Republican Double Dealing

Republican Double Dealing

House Minority Leader John Boehner complained that the “job-killing Democrats (health care) plan does not implement a single GOP reform… they have not incorporated any of the health care reforms Republicans support.”  When it was pointed out to him that some of the provisions of the newly-inacted law were quite popular, Boehner responded by saying that any of the good ideas in the law “came from Republicans… they are part of the common sense ideas” offered by Republicans and included in the law.  I guess what he  means is the following: If you like it, credit the Republicans; whatever you dislike, blame the Democrats.


How is the Economy Treating You?

How is the Economy Treating You?

The first quarter of 2010 has been a bonanza time for the Big Banks: Citigroup recorded a $4.4 billion profit, JP Morgan Chase $3.3 billion, Bank of America $3.2 billion. Goldman Sachs increased profits by 91% over the same quarter last year, coming in with a gain of $3.46 billion. In 2009 the Big Bankers roped in their best-ever paydays, at a total payout of $140 billion. The top 25 hedge fund managers “earned” an average of $1 billion, with the lowest paid getting $350 million. John Paulson took home more than $3billion for the two years preceding the melt down!

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What the Pope Could Have Said

What the Pope Could Have Said

I learned a valuable lesson early in my political career: When you make a mistake or a misjudgment, acknowledge it quickly and repair any damage. What the Pope should have said years ago is that “What some priests have done is sinful and the response of the church is shameful. We must repent, both individually and as an institution; we must rid the church of all people in authority who violate the dignity and rights of others; and we must do everything we can to restore to wholeness those who have suffered such egregious harm.”

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Unemployment rose to 10.8% Under Ronald Reagan!

Unemployment rose to 10.8% Under Ronald Reagan!

In President Reagan’s first year in office, unemployment exceeded 8% so he cut taxes for the rich. In his second year the rate climbed to 10.8%. It wasn’t until he had been in office for 28 months that it dropped back to 8%. The Republicans, of course, blamed President Carter’s policies.  Now, with unemployment at 9.7% in President Obama’s 15th month in office, do you think that these same Republicans attribute the high rate to the Bush economic policies? Get real!

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Violent Words = Violent Action

Violent Words = Violent Action

A study from the Southern Poverty Law Center showed a growth in the number of extremist hate groups from 149 in 2008 to 512 in 2009, and 127 of them were militia groups. There is, in my opinion, a direct relationship between that increase and the incendiary language spoken on talk radio and in right-wing political sound bites.

Eugene Robinson wrote in the Washington Post that “For decades now, the most serious threat of domestic terrorism has come from the growing ranks of paranoid, anti-government hate groups that draw their inspiration, vocabulary, and anger from the far right… The danger of political violence in this country comes overwhelmingly from one direction— the right!

“The vitriolic, anti-government hate speech that is spewed on talk radio every day, and quite regularly at tea party rallies, is calibrated not to inform but to incite. Demagogues scream at people that their government is illegitimate, their country has been taken away, that their elected officails are traitors and their freedom is at risk. They (the Limbaughs and the Becks)  have a right to free speech, which I will always defend. But they shouldn’t be surprised if some listeners take them literally.”

The  St. Louis Post Dispatch  editorial (referenced above) stated that a Southern Poverty Law Center report “warned of potential threats from violent right-wing groups…”  The newspaper stated that these groups were encouraged by “incendiary rhetoric employed by politicians and conservative commentators who throw around phrases like ‘take back the country’,  ‘reload’, ‘anti-American’, or ‘traitor’. Such rhetoric may not be intended to incite violence, but it can further inflame paranoid people on the radical fringe. Words are important. Words have meaning. Words should be used with care…”

Please Join the conversation by writing your comments in the box at the bottom of this page, or going to The Pub (see top of page). Thanks, Bill