Cliven Bundy’s denial of U.S. legitimacy, confirmed that the Millers were Bundy supporters. MSNBC reports that Bundy’s son acknowledged that the Millers were at the ranch but, for reasons he didn’t state, were asked to leave."(

The picture here is so crystal clear anyone can see miles to the bottom. That is, anyone but the people who should be coming forward to condemn this vicious act of murder and terror. The only way to do that is to call it for what it is...domestic terrorism. This would send a signal to any others out there who may see this as an heroic act of self-sacrifice for a "cause" that the party who gave a home and a voice to this virulent anti-government and conspiracy theory movement recognizes and rejects such terrorist acts. The leaders of the Republican Party must take an active role in stopping the monster they helped create and nurture.

"In the aftermath, not one Republican or Tea Party politician has condemned this act of terror or the fascist and neo-Nazi ideologies from which it stems."

It's not that these politicians aren't very vocal or proactive when they think a description of a tragic event doesn't pass muster. They have conducted 13 hearings and over 50 official briefings on Benghazi primarily because they didn't care for the initial official reaction and wanted the word "terrorism" used immediately. Benghazi is 5,372 miles from my home in Michigan..very far away from American soil.

Unfortunately, what happened in Las Vegas unfolded right under our noses, in real time, with witnesses who never signed up for dangerous duty as they went about their daily business. Police officers are the "good guys with guns" and they couldn't prevent being targets for rabid idealogues who snapped because they allowed all the fear, all the hate, all the ugly rhetoric to crowd out all reason and all sense of proportional response. In their minds the "revolution" was here. After all, weren't "patriots" marching around on the Bundy ranch prepared to violently confront the government, flinging their women and children in front of them like pyrrhic sacrifices?

Wasn't Fox News lauding these "patriots" seemingly salivating at the prospect of another Waco or Ruby Ridge..pure ratings gold? Weren't US Senators Paul and Cruz, Texas Governor Rick Perry and GOP candidate Cain saying things like..

"Ted Cruz called the Bundy standoff the "the unfortunate and tragic culmination of the path that President Obama has set the federal government on.” He added that the reason he believed the story was "resonating" was that the Obama administration has put American liberty "under assault...we have seen our constitutional liberties eroded under the Obama administration."

"Under assault"...that says it all. If our elected leaders are saying we are "under assault" by the very government they are part of..what response do they expect..especially from the very heavily armed Tea Party who express virulent distrust, disdain and pathological fear of any and all things "government."

If President Obama and his administration are the enemies of freedom then so are those who voted him in twice and express support for him. If hate and distrust for the government of the people is "patriotism" then those of us who do not partake of that philosophy are by definition "traitors" and we all know the fate of known traitors in 1776. It was the same fate as Alyn Beck, 41; Igor Soldo, 31 and Joseph Wilcox, 31.

Mr. Boehner has a responsibility to name this act of domestic terrorism for what it is. By doing so, he stops any official narrative connected to a major political party that may in any way embolden and encourage those who seek violent anarchy as a response to a fear being stoked by their own party leaders. It's time for the GOP to act on behalf of all the American people and stop pandering to the misguided and gullible minority no matter how loud they may squawk and saber-rattle. All it takes is a little courage..if Speaker Boehner needs some inspiration he can talk to any of our millions of US veterans..they live and breathe courage. Coming out to condemn senseless violence shouldn't be this hard.

Thanks to Meme GOP for the photo meme! 

Enough Damage In Iraq by Aziz Anis

We have already caused the Iraqis enough damage and pain by our unfair and unjust invasion with a drummed up false accusation of their possession of weapons of mass destruction just to satisfy Cheney's drooling greed for oil wells and creating an opportunity for Halliburton to amass more wealth. We were already engaged in another grossly unnecessary, ill planned and ill managed war in Afghanistan to capture one single terrorist whom we could have captured or killed with one small expertly planned and executed navy seal operation just as how President Obama did, and yet the corrupt and incompetent Bush/Cheney administration without achieving our goal there, threw us into another unpaid for war of bad greedy evil choice bragging that we are exporting our Democracy to the Middle East as if our style of Democracy corrupted by Republican Ideology is doing us any good, bankrupting us in the process and leading us into the deep ditch of the worst recession in our history. What a bunch of shameless hypocritical spineless bastards to scream now "we told you so" ignoring totally the fact that Obama was elected President campaigning on the promise of getting us out of Iraq and Afghanistan. That is precisely why Americans elected him twice. He is doing nothing else other than simply fulfilling the promises he made. Iraq wanted us out so we left, they should now take care of their own problems. Our interference would only cause them more pain and lead us backwards into another disastrous entanglement we have hardly just extricated ourselves from. 

Thursday, June 5, 2014

He Is Our Son by Gail Stone

I don't understand the negativity related to this young man - well, except for the fact that bringing him home was a decision made in lieu of consultation with Congress. Even with that consideration, it seems to me that the naysayers should dig deeply within themselves and find a little compassion, and a little appreciation. This young man joined the military. He has served in the longest war in the history of the United States - a war started under questionable circumstances. So what if during his time in Afghanistan he began to question the morality of that war? So what if he indeed did voluntarily abandon his post? So what if he suffered a complete emotional and psychological breakdown and behaved in a manner not fitting to a soldier? I'm not saying he did so. I'm just saying what if he did? Going to war was an act of patriotism. He was not drafted. That fact, in and of itself, beckons our responsibility to not leave him there in the hands of the enemy. We should bring him home, even if he is not in an emotional state that results in the existence of a desire to come. I feel very sad for his parents, and for the community in which he grew up. They have been bullied into canceling plans to welcome him. I put myself in his mother’s skin, and cannot imagine the turmoil she must be feeling. He is her son. He is our son. 

What We Should Be Doing On Our Campaign - by Sharon Newell Holle

Your County and State Democrats should be working to organize weekly phone banking and door knocking in your district.

If you wish to help your Democratic Party door knock and lit drop (literature drop) simply contact your County Democrats and offer to sign up for a door knock lit drop event.

Democratic Party online websites are another way that you can get signed up for Door Knock lit drop/Phone bank events. You can check out their website, find an event nearest to you and get signed up!  Your Democratic Party needs you and will be so happy for you to join in!

Door Knocking and Lit Dropping

When you sign up for a door knock lit drop event your Democratic Party will schedule a place for a group meeting before you go out door knocking.

At this meeting you will be given a packet with a printed out map and copies of the names and addresses of the neighborhood that you will be door knocking at. These people will all be registered voters in your district. They will include on this list, along with the name of the person, their age, their political party, and if they have volunteered in past elections. In your packet you will find brochures for all of your Democratic Candidates at the Local, State and Federal levels. This is the informative literature that you will be handing out to the people on your walking list. It is to help educate our community about who is up for election/ re-election and general information about what they plan to do for “We the people” if they get elected or re-elected.

At the meeting your Democratic leaders will be giving you a short training/question/answer session before you go out on your way to door knock.

For door knocking the things that you should bring are:

1.       Mode of transportation
2.      Bring a bottle of water
3.      Bring a cell phone if you can
4.      Ink pen to mark your door knocks
5.      Clip board to write on (should be provided by the county party).
6.      Wear comfortable clothes to suit the weather conditions and comfortable walking shoes.
7.      Have knowledge about your Democratic Party and Candidates because there will be questions.
8.     Bring your smile!

To door knock you simply walk up to the door with the correct address and knock or ring the doorbell. If the door is answered you simply say “Hello” and ask for the person or persons that are on your list at that household. When the person comes to the door simply introduce yourself as a Volunteer for the Democratic Party helping to drop literature off about our Democratic Politicians and Candidates.

Be prepared to answer any questions about your candidates and Democratic Party.

Ask if they would like to volunteer for the Democratic Party.

Mark on your address sheet that you have made contact with this person

Make a note on your address sheet if the person or persons are interested in volunteering for the Democratic Party and how they would be willing to help out.

If no one answers the door, simply leave the literature in their door. DO NOT PUT THE LITERATURE IN THEIR MAIL BOX! IT IS A FEDERAL OFFENSE TO TAMPER WITH SOMEONES MAILBOX!

Move on to the next address and continue until you are at the end of your list. When you are finished with every address, return to your designated meeting place. Turn in your finished packet. All done!

Your Democratic Party should be organizing these events every week on certain days. Each week you will be door knocking and phone banking for different reasons. You will be trained for these changes before you are allowed to go to work. It is not hard work, it is enjoyable work. Most people that you talk to are very interested and want to talk to someone about our politics. I have had some very pleasant conversations with the people that I meet during door knocking, even made new friends! They are the people of your community, it’s great to get out and meet them!

Phone Banking

If you wish to help your Democratic campaigns by phone banking you can sign up the same way you do for door knocking. Sign up with your Democratic Party online.

Your Democratic Party will establish a meeting room for phone banking and phone banking events. They normally supply cell phones or cordless phones for you to make the calls from. They will provide you with a call script and a list of names along with their phone numbers. These names are registered voters taken from the VAN. The VAN is an updated electronic list of all registered voters from your county and state that your county party has access to. You will be making different kinds of calls for different phone banking events. You will be trained by your County Party leaders at each event.

For phone banking the things that you should bring are:

1.      Bring your cell phone just in case the group you are volunteering for does not have phones for you to use.
2.      Bring a bottle of water
3.      Bring scratch paper to take notes
4.      Bring an ink pen or pencil to mark your tally sheet and to take notes
5.      Bring your reading glasses if you need them
6.      Be well informed about the types of calls that you are making. Be able to answer questions.
7.      Be ready to encourage people to get involved in the campaign. Use a good motivational line to get them to sign up.
8.     Be polite and courteous
9.      If you cannot answer a question, find someone who can.

Right now your campaign should be making phone calls to identify who is supporting your candidates. Then you will have another group of phone bankers calling the supporters and trying to get them signed up to volunteer for the campaign. We are now at a stage where we are building an army of Democratic volunteers which we intend to grow and grow all across the country! 
Gathering for door knocking in Scott County, Iowa
Field Organizer - Jeff Wolf
Check in and door packets
Discussing the maps
Scott County, Iowa Coordinators for the Democratic party from left to right - Sharon Holle, Judy Voss, Beverly Strayhall