It's tough being a progressive in 2015. Hell, it's been tough since Dwight Eisenhower was president. Yes, I picked a Republican because today he would never stand a chance. But, I digress...grab your Sunday Morning Coffee full of the stuff your Mother said to never talk about: Politics, Religion, Sex with a little Gossip thrown in for flavor. Bottoms up!
Planned Parenthood & Government Shutdown
I was listening for a bit this week as members of the United States House of Representatives screeched about "partial birth abortions", "harvesting brain tissue from live children" and continued down a path of false, misleading and outright lies about Planned Parenthood. Now they are suggesting that the United States Government should just shut down unless they get their way. Really? Anybody know the words to "Oh Canada"?
Actually what Planned Parenthood does is deliver women's health care and contraception advice and products. It's far better than abstinence (ask Sarah Palin) but let us just ignore the facts and be stupid. Weary friends...just weary.
Speaking of the Palin Family
Last week some officials from the enlightened state of Texas (Don't get me started!) put the heavy hand on a 14 year-old student because he brought a home-made clock to school to show his teacher. He was arrested. Handcuffs, interrogated and charged with "building a bomb". Oh, did I mention that the kid, Ahmed Mohamad is a (gasp!) M-U-S-L-I-M!??!? And, if it's one thing them folks from Texas hate more than them "wet-backs" it's them Muslims. (Any chance Texas will seceded....please?) Anyway, back to the "God Fearing Palin Family" Bristol Palin wrote, after President Obama invited Ahmed to the White House, with his clock, that the President should "stay out" of these matters. "This encourages more racial strife that is already going on with the ‘Black Lives Matter’ crowd and encourages victimhood," penned Palin. Hey, Texas...any chance you might take Alaska with you? (Photo: Wired)
It Gets Worse
A couple of weeks ago I told you that one of the reasons folks, white folks, really like Donald Trump is because he echos much of the white supremacist language and ideals so many find...delightful. Hell, even the hate group Stormfront said in a recent blog, "At last a politician who says exactly what is wrong with this country." They were speaking about "them illegals" and anything else that isn't white. You don't believe me...right? OH, so go ahead and have a look...but come back.
It was cemented last week when some moron in New Hampshire said that, "Obama is a Muslim" and "Muslims are the problem in this country." Mr. Trump? Silent. And, this guy is leading all the polls for the GOP. If you ever doubted the enduring hate that comes from these people it is full force in your face. These "states rights", "separate but equal", "I want my country back" Republicans are what is wrong with this nation. And they foment great strife. So, stand tall...so we know who you really are.
The Pope and Congress
This should be good. Pope Francis is going to address congress this week and it is widely expected that he will say some strong words about the planet and (gasp) climate change. A climate change topic in this congress. That should be something to watch. In the past, when President Obama said climate change was the biggest challenge of our time, the GOP riled and said, "What about them Muslims and ISIS?!?" Yep, this should be a good time.
You have got to be kidding. It would really be funny if it were not so serious. Last week millions of people watched the CNN debates and were, no doubt nodding their heads "Yes!" as the pack of GOP candidates outright lied. New York Times columnist Paul Krugman argued Friday that all the GOP debate on Wednesday proved is that the current field of Republican candidates is dangerously out of touch with reality, and is more than willing to lie about it in order to win an election.
By way of proof, he noted that the only candidate who didn’t spout “economic fantasies” was Donald Trump, and the only one seemed “remotely sensible” on foreign policy was Rand Paul — both of whom aren’t electable for a host of other reasons. Indeed, he said, the entire field should be “scary” not just to Democrats, but to moderate Republicans, because it’s impossible to tell what they actually believe. He says all of this much better than I...so here is the link to the Krugman piece in the NYT. But, come back...I've got more. (Cartoon - Tim Lloyd)
Labor Hall of Fame
Last night the Iowa Federation of Labor AFL-CIO held their 33rd Annual Labor Hall of Fame Awards Ceremony and Dinner. It was a nice crowd. Former Senator Tom Harkin was there the keynote was delivered by my old friend former Congressman Dave Nagle and the inductees were State Senator Dick Dearden, Letter Carrier Mark Fallis and Communication Worker Francis Giunta. It was a nice event and I was grateful to be able to go
But (and you knew this was coming...), until Labor feels the "fire in their belly" and doubles down...the middle class will continue to shrink. Passion and Action...for example the Seattle teachers shut down the public schools demanding better pay. In a marathon bargaining session the School Board "found" $5 million to sweeten the pot at 2:30 in the morning. They had it all along it just took some time to get it.
Dear Iowa Union Leaders..."Got Guts?"
I sat at a table with Earl Agan of the Central Iowa Building Trades Council. We had an interesting discussion about being "politically correct". He's not happy that the Iowa Democratic Party made the decision to change the name of their annual dinner from the Jefferson-Jackson Dinner something that, according to State Party Chair Andy McGuire said would, "...align with the values of our modern day Democratic Party: inclusiveness, diversity and equality." In other words...it's become uncomfortable for the Democrats to align themselves with former slave owners. Earl was not impressed and said, "It really doesn't matter." Really? How's this, "Ya know that Adolf Hitler guy wasn't so bad, after all he built a great highway!" Weary...I gotta join a union. If you would like a little better look at Thomas Jefferson and slavery you might follow this link to the Washington Post on the book written by Henry Wiencek.
As many of you know I've been doing a business news radio broadcast for the past two years over at 1350-KRNT. Two weeks ago Insight on Business the News Hour was "bumped" by the Des Moines Radio Group to AM-940 and FM-104.5. That means loads of changes in logos, social media platforms and (what is more daunting) getting listeners to move down "the dial" between 5PM and 6PM for the only "Non-Toxic Talk Radio" on business in several states. The good news is the News Hour can be heard as far away as Iowa City. The jury is still out but, gotta tell you it's been a hell of a week.
Thanks for reading...listening and being there. Have a great Sunday. Me? I think FOOTBALL is in the air!