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Today the White House issued this Executive Order.

“Should the debt ceiling not be lifted in time by May 16, in order to prevent the Treasury from running out of funds, I am hereby using the emergency powers given to the Chief Executive by the Constitution, to temporarily suspend the Bush Tax Cuts until: 1) either we can legally borrow the funds to continue paying on our commitments, or 2) we bring our debt down to the 2008 level by having much more tax revenue pour in.

This is in effect, immediately, and I have instructed the IRS to recalculate all 2010 tax forms over the level of $2 million dollars, and asses those individuals and companies, for the differences.

We must take this action because Republicans want to pay politics with your lives. As Chief Executive, I am responsible to you, not them. I won’t let that happen.

With these tax cuts out of the way, and with our austerity programs already in effect, that windfall of profit the Treasury will receive, will be entirely funneled towards the paying off our debt.

This policy will continue until Republicans can act reasonably and in a productive fashion.

Barack Obama.

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Brief notes:

What didn’t happen?

SB 04 did not escape fast enough when Thurman Adam’s bottom drawer was quickly open and shut. It and HB 04 expired last night from lack of oxygen.

Few gave much chance that either bill would survive once they entered the dreaded Senate Executive committee. Gee, who is on that committee? One, the chair, is a Democrat! Thurman Adams who hails from the Sussex County town of Bridgeville. The others include the following Democrats: Patty Blevins, Tony DeLuca, and Jim Vaughn, who can now retire since it will not matter how his replacement would vote. The committee is complimented by the ghost of Wayne Smith, Charlie Copeland, and the renewable resource fox lover, Liane Sorenson

If you need a good cry, look back through the January archives of Delaware’s bloggers and see the hopefulness that burned within. Then on 1/11 the Senate bill got pegged. On March 20, the House Bill 04 disappeared along with it after being passed 38 to 1 in the House.

So lets see…….in the House, which is Republican, almost everyone except for Rehoboth’s Democrat, voted to have the Bond Bill brought out of committee three days before the last day of the session. This year, the bond bill came out and was passed sight unseen at11:01 by the Senate, and at 12:54 by the House. 3.4 Billion and now you know more of what was in it than any of those voting yea did in the early morning hours!

So who failed us? We did, you and me. As any high school student of physics will tell you, under the law of inertia, it takes an unbalanced force to challenge and change the direction of a moving object. And our General Assembly has been traveling in this direction for a long time.

Only Delaware’s bloggers are “unbalanced enough” to create the precisely applied force required to change the direction of our legislature. Now, after tonight, it is public knowledge as to where that force needs to be applied………….

So we’ll give those lobbyists who packed the galleries early into the morning, fingers crossed that their special projects would go unnoticed until passage, then high five-ing their way down Lockerman Street to their favorite watering hole-(Hi Diana (bartender))………..to them, we give the first round.    But it was no TKO;   just a one point split decision. We now know their Achilles heel.

Incidentally,  of all the personalities. on either side of the aisle, in either chamber,   the most impressive personality was,……………………………Karen Peterson.  Someday she really could be governor.

 

 

 

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

144th GENERAL ASSEMBLY

 

HOUSE SUBSTITUTE NO. 1

FOR

HOUSE BILL NO. 186

 

AN ACT TO AMEND TITLES 9, 22 AND 30 RELATING TO LAND USE AND THE

APPLICABILITY OF LOCAL GOVERNMENTS TO UTILIZE THE STATE’S ATTORNEY

GENERAL’S OFFICE TO ENFORCE ALL APPLICABLE CODES RELATING

OF ENFORCEMENT OF LAND USE ISSUES

 


BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE:

WHEREAS: Most businesses related to the Capano family have, in the past, shown enough and considerable disrespect to the codes, rules, and regulations passed by this legislative body, and those regulatory commissions representing this state’s three counties, the Delaware General Assembly does hereby with the passage of this bill, forbid any business, corporation, partnerships, or any other open-ended arrangement that can be construed as being a Capano business enterprise, to be allowed to occur within the jurisdiction currently covered by this legislative body, as outlined within the current Charter of the State of Delaware.

WHEREAS: Due to the various damages caused to this state’s historical and natural resources by various divisions of the Capano organization, all rights to profit from or do any business within this state, will be rescinded as of 12:01 am on July 1st, 2007.

WHEREAS: Due to the lack of credibility this Capano organization has shown to all past government codes, rules and regulations, this Bill will give the Attorney General’s office of the State of Delaware, the immediate right to freeze all assets connected with any or all Capano enterprises, holdings, or interests within this state, should any violations of this law be deemed to have occurred.

That was fun. Although it has legal implications that go way beyond where most of us want our government to intrude, many within this state will argue that our state government already intrudes in many more places for much of a less cause.

But, according to the Delaware State Charter, for this theoretical event to go into effect, all that has to happen, is that a majority of both bodies of the General Assembly pass this make believe legislation and that the governor sign it. Then,…………. it will be done.

If you haven’t read Jud’s Rant or Nancy’s commentary, then you probably do not see the need. But considering the bi-partnership that my previous sentence implies, and the two decade spanning history that this family enterprise has had at saying “screw you” to all of our governing bodies, this course of action would be a grand exercise in having the people of Delaware utilize their given right to pressure both their representatives and senators, and insist that those office holders ignore those all those contributions that the Capanos have previously slid to them. and instead, vote to make this happen.

At the most, it would freeze their assets until the courts could amble around to make a final decision. Considering how long their hotel stood vacant overlooking Churchman’s Marsh, this state is poised to shake them down for a long, long time…………..

Much hand wringing has taken place on the “other side” of the aisle. Their erosion of power, while uplifting to their opposition, tends to have a psychotic depressing effect upon those who suffer the actual convulsions, caused by aneurysms regularly occurring along their arterial chains of command.

This feeling is perhaps best put by this phrase: “We were doing so well……..how could this have happened to “us”?”

Eloquent as always, Jud’s Rant sounds the alarm.

To echo, I would like to borrow a this phrase from Lord of the Rings: The Quest stands upon the edge of a knife: stray but a little, and it will fail, to the ruin of all.

And so along this vein, it was sad to read of Copeland’s upcoming support of Delmarva Power’s status-quo decision, when it was leaked that Delmarva not supporting ANY of the three options to generate new power in Delaware.

To paraphrase his comment, he said something like,… “a company should be allowed to make the decisions that affect it’s own well being. Government should not dictate to a corporation how to run its business.”

To be honest, if someone who had possibilities of achieving a future governorship, were to tell me that government should stay OUT of my own personal decisions that affect me and no one else, I would say “whoopee” and pledge my support.

But if I were, and forgive the insensitivity for no malice is intended, being raped and a potential governor came out and defended the rights of my rapist to “run her business as she saw fit”…….. my support would, and should go to anyone, even former enemies, who would step up and champion my rights for a change.

Figuratively speaking, all of Delaware was and still is, being financially raped by Delmarva’s rate hike last year.

Having the most touted Republican gubernatorial candidate, far more interested in pandering to future contributors, than in alleviating the suffering of his own state’s people, amply gives credence to the growing disbelief that, perhaps it really is true, the Cheney/Bush ticket has morally bankrupted and effectively killed the Republican party everywhere, as recently evidenced in the Republican dominated seventh district’s election.

However I would be remiss if I were not to confess that as a dull, self indulged, overwhelmed by daily life citizen, I did not find the Republican Party currently far more fascinating than the old guard Democrats who still wear their pants too high, and currently run the politics of this state.

The excitement generated by Dave Burris in standing up for American principals, as opposed to Republican ones, awes me.

Tyler’s last campaign, long on solutions, short on “old guard” support, signaled that political bravery was not “just” a provincial Democratic one.

The current buzz in today’s Republican House of Delegates, now void of Wayne Smith, is both refreshing and hopeful.

The Republican push for “Karen Petersen’s Vision of ‘Open Government’ ” is smart, inspiring, and long overdue.

And on the national scale, shadowing the local trend, Mitt Romney’s campaign, as viewed through unfiltered non-partisan eyes, still generates exciting possibilities when compared to front-runner Hillary’s campaign, who by some accounts has already been prematurely ordained as our next president.

So it behooves me to understand why this party, now on it’s death throes here in Delaware, still continues to insist on its adherence to the “old” ideas of energy generation, instead of being forward thinking and becoming supportive of Blue Water Wind’s proposal. This is the one proposal which allows Delaware the freedom to create it’s own cheap energy, instead of buying it from its high priced neighbors.

One would think someone at least would look at the numbers. 94% of Delawareans support wind power. The Democratic old guard, labor, and Minner’s inner office are vulnerable on this issue, having been caught with NRG’s coal dust underneath their fingernails. If Republicans ever needed a popular campaign issue at the right time, this is it.

Those of us who watch politics are always surprised and amazed when a new issue that political pols think is insignificant, resonates through the general public and becomes the central campaign divider and emphatically decides the election.

The Republicans have an opportunity to do that. Just as they attempted with open government his year, they can use this issue to again make themselves relevant to Delaware’s voters.

For those of us paying 60% more in energy costs this year, it is not too late.

Let us hope that Copeland has not hammered too many nails into the coffin’s lid, still allowing for their sleeping corpse to wake up, raise its head and look around, and climb out of the casket before it’s buried six feet under.

Flashback to the last hour’s of Legislature in the 05 session.

The Honorable Cathcart brings up a bill to move forward the moratorium on a certain vaccine preservative that may be banned by the federal government at the end of 08. This vaccine, when used on children, gave rise to a higher than normal autism rate, and often left survivors incapacitated. Using good judgment, the Honorable Cathcart proposed that the state of Delaware move forward it ban to the end of 07. This would protect a year’s worth of children from the possibility.

The Honorable Wayne Smith spoke against the bill, saying that if the federal government allowed it to continue to 08, then why should Delaware do anything different……

Cathcart responded that based on statistics, that 8 to 10 Delawareans would be affected by this vaccine over this one year period, and those children might suffer severely.

Wayne Smith argued that doing so was unfair to medical practitioners who had stockpiled the cheap vaccine before it was deemed to be dangerous, and who should be allowed to sell it off within the bounds set by the Federal Government.

Both individuals read medical evidence supporting their cause, and dismissing the evidence brought by the other.

I never found how it ended. I had to leave. There was no public record found, that I could access, just a brief mention about the bond bills that passed late that night.

Now the individual Republican who bravely championed a child’s right to life, is now Majority Leader.

And the villain, who argued that a Doctor’s money far outweighed a child’s life, has been rewarded quid pro quo for his courageous action in the trenches.

10. FSP did not mention Romney for 3 days. Something is wrong.

9. Preliminary reports show wind power to be the second choice to gas fired plant. Risky choice.

8. If generals resign, we will not go into Iran. War is over. Military stocks fall.

7. Wayne Smith retires. Now it will be much more difficult for corporations to screw average citizens.

6. All of the Libby jury showed up wearing red.

5. Al Gore won an Oscar making “Global Warming” an official policy of the United States of America.

4. Someone actually totaled up Bush’s deficit and figured out how much we were in the hole.

3. Obama’s strong showing puts doubts that insiders Hillary or McCain will win.

2. Mysterious Men in Black showed up at Kilroy’s, driving a MIni Cooper and then forgot to “neuralize” him when they left.

1. They lied to us about 9/11. They lied to us about WMD’s. They lied to us about Valerie Plame. Who would ever expect that as we approached an election that they would lie about the fourth quarter’s economic data?

Recently the Bush administration has come under a lot of criticism over the war in Iraq. However there is a hidden twist that does not meet first glance. One could say that there was a hidden agenda, like a video game and that if those codes were followed, they would thereby illuminate the Iraqi adventure as a success.

I want to be quite clear. This is not spin. This is a “what if” scenario that has been played out beneath our noses. It is a story of what we were led to believe versus of what the real agenda was. Once we understand this agenda, the onus of “incompetence” that has been thrown loosely at the Iraq mess, takes on Reichstagian proportions, leading one to admit that most of us have been outfoxed by a fanatic regime more intent with taking care of it’s own, than furthering the greater American good.

When the war was proposed, here is what we were led to believe. The argument went as follows:

The war in Iraq is necessary to:

Find and destroy the weapons of mass destruction.

Oust Saddam Hussein and free the Iraqi people to establish their own democracy.

Allow Iraqi businessmen to establish a free market.

Use profits from Iraqi oil to build the infrastructure for the people of Iraq.

Allow Iraq to become a shining example ofliberty, free markets, and democracy in the Middle East.

These are generally progressive goals which explains the broad support for the Iraqi invasion. After all it is progressives who champion international aid, the protection of human rights, and the ideal that the proceeds 0f a country’s rescources should go to the prople of that country.

However there are strategic goals that were understood and opposed by far too few progressives. It was the understanding of these strategic goals and the practical realization that the humanitarian goals would never be met, that led those too few progressives to oppose the war.

Among the Bush administration’s strategic goals of the Iraqi invasion:

Show that globial order can be reshaped to our advantage by preemptive military means, and show enough force to intimidate other countries in the Middle East.

Use the war, linked to the war on terror, to establish domestic war powers and much greater political control for the president and the administration.

Shift domestic spending from social programs to the military, as shift domestic wealth and power to defense contractors and the oil industry.

Establish a controllable “client state” government in Iraq

Gain access to the world’s second-largest oil reserve

Establish permanent military bases in the heart of the Middle East to gain a strategic position, particularly with regard to Iran.

Use the war as a rallying call for electoral advantage in America

Allow american corporations to take control of a signifigant portion of Iraq’s economy

Privatise military functions in order to 1) maximise the effect of fighting forces, 2) increase profits for military contractors, and 3) remove accountability from the military for such actions as torture and bribery.

Establish the dominance and independence of the United States in world affairs by ignoring the will of many of our NATO allies and the UN.

None of those is a progressive goal which is why the war proponents do not often state them. Americans are just too progressive to accept them. However many of these goals can be found in think-tank publications and right-wing magazines. Many of the architects of the war, Vice President Dick Cheney, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfield, World Bank President and former undersecretary for defense Paul Wolfowitz, US Ambassador to Iraq Zalmay Khalilzad, I. Lewis Libby ( former chief of staff for Cheney), William Kristol (editor of The Weekly Standard) and governor Jeb Bush of Florida, among others– explicitly endorsed such an agenda as part of the Project for the New American Century in 1997.

If we recognize that these stratigic goals are the important focus of the Iraq invasion, then what we see in Iraq, is not “incompetence” as I have often decride, as well as has the majority of the progressive voices. The conservative architects of the war, and those in charge, were less interested in the humanitarian mission of the war than in these strategic goals.

One does not need a “kristol” ball to determine that most of these strategic conservative goals were met. One has subsequently to realize that the progressive mantle in which the war was wrapped was only a snake oil sales pitch to persuade our purchase of the package whose sole “raison d’etre” was to make it’s seller rich.

(My thanks to George Lakoff and the Rockridge Institute for writing and sponsoring the book Thinking Points , particularly page 104, portions of which were used herein.)