Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Any Other Day

If the report on the Justice Department firings of U.S. Attorneys had come out on any other day but yesterday, we would have seen major news coverage of Senator Pete Domenici, Congresswoman Heather Wilson, and Sheriff Darren White's complicity. Oh, lets dont forget Pat Rogers and the rest of the extreme rightwingers too. Last night I watched local TV news and the story got very little coverage. Astonishingly, the Albuquerque Journal didn't even mention White's name in the story it did. How could that happen?

Even so, I think it is enough to pretty much finish the Sheriff's run for Congress against former City Council President Martin Heinrich. Martin, give me a call and I will write a TV commercial for you. Although, curiously, White has run such a poor campaign that maybe it isn't necessary. I don't know why this is happened, but I think the Republican party is so fragmented here that they just never got their 'merde' together.

Martin has run a good campaign for the this particular time in this congressional district's history. I think he will win by as good a margin as Heather used to win her seat.

Monday, September 29, 2008

New Hampshire

After the Wilderness Society meeting in Bretton Woods I went to stay with my friend Ned at his cabin at Lake Christine.
You reached it by going across one of those covered bridges.
This was the view across the lake from Ned's cabin.
I smoked my second cigar in a year. People from the seven cabins on the lake rowed out to the middle for "floating cocktails" before dinner. They lashed the boats together until dark and then we rowed back in a light rain shower and ate in front of a nice fire. Everyone should do this at least once.


I arrived home from New Hampshire to learn of former City Councilor Vince Griego's death. Albuquerque has lost a really decent soul. I knew Vince for many years, ever since he was first elected to the city council. Bobbi and I walked neighborhoods for him in his elections as he was our Council member in the North Valley.

Years later, Vince was still a Council member when I was elected Mayor. He was still a decent man who never kept any sort of tally on who owed him favors and who wouldn't get them. He approached every issue as a separate one and didn't let things spill over into other debates. No grudges with Vince. The people in DC could learn something from this philosophy. It is regrettable that the other right wing City Councilors didn't learn any thing from him.

Vince was a pretty good politician though and he usually got what he wanted for his city council district. He really brought home the bacon for the north valley. It is a better place to live than it was before he became the first councilor under the new city charter that set up the Mayor/Council form of government in the 70's.

Friday, September 26, 2008


We are in day long meetings here at the Wilderness Society Governing Council annual get together. New Hampshire is supposed to get a lot of rain today. So the afternoon hikes are probably out. In the meantime, we get snippets of news filtering in during our breaks about the financial crisis and the inability of bush and congress to get it together on a solution. It is kind of nice not having instant access to news and doom over the internet and TV. The forests here are prettier than ever and they pretty much get by without minute by minute updates too!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

New Hampshire

I traveled most of Wednesday to get to Bretton Woods, New Hampshire for a meeting. After arriving I was greeted with the news that McCain wants to cancel his debate to work on the nation's financial crisis.

All I can say is that the McCain campaign seems to be making some goofy decisions. Can this possibly make him look Presidential? Ducking out on a debate? Will it change any minds, or will it mainly just keep undecideds from making up their minds? Hard to tell.

The forests in New Hampshire are in full autumn glory.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008


I will be traveling for the rest of the week but will attempt to blog from the road. My one hope is that I can arrange to listen to the debate on Friday night. I am told we will have a satellite radio available in the backwoods.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Heinrich's Role in a Tie Breaker

First, here is the commercial I have been waiting for. Just run it constantly Martin Heinrich campaign.

I am reminded by a friend of another really important reason to elect Martin Heinrich as our new Congressman in this district. That reason is a possible tie in electoral votes after the election for President. If both Obama and McCain recieved 269 electoral college votes then the election will be determined by the new Congress. The House picks a President and the Senate picks the Vice President.

Each state gets only one vote however and that vote, for President, is determined by the vote of the congressmen in the state. In New Mexico we have 3 congressmen, so we need two of them to be Democratic to swing the state for Obama. If bush lover Darren White is elected he could team up with a Republican from the southern district, if they win that one, and put the state's one vote in the McCain column.

This is not a far fetched scenario. It could happen, just like Gore winning the popular vote in 2000, but still losing to bush in the electoral college. (Aided and Abetted by the bush Supreme Court)

So no matter where you live just vote for the Democrat running for Congress as another vaccination against continuing the bush administration by McCain.

Fiscal Responsibility

Sheriff Darren White, the chair of george bush's campaign in Bernalillo County, is out with an attack ad that lies about Democrat Martin Heinrich's tax policies. The bush/cheney loving sheriff said not long ago that bush was great for the economy and was creating jobs. Here is a snippet about that.
  • Darren White supported George W. Bush's failed economic policies. "[F]amilies in New Mexico are making progress. America's economy is strong and getting stronger. The president believes Americans finding work is good for New Mexico." [Las Cruces Sun-News, 6/20/04]
So, lets tie this one around the Sheriff's neck like a dead chicken around a fowl killing dog's neck. He should have to live with it and Martin Heinrich's campaign should not let up on it.

Now, having said that and generally thinking White would be a disaster in Congress because of his bush conservatism, I think he has done an okay job as sheriff. He hired some good people to get rid of the problems there. But, just because he has been an okay Sheriff doesn't mean he would make a good congressman. They are two different things entirely. So, lets give Darren White the opportunity to serve out his second term as sheriff. Keep him here in Bernalillo County.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Good Read

My last post was about lies. This one is about lies being started. This is a good column from the Chicago Tribune yesterday by my old St. Pius X High School friend Dennis Jett. He retired from the State Department after serving all over the world as a diplomat. That service included Ambassador to Mozambique and Ambassador to Peru.

Outright Lies

The New Mexico Oil and Gas boys have one thing in common with John McCain. They are all good at lying. McCain continues to lie about Obama's tax proposals and the NM Oil boys continues to lie about how good they are for New Mexico. They did their annual self serving full page ad in the Albuquerque Journal yesterday about how they 'pay for everything' in our state because of the taxes they pay. Most of that is not tax, it is royalties that they owe for sucking "our" oil out of the ground. They have to pay us for something that doesn't belong to them, kind of like you have to pay for everything you buy at the grocery store. They have to pay severance taxes for severing these publicly owned resources from the ground for all time. And they think they are doing us a great favor. Yes, we do owe them some thanks for helping America become great. But, like many politicians, they just don't know when to quietly fold their tents.

Look at the states that surround New Mexico. All of them have much larger and diversified economies because they didn't have powerful oil boys controlling their legislatures. That has held us back for decades and it is time to end this stranglehold they have on our politics.

The best way to do this is to make sure the U.S. Senate passes continued incentives for the solar and renewable energy sector. Right now the oil boys are holding that up on a national scale and that is affecting this nation's security. If the oil boys in this country had their way we will fall from superpower status(more than we have under bush/cheney) in a short time.That happened to the Spanish and Dutch empire when they refused to switch from wind to coal to power their ships. It happened to Great Britain when they refused to switch from coal to oil, and it will happen to America if we don't switch to from oil to renewables. Remember to thank the oil boys for that.

Sunday, September 21, 2008


One thing you can expect from the Rove type of politics suffered on us by the republicans is that they most likely have a contingency plan for every scenario over the next six weeks. Mostly it will involve lies and sleaze. But it is certainly coming and I want Obama, Udall, and Heinrich prepared for it. Lets hope they are. Mark my words that these campaigns will descend to the lowest ring of hell. Yes, that means lower than what McCain/Palin are doing right now.

Speaking of something low, it seems that good European Christian folks are viewing Jews and Muslims with increasing levels of distrust. Ah, religion. Sometimes I don't think this civilization hasn't got a chance. Maybe the Pope and his Cardinals should say something?

Finally, a little advice to the Heinrich Campaign. Before early voting starts I would concentrate all of my advertising on showing these two pictures together.

Friday, September 19, 2008

My Tax Money

I sent off a really large quarterly check to the IRS last week. Little did I know they would turn around and give it to large failing companies on Wall Street. Essentially, that is what has happened here and it may have been necessary to save global financial systems that those same companies screwed up. So, I gave thousands last week to help with this and meanwhile the CEO's of these companies are walking off with tens or hundreds of millions of dollars in past bonuses and golden parachutes. Can I get a refund from them personally? Does anyone have the addresses of all of their homes where I might go ring the door bell to ask for some money?

In the meantime, why does McCain get a free ride on his involvement as a member of the Keating 5?

Thursday, September 18, 2008



The act by which a person abandons and forsakes, without justification, a condition of public, social, or family life, renouncing its responsibilities and evading its duties. A willful Abandonment of an employment or duty in violation of a legal or moral obligation.

The team of bush/cheney have deserted the country. They are absent. They are no where to be seen. They should be charged with malfeasance and dereliction of duty. Have you seen them during the meltdown in the financial markets? Have they been on the point of calming and assuring the American public that things can be fixed? Have they shown themselves on TV to say that they are working on solving the problem? Hell no! Rove has probably advised them to stay away from this negative story.

When you stop and think, it might be a good thing they are invisible. One, if they were really involved in trying to fix this financial nightmare then things would only get worse. They are incompetents after all. Two, they are leaving their good buddy McCain in the hot seat all by himself trying to explain why he has always objected to regulation of the financial markets.

So, maybe this is all playing out okay. Meanwhile, I personally know of people who are really in trouble because of this fiasco. And, there are millions of folks I don't know who are also in a state of despair because their retirements are being trashed before their eyes.

In the military, if you desert, you are put on trial. That should go for the 'Commander in Chief" too.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The R Word


This letter to the editor recently appeared in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram:

What if John McCain were a former president of the Harvard Law Review? What if Barack Obama finished fifth from the bottom of his graduating class?

What if McCain were still married to the first woman he said "I do" to? What if Obama were the candidate who left his first wife after she no longer measured up to his standards?

What if Michelle Obama were a wife who not only became addicted to painkillers, but acquired them illegally through her charitable organization?

What if Cindy McCain graduated from Harvard? What if Obama were a member of the "Keating 5"?

What if McCain were a charismatic, eloquent speaker?

If these questions reflected reality, do you really believe the election numbers would be as close as they are?

This is what racism does. It covers up, rationalizes and minimizes positive qualities in one candidate and emphasizes negative qualities in another when there is a color difference.

— Kelvin LaFond, Fort Worth

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


First, we need to hold CEO's of these demised financial institutions accountable for their greed. No golden parachutes allowed. Zero! Also, an apology would be nice. Has any one heard any apologies from these guys and their bush administration enablers?

Everyone with 401-K retirement funds are in an angst mode right now. That includes just about everyone in the middle class, federal government workers, state government workers, city government workers, the self employed, corporate workers and anyone who has thought ahead a few years to retirement.

Bobbi and I are no exception and we have been lucky so far because Bobbi has a good head for what funds she invests into and the timing for doing so. Even so, we have seen a 12% decline in our holdings over the last year. If things don't continue to meltdown we should be okay. (We were seeing annual 10% climbs in our funds during the good times.)

One would think that this situation on Wall Street would hurt McCain. I think it will depending on the efficiency of his lies on the campaign trail. If he thinks that the economy is fundamentally sound as he stated a few weeks ago then we are all screwed if he gets elected. Why? Because he doesn't believe in regulation and oversight. Just like bush/cheney. You can see where that got us.

I think one thing that could happen as a result of all of this is pressure on state and local governments as their revenues fall and their ability to sell bonds gets harder. Add to that the reduction in oil prices and New Mexico State government is especially vulnerable.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Solar Tax Credit Means a Lot for New Mexico

My son sent me a link to look at a new study by his employer, the Solar Energy Industries Association, and it shows the great potential for New Mexico if Congress grants an eight year extension of the Solar Tax Incentives. This is worth some time. The executive summary is very good.

Karly's Letter

This is a insightful letter to the Editor that my daughter in law wrote to her hometown newspaper in upstate New York.

I grew up in Cuba, NY and then Olean, where I graduated from high school in 2000. I am a White female from a working class family and community, and I am proud of my small-town roots. The values I learned from my working-class childhood are still dear to me, and include hard work, compassion, family, service, modesty, and loyalty. I believe in structuring our economy to benefit blue and white collar workers before the rich, and I believe that strengthening public education and providing health care for all makes us a safer, stronger nation. I believe that God's work means serving the poor, living with honor, and treating others with kindness—not judging others or enforcing one brand of faith by law. These values are why I vote Democrat and will proudly support Barack Obama for president in November.

Though many who share my background and values have also voted Democrat all their lives, it distresses me that many working class and small-town folks are hesitant to support Senator Obama this year. It is truly scary how many actually believe Obama is Muslim, unpatriotic, or "too inexperienced" to lead. Worse is how many simply say "I can't relate to him."

I would expect such criticisms from Republicans and others with ideological opposition, but when Democrats and Independents make such statements as their only reason for not supporting Obama, I can't help but wonder if what they are too afraid to say is " I am not comfortable with a Black man for President." After all, Obama's policy platform at its heart embodies classic Democratic ideals, and is almost identical to that put forth by former contender Hillary Clinton, who enjoyed strong support from the white working class.

This is not to sling accusations of racism at anyone who does not share my enthusiasm for my candidate. It is a call for introspection, so that we might sort thoughts from feelings on Election Day, and vote from carefully reasoned opinions. It is virtually impossible for any of us in this nation to be immune from prejudice or plain uneasiness around racial difference. Especially in this community, there are many who will go a whole lifetime without interacting in any meaningful way with people of color. However, most of us can verbally agree that all people, regardless of race, should be treated equally. Do we mean it?

For those of us who are inclined to support Democrats but "just can't relate" to the present candidate, ask yourself: What issues and positions win my vote? Are principles more important than skin color and appearance? Although George W. Bush and his cronies mostly share my complexion, did they better represent my interests because of it?

Let us not forget that we who hail from small towns and rural areas deal with many of our own stereotypes—that we are simpletons, small-minded, or just plain "hicks." There is much speculation that people like us are so ignorant or uncaring about political issues that we will simply vote for whatever candidate resembles us the most and intimidates us least with shows of intelligence and nuance. John McCain's own campaign manager endorsed this stereotype when he said "this election is not about issues." Let us also not forget—as a community with predominantly Irish, Italian, and Polish roots, that our culture considered these groups to be only sub-human when they first arrived as immigrants, and participated in vicious discrimination against them.

The pendulum of public opinion on race changes course as people are given the chance to experience integration and become familiar with those who are different from them. Acknowledging what we have in common as Americans is the first step. If you are a Democrat, Independent, or disenchanted Republican who supports labor, women's rights, public education, the environment, tax cuts for the poor and middle class, and the values of compassion and diplomacy, you will have a friend in President Barack Obama. Please put any hard-to-articulate uneasiness aside and vote on your principles in November. For goodness sake, don't prove the pundits right about us "small-town folk!"


Sunday, September 14, 2008

Be There but No B-Square

Yes, I got my annual corn dog at the New Mexico State Fair today. Bobbi went along and had one too. They were good. One a year wont kill us. No, I don't want to know what it was made of. Then we headed over to the Agricultural exhibit to see the Bolack B-Square Farm Exhibit. I have been doing that for about 50 years. Except it wasn't there today. They aren't going to do it any more. So much for 1000 pound pumpkins, yard long squash, carrots as big as your forearm, and beautiful giant green chiles.

This is one more sign to me that the State Fair must remake it self for a new century. The Commission must look at a whole new way of doing things. Its okay to still have the traditional stuff, but a new line of exhibits on science, technology and education might liven things up a little bit. Just my suggestion.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Les Mis for All of Us

You must watch this for some relief.

I spent some time Saturday on politics. First, I participated in a phone conference with Obama policy wonks and concerned New Mexicans on energy and environment issues. Then I stopped by Martin Heinrich's HQ open house. He is shown here with his son Carter and a visiting member of the Austrailian Parliament Mark Bulter.

Then I stopped by the Obama HQ at Central and Carlisle to see if they had any yard signs. They have run out. But the ground game is on with citizens being trained to go out and get votes. It was an impressive site on a beautiful Saturday morning.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Cruelty to Animals

You can usually figure out how a human being behaves generally by the way they treat animals. Watch this if you can.

Please send money to Defenders of Wildlife Action Fund to get this ad on TV. No, I am not anti hunting, but this isn't sport or subsistence hunting.

Growing Rage

Do you sense it? A growing rage against the tactics of the republican party and John McCain's campaign. You can see it simmering in the blogs, in discussions overheard, even in some of the media that has had enough of the lies being disgorged in advertising. Even John Stewart let some suppressed rage leak out on Sarah Palin's asking for people's respect in her family decision to keep a pregnancy intact for her teen aged daughter while being against decisions being made by other family's unwanted pregnancies, even in the cases of rape and incest.

Palin said in her ABC interview that we may have to go to war against Russia if they invade another country. (Uh, would that be a nuclear war Ms. Palin?) Think about where that idea came from. A guy named dick cheney is her advisor for sure. I really mean it. Well, why not? The speeches she reads are authored by bush speech writers.

How much longer can Obama remain talking just on issues, which is pretty damn important right now? He needs to get nasty I guess because that is what the media and public want. He should start with the bush administrations complete failure to get Bin Laden. Tie that to McCain who was bush's enabler.

And Finally, do you know how many Americans know how many U.S. soldiers have died in Iraq? Just 28%. A far less number than those who know about lipstick on a pig controversies. We are so screwed! Rage about it.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Fact Checking

This is good.

Small Towns

" Nonmetro areas contain 17 percent of the U.S. population but extend across 80 percent of the land area. Relatively slow growth characterized nonmetro America during 2000-05. Population increased by just over 1 million, a 2.2-percent increase compared with 5.3 percent for the Nation."...US Department of Agriculture.

I am continuously amazed at the McCain camps attacks on Obama as being disrespectful of small towns. It is just another one of those 'lipstick' issues that ignore real problems. Phony outrage in the hinterlands. Try and get small town people to hate a black man running for President. Get people to think that city slickers are immoral. You know the drill. Pick out a group and make them the enemy.

I look at New Mexico's small towns in the year 2008 and marvel at their lack of economic development and population growth. (I am not talking about growth in places like Los Lunas and Belen that are in commuting distance of Albuquerque.) In fact, many small towns are losing the majority of their young people to the Metropolitan areas. (Will they soon be looked down upon by the people they left behind?) So, the real concern here is how to bolster small town economies. The last thing we should do is another boom bust cycle like Grants, NM has endured with uranium mining. Real growth wont be easy with current energy and fuel costs and lack of transmission lines to bring in what I hope will be mostly renewable energy.

The next administration, if they end exporting dollars for oil and war, can help with this issue. We already know McCain will stay in Iraq so there is $10 billion a month that won't be available. Meanwhile, he has no program for getting us off an oil addiction. So small towns can't look for much help from him. But he does have a great program for lipstick issues.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Obama Takes Off the Gloves

This is what Obama needs to keep doing for the rest of the campaign.

Secrets of the Universe

Scientists in Geneva have fired up the Large Hadron Collider in hopes of finding the secrets of the Universe. I wish them good luck. They are going to need it, especially when you think about the mysteries in American politics right now that seem impenetrable. We need to figure out why lies work so well in this country when they are employed by the Karl Rove types. We need to figure out why a country that has been so successful in separating church and state has now reversed course over the last 20 years and insisted that one's religion, or lack of it, is so important in running government. We need to figure out why warriors are more electable as leaders than diplomats and peacemakers.

Well, there are some people who worry that when the Hadron Collider is ramped up to full power that it will create a black hole that will consume the earth. I don't think that is going to happen since we already have a black hole in American politics. What is that black hole? Basically, it is the widening gap between the rich and poor. No government has ever lasted long when that goes unaddressed.

Okay, Okay, I am in a rush and ranting but it relieves the frustration.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

We Get What We Deserve

When we reelected bush we got what we deserved. Well, at least half the nation who voted for him did. Now, after listening to the republicans bash Obama as nothing more than a celebrity they have now unabashedly put forth their own celebrity VP candidate. She belongs to a church whose members speak in tongues, she disparages community organizing(which got women the vote some years back), she has no respect for the wildlife in her beautiful state of Alaska, but as republicans say, 'she is a hottie'. So, if we end up with her as VP or possibly President because the old guy's cancer returns, then we, as a nation, can blame no one but ourselves.

This just might be the state of politics in this country now. Money and dirty tricks seem to work better than policy talk and depth. The one hope we have for Obama is that he is taller than McCain and that seems kind of important in politics too.

I am a secret admirer of "South Park". There is much wisdom in those little boys adventures and morals at the end of the day. One thing they hit time and again is the theory that 25% of Americans have no clue about anything. I sometimes agree with them, but that makes me an elitist I guess.

I do put some credence in counting bumper stickers and yard signs. In my nice neighborhood I have many neighbors with Obama stickers and signs. I have yet to see any for McCain.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Battle Ground

So, just like everyone predicted, New Mexico is a battle ground state in this Presidential election. It will be well fought over and I believe Obama can win with his on the ground effort.

Having said that the Obama policy people need to make known to those of us who are working hard and contributing money to the campaign just how they view the west. If we are a battle ground then the statewide Obama effort must talk to us about the issues many of us care deeply about, the protection of our landscapes, watersheds, and rivers. There needs to be a concerted effort, like they are making with the veterans and their issues, on how an Obama campaign would work with the many factions on protection for our resources. So far the effort at bringing together a New Mexico environmental team for the campaign has faltered. This needs to be fixed not just in New Mexico, but other pivotal western states like Colorado and Nevada.

We pretty much know what to expect from McCain and Palin. Drill, Drill, Drill.

New Mexico's battleground status will be a more even fight than Sarah Palin is giving the wolf in Alaska however. It is a metaphor for what we can expect from the Republican team. Read this for an eye opener on how this 'hockey mom' views these creatures.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Let's See

Let me try to understand this. The republican administration and Congress have completely screwed this country up over the last eight years and now they want to be the ones that come in and clean up the mess in Washington. Rudy Guiliani, Mitt Romney and bear cub killer Sarah Palin savage Democrats on Wednesday night and John McCain says he will end partisan rancor on Thursday night.

The republican party is rallying around their vice president candidate Palin in order to elect their presidential candidate. This more than anything should tell us that she very well could end up President.

As far as the West is concerned, the republicans have drilling fanatics McCain and Palin, both horrible on western land and water issues and the Democrats have Barack Obama and Joe Biden who come from the east with little knowledge of these issues. They need to start paying attention in at least some small way to these issues.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

So Good

Priceless. John Stewart has it figured out.

Bankrupt GOP & Palin Insults

Palin: "I guess a small-town mayor is sort of like a "community organizer," except that you have actual responsibilities."

She owes an apology to every community organizer including:
Every church in America
Every AmeriCorps volunteer
Every PeaceCorps volunteer
Susan B. Anthony
Elisabeth Cady Stanton
Martin Luther King Jr.
the list goes on.

You have to know that the Republican party is bankrupt when Rudy Giuliani has to criticise Barack Obama for having a good education. He made sarcastic remarks about an "Ivy League" education that Obama received. My son Justin got one of those educations from Cornell University and then went on to a Masters Program in Public Administration from Syracuse University. He is now working to ensure a renewable energy future for America. So, does this good education mark him as 'suspect' with the Republican party? Will he be hounded out of the country because he was fortunate to receive such good schooling? Will the same happen to my daughter Noelle for receiving a great education at Rice University? Oh, I forgot, the GOP already doesn't want her to control her own choices.

I remember when Mayor Debbie Jaramillo railed against people moving into Santa Fe with their 'high educations'. It finished her political career for a lot of us folks who had thought she might go places.

Think of it! Saying someone is inferior or unqualified for political office because they are well educated. It is almost to hard to take in.

Factoid. Did you know that the Democratic convention had 1000 African American delegates and the Republicans have 40? The crowd in that arena doesn't represent America for sure. It reprsents the oil and gas industry who peppered 'Drill Now' signs throughout the seats.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Food Gestapo

Mayor Martin Chavez has directed his storm troopers at City Hall to force certain food off the menus in vending machines. He has decreed from his office that junk food not be vended any longer. Gone, I assume, are M&Ms, Snickers, Doritos, Oreos and anything else that tastes good. Now, I can see the value in doing this in a school but I gotta say that treating adults like school kids goes a bridge to far.

I have recently gone on a high vegetable and protein diet. I actually feel pretty good for it. But, I still eye those special occasions when an Almond Joy might be appropriate. I guess I will have to find a 'pusher' if I am in a city building to provide me with my fix. Pssst, Buddy, I got some good stuff here....Meet me in the parking structure. Yuk.

Palin and McCain

Here is what women can expect from a McCain/Palin Administration.






Obama Has A 100% Pro-Choice Voting Record. Obama has received a voting record of 100% from NARAL Pro-Choice America. [NARAL, 5/14/07]

Obama Passed A Law Requiring That Emergency Medical Services For Sexual Assault Survivors Include Coverage For Emergency Contraception. Obama was the chief co-sponsor of a bill requiring that hospitals providing emergency services for sexual assault victims provide medically accurate information about emergency contraception. [Vote 110, 4/23/08] [92nd GA; SB 0114; 2001; Signed into law 7/25/01, PA 92-0156]

Obama: “It’s Never Been More Important To Protect A Woman’s Right To Choose.” On the 35th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, Obama said "it's never been more important to protect a woman's right to choose.” [Obama Press Release, 1/22/08]

McCain Bragged About His Anti-Choice Record And Wants To Overturn Roe v. Wade. McCain has a long anti-choice record and he even bragged about the consistent “zero” score he had received from NARAL Pro-Choice America. [NARAL, 8/11/08] His campaign website says he “believes Roe v. Wade is a flawed decision that must be overturned.” [Vote 110, 4/23/08] [McCain Website, “Human Dignity and the Sanctity of Life,” 8/11/08]

McCain Opposed Requiring Insurers To Provide The Same Level of Coverage For Birth Control That They Do For Other Prescription Drugs. McCain voted against requiring health insurers to provide the same level of coverage for contraception as they do for other prescription drugs.[Salon, 3/24/08; Vote 75, 3/17/05; Vote 45, 3/11/03; Vote 180, 5/16/03; Vote 231, 7/23/96; Vote 28, 2/8/94]


Obama Helped Protect 330,000 More Illinois Women From Pay Discrimination. Obama co-sponsored the Illinois Equal Pay Act, which provided that no employer may discriminate by paying different wages solely on the basis of gender. The AP says the bill gave “about 330,000 more women in the state protection from gender-based discrimination in pay.”

[93rd GA, SB 0002, 5/11/03, PA 93-0006; AP, 5/11/03; Chicago Tribune, 5/8/03; Chicago Tribune, 5/12/03]

Obama Cosponsored The Federal Fair Pay Restoration Act And Describes Equal Pay For Equal Work As “Fundamental.” Obama co-sponsored legislation to overturn a Supreme Court decision making it harder for women to challenge pay discrimination. Obama said “we've got to use all the power at our disposal to make sure that women are treated equally. The idea of equal pay for equal work is something that I think is fundamental to the American ideal.”

[ABC Good Morning America Interview, 7/9/08; U.S. Census, 8/30/05][Obama Senate Press Release, 4/23/08]

McCain Opposed Legislation That Would Help Women Achieve Pay Equity. McCain opposed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which sought to overturn a recent Supreme Court decision making it harder for women to challenge pay discrimination. McCain even suggested that women get paid less because they need more education and training. In addition, McCain voted against a proposal that would have provided more effective remedies to victims of sex discrimination in the payment of wages.

[New York Times, 4/30/08; Factcheck.org, 5/1/08]


Obama Has Fought To Increase Education And Awareness Of Cancers that Affect Women. Obama passed a law in the Illinois State Senate to require coverage of breast and cervical cancer screenings, and he helped pass a law ensuring that women and minorities are included in state-funded clinical research. Obama was an original sponsor of “Johanna’s Law”, which launched a national campaign to increase awareness of gynecological cancers like ovarian, cervical and uterine cancers.

[PL 109-475, 1/12/07; PA 93-0514, 8/12/03]

McCain Voted Against Extending Insurance Coverage To Pregnant Women And Infants And Opposed $214 Million For Breast Cancer Research. McCain voted against extending Medicaid coverage to pregnant women and infants up to one year of age with incomes below the Federal poverty line. He also voted against transferring $214 million from the Defense Department to fund breast cancer research. [1988 Senate Vote #170, 6/8/88; 1992 Senate Vote #211, 9/17/92]


Obama Supported More Domestic Violence And Abuse Prevention Funding And Passed Laws Protecting Victims. Obama voted for funding to prevent domestic violence and abuse, including increased funding for the Office of Violence Against Women, and passed numerous laws protecting victims of domestic violence. [PA 92-0827, Signed 8/22/02; PA 90-0136, Signed 7/22/97; PA 91-0163, Signed 4/16/99; PA 92-0162, Signed 7/25/01; Vote 226, 9/13/05]

Obama Cosponsored Legislation To Reauthorize The Violence Against Women Act. Obama co-sponsored the legislation reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act, which provides funds to help communities, nonprofit organizations and police combat domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking. The VAWA also establishes a sexual assault services program and provides education grants to prevent domestic violence. As president, Obama will fully fund and implement VAWA.

Obama Authored The Victims’ Economic Security and Safety Act. In Illinois, Obama introduced and passed the Victims’ Economic Security and Safety Act (VESSA) – one of the most comprehensive sets of employment protections in the nation - which ensures that victims of domestic violence can seek treatment without losing their jobs.

McCain Repeatedly Voted Against Funding To Fight And Prevent Domestic Violence. McCain has repeatedly voted against funding to fight and prevent domestic violence, including a $9 million increase for the Office of Violence Against Women. McCain even opposed authorizing grants to aid children who have witnessed domestic violence. [Vote 226, 9/13/05; 205, 5/25/95; Vote 295, 8/25/94]


Obama Helped to Dramatically Expand Day-Care Services. In Illinois, Obama fought to create Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, which included a six-fold increase in day care funding.

Obama Will Expand The Child And Dependent Care Tax Credit. Obama will expand the Child and Dependent Care tax credit to 7.5 million more working women, double funding for afterschool programs to serve 1 million more children, and provide summer learning opportunities to an additional 1 million young people [90th GA, HB 204, 5/31/97, PA 90-0017, 6/19/97; State Journal Register, 6/1/97; HR 3010, Vote 272, 10/26/05]

McCain Has Repeatedly Voted Against Increased Funding For Child Care. McCain repeatedly voted against providing billions in additional funding for child care services. McCain even voted against a proposal to expand tax credits for businesses that provide quality child care centers. [Senate CQ Vote #613, 12/22/95; 2003 Senate Vote #90, 3/25/03; 1997 Senate Vote #153, 6/27/97]


Obama Will Expand Sick Leave To 22 Million Working Women, Expand The Child And Dependent Care Tax Credit. Obama will work to guarantee seven days of paid sick leave to the 22 million working women who currently have none.

McCain Does Not Have A Real Plan To Expand Paid And Sick Leave. McCain doesn’t have a real plan to help parents juggle work and family, and has no plan to expand paid leave and sick leave for working Americans. [Mother Jones, 6/23/08]




Printed in House

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Consumer Rage-Hertz This Time.

One of the things that I like about having a blog is being able to rage about bad service. This time it is my long time rental car agency, Hertz, that has me upset. I think they are a good company that is sinking fast when it comes to service. I have used them exclusively for a decade but now they are off my A-Team list. The last three times I have used them they have screwed up. First it was a car so dirty I had to stop and get it vacuumed out. Then in Hawaii we had reserved a seven passenger vehicle and they gave us a five passenger vehicle. This trip to Baltimore over the weekend was also ruined by a car that had been the scene of a cigar smoking contest with numerous holes burned in the seat and a stench that could be smelled outside the car. Of course, we are supposed to get non smoking cars.

Every time they mess up they offer a $25 dollar coupon for your next rental. Screw that. I want a clean car and good service. Besides, I always lose the coupon.

When I called them to complain today I was notified that it would be 23 minutes before someone could help me on the phone.

I wonder if Avis is still trying harder.

Southwest Airlines service to Baltimore and back was great. Hertz could learn something about service from them.