Sunday Morning Coffee is a collection of stories about politics, news, gossip all laced with my opinion. And, because there is no hiding here, my name is Michael P. Libbie. If you wish to comment here, feel free. Or we can connect on Twitter @MichaelLibbie or here is my personal Facebook Page. We'll get back to business tomorrow and thanks for coming by. Now...grab a cup but, careful, the coffee is always hot!
It’s A Bible Thing
I’ve often wondered about those individuals who wish to foster their particular religious beliefs upon the rest of us, “Because it’s in the Bible”. Obvious to this is the question as to which of the commandments might they choose to observe and which might they dump on the trash bin of history. The answer lies in their perception of what they find acceptable and what they might blow off for personal or political gain. That’s why a recent guest editorial by Jonathon Wilson in the Des Moines Register regarding the very public resignation of the Rev. Keith Ratliff as the president of the Iowa-Nebraska Conference of the NAACP was so…good. So, while we’re at it and “Because it’s in the Bible” let’s make laws that:
- Mandate circumcision;
- Make it a crime to eat pork;
- Require all business to come to a halt on Saturday;
- Require that marriage is forever, no divorce allowed;
- Mandate polygamy;
- Approve of slavery;
- Mandate capital punishment for adultery.
Let’s put those bibical traditions up for a vote and see how far it goes. Oh, it’s been tried…but the Taliban didn't allow a vote and even if they did, women would not be allowed. Weary friends…weary.
Open Forum on Marriage Equality
This should prove interesting. Desmund Adams, the Democrat seeking the open seat in Iowa Senate District 22, has said he is putting together a Town Hall Forum on marriage equality slated for July. “We will invite both sides of the controversy so that we can engage in a thoughtful discussion of those issues which tend to divide us. It’s the kind of things we should expect from our senate leaders.” We’re in however I’m concerned that “thoughtful discussion” may be a stretch. We'll see.
It wasn’t a good week for Dr. Nancy Sebring the former superintendent of the Des Moines Public Schools and almost the superintendent of the Omaha Public Schools as Judge Robert Hanson ruled against her motion to keep additional emails out of public scrutiny. In addition at least one Des Moines television station (WHO-TV 13) has released, against his wishes, the name of Dr. Sebring’s married lover, an active duty officer in the United States Army. Frankly I thought the Des Moines Register did the right thing in not releasing his name saying it was not in the public interest. Maybe so…but what these two highly visible people (he, by the way was featured in a 60 Minutes piece) should have done was to just say “The hell with it…” and make it public. Get divorced and live forever as happy, crazy about love, sexy kids… Oh, wait that might not work so well. We would have to, if my religious friends have their way, to put them both to death. Icky…
The Private Sector is Doing Just Fine
Got to love politics where the game is to convince people that your opponent is “out of touch” with the reality of the day only to ignore what reality is. Recently Gov. Mitt Romney, and his known and unknown buddies, have been buying loads of TV and Radio time to share what has now become a mantra among the Republicans. “See, the president is so far removed from reality he thinks the private sector is doing fine.” What they fail to include is the rest of the president’s remarks contrasting the private sector with the bloodletting that has been going on by cutting thousands and thousands of middle class government workers. My son had a wonderful tip and we’ll pass it along to the Obama team. Go talk to the private sector business owners, many of whom are doing “just fine” and put them up in a :60 and have them say, “Us? We’re just fine.” Do that 45 times in sixty-seconds and it defuses the argument fostered by the GOP.
Last week at a GOP sponsored event an Iowa businessman bemoaned the fact that his business has seen a flat line when it comes to creating jobs. Jose Laracuente, of course, blamed his hiring woes on the usual suspect, President Obama. He went on to spread more doom and gloom by saying, tax, regulatory and health care uncertainty have hampered hiring. Now, what business might Jose be in? Agriculture financial software at AgVision in Ankeny, Iowa. I shared this story with a friend of mine who is in agriculture manufacturing and happens to be buddies with Gov. Scott Walker who said, “Either he is lying or he has a crappy business.” You see friends, if you’ve even touched the agriculture industry over the past three years…you know it’s booming. But, Jose was being a good servant of…fear. Either that or agriculture is making so much money they really don’t want to account for it. Hum….anybody?
Webster City Gets the (Drive) Shaft
There is some news blowing around that we're about to sell Iowa as a "Data Farm". What that means is we're about to give the farm away to lure a big operation to store data. The player is Google, Facebook, YouTube...Microsoft...nobody is saying but here's a story of how, sometimes, giving away the farm can get you the shaft. Our friends at Bleeding Heartland have this story about how the citizens of Webster City are stuck with nearly $500 thousand in grant money for an electric automobile plant that...won't happen. Desperate people will do just about anything. Oh, remember where those jobs in Webster City went? Si...I thought so. And, no there will never be another Electrolux product in our home...ever.
Simply put in this great piece from our friend Robert Reich is the fact that middle class Americans just don’t have the money to spend us out of the recession. In fact, personal income for the average American family went down 7.7% between 2007 and 2010 while the net worth and income of the most wealthy continues to climb. Pretty simple folks, when the majority of Americans can’t afford to buy stuff and the minority of Americans spend only half of their income on stuff…its ass backward. Please read this article and when you are done let me know what does not make sense. Bet you won’t.
The United Nations & Warren County
The other day I was visiting with a guy by the name of Scott Ourth who is running for the Iowa House of Representatives in House District 26. We talked about his candidacy and his long experience in economic development. I asked Scott about his opponent this November and what his or her number one policy might be. Scott said, "He's got lots of Tea Party backing but one of the most interesting things he talks about it the United Nations..." HUH? So, I was wondering what this guy Steve McCoy might be like and about his issues. Oh...my..extremists are alive and well in Rural Iowa and it seems he is more concerned about federal than local/state politics. That, of course, is low hanging fruit for guys like him. Good luck Scott, you've got lots of friends who believe in the important issues of economic development, jobs and education all solid ideas that benefit all the people...not just a few.
Speaking of Warren County
Last week I ran into my good friend Jason White, Executive Director of the Warren Country Development Corporation. Jason and I go back several years and I got to catch up on the progress he and his team are making. If you remember I attended a major fund raising program GroWARRENow this past winter and had an opportunity to talk economic development with Jason:
See, I DO have friends who are Republicans. Honest....
Father's Day came and...went. I've always gotten a kick out of how different we celebrate that day vs. the Mother of All Holidays...Mother's Day. There is much less fanfare in June than in May. Anyway...along with some nifty cards my son, Aaron (pictured here flipping burgers with Desmund) got me a air-powered nail gun. Yeah baby! We're going to be doing some nailing now!! Whoot...and thanks!
Thanks to you for coming by....have a great Sunday!