It's the final day of February 2021...and there is hope for Spring. Welcome to Sunday Morning Coffee a bit of politics with, often, a dash
of religion. It's what I get to do long before the sun comes up each Sunday Morning. Let's go.
As a Jew we're pretty much tied into the story of the Golden Calf. It was the sin of a nation following a panic because Moses didn't show up on time from his trip up Mt. Sinai to collect the commandments. (In reality, it was the people who got the time wrong...not Moses.) Anyway a couple of hucksters whipped the crowed into a frenzy and before you knew it they had a Golden Calf.
Same story...different era. Last week "Dathan" and "Korch" (just for fun, look it up) were seen rolling the latest version of the Golden Calf into the Conservative Political Action Committee (CPAC) venue. "They arose early the next day and offered up elevation-offerings and brought peace offerings. The people sat to eat and drink, and they got up to revel." (Ex.32:6) It didn't end well for the people at the foot of Mt. Sinai because it was a false god....same here my friends. But, it is truly amazing.
Policy? We Don't Need No Policy!
Welcome to the new iteration of the Republican Party where the lack of any real policy has been replaced with fear and hate. "The election was stolen!", and because of that the GOP has been busy putting up roadblocks for voting. Here in Iowa we make national news on a regular basis, and it's not about the caucus. We're well known for screwing up the COVID19 response. (Our governor has been campaigning for months rather than taking care of Iowans.) The Iowa Legislature fast tracked a voter suppression bill that mirrored other states in the hope to cut down the vote. Now the clowns that fostered this bill will deny it has anything to do with voter suppression. But...remember if a Republican is moving his/her lips they are simply...lying. They were taught by the best huckster....ever.
Usually when a candidate loses an election his/her standing in the party sort of evaporates. I know...how that works. Losers are kicked to the side and only asked, maybe, for a donation or three. But not with the Republicans. Their "guy" lost by a bunch and he is still in control of the party. Heck a week after Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said that "45" was guilty of calling a mass of people to storm the capitol he was back to say that if the Loser-in-Chief runs again he would support him. Somethin' ain't right with that guy.
Early in the morning last week the U.S. House passed the $1.9 trillion COVID19 Relief Bill complete with the call to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. I'll be the first to suggest to you that $15 an hour doesn't come close to what might be a "living wage". But, it's a start. Of course people are howling...most of whom have no idea what it is like to work two or three minimum wage jobs. And my Facebook Page is full of furor from ill tempered citizens who deem any person lazy and unworthy if they must work for low wages.
Never mind that they may be teachers, students or retired folks trying to make ends meet. Nah...never mind, the callous heart just knows hate and fear.
Whew, That Was Close!
Last week it was announced, with great fanfare, that Iowa was past the pandemic. Not only that but that the unemployment rate had once again been reduced and was now equal to what it was prior to the great loss of jobs due to COVID. All of that came from State Sen. Jason Schultz (R-Schleswig) who was championing a bill that would pause unemployment benefits for a week because folks at the Iowa Association of Business and Industry suggest that the unemployment tax is too high and something must be done before the well runs dry. So...rather than pay the current tax of .5% business wants to move to .3%.
Never mind that nearly 135,000 fewer Iowans had jobs in December, compared to before the pandemic. The labor force participation rate — the share of Iowans with jobs or looking for work — has dropped to 63% from 69% during that time. What that means is that when you are NOT looking for a job and you have dropped out of the labor force you don't count in the unemployment percentage.
But, at least in Iowa, the pandemic is over.
Rep. Ras Smith
Later today my conversation with Rep. Ras Smith (D-Waterloo) will air on News/Talk 1540 KXEL. I heard Rep. Smith speak earlier last week and then received a presser that he was speaking at several locations about a "Worker Safety" bill that he was going to introduce in the Iowa House this week. Of course we talked about a host of things business related. It's an exclusive for that radio station and will air in the 3PM Central hour today. Tomorrow it will be part of my regular business newscast.
A couple of weeks ago my brother Yoni offered up a suggestion to help folks living in the several homeless camps in and around Des Moines. It really was a simple suggestion to go and purchase one-pound propane tanks and then deliver them to folks who do work supporting the homeless. They have access...that many of us do not. People use them for not only cooking but also for heat. So, we put out the word the the Windsor Heights Democrats and we've been getting these tanks dropped off. A one-pound propane tank costs about $4 but what a lifesaver it could be. Anyway...just a suggestion for those of you wishing to make a difference in a life of someone you don't know.
Last week I mentioned that my Bride had gone out and purchased a used truck. New to her and she is still "over the moon". This week she's been adding stuff like bright red caps for her tire inflation stems, red knobs on the dash and a "booster" seat to help her reach the controls. Anyway she was a bit put off that I failed to include a photo of her new set of wheels and so here you go.
Yeah, she is/was pretty pleased. And I am grateful
Thanks for reading and have a great Sunday!