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Impeach Trump NOW

We’re at the 56 day mark for President Trump’s first term in office. We all knew this wasn’t going to be a traditional presidency and from watching Trump during the campaign I knew he’d make a disastrous president but never in my wildest nightmares did I expect it to be this bad this soon. The incompetence, the secrecy, the mismanagement, the infighting, the irreverent disrespect of norms and tradition, the lack of leadership, the paranoia, the toxic relationship with the press, the nepotism, the staff’s lack of government experience, constant scandal after scandal, and worst of all the avalanche of lies from Trump and his administration that bombards us daily.

Never in our nations history have we had a president who lies so easily and then forces his staff to deal with the aftermath and clean up the mess he made. We’ve seen this play out over and over again with each new lie he tells. This damage control process has become very familiar to us:

When Trump sent that absurd untrue tweet 2 weeks ago accusing President Obama of committing a felony (wire tapping Trump Tower), and insulting President Obama by calling him “a sick guy” that should have been enough to get republicans to start questioning the President’s ability to serve his full term as President. How can they say their party believes in integrity, honesty, and leadership and still support Trump? If those values meant anything to them they would call a meeting with the democrats and hammer out a plan to remove this corrosive cancer who’s a bigger threat to our democracy than terrorism. Each day Trump is allowed to stay in office, he makes us weaker as a country.

We’re only 56 days in and Trump had to fire his National Security Adviser for lieing about his contact with Russian officials during the presidential campaign. His attorney General committed perjury during his Senate confirmation hearing and had to recuse himself from the investigation into the Trump campaign’s possible collusion with Russian officials who hacked the DNC to help Trump win. Trump’s first military mission was a failure that led to the deaths of a US service member and an American little girl. When interviewed about the disastrous mission Trump didn’t take any responsibility at all as commander in chief. Instead he blamed his generals. His executive order that issued a travel ban targeting Muslim majority countries got smacked down by 3 different courts. He lied about winning the popular vote. Has his family sit in on meetings and takes a vacation to Palm Beach every weekend to play golf, which costs US taxpayers $3.5 million for each trip. And his healthcare bill will fail in the Senate.No to trump

I just don’t see how we can live with a president who lies compulsively, who’s under investigation for collusion with a foreign government, and thinks he can take every weekend off. He spends more time speaking at campaign style rallies, flying back and forth between DC and his properties and playing golf than he does in the white house workingfor the American people.

HEY PAUL RYAN AND MITCH MCCONNELL, please put what’s best for our country before your loyalty to your political party and tell Trump to resign or get impeached. We can’t have this kind of cahos and incompetence bringing us down for the next 4 years. The way things have been going is absolutely unsustainable.

Save The ACA Save My Life

Now that Donald Trump is our new President and republicans have control over the house and the Senate, they are working to get rid of the Affordable Care Act even though they have not presented a replacement to the American people. They had 6 years to create an alternative but chose not to pursue it (which baffles me).

As a person living with a genetic blood disorder known as Sickle Cell I’m very afraid of the repeal of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). Having my life in the hands of Donald Trump and Paul Ryan isn’t a good feeling. Calling it anxiety would be an understatement. Without government run Healthcare there is no way I could afford to see my doctor. With Sickle Cell I have to get blood transfusions, outpatient IV treatments, blood labs every month, hospital stays when I have sickle cell pain crisis (that could last a few days or a few weeks), 4 different prescriptions that I have to fill each month and a lot of other health issues that arise from my weakened immune system. So for me this isn’t a political issue or a republican vs democrat issue. It’s literally a life vs death issue. Of course the ACA is not perfect by any means but I wish they could work on ways to improve it instead of a complete repel.

It seems like those who are in favor of a repel are the people who are lucky enough to have good health and the people who can afford to see a doctor and pay for their prescriptions with or without the ACA. I want those people to think about people like me and ask themselves what is the best solution for our entire population as a whole. Every American should have access to health care and every American deserves that right. Rich, poor, black, white, gay, straight EVERYONE!  No matter who you are, you deserve to have a healthy full life.  What kind of person looks at the sick and the poor as a burden?  That doesn’t sound like an exceptional unified and free country.  

If you agree please call your state representatives and let them know how you feel. Leave a messge if you can’t get an answer. If enough people call, it could save health care, and save millions of lives as well. When is the next time you’ll be able to save a life with a phone call? …Exactly!

Rev Barber Undoing Trumpism

Rev Barber Undoing Trumpism

Like many progressives the election of Donal Trump left me in a very depressed withdrawn and sometimes angry state. I have read and listened to many of our leaders try to give pep talks but all of them were woefully inadequate.  Then I read an article written by Reverend Dr William Barber and found my inspiration.  “Birth Pangs Of A Third Reconstruction” is a brilliant assessment of our current political reality post-election and a diagnosis of Trumpism’s cancer.  Rev Barber traces the roots of our current political situation to America’s first Reconstruction at the end of the 1800’s.

…every stride toward freedom in U.S. history has been met with this same backlash.  We faced it during Reconstruction, in the shadow of slavery and amid the wreckage of the Civil War. African Americans joined hands with whites in the North and in the South who were willing to see one another as allies.

Within four years after the end of the Civil War, white and black alliances controlled every state house in the South. Together, they elected new leaders. Almost all of the southern legislatures were controlled by either a predominantly black alliance or a strong interracial fusion coalition. They hammered out new constitutions from a deeply moral perspective.

These fusion coalitions 150 years ago also built the first public schools and in state constitutions gave all persons a constitutional right to public education — somethingRev Barber Undoing Trumpism

that to this day has not been done in the federal constitution. In the state constitution of North Carolina they stated that “beneficent provision for the poor, the unfortunate, and the orphan is one of the first duties of a civilized and a Christian state.” They included labor rights and the right to “enjoyment of the fruit of your own labor” in 1868, long before the Knights of Labor came south with their first southern campaign.

They knew then — black and white together — from a moral fusion perspective, that labor without living wages is just a different form of slavery. They expanded access to the ballot and wrote a new fairness into criminal justice.

His plan to overcome the current backlash in response to changing demographics and 8 years of a black president, is so simple and left me thinking why I hadn’t heard more of this during our presidential campaign.

First, we must recognize the need for indigenously led, state-based, state-government focused, deeply moral, deeply constitutional, anti-racist, anti-poverty, pro-justice, pro-labor, and transformative movement building. There’s no shortcut around this. We must build a movement from the bottom up. We must build relationships at the state level because that’s where most of the extremism of the current-day deconstructionists are happening.

They see the possibility of a Third Reconstruction, which is why they’re working so hard this time to strangle it in its cradle — and we must know that. We have to recognize that helicopter leadership by so-called national leaders will not sustain a moral movement. What you need are local movements.

Obviously Trump and his supporters have no legitimate moral argument for any of the policies they are pushing just like the pro-slavery faction of the 1800’s, and the anti-civil rights faction in the 1960’s.Undoing Trumpism The lesson to take from that; if you appeal to the civility and inherent sense of fairness in an honest and sincere way, people will begin to open themselves and really listen to what you have to say. That’s how you build a diverse coalition of both democrats and republicans. But one thing progressives must do is make sure the leaders who take on this message have the credibility to say it with conviction. Local organizers, pastors, local social justice leaders, and advocacy group leaders are perfectly poised to take this on.

This new movement isn’t about “taking back America”. That kind of language implies that one party is more American than the other. It also implies that one group is more deserving of America’s promise than the other. That kind of thinking will never advance our ideas.  We’re all Americans. This movement is about restoring America. Restoring it back to the moral leader of the world. Restoring it back to the ideals that made us great. Reverend Barber has not only given us the blueprint, he has proven it can work. Now it’s time to upgrade the “Moral Monday” movement that ousted republican governor Pat McCrory in North Carolina, and replicate it in all 50 states.

Great article, great message, great man, great plan and most importantly, great inspiration. To read Rev Barber’s full article go to https://thinkprogress.org/rev-barber-moral-change-1ad2776df7c#.vn17l4ym7

Why I’m Voting For Hillary

Socially Urban Blog is proud to announce our support and endorsement of Hillary Rodham Clinton for President of the United States of America.

As the founder and editor in chief of Socially Urban, here’s why I trust Hillary and think she’s exactly the kind of president we need. I know some people think this is a bad word but I am not one of those people. The word I want to reclaim as something positive is “politician”. Hillary is an experienced politician who does the duties of that profession very well. A politician listens to the country and her supporters and then decides what direction would satisfy the people most. For example, during her primary with Bernie Sanders she wasn’t talkimg much about trade policy at the beginning. But as that issue became important she listened and adjusted her focus to accommodate this. Some may call it a flip flop, but I think it was a good politican doing what the job required. I think it made her even more suitable for the job as president. We want a president who hears the people. Who looks at polls, who constantly adjust to the will of the people. That is who Hillary is.

I always say activist would make horrible legislators because they aren’t swayed by public opinion and they don’t adjust when an adjustment is needed. They have an ideology that must be adhered to and their actions rationalized as the ends justifying the means. Those are great qualities to have if you’re leading a movement or if you have one specific cause or issue that you’re passionate about, but those are horrible qualities to have when you’re trying to run an entire country and make decisions that are in the best interest of our country as a whole.Socially Urban Blog The job of president is about consensus building, and compromise. Bernie Sanders is a great Senator, and he is passionate about income inequality. But his myopic view wouldn’t have made a good president (in my opinion).

We have all seen how Hillary operates over the past 30 years. We’ve seen her under pressure. We’ve seen her deal with foreign leaders. We’ve seen her listen and change with the times. She’s exactly who we need as president for the next 8 years. If you think she’s not progressive enough, make your case, organize, push her in that direction. That’s our job as citizens, as activist. I promise she will listen just like she listened in the primary. Politicans care about their approval numbers, they care about how they are covered in the media. That is our leverage.

If you sit home on election day because Bernie isn’t on the ballot, you are contributing to the apathy and cynicism that lost the house and Senate in 2010. If you’re a hardcore progressive who thinks Trump and Clinton are just alike, you really need to do some research about Obama’s 2 terms in office. If he didn’t win that first election gay marriage wouldn’t be legal in all 50 states, we wouldn’t have avoided a war with Iran by getting them to shutdown their nuclear program through diplomacy. The economy would have continued to spiral downward. We wouldn’t have the Affordable Care Act that gave 11 million people health insurance who didn’t have any before. The Libbey Ledbetter act for equal pay for women wouldn’t have been signed into law. Osama Bin Laden would still be alive planning new ways to attack our country. Don’t you think this is worth your vote? All of this happened because we elected Barack Obama instead of his republican opponet.

That’s why you need to support Hillary. If she doesn’t win I can guarantee her republican opponent will not do anything to reform our criminal justice system. He wouldn’t do a damn thing about police shooting unarmed black men. He even said he’d punish women for exercising their constitutional right to make decisions about their reproductive health. These two candidates are not the same. The two parties are not the same. Hillary Clinton is the only intelligent choice to make. The ideal candidate you have in your head doesn’t exist. Hillary is the only logical choice and I’m very happy to announce my support for her candidacy. As the editor and creator of Socially Urban Blog and as a private citizen I’m happily announcing my endorsement for President of the United States, Hillary Clinton.

20 Donald Trump Lies

Family Guy as Donald Trump

2016 republican nominee for President of the United States Donald Trump has a long disturbing history of lying about almost everything. Even trivial stuff that can easily be disproven. For example, Trump said he met Russian president Vladimir Putin when they both did a 60 minutes interview. Every journalist knew this was a lie as soon as he said it but he couldn’t help himself. Lying seems to be the only way he knows how to operate. This blog post would be way too long if I tried to list all of his questionable statements, so here are 20 Donald Trump lies that I find the most interesting.

1. The Mexican government is selecting criminals and rapists and sending them to sneak into the United States.

2. Undocumented Mexican immigrants commit more crime than native born United State citizens.

3. President Barack Obama is not a Untied States citizen and the birth certificate he produced was fake.

4. Trump said he hired a team of investigators and sent them to Hawaii where President Obama was born to obtain evidence that supported Trump’s unfounded theory that the President was not born in the United States.

5. Trump said his investigators found some unbelievable evidence that disputed the legitimacy of President Obama’s citizenship. Trump said he would release the information but 7 years have passed since those birther accusations, and in all that time he has made no effort to share the so-called “findings” with the public.

6. Trump claimed that President Obama never attended Harvard. Trump said he got the information from his investigators and they told him that no one remembered President Obama ever being on campus.20 Donald Trump lies

7. During the 2012 Presidential election Trump claimed that President Obama spent $4 million dollars to hide his school transcripts and conceal his passport information.

8. Trump claimed that the current unemployment rate is at least 42% and could be as high as 50%. The correct unemployment rate is 4.9% (5/2016). HUGE difference.

9. Trump said President Obama is accepting 200,000 Syrian refugees into the United States. The accurate number is 10,000.

10. Trump says he never supported the invasion of Iraq and warned people against it from the very start. In a taped interview in 2002 Trump seemed to support the invasion and said nothing against it in any interview until 2005.

11. Trump says he watched thousands of Muslim’s in New Jersey celebrate on television after the 9/11 terrorist attack.

12. Trump said the wives of the 9/11 terrorists knew what their husbands were planning and left the United States a few days before the attack. According to the 9/11 Commission report only 1 of the terrorists were married and none of them shared any plans with family members and none of their family in the United States left before the attack.

13.
Trump said he predicted that Osama bin Laden was going to attack the World Trade Center 2 years before it happened. There is zero evidence that this prediction took place.

20 Donald Trump Lies14. Trump says he’s a self made man who built a very successful company from nothing. This is untrue. His father was very wealthy and owned a lot of property in New York. When Trump wanted to strike out on his own, his father gave him $1 million dollars to start his company.

15. Trump claims he made $213 million for his NBC reality tv show “The Apprentice”. NBC said he was paid only $2 million for the series.

16. Trump claimed that the Russian president Vladmir Putin called him a genius in an interview. This is false. Putin called Donald “colorful”, not a genius.

17. Trump claimed to have met Russian president Vladmir Putin and got along well with him when they both did interviews on “60 Minutes” on the same night. This is false because Putin did his interview via satellite from Russia and has never even been in the same room with Trump.

18. Trump claimed that Ted Cruz’s father was somehow involved with the assassination of President Kennedy.

19. Trump continually claims that he is beating rival Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in every poll. This is false as of 5/13/16. There’s not even 1 national poll that shows he is leading Hillary.

20. Trump says President Obama will go down as the worst president in history because America has been in decline since Obama was elected in 2008.

 

Here’s the indisputable truth of President Obama’s term in office so far

This is what a successful presidency looks like. Donald Trump would destroy all the progress President Obama made because Trump is incapable of thinking about anyone but himself. How can republican voters put their faith into someone who lies as much as Donald Trump does? By no means is President Obama a perfect president but he sure isn’t “ruining America” (as Trump suggested). President Obama has been a public servant for the past 20 years with his integrity, beliefs and self-respect intact. Trump never had any of those qualities and it’s scary how close he is to the most powerful job on earth where every decision he makes can effect all of humanity. I’m pleading with republicans in hopes of getting them to see this man for what he really is. An insecure overcompensating egomaniac who looks you in the eye and lies, while flirting with elements of totalitarianism in every interview and rally speech he gives. After 4 years of Trump as president every single supporter he has right now will long for the good old days when that black family lived in the White House.

The Will Of The People

The will of the people

When President Barack Obama won reelection in 2012, he made a number of promises that captivated progressives and made us all hopeful once again. We all knew these were very big ideas and would not come easy at all, but when the President has the will of the people on his side and a crumbling economic structure where only a few benefit, then of course these factors would make things much easier. Ideas like gun control, marriage equality, income equality, immigration reform, health care reform etc. Under any other circumstances I’d be crazy or embarrassingly naive to think we’d get anywhere with such a lofty progressive agenda. But the more I think about it, all of those things should be easy. They should be a given really. Think about it… mandatory enhanced background checks for all gun purchases is supported by 90% of the American people. Marriage equality is supported by 60% (and rising more every day). An increase in minimum wage has 80% support. Immigration reform has the support of 55% favoring a legal pathway to citizenship. Sixty percent of the American people either fully support Obamacare (aka The Affordable Care Act) or think the bill isn’t liberal enough (those who still favor the public option which was dropped from the bill to get it through the house). Every one of those lofty progressive ideas that the President spoke about in his speech has support from a majority of the American people. Something is wrong here. Something is definitely wrong here. We’re supposed to live in a democracy where the president and elected officials are chosen by the people to carry out the wishes of the people. So if you have a situation where a majority of the people overwhelmingly support something, but that something still does not come to pass, we need to ask ourselves why the hell not. This is a question I’ve been struggling to make sense of for quite some time. How can you have the will of the people support something, and a majority of the senate support something and still it does not come to pass?

I’m a lover of politics but ultimately I’m a lover of information. I love history and science and finding out how things work. I love reading obscure historic biographies and watching every history channel special about past wars and presidents. As I began to write this blog I remembered something about World War II that helped me understand how elected officials can completely ignore the will of the people over and over again and still remain in office. I know it sounds crazy right now but let me explain. During WWII Japanese Emperor Hirohito and his military generals devised a propaganda campaign of massive proportion. They relentlessly drilled into the minds of their civilian and non civilian population that the Americans were complete savages. Every single day they were told stories of the Americans coming into villages raping women, decapitating babies, dismembering kids, drinking the blood of the people they kill after torturing them, and whatever else the regime’s sick sadistic minds could make up that would put the fear of god in them. They did this because it made their army fight till the death and it made the Emperor look like a protector. But one very unintended consequence of this type of propaganda says a lot about human nature and how what was intended to strengthen through manipulation can end up weakening and leading to a huge downfall. Ok, so the Japanese people heard and believed all these horrible stories about Americans and American soldiers. When our army finally reached the shores of Japan and started to make their way through the villages, they were not there to harm civilians. We knew about the Japanese propaganda so we printed up thousands of pamphlets in Japanese telling them that our soldiers were not there to kill or hurt them and if they surrendered peacefully no harm would come to them. But of course they did not believe us. They were bombarded with horror stories about us for two straight years so to them an American soldier was the devil incarnate. When it became clear that they were losing the war and they saw US soldiers coming to their village, the parents would slit the throats of their children and then slit their own. To them this was the only way of saving their children from the devil. They’d rather die by their own hand so they could make it quick and relatively painless than be tortured, dismembered, decapitated, raped, etc. Village after village the same thing happened over an over no matter what the soldiers tried to do to let them know we meant them no harm.

This small piece of WWII history helped me understand why the will of the people can be ignored time and time again without an all out revolt. We’re Japanese villagers. We’ve been conditioned. We’re fearful and therefore powerless. The president wants to raise the minimum wage and has the complete support of the people. Every working person in this country can agree that a person working a full time job should not be in poverty. But that’s the way it is right now. Full time job working everyday of the week and still does not make enough to feed their family. Wall Street seeing a huge upswing, major corporations making record profits, CEO’s getting millions in bonuses and instead of using all those profits and bonuses to pay the people who work for them a fair wage, they use it to buy politicians, to lobby the people we put in office so they can keep their huge profits and keep paying their workers shit. These lobbyist get political pundits and “so called” journalist to tell the electorate that a raise in minimum wage would kill jobs. And people are so afraid of losing their low paying crappy job that they start to believe the propaganda. Never mind that what these so called experts and pundits are saying does not make sense. A company making record profits can’t afford to pay their workers a living wage? If that’s true they should go out of business. If they are that close to the edge then that’s not a healthy company. We need to stop separating ourselves into republicans or democrats, or white or black, or native or immigrant… those are really just labels that help the fear machine push out more and more lies and more and more propaganda. We have the numbers, we are the majority, we have the power so it’s about time we start acting like it. We’ve all seen the gap in income disparity grow larger and larger and yet we’ve done absolutely nothing NOTHING to fix it. Our president wants to raise the minimum wage. The American people want to raise the minimum wage. Why isn’t it happening? Are we going to take responsibility and support this until it’s law or are we going to be like Japanese villagers in WWII waiting to slit our throats to avoid an even worse fate?

FACTS FOR NONBELIEVERS:

The will of the people

income inequality infographic workers middle class and ceo’s get compared

The next time someone tells you that raising the minimum wage would kill jobs and slow the economic recovery, here are some hard facts that proves those statements to be false.

Among the 50 largest low‐wage employers:

  • 92 percent were profitable last year
  • 78 percent were profitable for the past 3 years
  • 75 percent are earning higher revenue now than before the recession
  • 63 percent are earning higher profits now than before the recession
  • 63 percent have a higher operating margin (a measure of profitability) now than before the recession
  • 73 percent have higher cash holdings now than before the recession

These facts and figures were researched by the National Employment Law Project (PDF).  They killed a very old Republican talking point that low wage jobs were the heart of small businesses.  This study found that the majority of America’s lowest‐paid workers are employed by large corporations, not small businesses, and most of the largest low‐wage employers have recovered from the recession and are in a strong financial position.

White House Crisis Management

Socially Urban Blog White House Crisis

Last week in my “Bad Week For Obama” blog I discussed three current “so called” scandals that the white house is trying to deal with. The IRS debacle, the Department of Justice wiretapping issue, and the attack on the consulate in Benghazi. Honestly I thought all three of those scandals would fizzle and fade away from mainstream media. I knew Fox wouldn’t let these issues die so that part I expected. But mainstream media and even liberal media are still leading their broadcasts with all three of these stories every day. I’m not saying that these issues aren’t important, but they aren’t half as big as everyone is making them out to be. Especially Benghazi. That’s the one that drives me crazy because I don’t understand why an argument over talking points has garnered all this attention. I thought President Obama took all the steam out of that story during the second presidential debate. Romney thought he had a sure-fire trump card that would definitely score him major points but President Obama threw it right back at him and ended up making Romney look like an uninformed opportunist. For some reason Republicans never learn from their mistakes and seem incapable of moving away from issues and political maneuvers that have failed and in some cases failed miserably. Two very good examples of this is Benghazi and the repeal of The Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare). The House and the Senate can’t seem to get anything done or even bring bills to the floor for a simple up or down vote, but that hasn’t stopped them from voting on the repeal of Obamacare 45 times. They know each time this will fail but they still do it over and over again. Common sense would tell anyone that there’s zero chance of Obama signing a bill that would undo his biggest piece of legislation. The Affordable Care Act is the most important part of his legacy. Hell, it even has his name in the title (lol). It seems as though everyone has caught scandal fever when it should have been just a 24 hour bug.

I can’t blame everything on Republicans because the White House continually makes bad decisions which makes small missteps into huge epidemics. Their number one problem is rolling-disclosure. Leaking small pieces of information here and there day by day keeps these scandals in the news. They’ve done this with Benghazi, the IRS thing, and the DOJ’s wiretaps. I just blasted the Republicans for not learning from their mistakes, but the White House has the exact same problem. I wish President Obama would have taken charge of the IRS issue as soon as they became aware of it. They should have been the one to bring this to the public’s attention. That would have taken 90% of the steam out of the GOP’s argument. But instead his staff and advisers decided that “plausible deniability” would somehow protect him and limit his exposure without risking his political capital… so they didn’t tell him. That works well in business but it never works in politics. Especially when you’re the president. Maybe this time they’ve finally learned that lessen and they’ll stop giving Republicans ammunition.

Bad Week For Obama

Socially Urban Obama Blog

This has not been a good week for our president… stating the obvious I know, but he’s taking heat from all sides, both left and right.  Some of it is warranted but most of it only exist in the minds of republicans or manufactured within the 24 hour news cycle to raise a ratings slump that’s been stagnant and/or lagging ever since the presidential election ended in November.  I hate to see the President on the ropes like that so I’m going to break it down and help him out a bit (like he’s going to read my blog or solicit my advice lol).

Late Friday evening a story leaked out accusing the IRS of unfairly targeting right-wing groups who filed for nonprofit status.  After the story broke the IRS released a statement acknowledging the unfair targeting and extra scrutiny these applications were getting.  President Obama held a press conference to address this issue and told the press that they were launching an investigation, and he was very emphatic about finding out who was responsible and promised to deal with them accordingly.  I’m a very liberal democrat (surprise surprise) and I’m not a fan of the Tea Party (an even bigger surprise) but wrong is wrong.  Anyone at the IRS who had anything at all to do with this should be fired and prosecuted in a criminal court.  President Obama also said that he had no prior knowledge of this happening until the day before the story leaked, and it’s pretty obvious that he had nothing to do with the IRS placing extra scrutiny on the right-wing groups applications.  Common sense would tell anyone that the White House and President Obama had absolutely nothing to gain by delaying nonprofit 501c applications.  He’s extremely intelligent and pragmatic so he would never risk his presidency for something as stupid and insignificant (relatively speaking) as this .  But the republicans haven’t figured this out yet.  They’ve alluded to cover ups of mass proportions all week on any media outlet that will give them airtime.  Normally this wouldn’t be such a huge deal.  Admittedly the IRS was wrong and they should take responsibility for letting this happen and be punished.  But the far right-wingers want to make this all about President Obama and they’ll continue to feed these delusional theories to their base buffet style as long as they keep eating it up.  So the quicker the president resolves this situation the better.  He needs to wrap the investigation up ASAP and be brutal quick and indiscriminate with the firings of some top IRS officials and do it in a very public way.  When dealing with political scandals whether they are real or manufactured, perception is everything.  Republicans rarely deal in reality so you have to beat them at their own game.  PERCEPTION IS EVERYTHING.  Start demagoguing the hell out of every press conference when these guys start to come for you.  So, that’s my advice on the IRS issue.  On the scandal scale it gets a 2 out of 10 (10 being Watergate or the Iraq war, and 1 being Jimmy Carter lusting in his heart lol).

The second scandal is a lot more serious and actually merits even more attention than it’s already getting.  Earlier in the week the Justice Department secretly obtained two months of telephone records of reporters and editors for The Associated Press in what the news cooperative’s top executive called a “massive and unprecedented intrusion” into how news organizations gather the news.  Attorney General Eric Holder and the Obama administration did this without a warrant, without honoring the First Amendment, and contrary to normal procedure where they could have asked the Associated Press to cooperate and if they declined then they could take it court and let a judge decide.  Prior to this incident that is the way the DOJ has handled similar situations in the past.  This story troubles me the most, and it’s the most confusing issue I have with President Obama.  I voted for him twice thinking he wanted to do things a lot different from his predecessor.  Obama promised me and everyone who voted for him a more transparent government. Then he does a 180 and instead of walking back some of the civil liberty infringements of George Bush’s Patriot Act, he adds to it with things like warrantless phone taps on law abiding citizens, increasing the number of DRONE attacks, and assassinating secret targets without telling congress and without any due process.  For most of his first term in office he wouldn’t even acknowledge that the drone attacks were coming from us.  That doesn’t sound transparent to me at all.  Don’t get me wrong, I think the President is doing a great job as commander in chief, and I don’t regret voting for him at all.  But when it comes to foreign policy and protecting civil liberties I am extremely disappointed in that part of his administration’s agenda.  So here’s my advice to the president about this.  First of all he needs to do some restructuring at the Justice Department.  He needs to take the DRONE attack program away from the CIA and give this responsibility to the military.  The CIA is a covert organization so they really can’t be transparent about their operations, and they do not answer to Congress so that means no oversight.  The Military handles these types of things best because they have to get orders, show results, and notify Congress of their actions.  My second piece of advice pains me because I like Attorney General Eric Holder, but like I said before, perception is everything.  President Obama needs to replace Holder with someone else, preferably someone outside of his circle of close friends and advisors.  Someone who is passionate about progressive ideas and an advocate for civil liberties.  Eric Holder was great at his job, but someone’s head has to roll and roll quickly.

It will be interesting to see how the President will handle all of these situations being thrown at him all at once.  I have complete faith in him as a leader because he’s been overcoming major obstacles all his life.  So far he’s risen to meet every set back head on and always comes out unscaved as the victor.  I’m not even going to talk about Benghazi because he’s already won that argument.  The republicans just don’t know yet.  When will they learn that It’s going to take more than the GOP to tarnish this man.

50 Ways To Fix America (If I Were President)

If I were president here are 50 things I’d want to accomplish.

1. Legalize gay marriage and end all policies that were born out of discrimination.
2. Abolish the death penalty (state and federal).
3. Reverse “Citizens United” that gives corporations permission to anonymously funnel unlimited amounts of money into the election process.
4. Create a nonpartisan federal commission to construct and implement guidelines to standardize all elections. No matter what state you live in, your voting process will be identical.
5. Disallow private money in presidential elections. Each candidate will have a federally funded campaign budget. This can be funded by a small tax added to everyone’s driver’s license fees (2 or 3 percent should be enough).
6. Attach the federal minimum wage to the fluctuation of the living wage. (Minimum wage = living wage + 20%)
7. Free health care for all Americans.
8. Create new restrictive regulation on Wall Street to protect our financial system.

a. 2% tax on every stock trade
b. Reinstate the capital gains tax
c. Sever the ties between banks brokerages and hedge funds
d. Limit high speed stock transactions (add another 1% tax for these types of trades)
e. Reinstate the “Glass Stiegel” act and the good parts of “Dodd Frank”

9. Legalize marijuana
10. Limit prison sentences for non-violent offenders and offer rehabilitation programs for first-time offenders instead of prison.
11. End elections for district attorneys and county sheriffs. These positions will be appointed by county commission boards with input from the town’s mayor and the state Attorney General.
12. Close all privately owned prisons.
13. Divert a majority of resources away from the failed war on drugs and use it to improve low income neighborhoods.
14. Make it easier to achieve and maintain a decent credit score.
15. End district attorney job promotions that are based solely on conviction rates.
16. Create legislation that says the government cannot regulate the internet in any way under any circumstances. 100% off limits for the FCC
17. Create a program that offers zero percent interest for student loans.
18. Increase salaries for all teachers and give them performance based bonuses.
19. Legalize work unions in all states.
20. Corporate CEO’s cannot give themselves bonuses if the company did not meet projected earnings for that year. (every time the CEO gets a bonus all workers get one as well)
21. End all drone attacks and reduce the number of American military bases in other countries.
22. Fund a huge government program to encourage organic farming.
23. Heavily invest government funds into legitimate energy alternative research and implementation.
24. Create a program that gives unemployed workers an opportunity to get their unemployment benefits in a lump-sum to start a cooperative with 9 other unemployed workers to start their own company.
25. Ban former senators, legislators, and congressmen from becoming lobbyist after they leave public office.
26. Rebuild America’s crumbling infrastructure which will create a lot of jobs in every state.
27. Make it easier for the poor to get low income housing in nice neighborhoods.
28. Undo tort reform laws and remove judgment compensation limits.
29. Allow illegal immigrants a pathway to citizenship after completing and meeting certain criteria.
30. Ban all assault weapons and extended clip ammunition and require extensive background checks for every weapon sold, given, or traded.
31. Abolish ALL stand your ground laws in every state.
32. Give employers tax incentives for implementing a pension plan for their employees instead of a 401k plan.
33. End the anonymous silent filibuster in the senate.
34. Close tax avoidance loopholes for corporations.
35. End predatory lending in poor neighborhoods (pay-day loans, pawn shop check cashing, & title loans).
36. Fund a program that gives start-up capital to entrepreneur who wants to open a business in their neighborhood (to lessen the amount of outside people who have no ties to the community from owning every store and restaurant.)
37. Make all textbooks digital and give the students a free ipad or laptop in the 9th grade.
38. Offer free high-speed internet for low-income families.
39. Legalize gay adoption in ever state. Gay couples will have to meet the same requirements as straight couples.
40. Implement a 10 year term limit for Supreme Court appointees.
41. Make contraceptives available for all high school students who ask for it (from a guidance counselor who will also give them information about and talk one on one with them about pregnancy, sex and STD’s.)
42. Every public high school must have a gay straight student alliance club.
43. Give tax break incentives for those who register as an organ donor.
44. Break up huge media conglomerates into smaller companies to create a less bias corporate driven media industry.
45. Create a new government office under the FEC whose sole purpose is to monitor the fluctuation in income disparity, and report their findings once a year along with suggested courses of action to return it to a reasonable position.
46. Remove the legislation that protects gun manufactures from being sued for wrongdoing.
47. Ban lobbyist from writing bills and legislation.
48. Close ALL American prisons and detention centers in other countries.
49. Lessen time limits for drug patents and make life-saving drugs obtainable for 3rd world countries.
50. Take a much firmer stance with Israel and strongly push for a two state deal giving Palestinians the land they were forced away from.

I’d have to do all of this in my first term because I’d never win reelection with such a progressive agenda.  Although ideas that seemed far left ten years ago have become centrist.  Especially social issues like marriage equality and women’s reproductive rights.  This shift in public conciseness  is evident by the colossal failure of the republican party in last years presidential election.

Justice Scalia’s Racist Agenda

Justice Scalia's Racist Agenda

I’ve been seething for a few days now over Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia’s outrageous comment calling the Voting Rights Act a “racial entitlement”. There’s an article by LEONARD PITTS JR. in the Miami Herald that sums up everything I’ve been feeling about the injustice of The Supreme Court even hearing this argument. Although concise and extremely eloquent there is one very important aspect that Mr Pitts article left out. Supreme Court justices are not elected or held accountable by the people. They are lifetime appointments appointed by whatever party is in the white house whenever a seat becomes open (which is rare). The Voting Rights Act was enacted by congress and upheld by congress with overwhelming bipartisan support for almost 50 years now. Congress is an elected body who serves as a voice for their constituents aka THE VOICE OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. Justice Scalia not only wants to destroy The Voting Rights Act, he wants to remove the power to uphold or overturn the Voting Rights Act away from a democratically elected body who are there to represent the American people and transfer that power to an appointed body who can make decisions that goes against the intentions and will of the American people without scrutiny or recourse. This is one of the most radical concepts the bench has ever seen. The Supreme Court has never done this or even contemplated doing this in the history of our nation. If Justice Scalia is allowed to remove the power of congress as he sees fit, we are no longer a democratic country. It’s unconstitutional, it serves to further disenfranchise minority voters (which is his intention), it’s a huge step back from the progress we’ve made toward equal rights, it makes the voice of the American people irrelevant and it sets a very dangerous precedent for future legislation. This is not a democrat vs republican issue. The last time the Voting Rights act went through congress in 2006 99% of democrats AND REPUBLICANS voted to extend it, but unfortunately current house republicans aren’t speaking out and condemning Justice Scalia. That says a lot about how different this crop of republican law makers are from where they were just 6 or 7 years ago. If you can’t publicly support The Voting Rights Act as popular and as needed as it is, then what can you support? The silence from the hill is deafening.

Miami Herald article I referenced:
http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/03/03/3261943/voting-rights-act-not-a-racial.html

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