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Those of us who keep a toe in politics have noticed unquestionably the polarization occurring between conservatives and the rest of the world..  It is as if one side is living in a world structured by different facts than the world the rest of us live in…

Guess what?

They are, (or we are, depending on which terra firma one stands on…. )

pew-fact-distortion
In a national poll by this conservative leaning think tank, we see that 81% of us agree we cannot agree on basic facts with our political opponents.  That is 4 out of every 5 of us….

What are facts?  Definition, please.

The earth revolves around the sun and the moon revolves around the earth, are two examples of facts. You may have contrary opinions, but your having them will not change either the trajectory of the earth or moon.,,,

Those are facts.

Here is an example of two opinions masquerading as facts:

A) Terrorists are coming into our country with the massive influx of Syrian refugees.
B) America has the most stringent vetting of any refugee on the planet and only plans to accept 10,000 Syrian refugees across all of 2016.

One is the fact propagated by right wing fear mongers, the other is the official policy of the US government.

This causes great arguments in social media with threats and charges being tossed around by both sides,  based strictly from feeding off different facts, and the result is that each is unwilling to listen to the other because their facts prove the other is just “spouting crazy…”

Sound familiar?

Now with myself a rational human, if A) were true, that is if we had accepted millions immigrants and were just rounding them up, putting bodies on boats and giving them papers in New York and saying, “here you go”… most of us would say this was ridiculous policy and very dangerous… I would put myself among them.

But as a rational human, if we are only letting in less than 10,000 a year, and we are vetting them extremely well, and some of these, like our ancestors will do great things for their new nation, then this would be the sane policy to take, and you know what? With all this in place, we could probably take more…

So you see:  when on social media or in argumentative comment sections, to banter back and forth with:

A)  You’re @#$@# crazy….
B)  No, you’re #$%#$ crazy

ad nauseum

makes one totally miss the point that neither is crazy at all, but are in fact very similar; Both agree on the actions to be taken in both scenarios, but are just arguing because both were fed different facts, that’s all... Again most of us would be in agreement if we were all fed the same facts and only those facts…

Why has this gotten worse since the Internet, something which was supposed to put all the world’s knowledge at our fingertips?

Well, this might be a good place to remind you that the Internet is a two way street… You use the Internet to learn about the world;  the world uses the Internet to learn about you.

Everything you do on the Internet leaves a record… Everything! If no one cares what you do that is probably “ok” and inconsequential to you right now…  Does anyone really care if you look at porn?  No, then go ahead… No one will look for that needle in a haystack…

BUT, if at some future point someone does want to find out about you, everything you did since you first logged on is at their fingertips.  It could be a hiring agent, a boss, a competitive co-worker trying to get you fired, your spouse, your mistress, your gigolo, your estranged gay lover, your bank, your insurer, your best friend, your worst enemy, a political opponent, or even someone making a mistake and accidentally thinking you are someone else …  right now it’s for sale to anyone coughing up $78 dollars.

So what if someone found out what you like to see and fed you stuff that would keep you engaged, instead of the opposite, making you so totally enraged at the lies you were fed, you disconnected and walked out the door to live your REAL life?    Would they use it?

Rupert Murdoch bought the Wall Street Journal and is now the owner.

They have two Facebook feeds, one blue and one red… Someone put them side by side.

You should book mark this site for it readily explains what each side sees and gives you a bird’s eye on the upcoming arguments with which social media will soon explode.  <=(Link)

split-fb-feed-wsj

These are both coming from the same media outlet which we thought was a body that deliberated on issues and then fed us what they thought.  That was a lie.  They feed us what they think we want… Which means, both sides are seeing different things.. Period…

Each side probably for the most part thinks they see the one true Wall Street Journal on their FB feed.. If you are someone over 40, you have always had the WSM dictate things to you across your life, especially if you invest.  So when they show you something culled from Breitbart, you take it they have certified its validity.  Little knowing the person you are “politely” arguing with is also getting notifications from the same WSM, just on a different feed, and all facts they get are opposite of yours…

So on one side we only get all facts that Hillary is guilty of killing 4 people in Benghazi. On the other side we get facts that as many times as she gets hauled to answer questions, there is no “gotchu” and it it pretty obvious that she had absolutely nothing to do with that event.

And flipped? …On one side we get all the references of previous attempted rapes perpetuated by this Republican candidate; on the other side we only get to view the inconsistencies showing that these are gold diggers who are just piling on for some extra cash.. After all, our most “trusted” source in both cases… is who told us so…

Both from the same trusted source… So which is it, is Benghazi really a crime unpunished, or is it a political football just waiting for the quarter to end?  So which is it, are these really true stories of attempted assault, or are they gross misinterpretations of fooling around?

The overall answer is we need some way to hold media to truth… If you are media, you have to tell the truth.  You certainly can’t talk out of both sides of your month to different sides telling each a version of truth that pits one against the other… Especially when they would probably all agree, if they were all given the same facts.

There are two ways to control it:  internally or externally.

Cutting to the chase, I tend to lean internally for several reasons. One, it is far easier to manage, both at the news gathering level, and at the monitoring level.. One of the principle arguments for first allowing faux news was that as entertainment it shouldn’t be regulated.  Another was that Big Brother could more easily control all information if narrowed down to a tiny few.  Both of those have been proven true.  It is harder to control all media since faux news and Clear Channel has emerged as huge players.

The Internet provides balance but quite often, those “trees of knowledge” fall in the forest making no sound. The Internet is so big.

Having a bureaucracy follow up on every broadcast to determine truth, is simply un-American and therefore unacceptable…

Therefore having individuals and corporations police themselves seems to be the best solution.  And the best way to do that is to facilitate the filing of lawsuits anytime an untruth is uttered.. What this does, is prevent speculation from going across the airwaves. And sometimes such lawsuits can be misused, as in the Scopes-Monkey trial of a century ago.  But that trial became the news for a month, illuminated pride and prejudice in a new light, and opened the doors of enlightenment as the suppressors of information got overruled…

For example:  one screen shot showing a Republican Congress-person being arrested for illegal sex while having a “D” next to his name on a blue banner, could cost Faux News a pretty penny.  As a result, they would tend to internally outlaw propaganda and police those themselves.

Today, saying Global Warming is not man-made, would open one to a lawsuit. Saying Hillary Clinton killed 4 people in Benghazi, would open one to a lawsuit.  For those already committed to truth, it would have very little effect.  If one was sure of ones source, they could go ahead and release the story… if one wasn’t sure of their source, they could sit on it waiting for collaboration from someone else……

Those of you with a few years under your belt may smile at that last line.  That is how journalism used to be accomplished by family publishers before corporations bought out all our media outlets, and before computers….

Essentially eliminating all non-fact based propaganda is past overdue… Our population deserves the facts to make their informed decisions on how we should run this country.. Anyone withholding those from a segment of our people is deserving of punishment for doing so….

And finally, as we today see threats from Trump again leveled against those medias putting forth stories of his penchant for playing with little young pussies,  we could limit the threat of lawsuits for intimidation by forcing the filer to pay all expense of the filing, and defender’s legal fees unless the publishing party in the end is found guilty of publishing falsehoods…  Then they would pay all costs including attorney fees of the plaintiff.

If you lie it costs you.  If you always tell the truth. you remain untouchable…

Then, maybe we all will become less polarized and less contentious…..

 

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Imposing tighter and more forceful controls on the “fourth estate”, requires serious consideration.  And such a proposal being in itself, “politically charged”, guarantees nothing will be done unless there is a single party in firm control of all three forms of government and that includes the courts…

There has to be a faster way, a better way.

That is what I am to propose.We have found (particularly in this election year) that to get things done quickly,  “We, The People” have to get involved.  It is what propelled Donald to the forefront of his party’s nomination over the stale platitudes of people who were competent.  It is also what gave Bernie’s campaign far more power than any insider could have ever considered as late as last December a mere 9 months ago.  So whether you like either of the two campaigns or not, it is “We, The People” who manifested them in our own two diverse images….

The problem with today’s press is not so much its partisanship. The reason calling out such partisanship from BOTH parties is justifiable, is because the press plays itself against BOTH sides.  Indeed in social issues it does tend to side with liberals and lambastes both conservatives and Tea Party Republicans. Most of our media is liberal on issues supportive of prisoners, gays, minorities, and women’s rights. But when it comes to a government using its power to get things done, the media’s business-identity takes over and it becomes strongly Libertarian. Here keeping government in a box seems to be its prime directive. Those of you with sharp minds can already see where this is going: both socially and governmentally our press is almost pure Libertarian. On the social side it mimics Liberalness while on the business side, it’s conservative. Both which are planks of the Libertarian party.

Because of this dichotomy,  both sides can and do look at the American media as its enemy…. while the same both sides ignore and dismiss the side which is a partial friend of it .Therefore for citizen’s groups to attack the media on its partisanship is probably a moot endeavor.  For if there is no partisanship actually there, one will come up empty handed. No, for any change to occur, there first

a) has to be a problem, then

b) that problem has to become common knowledge, then

c) movements towards change have to campaign to attract followers, and then

d) the number of “pros” has to outweigh the number of “cons”, and

e) only then, does change occur.  But is has to start with a real … problem.

We have a real problem.  Our fourth estate refuses to report real facts and lets lies slip by without comment every time those facts or lies fly in the face of its Libertarian nature.  Take the climate-change debate: since governments should not enforce Draconian rules upon private business so the press mitigated the compelling facts of global warming with opposing opinions funded by Big Oil.  Flip that over to the other side: gay marriage.  Government should not enforce Draconian rules upon private citizens; therefore it cast and painted those who were traditionalists into caricatures of silliness, to which most of “us” (long oppressed) took delight.  Take religion:  all those enforcing a “state’ religion, be they traditionalists of Muslim, Jewish, Old School Catholic, or Fundamentalist Christian get parodied and those actively involved in the “serving” nature of religion as in “creating good here on earth” get support… Take taxes: raising them though obviously the glaring solution to almost every problem and concern, also involves taking resources away from private citizens and putting them into the hands of a “government” … Hence, no commentary is ever given towards how raising taxes would swell the “people’s” economy, raise all wages, and allow us to all live much wealthier than we can today, despite all the evidence out there crying for it to be noticed and upheld… The trend has been consistent.

The point I’m making is that when progressives look at this monolith, and when conservatives look at this monolith, they both see the monolith fighting strictly against them.  They don’t see it actually is fighting against all government in general….

One could talk about this “problem” of the media for hours.  In just the few short minutes of typing I already have cooked up enough mental outlines and supporting examples to write a whole book. We don’t have time for that. Let’s accept step a) (There has to be a problem) is legit and move onward to where we need to go to make our stamp as We, The People, felt…

 

We need to quickly move over to step (b) (that problem has to become common knowledge), as well as setup the future stages of c) (movements towards change have to campaign to attract followers) and d) (the number of “pros” has to outweigh the number of “cons”…..) 

We know how to do this because we did it to Rush Limbaugh… We attack their advertisers… Both due diligence and concerted effort are needed as was bravely and methodically accomplished against Rush Limbaugh.

The plan simply involves holding advertisers accountable for the News shows they sponsor.  We write to advertisers supporting some of the most hateful one-sided shows and ask them if they were aware they were supporting bigotry, we ask them if they were aware they were supporting misogyny, we ask them if they were aware they were supporting a “state religion”, and we ask them if they were aware they were supporting climate change denial….

Make sure you offer the examples… quotes and times of what was directly said.(Twitter makes it easy).. Then politely inform them that for the life of you, you cannot conscientiously buy another of their products until you are sure they have changed …. and that one way for them to gain your future support, would be to take public action and combat those issues which by their association through their advertising, they seem to support.

We know this is effective…. The power of association is a very motivating human trait… “Ew, I don’t want people to think I’m with them….”

And we also know it does not take many such letters to make an impact… It is one of the reason true Conservatives appear almost equal in power though their numbers are a very minimal percentage of the population.(17%)… Because almost the full 100% of them write protests to businesses including those in the press themselves.. Therefore no matter how ridiculous is their claim, one needs to pay it respect to mitigate any financial impact to oneself.

The reason such small numbers can impact business is because businesses depend on revenue streams.  As you know profits are only the tip of the pyramid after all other expenses have been paid down and off. So by taking a block of two off the top, they who live or die by their profit dollars, are impacted immediately…  They cannot ignore your threat….

Now some may say that the press doesn’t matter.  Because to most people,  the press is just something out there… an irrelevant entity that no one seems to watch…  When we hear that 2.4 million watch Fox’s “The Five” we should also calculate to ourselves that means there were also an estimated 322 million who did not watch. And that does indeed correlate to the reality of our lives.. At work, no one comments on politics unless that happens to be all they live for.Sports, entertainment, family, problems with coworkers, traffic, all seem to take precedence in our lives over the fate of our county, state, or even federal electees…

But Brexit pointed out a glaring problem to ignoring this.  When Brits were asked from where they got most of their opinions prior to voting, a high majority responded with the BBC. And this makes psychological sense. When confused it is natural to turn to where your parents used to get their source of information.. which was the BBC.

Now throughout the argument of Brexit, the BBC as is today’s American media dealing with Trump, tried to play both sides evenhandedly; to do so they let tons of lies simply slide by without context which caused quite a few votes going Brexit’s way.  Brexit proponents made promises and charges that were completely unfounded, but due to any silence of a rebuttal by BBC, they were allowed to hang out on the line as truth.   Proof of of this being that the promise to transfer moneys being sent to the EU  (350 million each week) over to the NHS, was pulled less than 24 hours had expired since the vote went Brexit’s way… That misinformation bubble on which many used to cast their vote, could and should have easily been popped before the vote…

The BBC let down Britain, and today, we see our American press doing the exact same: letting down America to keep up the semblance of a tight horse race… We see click-bait headlines pushing “something’s very wrong” in a squeaky clean Clinton Foundation even when inside the same article they mention there was no wrongdoing found; on the other hand we see them completely ignoring outright bribery looking at them in the face…as in Trump paying off the Florida AG to make a “We, The People’s” investigation go away….

The press has the ability to spin an election cycle. This is very true.  This happened in 2000 and the USA is still digging out from that tragedy… All the facts back then said tax cuts and deregulation would cause immense economic trouble, but those effects were never publicly discussed by our press. Instead we were treated to media storms of:…”who would you rather have a beer with?”  Duh, the obvious answer would be a Texas Rangers baseball team owner over the other choice, one who’d been a governmental bureaucrat all his life.. But that shouldn’t have been the question!.. But solely because it was, and many more voters back then looked at the press for guidance than dare do today, it spun the election criteria out of the field of economics over into La, La, Land.  So instead of having our national debt completely paid off back in 2008 to which we were on track to do, we now have $16 trillion new dollars yet to pay.  So now instead maintaining certain regulations to keep businesses from immorally gouging consumers without consequences, we had a crash rivaling the Great Depression. So now instead of nipping Global Warming in the bud by 2004, we have oceans crashing into our houses, wiping out recreational shoreline yearly and species living 30,000 years disappearing without trace.

Elections have consequences and if “We, The People” are to truly remain in charge, we need to apply our control over this press as well as we apply it over our government… And our tool for that is economic. And it must start with you…. 

One… Personally comment somewhere every time you hear misjudgment made by the press.

Two… when you do hear a particular misleading comment, note the next three advertisers.

Three… do a search, find those advertisers’ customer service, click send email, and type a few sentences.  Like this..

“Did you know your company’s ad was the first thing I saw on Politico after its host seemed to support Trump’s misogynist agenda and did not comment against Donald Trump’s slur against women!  How can you advertise on such a vile channel?

Or..

“What are you trying to do!  Just saw your ad on ABC who just gave credence to Trumps’ immigration policy by not calling out the lies Trump spewed…especially that all Hispanics are rapists.   I will no longer support a company who indulges in prejudice and hate.. Good bye

Or…

Did you know that CBS just let Donald Trump’s assertion go unchallenged that there was no global warming? … Did you know your advertisement came immediately after cutting away from that?  I’m sorry but my dollars cannot go to a company who associates with networks who will not correct such lies and misinformation….

==========

It’s a start. The benefit is that we know it works…  “Rush who?” you ask.

 

 

 

 

As we ponder our daily feeds, either rejoicing at an inevitable victory in November, or cringing as a Republican, knowing defeat is almost certain, it might be time to consider making some changes to society so that this type of thing (Donald Trump) doesn’t happen again.

Why exactly do we have Donald Trump as a real possibility of becoming president?

  • Democrats don’t want him.
  • The Republican leadership doesn’t want him.
  • Hispanics don’t want him.
  • Muslims don’t want him.
  • Women don’t want him.
  • Blacks don’t want him.
  • Big Business doesn’t want him.
  • Investors don’t want him.
  • Catholics don’t want him.

No Republican has ever run alienating all of the above. Yet this one is! So the question has to be asked since it IS obvious that he got the most votes and  often by rather large margins….. how did so many Americans get fooled into voting for someone so unqualified and so unbalanced they are unable to handle the office at hand?

The most likely answer is that they voted for something else they thought they were getting, but like Trump University students, they got shafted.  We can be dismissive of them,. calling them stupid “whatevers”…. But the reality is that most of them aren’t stupid. They have decent brains and they know how to use them, just lapsed in this one solitary case… In the real world they run businesses, they run state governments, they perform difficult tasks for their employers; no, they are not stupid as measured by a psychologist.  But somehow they all got duped….

I was curious as to how. How could so many Americans get this wrong?  Trump received 13,406,108 votes by someone’s calculation… Many were members of my extended family.

I saw a glimpse today as to why…..when Sean Hannity just showed us why the upcoming blowout Trump loss, wouldn’t end the GOP’s civil war..

“On his radio show Wednesday, Hannity rather amazingly sought to pre-blame the Republican establishment for a Trump loss in 2016.

If in 96 days Trump loses this election, I am pointing the finger directly at people like Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell and Lindsey Graham and John McCain and John Kasich and Ted Cruz — if he won’t endorse – and Jeb Bush and everybody else that made promises they’re not keeping,” Hannity said.

He added: “I have watched these Republicans be more harsh towards Donald Trump than they’ve ever been in standing up to Barack Obama and his radical agenda … . They did nothing. Nothing.”

Right here, even after a disastrous convention, even after the def-con 5 week afterwards, Sean Hannity is blaming moderate or actual working members of the Republican Party for Trump’s ultimate upcoming blowout in November. How silly is this?  Did those 7 Republicans he mentioned by name, pick on a Gold Star family? No, all seven were blindsided by the affair and had to quickly distance themselves from Trump’s controversy because most of their constituents do love and support the military.  Did those 7 Republicans throw out a crying baby?  No, all seven of them love babies, albeit better when they aren’t crying. Did those 7 ask 3 times why we couldn’t use nuclear weapons?  No, all seven of those already know why…….

Yet Hannity is blasting these members of the Republican Party for not standing with Trump while he appears to be grasping for the detonator on his explosive suicide vest….

Who is this Hannity,  … the freaking devil?

And that’s when….. I understood….

IF YOU ONLY SEE ONE SIDE OF EVERY ISSUE, THAT IS ALL YOU ARE GOING TO BELIEVE……

So instead of ignoring all the Republican memes today, I asked most of them,  “do you ever watch the Fox Network?”  And all of those posting memes still supporting Trump, said “yes”…  I said, “how often?”  and as you would expect, usually the answers paralleled “all the time.”

So here’s the problem with Free Speech.  When you give only lies not balanced by truth, you will get people who’ll believe the lies.  For how could they not?  If you reach a lot of people, you have a lot of people who’ll believe the lie over truth…because to them, what they know, they deem IS the truth.

It correlates to this:

“Sean Hannity’s ratings boost, on the other hand, has been phenomenal. Hannity now comes in third in the demo, right behind Kelly, and fifth overall. His audience grew by over a third since last April, and it seems very clear where that dynamic originates. While Bill O’Reilly has been somewhat sympathetic to Donald Trump, Hannity has been outright enthusiastic about Trump.”   POSTED AT 2:01 PM ON MAY 9, 2016 BY ED MORRISSEY

Hannity with 1.8 million viewers versus 1.3 million votes for Trump? Any correlation?

One thing about television viewing is that you can’t watch two screens at once. You can read two newspapers one after another, you can read multiple reports on line one after each other, you can switch stations on your car radio driving home from work.  But if you want to see news told to you by a human face sometime between dinner and bed, you are going to watch one channel, the one you feel most comfortable.  And a good network, is going to profile itself to your demographic so you will feel compelled to watch and thereby help it boost its ratings.

Thus, you will only get news you want to hear.  Most likely what you hear will be a fabrication. It may even have no truth.  They may leave out several vital points in its telling and put blame on other’s actions to provide a possible reason which explains the gap over what they purposefully hid. (Example: Hannity’s spout above). If you only watched that one channel or network in an alternate universe, you’d never know about the real world.

Trump’s ascendancy makes this a national crises. Instead of having two choices for president, we now realistically only have one. Up to this moment we thought we had enough safeguards in place to protect our liberties so we wrung our hands in exasperation, but never thought we’d ever look at doing something about it. But the idea of a Trump presidency makes many of us think our nation is about to end.  After Trump’s nuclear exchange, some think the whole world is about to end.

Yet on my social media, I see there are still many people who “don’t see it”. Every counter argument or piece of additional evidence handed to them is ignored as coming from the “liberal” media. And no doubt this is very bad for a democracy. You need discussion. You need opposing views.  But we have large numbers of people who willingly support a tyrant solely because he won’t moderate or soften his views under any criticism (or reality).

That veteran actually gave him his purple heart? (I’m betting at some future point in his life, he’s going come to his senses and want that back).  In his own mind, or in his own fabrication based on what he’s been told about America, he obviously believed that his gesture was magnanimously going to change America’s opinion of his hero. “We veterans support you, Mr. Trump.”  That is not something one does flippantly or lightly. I bet he has no idea that most of America right now is thinking him the biggest deluded fool on our planet.

We must ask how can that be?  What brought us to this point? How can someone so attuned to what makes America great, be so deluded?  I looked to find collaboration. I remembered the often quoted PEW study on the polarization of America’s views.  We heard a lot about this in 2014 leading up to the mid term election.

Democrats and Republicans by this study were more ideologically divided than in the past.

Divided We Fall

Prior to Gingrich’s revolution, we could all get along for the most part. In 2014, everybody was the bad guy.  What could have created that?

Political intransigence for one.  Gingrich’s revolution after 1994 was based on not compromising with anybody; it was either his way or the highway… (When it went negative after they shut the government down, he softened his approach). But back in 1994 uncompromising was something brand new and prior to him we’d never seen the likes of it before.  Some blame both sides (Republicans usually) for intransigence, but when one blindsides you with a sucker punch, you don’t respond with, “oh, dude; looks like your hand accidentally impacted my face. Let’s have a beer and talk about it”… You punch them back with every intent on hurting them as hard as they hurt you.  (It’s how wars get started.)  Gingrich probably was the catalyst that started the migration to the poles instead of remaining happily congregated together in the center.

But that could not have happened in a vacuum. Had the same occurred in the 40’s, 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, or 80’s, Gingrich would have lasted just one term and no one would have supported him.  Prior to that, being recalcitrant was simply unelectable. It had been tested by fringe candidates, all who were never elected. No, something was different in the nineties that insulated this group of iconoclasts and allowed them to continue with impunity.

The repeal of the Fairness Doctrine—which had required that stations provide free air time for responses to any controversial opinions that were broadcast—by the FCC in 1987 meant stations could broadcast editorial commentary without having to present opposing views. Daniel Henninger wrote, in a Wall Street Journal editorial, “Ronald Reagan tore down this wall (the Fairness Doctrine) in 1987 … and Rush Limbaugh was the first man to proclaim himself liberated from the East Germany of liberal media domination. —Wikipedia

When the Republican Party won control of Congress in the 1994 midterm elections, the freshman Republican class awarded Limbaugh an honorary membership in their caucus.

On October 7th, 1996, Rupert Murdoch launched the Fox News Network  to just 17 million subscribers. He publicly announced its formation on January 31st, 1996. In February he wooed Roger Ailes from NBC”s “America’s Talking” to run it. At its October 7th launch, only 10 million households were able to watch Fox News, none in the major media markets of New York City and Los Angeles. Many media reviewers concentrated in those two cities had to watch the first day’s programming at Fox News’ studios because it was not readily available. By the 2000 presidential election, Fox News, which was available in 56 million homes nationwide, saw a staggering 440% increase in viewers, the biggest gain among the three cable news television networks…. Wikipedia

Strange things began happening according to the Pew Study.

Polorization

We became more antagonistic to the other party. In 1994 almost no one thought the other party was a danger to the nation’s well being. Of course they may be misguided, but a danger? Ha. Even in 2004 there were statistically none feeling such. But that has significantly changed in the past 10 years.  Now the others’ unfavorables hover around 40% with 3/4ths of them in each party considering the other party to be an enemy to the nation’s well being. In light of this almost all of us would be willing to fight for our country to protect it from danger. So if we are being teased into thinking our country is sinking into mortal danger by “those other people”, then it very likely that among some of us, our emotional fight or flight propensities would be liable to surface easily.

Have you ever noticed how well people get along, until politics get mentioned?

Activism
That is because more and more we have little in common.  Not in reality. In the real world we have quite a bit in common. Most of us belong to the 99%. Most of us have some type of spiritualism or religion.  Most of us graduated through public school. Most of us watched the same shows growing up, heard the same musicians on our radios, and read many of the same books our schools insisted we should.  We have a lot more commonality now due to media’s intrusion in our lives, than did our ancestors living in the last century.  So why is there no middle ground?

And I think Sean Hannity showed us exactly why today.  Which would be just another media grab for his persona, if it weren’t for the following news items going on at the same time.  Question of Trump quitting?  News of Trump letting Pence run both domestic and international policy while Trump concentrates on “Making America Great Again”?  I love babies; get that baby outta’ here, what was she thinking? For the third time, can you tell me why we can’t use nuclear weapons? I’m just not there yet with endorsing possibly my future House Speaker for his Congressional seat up this November… Not to mention his continuing obsession with Khan’s DNC mentioning his name.  And if you do follow conservative media posts, you saw as recent reality begins to dawn that they’re about to lose big, their posts have begun filling up with talk of armed civil war, as in the Bundys-on-steroids….

Sean Hannity showed us exactly why today…. There was no rationality in his statement. None. It was a complete fabrication, a complete misinterpretation, and totally and completely irrational.  Yet it was said, to the Wall Street Journal even.

It was “Fire” in a crowded theater!  Courts have ruled that saying “fire” is not an exercise in free speech and such can be deemed to be criminal and damages can be leveled against it perpetrators.

So, if we survive after this November, for the future how do we fix it?  I sweat thinking what could happen. I really don’t think we ever want this to happen again,  do we?  I would rather we have more civil public discourse between ideas and values, instead of Jerry Springer fist fights, slurs, name calling, and massive societal “unfriending”‘s…. Am I alone here?

If we choose to fix this, we will need to come up with a line over which one cannot cross, one that separates free speech from yelling “fire” on our public airwaves. We will need to come up with some way that holds our news celebrity people accountable for what they say.

  • Opening them to lawsuits, could be one option.
  • Forcing equal time, could be another.
  • A daily fact check of the night before, available to all, might work.
  • A revocation of a necessary license if caught in a lie just once.

But these come with their own problems. Just imagining the opposition leveling these against us should give us pause in pursuing any of the above to curb future harm.  If not very careful, we could be creating more harm towards the free exchange of ideas.

Other options could include posting a Madow or similar report following a Hannity or similar report and vice versa on the other side’s channels.  Imagine after hearing Ted Cruz, you got to hear Bernie Sanders?

Or placing such equal time laws and responsibilities only on our most successful characters… Perhaps starting at over 1 million regular viewers, you do have to have some fair and balanced reporting on the same channel, even the same show… That would still allow for legal unlimited expression on cable among everyone else without moderation. Those independent shows no matter how extreme, never were a problem. There are so many of those, I never watched; nor does anyone else except their mother perhaps. Therefore whereas Bill O’Reilly must have someone pointing out his inconsistencies right after he utters them, so should Rachel; but Jamal the Reggie Bandmaster can say anything thing he wants at 3:30 am.

Or perhaps only allowing even numbers of opposing-view stations in a market at a time. You have Fox, you must have another to enter at the same time; just that you can’t have large areas under only one network.

Yet these two ideas also have their problems with enforcement and creation. Whatever reasonable solution we eventually find, it will need to stand up to court challenges against anyone’s misconception over what the First Amendment allows.

When television first landed, we had restrictions, particularly the Fairness Doctrine. Reasons being for one, we were a lot closer to WWII and saw a once great and noble nation (one fourth of us were German too) go down a path of someone’s senseless power addiction and their nation’s ultimate destruction.  Also we knew well how the Soviet Union kept their population from rebelling against what no American would accept as status quo. We had seen under totalitarianism the power of a single voice in media and we only allowed television if it agreed to benefit all its citizens, not just titillate them.  By today’s standards, heavy censorship was applied and enforced.

Can we go back to that?  Doubtful as it seems right now, we may not have heard the last of Trump’s crazy utterances. Our future may dictate that option again be available to us, reluctant as we are right now to accept it.  But to stave that off, this topic now becomes one more thing we need to consider during this election cycle…

When Hillary wins, what are we going to do with the Fox News Network to make sure such disinformation or manipulation never happens on such a scale to harm our nation again?

We hate each other… not because of who they are, but because of what we are told they want to do to our country.  Even Cowboys and Eagles fans get along better than Democrats and Republicans once Fox News becomes the topic of conversation. We should not be in such straits.  Our uppermost levels of animosity should always remain in sport’s fan-ship; not in whether our democratic nation can last as a democracy.  On that topic we should all be working together towards a common goal. We need to kill that messenger who keeps dividing us, even when deep inside we really don’t want to be divided……

Antipathy

Donald Trump just accused Ted Cruz’s dad of being with Oswald before the killing of JFK.

The press in up in arms over how to treat this.

Trump has once again said something wacky that the media can’t refute with total certainty (this is an ongoing problem). The Cruz campaign has said the man in question is not the candidate’s father, but there is no easy way to prove a negative. So the media are left to point out the lack of credible evidence supplied by Trump and the Enquirer without actually asserting that the report is fiction.

It’s a dance that has been repeated many times over, but perhaps never has it been so difficult.

====

So, let me teach the press how this get handled.

You put a picture of Donald Trump on your front page with the headline

LIAR

Doctored Trumpism

Then you tell his accusation.

That is all.

If he wants to counter the name-tag you just gave him (and as a political animal he will), he has to prove it.

If he can, you issue a correction.  If he can’t, he’s done.

 

End of lesson.

 

 

 

First they backed Jeb, then Marco, then Cruz, and now, it looks like Wall Street is pinning their hopes on Hillary.

Bernie is not an avuncular Socialist anymore. He is a threat to the capitalistic system of today, a system that has put 90% of America near poverty… The reason? He wants to return America to the capitalistic system we had 20,30,40 years ago… when to borrow a phrase from Donald Trump, “America was great.”

And most of America hopes he succeeds.  The anger behind Donald Trump is also anger against the current capitalism which has emasculated the American worker. You add Donald’s followers to Bernie’s followers and you have a majority of America who wants some very big changes to quickly affect the daily lives of 90% of Americans… They need more income.

The capitalist system of today is bigger than America… Most of America’s profits are quickly moved off-shore doing Americans no good for all the work they’ve done for their bosses.

American workers are past their breaking point and only two candidates understand and address their issues.  Donald and Bernie.  There are opposite differences in addressing the same theme.  One is diverting attention away from those big businesses by pointing to Mexicans, Muslims, and Megan (something with M’s?). The other is aiming to control big business by putting it back into the box from which it escaped during George W Bush’s presidency…. But depending on who you mistrust, both are doing exactly the same thing in the grand scheme of things: organizing against today’s form of capitalism.

So, with Wisconsin going to Bernie, there is now some fear that New York may do the same.  And that has unleashed all the tricks to blank out  both Bernie and Donald so regular Americans continue to be blocked from any say in how their government gets run… something that keeps Wall Street up at night.

Which is why, with the Wisconsin Win, we now have The Daily News of New York and the Washington Post follow-up, excoriate presidential candidate Sanders…

I read the Daily News transcript and you should too.  You will understand that headlines quite often these days, do not an accurate description of the article, make.

I was very pleased with Bernie’s answers and was rather shocked that some have said otherwise….

The leader of the negative articles is none other then mega-giant Amazon.Com’s own newspaper, the Washington Post… Remember this paper is owned by Jeff Bezos, 5th richest Forbes designated person in the world, who is worth $52 billion. 

There is one reason he would not want Bernie to win and that would be because Bernie would put him in the highest tax bracket.  Which is 58% I believe.  Though he will cry, cry, cry about paying high taxes, Americans will get far more benefit from his $52 billion portfolio if correctly taxed, then they would from letting him keep even more of his profits, as is being proposed by every other candidate…

So, imagine you had $52 billion in assets… Would you attack someone who would cost you money???  Or someone who would give you money??

Here are the Washington Post’s flurries off that great interview (read the transcript)-=- remind one of Fast and Furious?

9 things Bernie Sanders should’ve known about but didn’t in that Daily News interview

This New York Daily News interview was pretty close to a disaster for Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders picks a dangerous New York fight with Hillary Clinton

The case against Bernie Sanders, according to Barney Frank

Clinton questions whether Sanders is qualified to be president

About that Bernie Sanders ‘momentum’ …

Writers for The Atlantic, Vanity Fair, CNN, Slate and Talking Points Memo concluded as well that Sanders had botched the interview.

But the transcript shows a different story…..Sanders’s conversation with the Daily News was more nuanced than some of the criticism might suggest.

Here is one example…. Sanders was faulted for not having formed an opinion on a recent ruling in federal court. “It’s something I have not studied, honestly,” he said.

That federal court ruling, for instance, remains under seal, and experts on the financial sector said there were additional reasons that Sanders couldn’t give precise answers to several of the questions that were put to him.

When asked how to break up JP Morgan, Sanders answered he’d leave it up to the banks.. That is exactly the right answer. The government doesn’t know the most efficient way to break up JP Morgan, JP Morgan does. If the point is to downsize the banks, the way to do it is to give them a size cap and let them figure out the best way to reconfigure themselves to get under it…  It is no different than requiring seat belts in every car, but not specifying how they must be constructed…

The same applies to Sanders not knowing the specific statute for prosecuting banks for their actions in the housing bubble. Knowingly passing off fraudulent mortgages in a mortgage backed security is fraud.  And the fact that Sanders didn’t know a specific statute, who cares? How many people know the specific statute for someone who puts a bullet in someone’s head? It’s murder. Specific statute?  Are you serious?

Although he did not know, he did argue that the federal law enforcement should devote more manpower to investigating the largest financial firms to determine whether any particular laws were violated, something Clinton has also promised to do, putting both of them at odds with Obama, who chose instead to seek large payments to settle, instead of aggressively prosecuting what could be very involved, risky and unsuccessful at the Supreme Court.

With the exception of the subway token thing, gracefully ending with an image of Bernie jumping a turnstile and gracefully eluding the subway police, it often appeared that the Daily News simply had inexperienced reporters asking vaguely open questions to which Bernie was hearing different parts….

Bottom line is that reading the entire transcript, makes Bernie not someone out of touch with the big picture of running America; which means that those saying he was, ARE out of touch with how America needs to be run….

Look.  Mom says:  Be home for Thanksgiving…  She doesn’t say: get out of work early, pack the night before, take the number 5 bus to the station at 7:45; get on the 8:11 train to Philly and get of at Suburban station and take at 9:22, the 102 bus north….

Bernie got it right… Bezos obviously has a $52.2 billion agenda…. If you are smart  (Allan Loudell gets fooled every time), don’t believe any media this campaign, but use them to read the transcripts…. for you are smarter than they are.

Brilliant strategy for any voter:  go the source; ignore headlines and commentary.

 

 

 

Presidential politics is too early to contemplate… But what is worth our attention is today’s fight over the playing field.. As in….which stadium will the game be played? Then follows: what are the extenuating factors that could affect the game for either team if played in that location?…

In football, it translates:  Phoenix? or Lambaugh Field?  One favors one climate of teams, the other,… another…

This has turned into an interesting campaign, this battle for the playing field….. There are 30 candidates from the two major parties now campaigning….

29 are saying nothing about raising taxes on the top 1%…. One is.

29 are saying nothing about stopping global warming cold…. One is.

29 are not talking about the hardships everyone making less than $250,000 is experiencing… . One is.

29 are not talking about increasing the power of labor unions and getting rid of anti-strike legislation…. One is.

29 are not talking about getting huge,gigantic money out of politics…. One is.

29 are not talking about a fair and humane immigration policy….. One is.

29 are not talking about increasing the rights of minorities and have some equality of justice…. One is.

29 are not talking about growing government to provide large numbers of decent jobs…. One is.

29 are not talking about having a living wage become our minimum…. One is

29 are not talking about sending any child to college for free….. One is.

29 are not talking about setting stronger limits on Wall Street…. One is…

29 are not talking about women’s rights as fellow human beings….  One is.

======

This is the “playing field war”… And the media is completely complicit in not addressing this.. That is why it has to come from outside America’s media to report real news, that is, what is really happening….

Either we play this election out on values…. as in which direction should America go? As in where do we want America to be in 8 years?    Or we play this out as a freaking cat fight…

The media is ginning for the cat fight… and If no one listens they can gin all they want… Just like when you go to a party and all the nerds get together and leave you alone.  The party goes on and in the real events of who hooks up with whom, the nerd conversations in the side-rooms don’t matter.  Who cares who is the greatest Dragonball Z character ever?.. How many were there??  O-v-e-r-…….. Nine…… Thousand??

But if we don’t pay attention and don’t call out our media… (it’s hard for them to refrain, just look at Allan Loudell who of all people is savvy enough to realize the pettiness of cat fights this early on, but still as a reporter, can’t help but to report that way out of habit)… then ignoring the real issue is what we are going to get…

Instead of spending all day talking about Joe Biden’s upcoming run, (will he or will he not?),  most would rather hear that the 7 person Wal*mart family brings in more income than the entire bottom 30% of America combined..(90 million people). Instead of discussing the wisdom of taxing them half that amount, and using that half each year to better America, which creates high paying jobs, we get threats against Hispanic children.

Instead of spending all day strategizing about the 29 candidates who are all the same, most Americans would rather here how much it would cost to wipe out student debt, so they could put that money to their lives…

Instead of spending all day whining about Don Trump not talking to anyone and drying up the entire American newsfeed,, most Americans would rather hear how much money they would be earning now had Al Gore won, and no Bush tax cuts occurred… ($10,000 per year is average…. )

Polling question:  does anyone out there wish they were making$10,000 a year more, or are you happy where you are..?

In his later years, a biographer of George W. Bush, after seeing the wasteland the Republcans created in the middle class in just 8 years, admitted his part in framing the 2000 election as the question of: “who would you rather drink a beer with?”

Remember that?  It went on weeks and weeks and weeks..

He ended with:  “I wish we’d analyzed what Cheney was really like, or what cutting $200 billion a year in taxes would do to the deficit and eventually break the economy. ”

Well our media is at it again… Analyzing who’s ahead; who’s behind. Who’s on the rail; who’s on the outside.

Based on today’s media, the playing field looks like it is going to be in the land of inconsequence.  Where politicians will rise and fall on the style of their hair…

You need to make sure on your social media  that you start lampooning (with hashtag) major media every time they focus on the inane, and ignore the profound…

Truth is:  we’re America.

We can slow and stop global warming.

We can provide free college tuition to all those who go to college.

We can rebuild every bridge in this country within ten years.

We can clean every river so fish can return.

We can raise the minimum wage and everyone else’s wage too.

We can  pay for solar panels on everyone’s roof so they can have most of their electricity for free.

We can mandate an 11:1 student teacher ratio in grades k-5 and 9th, and staff them.

We can get rid of standardized testing in grades 3-8.

We can afford free health care to all in this country.

We can allow unlimited $$ of produce to be bought by SNAP card holders.

We can hire 100 Accountants at $100,000 each to look over the books of the three big banks.

We can make oil a non speculative commodity.  Only transportation companies can be in on them.

———

After all expenses have been paid…. America has over $2 trillion dollars left over every 65 days… it’s called corporate profits….

We can put every person willing to work at a job.  None of these are hard… It just takes money now held by the wealthy to do it…

OH, THERE YOU GO AGAIN… TAKING MONEY AWAY FROM THE RICH… SOCIALISM…

That depends on how you define socialism.  I’m just trying to get back to Reagan’s economy.. If you think he was a socialist, I’ll have to call you out on that,… He was nothing near a socialist…

But his tax cut dropped the top marginal rate down to 50%….  just raising it back to that level and hiring hard working Americans with that new incoming money, is the dumbest definition of Socialism you could ever come up with….

And one more thing… All that money that the one percent is putting into their pockets?    That used to go to you…. $10,000 more each year, used to come to you…

Just as audience consideration is a factor in deciding where to play the Super Bowl…. so it is when it comes down to where this election will be held…   You can call up your tv and radio stations and say… Hey… talk more about Bernie Sanders.  I really want to know about him…….. 

The bridge closing may be a blessing in disguise… It shows the benefit if raising the gas tax 10 cents to pay for our projects….

This gas tax is nothing… We’ve been paying more for a gallon ever since the crash of 2009… We as customers will continue paying the same, and the oil companies and hedge funds will be the ones who can no longer get what they used to get out of a gallon…

In a study earlier this year, we showed all that the price of gas is not based upon supply, but on demand…  States with higher taxes, get their pre-tax gas cheaper than states with little or no tax…  yet they all come from the exact same refineries….

The Republicans who pretend to be against all taxes, are saying this is not affordable…

Here is what they are hiding from you….

Let us take the $20 million needed to repair the 495 bridge….   At ten cents a gallon, that $20 million will come from 200 million gallons….  At an average of 20 gallons per fill-up, that would amount to 10 million fill-ups in this state per year…. Excluding motorcycles and buses, there are an estimated 817,000 vehicles registered in Delaware….. The ten cents tax amounts to 12 extra fill-ups per year….  Of course, that is one a month… like you took an extra trip….

When this tax came out, we were told that 60% of gas sold in Delaware is to out of state vehicles… If that figure is true, then theoretically, you and I would only be accountable for 40% of that cost, which means we’d only fill up once extra for 4 months and have the rest normal…..  Is that really back breaking to us all?

Without the gas tax… it will have to come out of income tax…  If allotted evenly, that 20 million spread over every citizen, amounts to $20 for every man, woman, and child in the state…  (Considering the school population of the entire state k-12 is close to 130,000, then if you add the population from the years 0-4 for an additional 30,000, it would mean that the number of Delawarean paying taxes would be 870,000… )  That $20 million tax spread across all taxpayers evenly amounts to $23 per taxpayer…. per year….

So our choice is having the oil companies and hedge funds pay our tax for us, or to pay it directly out of our incomes….  You will pay the same for gas regardless.  Doesn’t it make sense to be getting something out of it for a change instead of having all our money simply go straight to their profit line?

 

 

I am borrowing heavily from Hunter here, who through an amazing amount of work did what I would have liked to, but never would have found the time…  He slogged through each month in separate installments.  I wanted to have one single visual representation of the year as a whole.

America has cancer.  It is our conservatives.

January.

January 3, 2013: Election of Speaker. Incumbent Speaker John Boehner was re-elected with the largest number of defections in the vote for speaker since at least 1991…

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal tells GOP: ‘Stop being the stupid party’. “It’s time for a new Republican Party that talks like adults,”

Republican Stephan King introduces the Repeal of Birthright Citizenship.

Republicans closed party ranks against doing anything at all to prevent another Sandy Hook mass killing.

Republican state legislatures initiated laws to disregard any federal laws on gun legislation that do happen to pass.

The constitutional Sheriffs said putting armed civilian posse’s in schools would be the answer.  Some noted that Sheriff’s Arapao’s own posse was composed of criminal elements.

Republicans threatened to veto Obama’s appointment of conservative Republican Chuck Hagel because he was neither Republican or Conservative enough.

Sequester Legislation gets signed as part of budget deal, and Obama goes on a olive branch dining tour with Congressional Republicans.  He was received well ( they all brought their wives to meet him.)

The government did not shut down, Mitch and Joe made a deal that sailed passed the House, in which the leadership and moderate Republicans all thumbed their noses at the Tea Party contingent who voted it down.  The lesson was short lived.

GOP had a retreat to determine why nobody like them, and discovered it was because they were conservative.  While there they decided they could do nothing without their prime funders, who were all demented Conservatives, and so they chose to remain conservative anyway.

And Glenn Beck announced a Glenn Beck theme park was forthcoming.

February

John Boehner informs America that the Republican House is going to initiate a top secret Immigration Reform Club, that will blow both the Senate and America away with the scope and integrity of their quality legislation.

Disclosure is made that the NRA has a secret enemies list…  topped by Mary Lou Retton. (Not snark; seriously)

The NRA head Wayne “LaKook” LaPierre, felt compelled to give his own rebuttal to Obama’s State of the Union address.

Led by a former Vice President who shot his lawyer in the face, a group of likewise gifted riflemen led a movement stating that having any discussion about gun safety was bad for America.

Mississippi Republicans pondered to ban animal-human hybrids. Oklahoma Republicans debated whether students should get marked wrong for stating that climate change or evolution DID NOT EXIST. Missouri Republicans responded with a bill to make it a FELONY for anyone to propose gun legislation laws….

Senator Cruz questions whether Secretary Defense Chuck Hagel is secretly getting money from North Korea or other of America’s enemies.

The Republican’s gentleman’s agreement not to block nominees with a filibuster lasted 15 working days.  Chuck Hagel’s vote did not reach cloture.

March

The Daily Caller was punked by a hoax involving two Dominican Republican prostitutes who after being paid a year’s worth of tricks by a wealthy Republican benefactor, then went and made charges against Bob Menendez.  Although quick to be proven a hoax, the Daily Caller to this date, still insists it was a true story, and the entire world is lying and currently is out to get them…..

After cowing to public pressure to install Chuck Hagel afterall, Senate Republicans next vow to hold up confirmation on the CIA director until Lindsey Graham and John McCain get the answers they want on Benghazi.

Senator Paul Rand of Kentucky stages a filibuster against the CIA confirmation chief’s vote, to protest drone use by America.  After receiving much good press and lots of contributions, he quietly said he really didn’t have a problem with drones being used to kill people at all.

With the exception of Governor Christie who fortunately as a Republican, is completely removed from the antics inside the capitol dome, all the other 2016 Presidential contenders came out against any post-Sandy Hook common sense legislation…. Sens. Marco Rubio, Jim Inhofe, Ted Cruz, and Mike Lee…..

The Republican Sequester begins to go into effect, causing Republicans to push legislation to fund all those parts of their sequester which make them look bad.  Long lines at the airports,  White House tours,  immigrants sneaking across the border were all erroneously blamed on Obama.  Like cutting $85 billion overnight wouldn’t affect anyone?…  Duh.

Remember the Acorn scandal of years ago?  It was settled and the full story came out after the trial.  The film was edited by Breitbart to make it look like a prostitution ring was being run out of ACORN, but in fact, the ACORN perpetrators had been suspicious and called the police on the film crew, thinking that they were the ones misusing women for financial gains.  Trusting anything said by a conservative is dangerous.  That organization which re-enfranchised many poor Americans was shut down over a lie.  Can we now have that class action lawsuit against Breitbart and the film’s producer?

Woot!  Woot!  Paul Ryan had a Medicare plan!  Awwww.  The Senate voted it down 96-3.

Sequester kicks cut deeply into Head Start, cancer research, and Meals on Wheels.  Republicans complain loudly about the quality of towels in the heated Congressional swimming pool.  Apparently they weren’t getting cleaned well or fast enough.

April

Republican nominee for Virginia’s governorship advocates for the re-installment of Virginia’s anti-sodomy laws.  (Yeah, seriously!  In 2013!)

Sen. James Inhofe, dismisses the Sandy Hook families who showed up in Congress to witness the vote, by saying the tragedy of Sandy Hook didn’t have anything to do about them. “I think it’s so unfair of the administration to hurt these families, to make them think this has something to do with them when, in fact, it doesn’t.” –Inhofe

After gun control gets defeated, Inhofe in search of another publicity run, makes himself the head of investigating those rumors of whether the federal government is buying up all the ammo so gun owners can’t use any to shoot at rifle ranges.

The new conservative media darling Ben Carson disappears after stating that gay marriage leads to bestiality…

Multiple conservative groups took to the airwaves and blamed the Boston Marathon bombing on the Pill, sexual liberalism and abortion. Obviously they are ignorant of real world terms like backpacks and explosives.

Rep. Louie Gohmert made the claim that the Obama administration was “chock full of Muslim Brotherhood” members…  Because it is?  That was the full extent of evidence behind his outrageous claim.

House issues its report on Benghazi.  It apparently did not know, or listen to any of its witnesses subpoenaed to it’s hearings,  that [By tradition], every cable from an embassy bears the “signature” of the ambassador — and every cable from Washington bears the “signature” of the secretary of state.”   The entire premise of their report, was instantly and publicly deemed invalid.

May

House Republicans admit their own ineptitude at being able to pass any legislation.  Revealing Quote:  “we couldn’t even get agreement to call 911 if House Speaker John Boehner were on fire.” 

Heritage Foundation weighed in on Immigration stating that it would cost trillions of dollars.  When broken down that came to half a million per immigrant, something that laughed Heritage Foundation past the monsters and over the edge of even their square world of reality.  it didn’t help Heritage, that the author of that report, was a known white supremest in charge of his own collection of kooks.

The NRA elects a new president who in video, express his continued anger that the northern states ran off with all of his great-grandfather’s black help…. More alarming was his advocacy for ” “weapons to fight tyranny”  forever dooming the next poor government worker who chooses to knock on the wrong door….

Republicans foundering in a froth over that Obama had the Tea Party scrutinized by the IRS, had a hard time dealing with the fact that democratic leaning groups got the same treatment as well. Could it be policy, that political groups requesting tax exempt status actually get looked at to ensure they were deserving of such before granting it? Completely out-played, Rand Paul stands up to protest, well, that he should even be forced into the position of having to protest anything at all…..

Michelle Bachmann announced she would not run again  and that the cause for which she was bowing out, absolutely had nothing to do with the two separate probes over her criminal misdoings…

It’s now been three months since the Republican National Committee issued its 100-page autopsy report about what went wrong in 2012 and promised to reach out to more non-white voters.

June

Just hours after the Supreme Court nullified parts of the Voting Right’s Act,  Republican state legislatures rush through legislation to purge voter rolls of Blacks and Hispanics.

Remember the IRS scandal?  In June through testimony it was revealed that twice as many conservative groups were approved than were progressive groups…  Remember Darrell Issa’s  charges that Obama was using the IRS to stymie Conservative groups only?   I guess the Congressional Committee actually did what it was supposed to do and got down to the truth of the matter.  Way to go, Darrell….

Snowden erupts… The press goes through a public mitosis.   We get to watch which reporters and organizations are the “real” fourth estate, and which are the self-appointed protectors of the DC bureaucratic elite.

Ultra Conservative foundation Heritage, was originally “for” a bill that eliminated public financing of campaigns, until they discovered the money would go to fund research for sick children… Better to waste it on Republican candidates than sick children they said (in a roundabout way), and switched their support to one of not…

And we heard again that rape does not result in pregnancy, so keeping abortions facilities around to prevent raped impregnations is absolutely unnecessary, and… we need to ban abortion immediately because, heaven forbid, fetuses are masturbating in the uterus!  Apparently this trend seems to occur mostly with Republican ones.

Republican Senator Jeff Flake had to apologize for his 15-year-old son’s unsavory remarks on Twitter.

July

July 16, 2013: The Senate reached a deal to allow some presidential nominations to come to a vote, avoiding the “Nuclear option” for filibuster reform…

Republicans in Missouri wanted their state Supreme Court to hasten forward their convict’s execution days, since access to acquire the drug to be used, was running out.

Conservative plans to put guns in schools hit a major hurdle as private insurance companies say if so, they’ll pull their insurance coverage away.

Republican Governor Rick Scott wonders why his national guard is not prepared for a hurricane, and discovers the sequester was the culprit….  Their funds were cut by his own Tea Party in Congress.

People whom no one takes seriously, on a network no one takes seriously, wasted a lot of air time blaming Obama for making us into a bi-racial nation, after he gave a few remarks about Trayvon Martin.

Congress takes a recess having passed 15 bills by it’s half year mark. A record low.

August

Arizona Senators who had voted against giving FEMA aid to New Jersey after Hurricane Sandy, demand FEMA do more to help their state, beset by a few fires.

Liz Cheney gets busted for lying that she was a Wyoming resident.

The Republican National Committee demands that CNN and NBC not show their prime-time programs on Hillary Clinton, or else they will ban those networks from showing their convention in 2016….  Turns out it was only going to be those two network’s Spanish channels who would be banned….

Republicans who castigated Clinton and Obama for not having sufficiently protected embassies across the world, called the unprecedented closing of 22 embassies over a credible intelligence threat, an act of cowardice….  Darn. There went their plan for Congressional hearings all the way up to 2014 elections….

Republicans complained that the re-enactment of Martin Luther King’s Washington speech had no conservative speakers.  It was subsequently revealed that all those Conservatives who were invited, had declined.

September

Buildup to the Shutdown. Republicans do nothing to stop it.

Ted Cruz gives a pre-shutdown standing “non”–filibuster. Topic, Obamacare.  It was just (yawn) a speech, since it delays no vote…

The month of September was preluded by Republican entreaties that the government shutdown would NOT be the Republican’s fault, since neither Obama nor the Democratic Senate was not accepting their unreasonable demands to repeal Obamacare. The entreaties obviously didn’t work.

John McCain continues his push to arm Syrian’s rebels. Creates inter-party confusion, since, aren’t those rebels Al Qaeda? John says arm them nevertheless… (until Israel tells him otherwise).

Lindsey Graham says not bombing Syria immediately, will cause an all-out Israeli-Syrian War by March 2014….

Florida’s Governor Rick Scott, reschedules an execution since it fell on his Attorney General’s re-election campaign fundraiser date.

As more and more Republicans express hope that shutting down the government and defaulting on our debts are preferable to allowing poor people access to insurance coverage, a shut-down appears more and more likely.

October

The United States federal government was shut down as most routine operations were curtailed after Congress failed to enact legislation appropriating funds for fiscal year 2014, or a continuing resolution for the interim authorization of appropriations for fiscal year 2014…

When asked if Republicans gained anything by forcing the closure on many government functions, Republican Senator Ayotte replied “I think the answer is no.”

GOP Congressman Stutzman explains the very coherent clear objective for the stop-payment on 700,000 people’s paychecks by shutting down government.  “We have to get something out of this; and I don’t even know what that IS.”

Rep. Randy Neugebauer  berates a Park Ranger for closing a war monument that Rep. Randy Neugebauer himself voted to close. The best part of the exchange? Multiple bystanders coming to the ranger’s defense.

Republicans found they could get TV time on networks by falsely appearing  outraged over the closing of War Memorials for which they voted.  Unfortunately no TV time was allotted to children awaiting cancer treatments,  people eating unchecked contaminated food,  mothers whose work depended on Head Start classes teaching their children certain hours every day…. Even the Federal employees who had no income for 17 days, were barely mentioned.  Proving to all that there is nothing fair or balanced with any American news organization.

Republican Party head Reince Priebus states the RNC itself will provide funds to keep the war memorials open.  Two things not mentioned.  They would not be closed in the first place but only for Republican’s irrational enthusiasm for shutting down all government; and that more necessary programs  towards the well-being of this nation,  both economic and defense, would of course not be getting any assistance and would continue to do severe harm. Those two omissions making it clear to all observers  that Republicans are not only stupid, but dangerous to have anywhere near real power.

A rolling right wing extremist truckers brigade was planning on shutting down Washington for an entire weekend by choking the Capitol City’s roads and freeways.   5 trucks showed up.  But that didn’t stop Fox News from showing year’s old footage of trucks stranded on a Georgia Interstate due to a traffic mishap, in its selling of the live and current story…

In his ongoing  effort to prove who is the most irrational Republican Rep Gohmert tells an audience that John McCain, due to his criticism of the Republican shutdown, is secretly employed and on the payroll of Al Qaeda..  And to think, if not for Obama in 2008, he (Al Qaeda)  would have been president!  It has a nice ring to it though… John (Al Qaeda) McCain….

And in case you couldn’t tell… Michelle Bachmann held a press moment to declare, we are now in the ….. “End Times”…  (So that’s why the Eagles are champs of the NFC East.)

Even Norquist condemns the Republican Party…. “I think if you make a mistake as big as what they did, you owe your fellow senators and congressmen a big apology — and your constituents, as well, because nothing they did advanced the cause of repealing or dismantling Obamacare.”

Republican North Carolinian precinct captain,  essentially says the Republican’s party’s prime role, is to make non-whites second class citizens again…  He was pushed out after the interview aired, but not before criticizing his own party for not being KKK enough…

Republicans say defaulting on our debt, which means the government not paying at least some of our bills, is no big deal.   Meanwhile, the actual price the government paid to borrow money for a month rose to its highest level since 2008, more than doubling from just a day earlier.

The shutdown cost the Federal Government $4.8 billion. It lost the economy $24 billion. It shaved 0.6% growth off our GDP.

The Republicans caved just in time.  Newsweek revealed the S & P was minutes away from changing our already lowered AA+ to its lowest category, Selective Default.  the lowest of all 20 of S&P’s grades of non-trustworthiness.

‘Tea Party’ Republican Rep. Mick Mulvaney of South Carolina, insisted “this was worth having the fight,” even as they were conceding absolute defeat.

To a Republican Party which pretends to be concerned about fiscal conservatism — even as these numbers and many others show they clearly are not — any “victory” found amidst this shutstorm will have to do.

Republicans sum up the month by declaring there is a war on Christmas and only they are the last lines of defense in keeping it from being overcome.  Really.  Would that “war on Christmas” spending have anything to do with a self imposed  $24 billion hit to the economy?

Oh, and on the very day the government shut down to deny all funding for Obamacare,  the website for Obamacare opened… and received considerable amounts of traffic.  Perhaps a little too much traffic. But when one is concerned with focusing all September’s efforts on keeping the entire government from shutting down, are the problems of a tiny single untested website going to get that much pre-scrutiny?

November

November 21, 2013: Nuclear option for filibuster reform was enacted.  The new rule will allow just a simple majority vote for all nominees except for the Supreme Court.  Tipping point was the Republicans filibustering of 3 DC Circuit appointments for spite,  finally pissing off 3 cool-to-the-idea Senators and giving him the majority he needed to make it happen.

Rand Paul plagiarizes on a scale that makes Biden’s remarks 25 years ago just a slip of the tongue.  Biden was kicked out for that?  And Paul is still in?  Oh… I see…  two different parties; two different morales…

Boehner comes clean:  “Frankly, I’ll make clear, we have no intention of ever going to conference on the Senate (Immigration) bill,”  Note: There are enough favorable bipartisan votes to pass the Senate Immigration Bill in the House of Representatives if it ever came up for a vote.

In Colorado, five hard-right counties voted in November to secede from the state…

Former Speaker of the US House of Representatives, Jim Wright, was almost denied his voting rights under Texas’ newly passed Voter ID law.  Being in a nursing home, he could not get his drivers license renewed in time to vote.  Not to mention, untold numbers of married women were turned away because their married names had not yet been updated on their ID’s.

December

Congress will close 2013 with 58 bills enacted into law. It’s the lowest one-year output since 1947. 6366 bills were introduced by lawmakers.

“You know, you look around the Congress and there are a lot more females in the Democratic caucus than in the Republican caucus, and some of our members just aren’t as sensitive as they ought to be.” John Boehner, Dec 5, 2013.

House Republicans decide we needed a budget after all…  The Paul Ryan deal with Patty Murray sails through with 60 Tea Partiers thinking it was too liberal, and 30 Progressives thinking it was too Conservative but still making it through with a 3-1 margin, showing the entire world, that the House of Representatives can function very well whenever the Republican Hastert rule is  ignored.

We find out from Fox News that Jesus is white, and so is Santa.   Both apparently look like this.

Realizing Obamacare will doom the Republican Party… California Republicans create a spoof site that mimics California’s healthcare website and mails every constituent a pamphlet directing them to that spoofed site, instead of to the actual one.  Much of California’s clamor over the website problems came from trusting people actually steered towards the wrong website by none other than their elected representatives.

Women must now get rape insurance in Michigan. Purchased separately in advanced.  Otherwise, they were asking for it when they got nailed.

Conservatives who praised Mandela were vilified.  How dare you praise anyone of color.  If you were already of color and shook hands with someone also of color, you were again vilified.  You can’t be “our” president they said, because you don’t hate people enough….

Duck Dynasty proved in Conservative America,  you do not have the right to fire someone for speaking hate and bile,  but you do have the right to fire someone who is in love with anyone you don’t approve.

Republicans piled on the US closing the Vatican’s embassy as a war on religion, even though it was reported it was being simply being upgraded to a new location because of logistics…   (They’ve since scrubbed their website.)  Apparently they’ve never heard of Google, which come to think of it, is probably why their embarrassingly overwhelming loss in 2012 was such a surprise….

Finally, now at the end of the year, the Wall Street journal reports that the  Chamber of Commerce is putting up $50 million in combination with Republican power brokers, to weed out the Tea Party crazies throughout the primaries…  Just as a reality check this is a lot of money;  an average Senator’s campaign war chest usually tops out at close to $1 million.

If you need them, all the sources are here…  You can look them up if you wish.  You should visit him and give him a rec for service well done.  Personally I just wanted a reminder for those times when I get tired, see how little has changed,  and wonder what’s the ‘effin’ point… why is it worth anything that I should keep pounding away at them anymore?….

At such points, I can then come back and  look at this post….

Award For Delaware's Most Influental P/P/or T of The Year
The Golden Flush Award
/Click Image for Past Winners

Usually this is an after thought…” Oh, wow, year’s over, let’s get a person of the year”…  And then once we elect one,  we go… “holy crap… we totally forgot so and so….”

So to try to stir up some old simmering coals of memory, both mine and others, and perhaps even to (heaven forbid) get some debate going in the blog sphere, I thought I’d make an initial run on Thanksgiving Week, and then add people into the nominating category as others mention various ones I should kick myself for forgetting.

It will also force me to review the year which is something I rarely do… because face it, as a human being, I am slave of the moment….  If I did this last year, come December 14th the entire world would have been turned upside down and all the old priorities of 2012,  would in one day become trivial….

And so starting early gives me the chance to make the argument for each of those I decide to enroll with your kind recommendations included….

Julius Cephus:  Particularly this one man organized and stopped an end run around the Port of Wilmington.  The Kinder Morgan deal did not go through, and the Wilmington Port is bustling like never before…   Kinder Morgan was to strip the union of power, and drop the rates of pay, further dampening the economy of Wilmington proper.  It was also the first defeat of a Lavine-Markell development project, .. Fisker and Bloom had gone forward without a hitch.  Julius and other’s push back resulted in a General Assembly motion that stated they, not the governor, had final approval. It was the first time we were exposed to the current Governor’s manipulations.  They were to play a significant part across this year’s tapestry.

Steve Newton:  A blogger who has written infrequently, but effectively. His piece on SB 51  is what alerted us to the end run being performed by Dave Sokola on lowering the current standards being used for educating teachers.  It is brilliant.  It took an evening of reading the legislation line by line and cross referencing  it with Steve’s analysis, to understand the huge negative impact this bill would cause.  By the time this was done, the Bill had already passed the Senate unanimously without comment, and with an friendly amendment added that was voted upon without even being read.  Some public outcry was mustered within the House, both in committee and on the floor, but under the Governor’s direction, the Speaker of the House, pushed the bill to the floor before significant outcry could be mustered.  Only 4 House members were not on record for it’s passing.  Our educational schools now have to water down their teaching standards to meet the new law.  Steve also has brought the Highmark story to Delaware.  His research in the increase of medical costs in Western PA as a result of knocking out competition by unfair practices, leads one with a cold chill of what to expect in Delaware’s future.  We are already there.  As an insurer, Highmark is only paying medical claims in its own affiliated clinics.  As the new Blue Cross/Blue Shield owner, that is a huge percentage of Delaware’s residents.  None can go to any other hospital.  He has properly fingered Karen Weldham Stuart for not catching this prior to implementation.  Without Steve, this would have passed unnoticed.  The News Journal still has not once mentioned the takeover of Delaware’s health field under one owner.

Ernest Lopez.  If Kennedy were still writing Profiles of Courage, he should include this man.  Ernest Lopez is a conservative, and voted with Libertarian values to pass the gun legislation recommended by Markell and Biden.  Reflecting the views of his district, instead of taking the threatening message sent to him down from the NRA, he voted for his district.  A very vocal minority, who is always vocal, and always in the minority, swore they would unseat him.  He disregarded their idle threat, and voted both his and his constituents conscious.  A major billboard was put up to call him out.   His vote caused the passage of us now requiring background checks at public gun sales.  Now a certifiably insane person cannot slap cash and get a gun.  It is a no-brainer, and Ernie was the only Republican with brain enough to even know what a no-brainer is….

Cathy Cloutier:  her vote allowed gays to marry.  Again, she is a Republican who said enough is enough… Tired of voting against her conscious just so Sussex County would not flip over to the Democrats, she finally did not toe the line and voted along the lines of her own constituents, all overwhelmingly in favor of gay marriage.  In doing so, she went against the entire grain of her party, who firmly feel that gays are second class citizens, even though most Republicans in office are closeted gays.

Bethany Hall Long:  on the same vote, made a viable personal decision, and also voted for the legalization of gay marriage. Unlike Cathy’s vote, this was accomplished at great personal sacrifice, for all of those in her personal life, were solidly against this policy from taking effect.  In voting for what was morally right, she had to contend against those whose influence she could not escape.  She went with the correct vote, over the easy one.   As a result, Gay marriage is now legal in Delaware.

Paul Baumbach:  gave great ammunition against the fight for SB51, and later against HB 165. Both bills which will damage Delaware’s education for years to come.  He was one of the four who put up a fight on the House floor.  Paul also arranged for the meetings in Newark to discuss the new Power plant that figured in this past week’s election.

John Kowalko:  also was against SB51, HB 165, as well, being against the power plant.  In fact, John was the first person to sound the alarm over how big the power plant would be.  Without his big voice, it may have slid through unnoticed.  The power plant has defined northern Delaware politics since September.

Kim Williams;  responsible for HB 40 which investigates Charter School’s meddling into our educational systems.  She was as an acting state representative, allegedly refused entrance into a committee hearing on education, for fear she might say something damaging to the bill being rushed through….  She brought to the public’s knowledge, that the Charter School bill was drafted illegally without public input, and the charter group constructing it, was also under FOIA, to which the private group denied.  The Attorney General backed up her assertion, that the bill was formulated illegally but their decision was moot, because the bill was passed both houses anyways.  Kim Williams also in the HB 40 task force, led the group to realize that charter schools unlike public schools, do indeed filter those entering charters to weed out those who might lower their test scores….

Mark Murphy, Rodel, Sweeney, Hefferman, and the Fake Educational Reform Establishment:  I almost purposefully did not post this.  Although the first person’s name is usually followed by explicatives whenever mentioned, it is unlike Voldermort’s, still getting mentioned.  Mark Murphy was not put in his position based on his ability. He was placed there for his loyalty to the cause of  corporatizing public education.  Markell pulls the strings, Murphy figures how to get it done…  It is hard to make a puppet the most influential person of the year… So I was going to skip him… But at the last minute, remembered that every time  he or anyone of these make an op-ed, it resonates as gigantic news. The entire community rises up to counteract each op-ed, usually with the word “lies” thrown liberally about…. So, they do exert an influence.  I looped all of them together, as the group of liars in a Greek play, who stand on the stair steps and taunt the protagonists.  Well,… they are part of the play…….

Dan Short:  Sometimes villains get noticed too.  Primarily a single issue candidate, who personally supports the NRA, he actively campaigned and organized to create enough backlash so Markell’s gun laws could not get enough votes…  Without him, there is a possibility that all four of Markell’s gun control pieces of legislation would have passed both houses of Delaware’s legislature. Dan Short should be given the credit for stopping them.

John Sigler: Single handedly by his very brief tenure as the re-elected head of the Republican Party, he pointed out through his pigeon shooting, just how inept the Republican Party was at everything else.  With his leaving, all fissures cracking the Republican bedrock, were impossible to ignore.  Blogs split. The IPOD’s split. Former candidates of the same party just months earlier, now not talking to each other. The Delaware Republican Party is dead; no it is past dead.  More dead than a pigeon shot inside a box by John Sigler, former head of the Delaware Republican Party.

Nancy Willing: Her blog, the Delaware Way, is the go-to site for local information. Whether about Dover, about New Castle County, about any of New Castle County’s associations, Nancy combs all sources and puts them down in aggregate form. Heavily involved in the Power Plant controversy, The Delaware City Rail Yard controversy, Barley Mill controversy, the Woodlawan controversy, the Kinder Morgan controversy, the Charter School Controversy, the Common Core Controversy, Nancy has who is saying “what”, and links to “why”. One can expend less energy by using her blog to follow all the stuff the News Journal neglects, in a few quick empty steps.

Amy Roe:  a head of the Sierra Club, who emerged from nowhere to lead the fight against the power plant, and give quite a run against the establishment candidate.  Becoming the face the anti- power movement could coalase behind, she gave the anti power plant movement both dignity and grace.  Coming up short only 115 votes, she has awakened Newark now politically as never before…  The power plant if it goes forward, now has a strong group of Newarkeans against it.  Hopefully they will be monitoring it regularly and helping authorities keep in in compliance with all local law.

Tom Gorden; although much quieter than his first term in office, Tom Gorden is rapidly rolling back the privileges the previous Clark administration handed over to our state’s top developers. The Barley Mill plaza which had a green light, is now parked at a red. In a big sea change, though handled quietly, community groups are now no longer persona non grata in county government. It is no longer accepted as a matter of course that the Woodlawn Trust will be gobbled up by developers. If enough fight can be mustered, it can be stopped. Furthermore, with Tom there is closer coordination with the City of Wilmington, than we have experienced anytime in our lifetimes. In the county, local policing has been stepped up, particularly in neighborhoods prone to crime…

Dennis Williams: Came in with grand expectations, which looked deliverable for a while. The tide is turning and his relevance on this list, is because every day, the headline reality in Wilmington’s streets, brings his electioneering boasts back to haunt him, like a sizzling hot branding iron.  Time, Dennis, to say “Damn the torpedoes… Their punk asses are going in jail no matter which blowhard on City Council spouts off,before mine gets tossed in jail for impersonating a mayor..”

Alan Levin:  Jack Markell’s second in command, he was instrumental in defending Markell’s position on Kinder Morgan and the port, as well as the new power plant for the data center. He also had a hand in keeping Dole in Delaware, and worked to slip the power plant past a slew of unsuspecting Newark City officials.

Jack Markell: had his hand in everything.  He was behind Kinder Morgan’s takeover.  He was behind SB 51 and HB 165.  He was behind the illegal charter group, requiring HB 40. He also was the driving force for the four rational steps to gun legislation, 2 of which were passed. He was also the driving force behind the passage of gay marriage, signing the bill in the chambers just moments after its passage. He also supported the transgender bill in its travels through the labyrinth of Legislative Hall. He as behind keeping Dole in Delaware. He was behind changing an icon in Millsboro away from pickles, over to poultry. He pushed the bill to curtail Flowers. Despite your opinion over whether these were good or bad, they still showed a ubiquitous and wide reach across the state of Delaware. Seems like nothing got done that didn’t have his fingerprints all over it.

John Young: As head of Christina board, John Young led the board in standing up to Mark Murphy and Jack Markell, by refusing the RTTT funds slated for his district. Although some hired fools, (Jea Street) tried to paint Young into a corner, it served the opposite purpose and gave Young a platform. For the fist time, Common Core was getting publicly bashed. For the first time, many were finding that aligning themselves blindly to this sham of improving standards, was probably going to hurt them politically in the next couple of years. It was the fist salvo back, so the damage estimates were not high, but it did open eyes of many who had been on the sidelines of all educational issues, making them also become vocal in fighting Common Core. His blog Transparent Christina has channelled a lot of detailed information into the Delaware market, and had made Common Core an apprehension, instead of the savior it was supposed to be….

Kilroy: Kilroy has always been haranguing over education. In fact he was doing such a good job I left that issue alone for years, because other issues for me, like the economy and elimination of guns from the hands of the mentally ill, were more important. But as the issue has shifted back into the limelight, Kilroy’s hard hitting is making its mark… Kilroy is blunt, and right now, that is the language that needs to happen. Blunt descriptions of what takes place in the stratosphere of he academic field…. Kilroy often breaks stories before the News Journal, especially ones embarrassing to the Murphy/Markell cartel of education. If you have read Kilroy over the past couple of years, you would already know that Common Core is not the panacea we have been promised. It is a power grab for taxpayer dollars, financed by Wall Street itself…. If you think otherwise, you haven’t been reading a balanced reading list….
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That is what I have so far. In retrospect I am surprised that education has played so much, as even I have only come to that topic lately… But if one looks over the News Journal op eds, education really did dominate the discussion in the 2nd smallest state this year….

I may have forgotten some big ones. To reiterate, that is why I am posting this early, to catch those big mistakes as they get brought to my attention….

The LADEE which graced our skies Sept 6th, 2013 will have the fastest internet anywhere….

It could download a full length move in under a minute… For a while at least. That is until the bandwidth gets filled up with pesky ads.