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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

WANT A BETTER ECONOMY? FORBES SAYS VOTE DEMOCRAT

In 2012 the very conservative magazine, Forbes, said "...laissez faire policies [strongly opposing government intervention] had far less benefits than expected, and in fact produced almost universal negative economic outcomes for the nation!" This 80-year analysis is significant for such a right wing publication. Thus, the horrid results George W. Bush left for Barack Obama which the current President has turned around into an increasingly improving economy. Forbes examines the compelling positive results of Democrats over the GOP in personal disposable income, Gross Domestic Product (GDP), corporate profits, stock market return, reduction of national debt and avoiding Great Depressions and Great Recessions. With these facts, anyone voting Republican on November 4 wants to return to the days of GWB.

MORE ON 2ND AMENDMENT LOOPHOLE

David Kopel of the Washington Post said "The Second Amendment guarantees the right of the individual to own and carry firearms, including handguns. The 2nd Amendment actually says, "A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed." The District of Columbia v. Heller 2008 ruling, "...protects an individual's right to possess a firearm for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home." A bit off the subject but the Justices said nothing about cowboys walking around on the streets with their guns. Something tells me that, until we find something more direct--that is to really gut the 2nd Amendment--we concentrate on passing universal background checks and getting rid of concealed carry, except for extenuating circumstances.

More to come.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

IS THERE A 2ND AMENDMENT LOOPHOLE?

Dictionary.com defines loophole as, "a means of escape or evasion; a means or opportunity of evading a rule, law, etc. The gun show loophole is a perfect example in the world of weapons rights. What we are dealing with for the 2nd Amendment is the fact that the National Rifle Assn., led by wacky Wayne LaPierre, holds it so absolute that there can be no change. Just some slight modification like making universal background checks mandatory. No, says wacky Wayne, it takes away the rights of gun owners, which kind of indicates to me some of his NRA members couldn't pass background checks.

In fact, 74% of NRA members support background checks so that would indicate that wacky Wayne LaPierre doesn't represent his membership, rather a gun industry vehemently against it. Yes, and 89% of the American public supports background checks so why can't we get it done? Because the NRA's gun lobby fills the pockets of Congress, thus, their complete hands off the issue. Okay, we can't get Washington to do anything, and many states like Arizona and Florida give guns to just a warm body, so we have to find the loophole in the 2nd Amendment. Someone with a good enough legal mind to bring this outdated legislation forward to the 21st Century.

Gun nuts will think I'm crazy and actually that's a compliment coming from them, but I am perfectly serious about this venture. Hopefully it will encourage others out there to take up the crusade, write about it, and with enough networking get a forum to revise or appeal the Constitutional Amendment that is being used by wacky Wayne LaPierre to allow the slaughter of school children and other innocent people. To start the ball rolling I am opening a debate that has been going on for several years comparing the 2nd Amendment to the 1st Amendment. The premise is that, if the 1st can be interpreted with certain parts being changed to fit the situation, why can't it also be done with the 2nd?

As an example, in the First, we have freedom of speech but can't commit libel or slander, same for perjury, or download child pornography. In other words there are corrective mechanisms, even to Amendments to the Constitution. I urge you to read an article by Barry Lyga that takes this very approach into consideration.

This my first post on this subject with more to come.

ARE SOME HEALTH WORKERS RETURNING FROM EBOLA COUNTRIES WHINERS?

Kaci Hickox
There is nothing more giving than to subject yourself to a virus in a foreign country with few medical facilities to care for it. Kaci Hickox, a nurse who worked with Doctors Without Borders to treat Ebola patients in Sierra Leone did this very thing. Then she came home and was horrified by the fact that she would be quarantined for a few days to insure the safety of those around her in New Jersey. She keeps pushing it and, yes, whining over the issue and how she was done wrong. Apparently she tested negative to the virus twice but that was not sufficient for New Jersey's Gov. Chris Christie to release her, until yesterday. If the two negatives meant she was okay, and does anyone really know this, she shouldn't have been detained.

But even so, this woman is a health care professional and should understand the fact that the country is going through a bizarre situation where health care officials are trying to prevent a life threatening epidemic, some of which ostensibly don't know what they are doing. Overkill like this could at least hold back public panic. I would hope this minor inconvenience would not discourage others from helping in the fight overseas and in the future these brave people will approach their return in a more mature way. 

Monday, October 27, 2014

NRA HAS CREATED AN "UNCIVILIZED" USA

Three people have died in the Marysville, Washington gun massacre, four are injured, some critical. The gun has been traced to the father of the shooter, Jaylen Fryberg. It was a high capacity weapon. Just another normal day in the good old USA that places the rights of gun owners over the life of these kids being murdered. Eric Liu on CNN says this "should not be," and "cannot be" if we are to be a civilized nation. The un-civilizing of America by the National Rifle Assn. has brought this country to its knees backed by a cowardly U.S. Congress too greedy to stop it. Pretty soon the number of families of the dead school children will rise to an amount that will eventually march on Washington and hold those responsible accountable.

DARK MONEY SPENDING IS BULLYING?

You thought bullying was only for kids in school that took advantage of those who either couldn't or didn't defend themselves. Not, says Dan Merica, in the CNN article, "Clinton decries outside spending in pricey N.C. Senate race." The Presidential hopeful said, "Elections come down often to who has got more money, who is pedaling more fear and who turns out." Well, both sides do it, but Republicans are perfectionists at pedaling fear. And the GOP always seems to get their people out to vote. My wife and I are lifetime progressives and have never missed an election. Another comment, "We teach our kids not to bully and that is all they [dark ads] are doing." Some think the mid-terms could be a tossup.

EXPLAIN THE TEA PARTY? IMPOSSIBLE? BUT...

Americans Against the Tea Party is one of my most favorite sites due to its obvious purpose. They have come through again with an article by Rika Christensen, "The Best Explanation of the Tea Party EVER," with some classic findings and comments. Here's one: "Today’s Tea Party is so far right that they could be considered the lunatic fringe of the GOP." I thought that was a given. Christensen reminds us these freaks want to get rid of Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. If they should ever succeed at this, hopefully, these conservative fanatics will be the first on the street looking for a warm place to sleep.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

DES MOINES' OWN JONI ERNST CHALLENGED

Another Tea Party loser
Des Moines' major newspaper, the Des Moines Register, endorsed Bruce Braley to fill Tom Harkin's Senate seat over Tea Party extremist, Joni Ernst. You remember this fruitcake, raving over the ages old Agenda 21 Conspiracy and most recently deciding to take up arms against the government. Having lived in Des Moines, I know this paper as excellent journalism, one you can depend on for the facts, unlike Fox News. Hopefully most of the population of Des Moines hasn't yet succumbed to this Tea Party trash and will elect Braley to the Senate.

MORE TEA PARTY STUPIDITY

Teapublican Texas State Senator, Charles Perry from Lubbock, Texas, drew a bizarre correlation that American Christians are treated the same as Jews in Nazi Germany. Where in the world do these people come up with these deviant ideas and who are the idiots that elect them? It almost seems today that the right to vote should be reserved only for those who can prove that they have all their marbles. It is obvious to me that this would eliminate a majority of the Tea Party.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

EBOLA AND ANIMALS

One animal was put to death in Spain because the dog was the pet of an Ebola patient. Completely unnecessary. This kind of desperation illustrates the level of unpreparedness in the world over how to deal with the virus. Fortunately in Dallas, infected nurse Nina Pham's dog, Bentley, was placed in quarantine. Dr. William Schaffner, chair of preventative medicine at Vanderbilt University, says we do not have to worry about most animals catching Ebola. I talked to our veterinarian this morning and she said maybe, just maybe, the monkey family might but not dogs and cats. However, if a person with the Ebola virus sneezed on the fur of a dog and he walked right over to another person who rubbed his fur, they could possibly pick up the virus on their hand.

Friday, October 24, 2014

IS IT TIME TO BAN CERTAIN KINDS OF GUNS?


Another shooting with two deaths and injuries and...at a school again. Sounds like it was a handgun but we still don't know how the kid got it. Makes no difference. He did get it and he used it to kill someone. I know some of you gun nuts out there love your weapons more than the life of the innocent kid that was shot in Seattle, but it's time to do something. Place a ban on civilians owning handguns unless there are extenuating circumstances and ban assault rifles, period.

MORE JONI ERNST TEA PARTY STUPIDITY


I feel sorry for my family who lives in Iowa and the Iowans I know who are straight forward, common sense people. JONI ERNST has already given Iowa a black eye with her insane rantings over the Agenda 21 non-conspiracy. Now she is espousing taking up arms against the federal government if they do something she doesn't like. Ernst is crazier than past TP loonies like Christine O'Donnell from Delaware and Sharron Angle from Nevada running for office. They lost!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

MORE...TEA PARTY STUPIDITY

In recent confrontations with people on Facebook--I wouldn't call them friends, more like conservative extremist wonks--that, like most of these insecure Teapublicans, love to press progressives for exactly what we disagree with them about. What this dull bunch doesn't seem to understand is that we disagree with them about everything their ideology stands for. But if they didn't use this strategy, they would have to explain their beliefs to us and some are so bizarre they are too embarrassed to reveal them. Here's the latest Tea Party stupidity...

Joni Ernst, running for a Senate seat in Iowa says "...the federal government is partnering with the United Nations to force Iowans off their land and into urban cores as part of a conspiracy called Agenda 21. She also wants to shut down the U.S. Department of Education.

Need I say more TPers?

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

YOUR PERSONAL DATA WILL BE HACKED! NOW LISTEN

I am a former data broker that spent 35 years manipulating and selling your personal data to junk mail companies. When I finally realized that the companies storing your private information and those using it were not listening to pleas for more security, I decided to get out of the business and write about it. I started The Dunning Letter in April of 2005 and blogged on privacy until December of 2010. In The Dunning Letter you will find a collection of useful information that will help you in protecting your data. Just do a "search" on your particular topic.

Identity theft, even in 2010, although causing million$ of losses then, has progressed today into a full-fledged business run by extremely well organized groups that have the best possible technology available behind them. Thus, the warning that you will be hacked. The culprits no longer concentrate on the source of your personal data--the warehouses of names and private information--but rather the companies this data is out-sourced to like Target, Home Depot and your financial institutions. It is there where additional info is added that makes your personal records valuable and marketable.

Once hijacked, it is on the black market in less than 24 hours. Overnight your credit card or debit card could be compromised without you knowing it. Unless your bank or credit card issuer is on the ball and stops the transaction. Or you keep daily track of the activity. Of course your liability is limited here but the hassle of issuing new cards is a real pain and is very time consuming. It is no longer a question of if, only a question of when. And please don't be one of those, "It probably won't happen to me." It will.

Here's what I do regularly:

  • Check our bank accounts for any illegal debit charges or other strange activity
  • At least once weekly check credit card accounts for abnormal activity
  • Three times each year run a credit report with each credit bureau to insure there are no new accounts added in your name or other strange transactions
In the first two you can usually head off any serious credit repair by being vigilant. In the last, it will take some doing to get a malicious account off your records but either of the two organizations below will help you through the arduous process.

For the best information available on how to prevent identity theft and what to do if it happens, go to these two sites: Privacy Rights Clearinghouse and Identity Theft Resource Center.

Good luck!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

DECLARED INDEPENDENT VOTERS DROPS IN THREE WEEKS

The Gallup Poll reports that Independent voters dropped from 47% in early September to 42% three weeks later. There was a similar drop in July/August. The question is whether they have made up their minds which way they will cast their ballots or is the glut of negative advertising just causing a seesaw effect? In another finding Gallup says Democrats, including their "leaners" total 48% compared to Republicans 44% in the same September period. Progressives will need Independents in November, but, then so will the GOP.

Friday, October 17, 2014

The iPhone is a circus





Apple Computer CEO Tim Cook, as did Steve Jobs before him, has proven repeatedly that the phrase credited to P.T. Barnum, but most likely spoken by David Hannum, was right: "There's a sucker born every minute."

Billionaires impel Social Democracy

Let's take a look at two recent stories on CNN. One, "The richest person in all 50 states," which lists Bill Gates from Washington at the top of the list followed by Warren Buffett from Nebraska. Conservative dirty money king, David Koch, is fourth. Gates comes in at $81.5 billion with the lowest from the state of Wyoming at $340 million.

The second story, "Over 48 million Americans live in poverty," which is self-explanatory by the title, sort of makes you wonder about the first story. "The official poverty line was $23,283 last year for a family of four," according to the article, which is defined by a conservative as "discouraging." Just discouraging? It looks more like a tragedy to me, and that still takes into consideration the philanthropy of these billionaires and millionaires.

I am not a socialist but to those 48 million souls in poverty, a Social Democracy might be very appealing.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

DALLAS HOSPITAL EBOLA PROTOCOL

Is anyone checking into the charges of the Dallas Presbyterian Hospital nurses re. their claim that there was no Ebola protocol established? This is moving too fast to not get the facts into the open.

Friday, June 27, 2014

FORMER SEN. HOWARD BAKER ONE OF A KIND

Former Sen. Howard Baker
Howard Baker, a Tennessee Republican who was first elected to the Senate in 1966 and served as its leader from 1981 to 1985 has died. He was 88. It may be just another passing politician to many but to those who know politics, it was the last of the great negotiators from a Congress that has evolved into a bunch of incompetent do-nothing deadbeats. Their only concern is to get reelected, the country be damned. Baker got regularly elected over four decades because he worked for the people of Tennessee and the American public, not for himself. President Obama called him the "Great Conciliator" because he could walk across the aisle and make a deal. Others of the same ilk who come to mind are Lyndon Johnson and Everett Dirksen. But can you name one person in Congress today who would put his or her country before their job? I think not.

163 DEMOCRATS FIND BALLS ON GUN CONTROL

Almost, but not all of the Democrat House caucus signed a letter to Speaker John Boehner demanding that he move to pass gun control legislation. That leaves 36 gutless Dems that should be voted out of office in November. The Blaze confirms the failure of this issue in the past but thinks in 2014's midterm election the tide could turn and the democratic base could come out strong for gun control. President Obama has charged gun control advocates to become as well organized as the National Rifle Assn., which, through its official big mouth wacky Wayne LaPierre, spews lies and propaganda on a regular basis. Obama's 2013 bill to strengthen background checks failed in a Democrat controlled Senate. But as Richard Martinez, father of Santa Barbara shooting victim Christopher Michaels-Martinez said, "Not one more."

PUBLIC FED UP AS GUN NUTS GET NUTTIER

Typical NRA gun nut
Salon has done an excellent job of documenting the craziness of the National Rifle Assn. maniacs led by wacky Wayne LaPierre. From one Virginia man strapping on his holster and shooting himself in the penis to gun nuts carrying assault rifles into the baby section of a Target store. In my estimation, the latter shows a complete lack of concern for the young lives lost in Sandy Hook gun violence and elsewhere. Salon's piece, "9 Signs America's Gun Obsession is Getting Worse," should be a huge awakening to those apathetics out there who seem to have accepted gun violence as ordinary. It's not. Examples of Salon's nine points include "States with the laxest gun laws have the most violence," "Americans aren't standing for this," including large retail chains like Starbucks, Chipotle, Chili's and finally, The NRA is facing opposition and losing. I recommend you go to the link above and read all nine.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

10 EXAMPLES HOW THE NRA PROMOTES GUN VIOLENCE

Wacky Wayne LaPierre
When you have Congress by the balls you can do pretty much anything and get away with it. Precisely what wacky Wayne LaPierre, head of the National Rifle Assn., has done with his conglomeration of gun nuts. They sneer at the gun deaths of these children and adults with the justification that what is important is protecting their right to own a gun and take it anywhere they want to. Not to save innocent lives. The Guardian newspaper, a United Kingdom based publication, has been covering the gun violence in the U.S. for years with authority, and rightfully so with the excellent guns laws they have in the U.K. That is the reason why they have .25 gun deaths per 100,000 population compared to the U.S. at 10.2. They have compiled a list of 10 reasons how the National Rifle Assn. has weakened America's gun control. Here are a few:

-Concealed carry reciprocity: The NRA wants their gun nuts to be able to carry their concealed weapons into all states, even if they bought their gun in Arizona, which requires only a warm body.

-Guns in schools: The NRA would like to pass laws to make guns  legal to carry guns on college campuses, elementary and secondary schools, state mental hospitals and bars.

-Revoking licenses from corrupt gun dealers: Sounds common sense, right. Not. The NRA wants to make it virtually impossible to revoke licenses from corrupt dealers.

Someday, sooner rather than later, a fed-up public is going to turn on these gun nuts and take away all their guns which means the responsible gun owners will lose their firearms as well. Tough.

THE CHILDREN GUN VIOLENCE REPORTS KEEP COMING

Everytown and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America has compiled some publically available figures for unintentional gun deaths that are recent, from 15 December 2012 to 14 December 2013. There were 100 boys and girls ages 14 and under who were killed accidentally by guns. Like those left on the dining room table around a two-year-old while dad takes a telephone call. He shot himself in the chest and died. And a four year old girl shot by her six-year-old brother with a gun left a gun under a jacket on a living room chair while the step-mother was outside. he died. The report says, American children are 16-times more likely to be killed in unintentional shootings than their peers in other high-income countries. Tragically, it was found that 70% of these deaths could have been prevented if precautions had been taken by the gun owners to secure their weapons. Pathetic! Read the full report here.
 

MORE STUPID TEA PARTY REMARKS FROM BOBBY JINDAL POST

Typical Tea Party redneck
Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal said on the Tea Party site, “I can sense right now a rebellion brewing amongst these United States, where people are ready for a hostile takeover of Washington, D.C., to preserve the American Dream for our children and grandchildren.” He added, "..there is a "silent war" on religious liberty being fought in the U.S." Following are some of the laughable and half-witted comments to his post:


David Anderson: “JINDAL IS RIGHT. WE'VE HAD ENOUGH AND NEED TO TAKE OVER OUR COUNTRY NO MATTER WHAT IT TAKES. I'M IN ARE YOU?”

Don Holmes III: “DAMNED RIGHT I'M IN! I HAVE BEEN READY FOR A LONG TIME! I KEEP MY WEAPONS BESIDE MY BED! THE OATH I TOOK IN 1964 IS STILL VALID AND WILL NEVER EXPIRE!
SEMPER FI TILL I DIE!!!!”

David Dixon: “yep Civil War II, the retaking of America. What a Grand idea.”

Jerry Ross: “southern conservatives would make a large STANDING ARMY!”

Bob Howe: “same with us Arizonans. We'll fight and take our own Army. Americans Unite!!!”

Peter Gundrum: “A complete genocide is necessary for the future of America.”

The definition of genocide from Dictionary.com is: "the deliberate and systematic extermination of a national, racial, political, or cultural group." 

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

ARE STUPID PARENTS TO BLAME FOR MINNESOTA BOY'S PREMEDITATED GUN VIOLENCE?

John David LaDue
I don't want to be too judgmental but if a recent account of a Minnesota teen's plans to bomb a school and shoot students is correctly reported, either his parents are oblivious about what's going on around them or they are just plain stupid. John David LaDue says he came from a good home and was never bullied. The piece describes LaDue with an "obsessively detailed plot" starting with killing his family. He was arrested in April when a female witness saw the 17-year-old at a storage locker where he kept his bomb making equipment. In his home LaDue had numerous guns and ammunition, but his mother said she had no idea what he was plotting. Her son countered that "he plotted right under her nose. He made no effort to hide anything. He told police they'd find three live bombs in a box on the floor next to his bed." Duh. These parents are just plain lucky they weren't co-conspirators in another school massacre.