In addition to their endorsement of Barack Obama's re-election campaign, the AFL-CIO at its recent convention outlined an ambitious platform of solutions to the problems that are undermining the country, the economy and the political system. The issues they tackle go beyond just worker's rights and represent one of the more aggressive political statements from labor unions in recent years. They issued a series of statements announcing their positions, including Citizens United:
The AFL-CIO supports the overturning of the Citizens United decision and calls for immediate action to end the dominance of our political system by corporations and the 1%. The AFL-CIO has long advocated for measures to bring about greater fairness, openness and participation in elections?reforms that enfranchise voters and ensure that wealth does not wield disproportionate influence. We support public financing of campaigns, limitations on individual contributions to candidates and parties and public disclosure of political expenditures. We also support measures to enable citizens to vote more easily, and we oppose voter identification and similar measures that are aimed at seizing partisan advantage through disenfranchisement. And, we oppose misleadingly labeled ?paycheck protection? measures that would exacerbate inequality by hampering union political activity while leaving corporate and rich individuals? political spending unimpeded.
The Citizens United ruling has opened the floodgates to massive spending by corporations and even more so by wealthy donors. They are pouring money into our electoral system and threaten to drown out the voices of hard-working Americans. Common-sense restrictions on their spending are needed, along with robust disclosure of their contributions and expenditures?including their contributions to organizations engaged in electoral activity.
The AFL-CIO also supports reforms aimed at restoring business corporations to their proper role as commercial institutions and limiting their influence in the political sphere. Business corporations are not people?they are manmade creatures of law that exist to generate economic activity and create jobs and income in communities. The notion that they should enjoy the same rights and protections as natural persons is absurd and it is destructive to our democracy. At the same time, for more than a century, corporations have enjoyed certain constitutional protections, such as due process protections against unreasonable searches and seizures, which are consistent with basic American values. We support reforms, including changes to our tax laws and corporate laws, that address corporate dominance of our political system and that restore corporations to their proper role in our democracy.
Congress should pass and the Supreme Court should uphold the necessary reforms to protect our democracy from the power of money. As long as Citizens United remains the law of the land, constitutional change may be the only option. Amending the U.S. Constitution should be a rare act, done with the greatest of care. To earn our support, any such amendment must be carefully and narrowly crafted to protect our democracy from the economic power of the 1%, while at the same time protecting the public?s right to organize politically through democratic organizations and movements.
On Social Security:
If America were to craft a solution to the retirement crisis, it would have the same components as Social Security?shared responsibility, pooled resources, portability and security, for example. But instead of increasing Social Security benefits to meet the real needs of real working families, foes of Social Security are attempting to cut it and "have spent enormous amounts of money spreading misinformation about the program."
With the unprecedented attacks on workers? rights, women have been disproportionately affected. However, the attacks have now gone beyond the consideration of legislative and policy debates. The denial of contraceptive coverage is seen as discrimination against women and an attack on workers? right to basic health coverage. The right to quality health care has deteriorated into an attack on the character of women who want nothing more than to have a personal decision in the matter. Contraception is not only important in helping women and men plan their families, it is also used to treat or prevent many health conditions that affect women, including reducing their risk of developing ovarian and endometrial cancers.
On the economy:
First, if we want to be competitive with Germany and China in the 21st century, we will need trillions of dollars in productive public investment over the next 10 years in affordable education and apprenticeship programs for young people, who have suffered greater income loss than any other demographic; infrastructure; energy; manufacturing; transportation; skills training and upgrades; and new technologies; all of which have been starved by successive rounds of tax cuts for the wealthy and inaction on long-term federal investment initiatives. Wall Street and the wealthiest Americans, who have benefitted most from the economic policies of the past 30 years, will have to start paying their fair share. We need to pass a financial speculation tax, let the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy expire, tax capital gains at the same rate as ordinary income and establish a minimum effective tax rate of 30 percent for households earning more than $1 million.
Second, to encourage domestic investment and lay a stronger and more stable foundation for long-term growth, it is essential that we tackle the problems of wage stagnation and economic inequality. This will require reforming our labor laws so that all workers who want to form a union and bargain collectively have a fair opportunity to do so, making full employment the highest priority of our economic policy, increasing and indexing the minimum wage, shrinking the trade deficit and, again, eliminating incentives for offshoring.
Third, we need to start making things in America again. We cannot hope to revive U.S. manufacturing without bringing our trade deficit under control, which means ending the overvaluation of the U.S. dollar and combating currency manipulation by our trading partners. We will also need to enhance Buy America safeguards, aggressively enforce our trade laws and end incentives for offshoring in the tax code and in our trade agreements.
Fourth, we need to shrink our bloated financial sector and make it serve the real economy once again. We can no longer afford a financial sector that squanders scarce resources on unproductive gambling and exposes the entire economy to the intolerable risk of speculative bubbles. This means reregulating Wall Street, eliminating tax advantages for leveraged buyouts and finding other ways to favor strategic investment over short-term speculation.
Fifth, if we expect other countries to stop relying on trade surpluses as their source of growth, we will have to make it easier for them to rely on domestic incomes as their source of growth. This will require a global New Deal that establishes minimum standards for the global economy, prevents a race to the bottom, creates vibrant consumer markets in the global South and in the process creates new markets for advanced U.S. manufacturing.
We also have unfinished business in digging out from the rubble of the crash. America wants to work, and decisive action to close our jobs deficit must not be delayed any further. An immediate multi-year program of public investment in infrastructure and clean energy would draw in business investment and buy time while households dig their way out of debt. To stop the foreclosure epidemic and stabilize housing prices, broad-based reductions in mortgage principal will also be needed. The U.S. economy cannot recover until the housing market?the single largest market in the country?is healthy again, and the banks must be held accountable for their contribution to the crisis.
And, of course, on the rights of working families:
Nothing is more central to our work than mobilizing and organizing on the side of workers seeking to form unions and build power by engaging in collective bargaining. We must trumpet this call as part of our legislative and policy agendas at federal and state legislative bodies. We must work to expand collective bargaining rights and reform labor laws to ensure that all workers who want to form unions and bargain collectively have a fair opportunity to do so.
At the same time, as we execute our ambitious legislative and policy agendas, we cannot overlook the overarching imperative of standing with workers seeking to join our movement now. We must re-dedicate and recommit ourselves to supporting workers? campaigns, because we cannot wait for politicians to fulfill promises or for favorable legislation to be enacted. Standing still and waiting are not acceptable.
The obstacles workers face in trying to form unions are intolerable. We must tear down those obstacles by showing the same courage, determination and dedication that workers themselves demonstrate. This requires courage, focus, discipline and resources.
As a key part of the fabric of our mission, we all share responsibility for achieving success:
Our program must consist of both statutory reform and active support for worker organizing efforts. Each of the federation?s departments has a role to play. We need vibrant local labor movements. Support for worker organizing and collective bargaining campaigns is central to the work of our state federations and central labor councils. Affiliate unions should call upon them for assistance and work in partnership with them on campaigns. Our affiliated unions are united in their commitment both to their own success and to the success of each other.
The AFL-CIO reaffirms its commitment to supporting the efforts of workers to organize and to bargain collectively.
It's good to see the AFL-CIO coming out with strong statements about their values and the action we should take moving forward. Unions are the backbone of the American left and when they are strong, we are all strong.
Puerto Rico has proven that it really, really doesn't like Rick Santorum. In fact, they disliked him so much that they gave Mitt Romney an 83% to 8% win over him, even after Rick went to the island to pander to residents and sneak in some rays poolside (no, I won't link to the picture, so you're on your own there).
Santorum's loss comes with good reason. After his double-win in the southern states of Alabama and Mississippi last week (where respectively 45% and 52% of Republican voters also believe that President Obama is a secret Muslim, and in Mississippi a plurality of GOP voters still think inter-racial marriage should be illegal), Santorum left for Puerto Rico to begin campaigning for their weekend race. Except things there got off to an epically-bad start.
I believe the general rule of thumb in politics is to not try to piss off the people whose votes you're trying to gain (but then again I've never run for office, and have publicly clarified my stance on man-on-dog action, so what do I know). Santorum stunned the entire island and the mainland after saying that in order to qualify to join the union, Puerto Rico is constitutionally-required to adopt "English as the main language." Yes, Rickie went to a nation of Spanish-speakers and told them to learn g-damn English.
And Santorum couldn't be more wrong. Not only does Puerto Rico officially recognize English and Spanish as their official languages, but this so-called constitutional requirement does not even exist (I don't expect a non-constitutional scholar like Santorum to get that - that's why we elected Barack Obama, who taught constitutional law). Santorum would probably call this absurd claim a "misspeak." Others might use the word "lie."
Santorum then tried to walk back the comment, but it was too late. In the end, he humiliatingly lost the endorsement of a prominent former senator and the island went to Romney. Romney of course milked Santorum's fail to the dear end, telling Puerto Ricans they could speak whatever they damn well please, y'all.
Rick later managed to top himself (coincidentally an act that would be illegal under a President Santorum) by calling Puerto Rico a "country," even though it's been an unincorporated territory of the United States since 1898. Are history books gay, Rick -- is that why you don't seem to interact with them much?
Sadly, this is the same Republican party that has joked about electrocuting Mexican immigrants and self-deportation (which I hear is about as popular among Latino voters as Republicans self-taxing). Even a Fox News Latino poll showed that Latino voters are picking President Obama over Romney, 70% to 14%. Santorum didn't even manage a showing in the poll, coming in as "Other."
Luckily for Puerto Ricans, Santorum self-deported from the "country" after his defeat, and has rejoined us in "America." I'm sure I'm not the only one waiting for Cinco de Mayo to roll around so Santorum can don a sombrero and tell Mexican-Americans like myself to quit having so many babies (while he tries to make contraception and abortion illegal). Mitt Romney, on the other hand, typically can't decide whether to brag about his quasi-Mexican heritage or shun it. (I look forward to the day when Santorum starts lecturing Seņor Mitt to stop having so many babies.)
And another margarita, por favor.
ALEC's Dan Boren has been subverting the House Democrats from within
There probably isn't a more serious institutional threat to democracy in America than the Koch-funded American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC).
It's basically a right-wing Republican organization working diligently to take away the rights of ordinary working people to implement the one-percent agenda. But there are a few reactionary Democrats who have been involved as well-- maybe 1%. The only congressional Democrats with ALEC ties I could find are Joe Manchin (WV), Dan Boren (Blue Dog-OK), Leonard Boswell (Blue Dog-IA), Ed Perlmutter (CO), Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA), and Kurt Shrader (Blue Dog-OR). And there are no Democratic governors toiling along with Jan Brewer (AZ), Terry Branstad (IA), John Kasich (OH), Bob McDonnell (VA) and Scott Walker (WI) to implement the ALEC agenda. The only Democrats on the ALEC board of directors are state Senator Steve Faris (AR) and ex-Rep. Dolores Mertz (IA).
Most states don't have any Democrats from their state legislatures in ALEC. Basically they're Republican political clubs. Many states will have one or two Democrats in a toiletful of Republicans. Like Wyoming, for example. There are 24 state reps and 11 senators who are ALEC members. Only one, state Sen. John Hastert, is a Democrat. And then there are a few states-- Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana and Texas-- with a half dozen or more Democrats have joined up. Interestingly, one Kentucky state Rep. Robert Damron, was a member and then quit last year saying he no longer attends ALEC meetings because ALEC has ?become, in the last few years, so partisan... The last meeting I went to, they spent all their time bashing Democrats. I don?t particularly care for an organization that?s so partisan.? On the other hand, Gov. Rick Perry (who's gotten between two and three million dollars from ALEC) was a member back when he was a Democratic state rep. And there's extreme right former state Sen. Mike Oliverio, who the DCCC has been trying to elect to Congress, who was not just a member of ALEC-- the only one in the West Virginia legislature-- but also West Virginia's state chairman!
The important thing is to keep track of these freaks and make sure they don't infect the Democratic Party and more than they already have-- and to make sure they don't climb into positions of power the way Joe Manchin and Kurt Schrader have. So... among the hundreds of Republicans in state legislatures with ALEC ties here's the handful of right-wing Democrats who have gone over to the Dark Side:
Rep. Richard Laird (AL)
Rep. Richard Miranda (AZ)
Rep. Barry Hyde (AR)
Rep. Terry W. Rice (AR)
Rep. Robert Moore (AR)
Sen. Barbara Horn (AR)
Sen. Jimmy Jeffress (AR)
Sen. Jerry Taylor (AR)
Rep. E. Bradford Bennett (DE)
Sen. Nan Orrock (FL)
Rep. Mary Flowers (IL)
Rep. Brandon Phelps (IL)
Sen. Arthur Wilhelmi (IL)
Sen. Frank Mrvan, Jr. (IN)
Sen. Brian Quirk (IA)
Sen. Chris Steineger (KS)
Rep. Ruth Palumbo (KY)
Rep. Dorsey Ridley (KY)
Sen. Kathy Stein (KY)
Sen. Ray Jones, II (KY)
Sen. Julian Carroll (KY)
Sen. Joey Pendleton (KY)
Sen. Tim Shaughnessy (KY)
Sen. Walter Blevins, Jr (KY)
Sen. Gerald A. Neal (KY)
Sen. Denise Harper Angel (KY)
Rep. John Anders (LA)
Rep. Jeff Arnold (LA)
Rep. Elton Aubert (LA)
Rep. Damon Baldone (LA)
Rep. Jean Doerge (LA)
Rep. James Fannin (LA)
Rep. Girod Jackson (LA)
Rep. Harvey LeBas (LA)
Rep. Walter Leger, III (LA)
Rep. Christopher J. Roy, Jr. (LA)
Sen. Willie Mount (LA)
Sen. Ben Wayne Nevers, Sr. (LA)
Sen. Francis Thompson (LA)
Rep. Harriett Stanley (MA), the ALEC state chairman
Rep. Mike Colona (MO)
Rep. Kris Edward Roberts (NH)
Rep. Robert Theberge (NH)
Sen. George Munoz (NM)
Rep. Bill Brisson (NC)
Rep. Bill Owens (NC)
Sen. Donald Ray Vaughan (NC)
Rep. Michael Stinziano (OH)
Rep. Jabar Shumate (OK)
Rep. Harry Readhsaw (PA)
Rep. Nick Kotik (PA)
Sen. Jon Brien (RI)
Sen. V. Susan Sosnowski (RI)
Sen. Paul Fogarty (RI)
Sen. Walter Felag (RI)
Rep. James Battle, Jr. (SC)
Rep. Ted Vick (SC)
Rep. Jimmy Bales (SC)
Sen. Kent Williams (SC)
Rep. David Shepard (TN)
Rep. Joseph Armstrong (TN)
Sen. Reginald Tate (TN)
Sen. Ophelia Ford (TN-- yes, not just a crook but the crooked the aunt of notorious corporate whore Harold Ford, Jr.)
Rep. Tracy King (TX)
Rep. Ryan Guillen (TX)
Rep. Jose Menendez (TX)
Rep. Dawnna Dukes (TX)
Rep. Eric Johnson (TX)
Rep. Tracy King (TX)
Rep. Jennifer Seelig (UT)
Del. Johnny Joannou (VA)
Rep. Troy Kelley (WA)
Rep. Kevin Van De Wege (WA)
Sen. Brian Hatfield (WA)
Sen. John Hastert (WY)
Speaking at the Center for American Progress Action Fund today, Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA) said he believes a price on carbon pollution can provide a unique solution to both the country?s fiscal challenges and its looming climate crisis, uniting climate and deficit hawks. His presentation put the challenge to Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), the House Republican budget chief, who has claimed that Congress has a ?moral obligation? to reduce the country?s debt. With former Republican congressman Wayne Gilchrest (R-MD), Waxman explained how tackling climate pollution can address fiscal, energy, environmental, and economic challenges simultaneously:
A price on carbon can give you a substantial amount of money to help deal with our fiscal problems. A price on carbon can move us away from our reliance on fossil fuels which add to the greenhouse gas emissions in our climate, and by doing that we can become less dependent on oil. We would be able to be a challenger in the economic future of clean energy.
“Do people want to cut Medicare and Medicaid?” Waxman asked. A rising price on carbon pollution, Waxman said, could raise over $1 trillion over several decades.
Gilchrest rebuked Ryan for ignoring the climate crisis in his depiction of the “defining moment“:
Paul Ryan said this is a defining moment for future generations as far as a fiscal sense for reducing the deficit. This is a defining moment on the planet of seven billion people extracting resources faster than they can be replaced, becoming a geologic force by pumping more carbon dioxide in decades than nature is able to store in the earth over millions of years. The defining moment is realizing that the market, capitalism, our civilization is actually a subset of the earth’s ecosystem. We’re not independent of the living machine that gives us life on earth. We’re dependent on it.
“The U.S. is facing a range of unprecedented fiscal and environmental challenges,? said Waxman. ?We?ve got a confluence of events happening all at once.?
Waxman and Gilchrest recently co-authored a Washington Post op-ed with Reps. Ed Markey (D-MA) and Sherry Boehlert (R-MD) calling for climate-change policies to be considered for deficit reduction.
Late last week, New York Republicans gathered in Rochester to select their U.S. Senate candidates strongly backed tenther attorney Wendy Long as their top candidate. Long received over 47 percent of the vote, with Nassau County Comptroller George Maragos and U.S. Rep. Bob Turner also clearing the 25 percent threshold required to appear on the GOP’s primary ballot. A former law clerk to Justice Clarence Thomas, Long wrote a book review praising a decision by her former boss that would lead to everything from national child labor laws to the federal ban on whites-only lunch counters being declared unconstitutional.
Women routinely pay $1 billion more a year than men for the same premium coverage due to “gender rating” practices, according to a new report released by The National Women’s Law Center (NWLC). The report, Turning to Fairness: Insurance discrimination against women today and the Affordable Care Act, “documents how insurers on the individual market use discriminatory practices that make it difficult for women to obtain affordable health care.” The group also notes that while insurance companies are highly unlikely to voluntarily end “gender rating,” at least 14 states have taken steps to outlaw or limit these practices in the individual market. The full implementation of the Affordable Care Act in 2014 will end “gender rating” nationally. The NWLC has launched a new campaign in response to the report’s findings, I Will NOT Be Denied, to educate women on the important benefits of the ACA. — Fatima Najiy
I just got into Live From Daryl’s House, the awesome little web series where Daryl Hall of Hall and Oates has musicians over to his house, cooks dinner and eats dinner with them, and then jams with them in his living room. It’s particularly cool to see Hall, a terrific white soul singer, duet with Cee Lo Green, who embraced his inner soul singer later in life, on “Cry Baby,” and to see how good they are when they’re riffing off each other:
I really think one of the better results of the internet for entertainment has been the proliferation of projects that put artists in juxtaposition with each other. It may not be a hugely revenue-generating project to see Cee Lo and Daryl Hall hang out, or to watch Marc Maron and Jeffrey Tambor riff off of each other for an hour, but it’s incredibly useful as a consumer of music and comedy to see what artists can get out of each other in a conversation that I as an interviewer probably couldn’t.
And I also wonder if innovations like this have managed to create an interim career tier for artists. Doing the WTF podcast is probably less stressful and more career enhancing for Maron than gigging around smaller comedy clubs would be. Daryl Hall can tour as much as he wants, of course, but this gig lets him bring collaborators to him once a month and to build a product that doesn’t have a clear place elsewhere. That’s lovely for the artists involved, and it’s also wonderful for us as consumers to have products that don’t fit neatly into other categories, that can be cut to a length that makes sense, and distributed flexibility. I was never someone who had incredibly fidelity to the album in any case (though Cee Lo is always an exception for me), and it’s nice to have options like these on the market instead of them, or in addition to them.
California GOP assemblywoman Shannon Grove has invited discredited anti-science disinformer and hate-speech promoter Lord Monckton to address the state legislature.
Amazingly, Grove is so proud of this move she is advertising it on her website below the string of wind turbines that form the backbone of California’s leadership response to global warming, a response that hard-core deniers like Monckton are working overtime to kill.
The Viscount Monckton of Brenchley (TVMOB) is not merely the most discredited purveyor of long debunked anti-science disinformation — see MN professor eviscerates Monckton in must-see video: ?The number of errors Chris Monckton makes is so enormous it would take a thesis to go through every single one of them.?
And Monckton is not merely a shameless purveyor of hate speech — see Lord Monckton repeats and expands on his charge that those who embrace climate science are ?Hitler youth? and fascists.
He actually lives in an alternative universe where he is a Nobel Peace Prize laureate and a member of Parliament ? who has cured HIV. None of those things is true (see here). Rather than being given a platform by the California GOP, he should be widely condemned for his extremist hate speech and anti-science disinformation:
Dennis Loo had an interesting piece at OpEd News this morning that asks a question all of us need thinking about the answer to. Basically, Mr. Loo wants to know if elections even make any difference anymore. My first instinct was to resort to my usual feeble-minded sarcasm and flip something like "as if they ever did" or some such out there but it struck me that this was a pretty damned serious question in view of all that we have ever claimed to be in this country and that it deserved at least an attempt serious answer. I find myself basically in agreement with some of his conclusions but having arrived at those conclusions by a couple of different routes.
If I could only answer yes or no my answer would be no for reasons that should be obvious to anyone that has taken any note at all of what's been going on around him for the past 30 or so years and that actually would be an accurate assessment, at least in the case of presidential elections. The simple fact is that the outcome of presidential elections have had little to no effect on the downward spiral this country has found itself in since 1980. The reasons are again obvious to anyone capable of turning his head left or right.
There simply isn't enough difference between the two major parties for any choice we make to have a significant impact on our slide into Fascism. In 1980, we elected the Patron Saint of the Downward Spiral, Ronald Reagan and that served to unleash the dogs of deregulation and "small government". From that time on we have had three Republicans and two Democrats in the White House and we've still managed to get to where we are with little to no hindrance from the White House during the times it was occupied by a Democrat.
Let's dispose of this whole idea that it makes much... if any... difference who's in the White House. If it didn't mean the doom of my worldview I'd have to laugh at the Teapers screaming that Clinton and Obama are both "Socialists" and that they're taking us down the road to Socialism on a wagon with no brakes. If Bill Clinton and Barack Obama are Socialists... or even Liberals... we're going to have to come up with new names for the few REAL Socialists and Liberals left in the country.
As a matter of fact, a TON of damage occurred to the working classes... including the much whined about middle class... during Clinton's time in office. Among Mr. Clinton's "accomplishments" was the one that most people now judge to be his "landmark", THE one that... as far as I'm concerned... sealed our doom as a free society. I'm talking the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) which... by offering American corporations a myriad of incentives to move their manufacturing facilities to foreign countries and make major investments in the infrastructure of those countries instead our own while avoiding US taxes on those investments... practically guaranteed the exodus of millions of manufacturing and related skilled labor jobs in this country and led to the financial sector replacing manufacturing as the key player in our pseudo-capitalist system. From that point on, the bankers owned the joint and the rest of us played by their rules or we got out.
Of course the jury is still out on Mr. Obama. Only history can judge the effectiveness of a president over the long haul and his final legacy is going to depend on whether or not he gets a second term. In contrast to Mr. Clinton, his "landmark" accomplishment, the Affordable Health Care Act is actually somewhat defensible in terms of the fact that it has helped people who would otherwise have gotten no help. But actually, the AHCA does little to stem the obscene profits of the insurance companies, basically shifting the cost of private insurance from the individual to the taxpayers and actually depriving MediCare and MedicAid recipients of benefits in order to provide funding for doing so.
In other areas, Mr. Obama has shown himself to be pretty much to the right of even Ronald Reagan himself when it comes to curbing the excesses of the Wall Street fraudsters which led to our financial meltdown under GWB and the subsequent raid on the US treasury by those same Wall Street dog robbers and in fact often seems to be trying to outdo Bush in service to the Wall Street parasites.
Everything it would have taken to finally put a stop once and for all to Wall Street's ruination of an entire planet for the money and power it would bring to the one percent was taken off the table before any discussions ever took place and every panel, committee or commission he's slapped together has taken months and millions of bucks to finally spit out the same conclusions we knew they were going to. And in spite of the "reform" that DID supposedly come about, Wall Street continues to laugh all the way to the Cayman Island bank and add insult to injury by funding Mitt Romney's bid for the presidency. Maybe Mr. Obama intends to come out kicking ass and taking names during his second term and maybe his next "landmark" will be a landmark that everyone can rally around and that won't line the pockets of the insurance and medical industries whose profits are already obscenely bloated. I'll certainly be voting for him and hoping so.
But in the meantime, my answer would be no. In these modern times, given our current party and a half system, presidential elections matter little in the overall scheme of things and the direction the country takes long-term. The two parties are too much alike and while voting one way may prevent X from happening, it's usually because we give up Y to get it. Next time around it will be the opposite and we'll swap X for Y instead.
Congress? Hah! Now that's a whole 'nother can of worms and that veritable pantheon of junkies and pimps and whores is where your future and that of your descendants is actually determined and your ability to separate the flim from the flam is a definite factor. We'll talk about that later.
(Cross Posteded at http://grandpasmad.wordpress.com/ )
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An important story from James Risen shows why anyone with a passion for more war who talks about the "intelligence" on Iran's nuclear program should not be listened to. In fact, we know precious little about that program, and even what we do know gets[...]
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