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Wednesday, November 9, 2016

ABC News: Hillary Clinton's Full Concession Speech- Election 2016 Finally Comes to an End


Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

"I'm going to start with Hillary Clinton's speech here and then go through the election. As Senator Tim Kaine put it, no one ever..."

I'm going to start with Hillary Clinton's speech here and then go through the election. As Senator Tim Kaine put it, no one ever thought for a second whether or not Hillary Clinton would concede if she lost the election. (Not a partisan statement, just a fact) Because Secretary Clinton respects and loves American liberal democracy. Secretary Clinton said she hopes that Donald Trump is a successful president. And whether you like that fact or not and I and over fifty-million people who voted against Mr. Trump including Republicans, we hate this fact, but if he turns out to be a bad president which a lot of the country fears, it won't be just President Trump who suffers, but America will suffer. If the country goes into recession, sure President Trump will take a hit. But he'll still have a job at least until January, 2021, but millions of Americans will be out of their job wondering what they will do now. If he makes any foreign or national security policy blunders, the country will suffer not just President Trump. So I believe Secretary Clinton had the perfect tone here.

As far as the election 2016 itself, CNN commentator Van Jones who has taken a lot of heat today about the so-called whitelash in the country as he put it, I believe he had the best comment for why Hillary Clinton lost last night. I'm going to paraphrase here but what Mr. Jones said was essentially that the Clinton Campaign was expecting Donald Trump himself would bring African and Latin-Americans to the polls himself against him. And vote overwhelmingly with a huge turnout against the Trump Campaign simply because of the campaign that he ran. And not what the Clinton Campaign offered them and a positive vision for why they should vote for her. That they didn't do  a major investment in Latino and African-American turnout. Unpopular president's can drive the other party to the polls against them during Congressional elections and vote for whoever the opposition party candidate or incumbent is for House or Senate. If you don't believe me, just ask GW Bush and Barack Obama.  But when it comes to the presidency, Americans have to have positive reasons why they should vote for someone. And saying the other guy is horrible is not a good enough reason.

So this election to me is about turnout. The Trump Campaign found whatever is left of the Reagan Democrat coalition in Pennsylvania and the Midwest and that is how they won Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania. States where Secretary Clinton had clear leads pre-election day. And the Clinton Campaign didn't get their African and Latino-American base to the polls, as well as Millennial's. That great get-out-the-vote operation that the Clinton Campaign supposedly had, apparently took the night off or fell asleep, perhaps because of how long election 2016 felt. It just wasn't there. 2016 looks like 2004 to me with the Kerry Campaign expecting millions of Gen-Xers and Millenia's, to come to the polls and vote against President Bush. Which was how they expected to win Ohio. But President Bush won Ohio with a hundred-thousand plus votes. When 2016 could have easily had been 1988 where Americans by enlarge thought things were going well and weren't ready to take a chance on a governor with no Federal experience in Mike Dukakis. And stuck with the status-quo in H.W. Bush.
ABC News: Hillary Clinton's Full Concession Speech

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Sharon Kauffman: ABC News's 20/20 First Episode- 6/06/1978

Source: Sharon Kauffman- From ABC News-
Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

"From ABC News- As the lead in to this video said ABC News, was a small player if not joke in the network news business in the 1970s. Th..."

As the lead in to this video said ABC News, was a small player if not joke in the network news business in the 1970s. They basically remained that way until the Iran Hostage Crisis in 1979-80 that launched Nightline with Ted Koppel and their nightly newscast World News Tonight started drawing real ratings then, This Week With David Brinkley emerged in 1981, 20/20 became a hit when Barbara Walters and Hugh Downs, became the anchors of it. ABC Sports with their NFL coverage with Monday Night Football and their MLB coverage with Monday Night Baseball and their college football coverage and a handful of entertainment shows that they had especially in daytime, were really the only hits that the ABC network had. Back then America had two great broadcast networks in CBS and NBC, as far as entertainment, sports and news. With ABC giving you same type of programming, but without the hits and affiliates that the big two had in the 1970s. And being a distant third to CBS and NBC when it came to news, but entertainment as well.

I sort of look at ABC in the 1970s the way I look at Fox today, but with ABC putting a lot more emphasis on news. Fox still doesn't have much if any impact on network news other than their Sunday morning talk show. ABC was trying to be CBS and NBC at least as far as influence and in size, but until Roone Arledge took over ABC Sports in the 1970s and then later ABC News in the 1980s, they were a distant third. Rooney Arledge with Monday Night Football and then Monday Night Baseball and ABC Sports college football, 20/20 World News Tonight, Nightline, This Week With David Brinkley, is responsible for making ABC the powerhouse it is today. With the ability to compete with CBS and NBC, when it comes to entertainment, news and sports. And have the affiliates to be able to do that. Whatever you think of this version of 20/20 and I'll get to that later, this was the start of ABC becoming a force in network news.

It's a damn good thing that Barbara Walters and Hugh Downs, became the anchors of 20/20. Even for 1978 the layout of this first show with two no-name anchors and one of them not even being an American and the other making his living as a writer and not a broadcast journalist and the cheesy music (even for 1978) and covering stories like how greyhounds are treated, just showed you that ABC News wasn't quite ready for prime-time. CBS's 60 Minutes even though they had already been around for ten years at this point, looked so much better and more professional. It looked like a network news magazine show. And not some weekend morning show that mixes in soft stories with a few real news stories and interviews, to make the show look serious. But they were trying and got much better again when Hugh Downs and Barbara Walters, took over the show in 1979-80. And were together for twenty years and made 20/20 the hit that it still is today.
Sharon Kauffman: ABC News's 20/20 First Episode- 6/06/1978

Thursday, September 15, 2016

NBC News: John F. Kennedy on Meet The Press Through The Years

This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

John Kennedy, was perfect for NBC's Meet The Press, because he was so quick. The people there liked him and knew that he could not only answer their questions, but wanted to do it and answer them with depth. Very similar to Bill Clinton or Barack Obama, he was very quick off the cuff and could answer questions with humor. Meet The Press liked interviewing him, because he was likable, popular, well-known and very funny. The 1950s was a fascinating time and JFK was in Congress the whole time as the country was dealing with the Cold War, post World War II economic boom, the early days of the civil rights movement and even American women starting to make important impacts out of the home in the American economy. Meet The Press had female anchors and questioners. There were women in Congress like Senator Margaret Chase Smith and many others. Jack Kennedy was in his thirties and early forties during this decade and had a great future ahead of him if he wanted it. Which is why Meet The Press loved having him on.

Jack Kennedy, was sort of an absentee Representative in the House. Somewhat bored and loved being a bachelor and enjoying the Washington nightlife when Congress was in session. It wasn't until JFK decided to run for the Senate in 1952 that he started taking his job more serious and making his positions known in Congress. There are a lot of things to love about Jack Kennedy and he is my political hero, but he's definitely someone who grew in office. Wasn't a great Representative, but a good Senator at least in the sense that he started taking issues seriously and studying them and not just going to his committee hearings, but knowing the right questions to ask. I don't believe JFK becomes President of the United States on his personal appeal and family name alone in 1960, had he not become a serious Senator and taken his job in Congress seriously and getting on the road and getting his political platform out there.

I'm not sure JFK gets into his politics without his father Joe pushing him. But it's clear that once JFK got into politics and ran for the House in 1946 and was elected he loved it and became a natural campaigner and politician. He gave a great speech, great interviews, knew how to excite and inspirer people. He wasn't a natural public servant and someone who actually loved doing the job that he was elected to do. He tenure in the House is a pretty good example of that. I believe he sort of grew in public service once he was elected to the Senate, especially his second term when he started considered running for president in 1957 or so. But was someone even though had a fairly thin resume outside of Congress and somewhat of a thin voting record and list of accomplishments in Congress, was someone who was great at expiring people and laying out a vision for how America could be even greater and how all Americans could succeed in America.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Associated Press: Today in History For September 11th- Remembering 9/11, 2001

Source: Associated Press-
Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

Just to give you a personal reflection about 9/11. I was working at a movie theater and not happy about it and working the nightshift and disliked that even more. Except for the people I worked with and for and met. I believe I closed the night before and slept in that morning knowing I would be closing again on that Tuesday night the night of 9/11. I woke up early that afternoon and turned on the news and saw I believe ABC News breaking in from their afternoon soap operas to cover these explosions that were happening in New York City and the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia. And to paraphrase what Jack Buck said during the 1988 World Series, "I don't believe what my eyes just saw." I can't believe what I just saw on TV. It must have felt like the way people in Hawaii felt during Pearl Harbor in 1941. That the nation was under attack and what's the next horrible attack that we'll be doing with. I get ready for work and get there I guess about 4 o'clock that afternoon and find out that the theater is close because of the attacks and I had the night off.

There are only two moments during the George W. Bush presidency where I was proud of President Bush and I don't say that lightly or proudly. It's just the way I feel about this President as President. The first one is where President Bush goes to New York City to look at the destruction caused by the attacks and he's giving a speech there and talking to firefighters there. And some people in the audience yell out essentially how angry they are at the people of these attacks. And President Bush literally breaks in with a megaphone and says, "we hear you, the Americans people hear you and the people responsible for knocking down these buildings will hear from all of us very shortly." It was the perfect thing to be said at that point and I believe reflected how most Americans were feeling at that very moment regardless of their politics and party affiliation. Those last four months of 2001 starting unfortunately with 9/11, you could argue was the last time America was united as a country. And President Bush deserves credit for that. Regardless of what you think of him.

I don't live in New York City and I never had. So I can't give you an eyewitness account of what happened in New York during those horrific attacks. But what I can do as an American is tell you how I feel about people responsible for attacking one of America's great cities and one of the great cities in the world. America felt under attack during 9/11. Before that we felt invincible as a country and believe no one would attack us period. Even if they could, because we would destroy them if they did and they knew that. 9/11 changed and changed the national makeup of this country. What goes on in the Middle East and South Asia, can now happen here. Not from another country sending in a plane and hitting us with missiles and bombs, because they would get shot down. But from terrorist hijackers so warped out of their mind and hating America and our foreign policy, that they would hijack a private plane and use it as their suicide attack. Even with innocent passengers on board simply flying to New York, with no say in the matter. And America has never gotten back to pre-9/11 and the few months after that when we were one country even for that short period.
Associated Press: Raw Video- Today in History For September 11th

Friday, September 9, 2016

Lisa Rinna: Marilyn Monroe- Things Happen For a Reason

Source: Lisa Rinna-
Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

I've blogged this before and I'll say this again. Marilyn Monroe, wasn't known for saying intelligent things, at least not with people not knowing her personally. She was known as a goddess, dumb blonde, an entertainer, comedian, singer, a wild child with the baby-face of a sixteen year girl and even the personality of one. And except for the dumb blonde she was all of those things. But she was so much more and even those she was immature and lack self-discipline and self-confidence, which is shocking if you just look at her and see that smile, she had this keen blunt way of seeing things for what they are and knowing exactly how to describe them and put things and people in their place. She had a keen sense for commonsense about life outside of her. Even if she didn't show much of it when living her own life. What's she saying here in this quote is not something that makes people think, "I wish I thought of that." Instead it's more like, "I wish I remembered that, so I could see things what they were and take life as it comes and make the best of it."

Things to happen for a reason. Which sounds like a quote from Captain Obvious, but it's so true and if more people just saw that instead of thinking their life is collapsing because they're facing some hardship. It's not whether something for good or bad happens in your life that is key. The question is how does that change you and what do you do about it. Being poor at any point in your life is only a life sentence if you make it one for yourself. You don't improve yourself, you don't get yourself the skills that you need to live your life, you don't make the necessary lifestyle adjustments needed to be able to move up in life and you'll remain poor. Instead of saying, "I hate poverty, so I'm going to do what it takes to get myself out of poverty." And that is just one example and when something positive happens in your life, you should know why and how that happened, so you don't take it for granted and stay on that positive course. Whether you get a promotion at work, get a great girlfriend, whatever it might be.

One way I would describe Marilyn Monroe, is that she has a Ronald Reagan knack of commonsense. (Sorry my fellow Democrats) The Gipper had an ability to put things as they are and put them in a way that anyone basically could understand. That is how someone wins presidential elections with 56 and 59 percent of the vote and wins 93 states in two elections. Because you show strong leadership and layout a vision and character that everyone can understand. Even if they vote for you or not. Marilyn Monroe, was fifteen-years younger than Ron Reagan and politically very different, but she had that same ability of putting things in a way that everyone can understand. And not introduce knew language and facts, but instead remind people of commonsense that almost everyone knows. That perhaps we forgot, because it's so common and perhaps seems so ordinary and perhaps old school and we feel the need to simply be different and fit in with current times. Marilyn was great at putting things exactly as they are and for that reason alone is worth being missed.
Love Marilyn: Marilyn Monroe and Her Most Beautiful Quotes




Sunday, September 4, 2016

Constitution Daily: Olivia Fitzpatrick- Vice Presidential Profile Henry Wallace: The Father of American Democratic Socialism

Source: Constitution Daily- Democratic Socialist Vice President Henry Wallace-
Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

Henry Wallace, is a very important figure in American politics as well as government and I believe in positive ways for the most part. He was in favor of civil rights, equal rights and equal justice, in the 1940s when very few Democrats were and probably most Americans were. But to supporters and followers of Bernie Sanders and Green Party presidential nominee Jill Stein he's their political father. He created the vision that they're currently fighting for. A social-democratic or democratic socialist vision that goes farther than the New Deal of that era and even farther than Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal and Lyndon Johnson's Great Society. He wanted to create a country and government where the central government became the tool to be used to see that no one had to go without anything they needed to live well. Henry Wallace was to the left of Progressive Democratic President Franklin Roosevelt on both economic and foreign policy. And he was FDR's Vice President.

Henry Wallace, didn't believe in fighting the Cold War against Russia. He didn't see communism as some big evil threat to American freedom. Unlike most Progressive Democrats at the time like FDR, Harry Truman and many others. Similar to Bernie Sanders with the Communist Republic of Cuba, Wallace might of founded aspects of communism that he least respected. As it related to economic policy and the welfare state, even as he criticized it for the last lack of human and individual rights. So he certainly wasn't in the mainstream of the Democratic Party back then, or wouldn't be today. Wallace ran third-party for president in 1948, because he couldn't have beaten President Truman in the Democratic primary season. Again Bernie Sanders and Jill Stein, have taken his role as the leader for democratic socialism in America, because there isn't a major party that represents them. They're trying to build that movement in and outside of the Democratic Party.

Thanks to Henry Wallace, you have the emergence of the New-Left if the mid and late 1960s. That had both social-democratic and communist factions in it. That was opposed to the Vietnam War, but the Cold War, the American military and American capitalism. That wanted to create a society where government was bigger and more centralized within the Federal Government. And was used to provide the basic benefits that people needed to live well. Instead of receiving those benefits from their employers, or making those choices for them in the private sector. People like Tom Haydon and Bill Ayers and groups like Students For a Democratic Society and The Weather Underground, represented the New-Left of this era. And flooded the Democratic Party with all of their members and made it possible for someone like Democratic Socialist Senator George McGovern (the Bernie Sanders of his time) to run for president in 1972 and win the Democratic nomination. Henry Wallace, has made a huge impact on American politics and deserves credit for that.
JCM: Henry Wallace- Century of The Common Man- 1942


Sunday, August 28, 2016

ABC News: World News Tonight-Colin Kaepernick Refuses to Stand During The National Anthem: Opportunism at it's Worst

Malcolm X, Really?
This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

In life there are followers and there are leaders. There are trend-setters who would be leaders and there are people who follow whatever the latest trend is who would be faddists. Celebrity culture and pro sports is no different, is a very accurate reflection of this. Celebrities feel the need to be cool to the point they'll follow things and claim to support things that in many cases they don't even seem to understand. Ben Affleck, from a couple years ago where he essentially accused Bill Maher of being a racist, because Maher made critical, but accurate statements about Islam, is a perfect example of this. Even though Islam is not a race, but a religion and Muslims can be anyone of any race, since Islam is not a race, but a religion. With today's social media and broader media culture, things can become hot and go or go viral, in an instant. And when that happens, many celebrities feel the need to be associated with it even if they don't understand what they're associating with. Colin Kaepernick, to me at least seems like the latest celebrity faddist and getting on the Black Lives Matter train.

This is not a debate about whether there's racism and bigotry, as well as oppression in America. Because of course there is and we've had as a nation more that two-hundred years of it. This to me is a debate about whether a multi-millionaire San Francisco 49ers QB Colin Kaepernick, is the right spokesperson to address this issue. Who'll be paid eleven-million-dollars by the 49ers this season to be there starting QB. A man who has taken advantage of every opportunity he's had in America as an individual to live in freedom and become filthy rich. Oppression in America, again goes back more than two-hundred years starting with American-Indians. And then Africans being kidnapped from Africa and brought over to be the slaves of European-Americans who the land of the American-Indians. To women of all races not having the right to vote in America until a hundred-years ago. To Jewish and other European immigrants, being denied access in America by Anglo-Saxons, simply because their ethnicity and religion was different from English-Americans. To Latinos and Asians as well. With the Japanese, as well as German and Italian-Americans, being kidnapped and forced into concentration camps. Because the U.S. Government saw them as traitors during World War II.

Colin Kaepernick, has been in the NFL since 2012 and has been a millionaire his whole career. America didn't wake up to oppression when the Black Lives Matter moment started in 2014. We've known about it for over two-hundred-years. That is anyone who took and passed American history in high school. Mr. Kaepernick has had all this time to let his thoughts and views be known about racism and oppression in America. And waits till now when the Black Lives Matter becomes popular and not only that, but isn't putting himself at risk here at all. The 49ers won't cut him over this, because standing for the national anthem is voluntary. And the City of San Francisco is a capital of fads and trends and pop culture and leftist hippies who applaud anyone who takes on anyone they see as 'The Man.' If Mr. Kaepernick loses his job this season, it will have nothing to do with the fact that he supposedly took a stand against oppression. But that he once again failed to perform, and the 49ers have another mediocre or bad season. And head coach Chip Kelly decides to go in a different direction as a result.

Colin Kaepernick, showed no more courage in not standing for a national anthem for a country that has given him no much opportunity as someone who is African-American, to be very successful, than millions of teenagers who bought and wore Malcolm X hats in the early 1990s when the Malcolm X movie came out. Claiming to support a man they probably never even heard of before that movie came out. And perhaps don't have much knowledge about who Minister Malcolm is today. Someone who I have a lot of respect for an learned a lot about. What Mr. Kaepernick has done here instead is make a fashion statement. And use the national anthem of a country that's given him so much opportunity to be as successful as he had, has his target and launching point. Which makes him not different from people who eat whatever the latest hit dish is, or where whatever outfit, or claim to be behind whatever the latest movement or celebrity is. So of course he has the Freedom of Speech (even in the NFL) to do what he did. But he's nothing more than an opportunist when it comes to oppression and fashion statements.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Scott Rogers: The Steve Allen Show- Diana Dors Hooray For Love in 1960

Source: Scott Rogers- Diana Dors-
Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

It’s simply not possible for me to see too much of Diana Dors right now and believe me I’ve tried. If I don’t get over this compulsion fairly soon I might seek professional help. She along with Anita Ekberg, Ava Gardner, Liz Taylor, Shelley Winters, are my favorite not just Golden Age Hollywood Goddess’s right now, but my favorite Hollywood Goddess’s right now. Add Angie Dickinson, Marilyn Monroe and Kim Novak to that list. Diana, was so adorable with a hot baby-face, English accent and personality to match.

I’ve seen The Run For Doom which is her Alfred Hitchcock Hour episode from 1962, probably twenty times now. And it’s a very good show, but she makes it great. Simply because of her performance on it. Her presence on it is simply overwhelming by the way she moves and her adorable facial expressions. But keep in mind she was a hell of a lot more than a baby-face goddess with a great voice and personality. She was a hell of an actress and a very funny performer as well. She reminds me a lot of Shelley Winters as far as personality and comedic timing.

Diana could make serious parts look funny and keep people staring at her with her with her add living. Again watch The Run For Doom. Or be the funniest person in the room when you let her go off the cuff. Like she did with Bob Hope, Steve Allen and many others. As far as Hooray For Love, again Diana had many talents. She played a singer nightclub singer/gold digger in The Run For Doom. And in this performance she’s singing Hooray For Love on The Steve Allen Show, (Got me for who that show was named after) Great face, great voice, great body on a 5’6 frame. Tall and curvy, but definitely not too tall and I just wish she lived a lot longer and had a much longer career. Because she was so special.
Scott Rogers: The Steve Allen Show- Diana Dors Hooray For Love- 1960


Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Constitution Daily: Constitution Check- Lyle Denniston- Where do abortion rights go from here?

Texas Abortion Case-
This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat: Constitution Daily: Constitution Check- Lyle Denniston- Where do abortion rights go from here?

I thought on this beautiful warm morning in the nation’s capital (the capital of the free world) that I would blog about something as unifying as abortion. Where there’s such an absolute consensus, arguing against it is like arguing in favor of slavery or something. Ha, ha! But to be serious I’ve always find it ironic that a state like Texas which claims to be so pro-life, consistently leads the nation in state killings. And the most uninsured and with high crime rates and not just in Houston and San Antonio and everything else. I mean I understand the mainstream pro-life position on abortion. It’s the other stuff that puzzles me. I would think anyway that a state that claims to be pro-life wouldn’t lead the nation in death penalties. But maybe that’s just too much common sense for the average American, or something.

As far as the Texas abortion case. If you try to shut down health clinics, because they perform abortion, you’re violating Roe V Wade. Because you’re essentially saying that women can’t get an abortion in your state. And you might say they could go to their local hospital, but a lot of Americans especially in Texas perhaps, live far away from hospitals and rely on local clinics for their health care. The neighborhood doctor, if you will. Or say women can’t get an abortion after a certain period of time. You’re still violating Roe V Wade. You’re putting the state’s view over the individual and saying the state knows best what health care people should have and when they should get it. States that claim to be anti-big government, shouldn’t be promoting it. And telling their people what they can do with their bodies.

To sound a bit more positive, if I was even offering free advice and no I’m not a charity, but if I had free advice for the anti-abortion movement, (I hate the term pro-life when it comes to abortion) I would suggest they become more consistent and positive on this issue. And then if they offered to pay me for my advice I would layout several steps for them to take. But if you want to hear it anyway. I would say people who claim to be pro-life, should be against the death penalty. Be against abortion with exceptions for life and health of the mother, if you believe fetus’s are babies and therefore alive and deserving of the same Right to Life as people. You say that the state should never promote killings, except and only as a last resort to defend the public. Lethal force to defend the public as a last resort, but if you have the murderer in prison for life, you’ve already removed that threat to the public.

My positive message for the anti-abortion movement would be yes you’re anti-abortion, but you’re also pro-life. So you’re promoting adoption and quality parenting for all. Quality education for all. And anti-poverty agenda that promotes economic freedom for low-income parents and school choice for their kids. You’re acknowledging the obvious (without stating it) that you don’t have the political power to outlaw abortion, so you offer an alternative instead. And get the message out that their options for women to take when they have unwanted pregnancies. Like adoption and for low-income women to self-improve and get the skills they need to be successful in life. Instead of passing laws that might look great in your state, but then get thrown out later on simply because they’re unconstitutional.

As far as abortion rights and reproductive rights in the future. We now no longer have 5-4 pro-choice position on abortion on the Supreme Court, but a 5-3. And most likely thanks to the Democratic Christmas gift known as Donald Trump, the next U.S. Justice will also be a Liberal. So whether the anti-abortion movement like it or not and you can pretty much put the nail in the coffin that they will hate this reality, they’ll probably be stuck with abortion for at least another generation. So again if I’m offering advice (free or otherwise) to the anti-abortion movement, I’m saying you need a positive alternative here that can actually become law. Trying to almost completely outlaw abortion if not completely do it (if you’re Governor Scott Walker) is not in the cards right now. So get involved in liberal democratic marketplace of ideas and tell American women they have other options here.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Slate: Chris Kirk- Donald Trump's Celebrity Apprentice Cabinet Generator

This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review: Slate: Chris Kirk- Donald Trump's Celebrity Apprentice Cabinet Generator

This is exactly why I don’t see Donald Trump’s presidential campaign as nothing more than his latest reality show. That will become a movie titled something to the effect “Who Wants Donald Trump For President?’ Available at your local independent movie theater (if it doesn’t go straight to Netflix or DVD) by the spring or summer of 2017. Donald Trump’s campaign theme should be called, “When Reality TV meets the Real World.” And perhaps that could also be his alternative movie tittle for his next reality show or movie. If you just look at his supposed campaign spokespeople on cable news/cable talk, these are not professional politicos or politicians. Other than Jeff Lord at CNN. They’re business people and Hollywood and New York celebs who’ve worked for the Trump Organization. Which is his business.

The Republican Party is so screwed up right now that their inmates are running their prison. Or their kids are running their household with their prison staff or parents powerless to take back the prison or house. Until their inmates or kids meet their demands. The Far-Right of the GOP, is tired of their leadership trying to govern with the Democrats and trying to reach out to new voters who don’t look and think like them. Whatever you think of The Donald he’s a very successful businessman. And just because he’s stupid about government, policy and anything that involves the President of the United States and is less qualified to be President than Sarah Palin and a current president of a college student body, he knows a great business venture when he sees one.

Thanks to The Donald and the Republican Party, we now have a national network reality show that is shown by all of our news networks and broadcast networks, instead of just NBC. And celebrity culture and celebrity news have taken over our politics and current affairs. If you think Congress sucks and is an embarrassment, you haven’t followed the Trump Campaign very closely. Maybe you’ve been vacationing in Mongolia or did something so horrible that you were given a long-term sentence there and you’ve just been released. But Congress, other than Senator Jeff Sessions who just endorses The Donald, looks very responsible and competent compared with the Trump Campaign. That is run by New York and Hollywood insiders who think American politics is so boring that they have to make it look like reality TV in order to get people to vote. And what America gets in return is an international embarrassment compared with the rest of the developed world.


Thursday, March 10, 2016

The Washington Post: Opinion- Jonathan Turley- 'Voters Want a Revolution- Here's What That Would Take': Rewrite The U.S. Constitution?

This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat: The Washington Post: Opinion- Jonathan Turley- 'Voters Want a Revolution- Here's What That Would Take': Rewrite The U.S. Constitution?

The problem that Social Democrats have in America, the so-called Bernie Sanders movement, is that they don't live in a social democracy. So much of what they want to do simply can't happen with the way our constitutional liberal democratic federal republic is set up. You can't scrap the U.S. Congress and go to a unicameral parliamentary system that maybe has an upper house in name only, but without any real power. Like the House of Lords in the United Kingdom. You can't scrap the presidency and executive branch by referendum or by a simple majority vote in Congress with the House and Senate agreeing to it. And then go to having a Prime Minister who also happen to be a member of Parliament and the leader of the majority or largest party there.

Our U.S. Constitution and Federal Republic was set up by our Founding Fathers (our Founding Liberals) the way it was very specific and important reasons. They didn't like big centralized authoritarian government centralized with one authority. That was the system they were escaping from in Britain and a big reason for our Revolutionary War that gave us the United States of America. And because of all of this they set up different branches of government and checks and balances and specifically made it hard for one party to govern by themselves and run Congress by themselves. Especially if one party controls both the presidency and the House and Senate. As well as a judicial branch to serve as both a check on the President and Congress when they pass laws that go outside of the Constitution.

Because of the way our country and government is set up and with our political culture as diverse as it is, we don't see a lot of political revolutions that lead to changes that require amending the Constitution in order to bring about that revolution. Which means to make government work better you need better leaders and the only way you get that is through good people running for office and getting elected by smart voters. Who aren't dumb enough to vote for people who promise them all sorts of free stuff or take positions now that were the opposite of where they were just a few years ago. And if you follow American politics closely you know exactly who I'm talking about. Which means to make the current government better you have to work within the system to bring about that. And our current system already allows for broad progressive reforms.

I like Professor Jonathan Turley's proposal on the Supreme Court, but I would go even further and expand it to 50 members one for each state. Still all appointed by the President and having to be confirmed by the Senate. As well as ending lifetime limits and having each Justice having to come up for reappointment to stay on the Court. But that reform can be done within the current system through Congress and the President. I like Professor Turley's proposal to end gerrymandering in the House of Representatives. And have each House district drawn to reflect the population of the state and overall voter registration. But I would go even further than that put in full-disclosure for all every member of Congress and candidate for Congress as far as where and when they get contributions. As well as all third-party groups that spend money on political campaigns. But again these reforms can be done through Congress and the President.

I've argued this several times before, but the problems with American government is not the system and the Constitution that protects it as well as the people. The problems with American government are our politicians and the voters who send them to government. With better voters and better candidates with more good people bothering to run for office, or at least voting, but voting for good qualified people and we could fix most if not all the problems in the country. Without spending anytime trying to pass one constitutional amendment. That even if were to pass both in the House and Senate, would take at least ten years for 34 states or more to ratify. When you could have passed your progressive reforms simply through statue through the Congress and the President.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

The New Yorker: Comma Queen- Mary Norris: “Awesome Is the New “Massive”: How Real Words Lose Their Real Meaning

Source: The New Yorker-
Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

Just a quick note and a bit of a warning. Valley people both girls, but valley guys, are not going to like this piece. Because this is all about them and how they talk and dominate pop culture in America. Where now every news shows sound like MTV or Bravo in some cases. Instead of professional news shows. But the genius’ at these networks feel the greedy need to sound like this crowd so they can actually understand what’s being reported and will bother to watch. And I’m thinking of Erin Burnett and Brooke Baldwin, specifically over at CNN. As well as Rachel Maddow at MSNBC and Megyn Kelly at FNC.

I’m not familiar with the over usage of the word massive and maybe that’s because I can’t even find Australia on a map, yet alone actually been to it. Maybe because Australia is too small or too unimportant. Just kidding. I can find Australia on a map. But living in the Washington area in Bethesda, Maryland my whole life I’m very familiar with the over usage of the word awesome. I can’t go anywhere without hearing the word and in many cases I hear the word accidentally. Because I get stuck listening to someone else’s cell phone conversation, because that person couldn’t wait five minutes before they got out of the grocery store to call that person or call them back. That would be a typical Washingtonian for you. Someone who thinks they’re too important to have to wait for anything or anyone.

The actual definition of the word awesome is something that is ‘extremely impressive or daunting. Inspiring great admiration, apprehension or fear.’ So that cup of coffee that you had at Starbucks yesterday that was the exact same cup of coffee that you had the last five days, because you feel the need to go to Starbucks every single day, is not awesome. Now if the four previous cups of coffee you had there were average, well maybe you should find somewhere else to get your coffee, or find something better to do with your time. But if you went back to Starbucks and got a great cup of coffee on your fifth trip there after the four previous cups of coffee were average, then maybe that fifth cup of coffee would be awesome. Awesome has become the early 21st Century word for cool. I guess Millennial’s got tired of sounding like their parents and felt they needed their own hip word.

Cool and awesome are completely different words. Cool has multiple meanings of course. You can use cool to describe one’s personality and demeanor. ‘Joe is so cool. Nothing never bothers him. He always looks great and knows what to say. And even knows the real meaning of the word awesome. Which makes him smart and cool.’ Or you could use the word cool to describe the weather. Your food to say that was a cool meal or that was a cool meal. One could be a way to say that was a great meal and the other could be a way to say the potatoes and soup were cool and undercooked. Or maybe you just had a salad which in that case could go either way. Or you can use the word cool to describe something or someone as hip. Meaning someone whose in on the latest trends, if not sets them and perhaps actually leads the pack. Instead of like a cult follower who always follows the pack even when the pack goes off a hill at a hundred miles and hour, or jumps off a bridge.

Anyone who writes or blogs for a living, you’re not only be interested in language, but also protective of it. Because without words we would be like race car drivers without cars. Doctors without patients. Comedians without jokes and hopefully you get the point by now. When words lose their meaning it makes our jobs harder to communicate for a couple of reasons. We run out of words, but also we’re talking to people who simply don’t get the American English language, because they’ve beaten the hell out of it and no longer get it. Not everything that’s positive for you is awesome. And not only that but awesome is not always a positive thing. A car crash could be awesome, just because of how devastating it was to the people involved. A massive pile up with cars being totaled. A severe weather storm could be awesome because simply of the amount of damage that it did to that community or region. World War II was awesome in a horrible sense because of all the destruction that came as a result of property. But the millions of lives lost as well.

Pop culture, celebrity culture, tabloid culture and valley culture even, all have their places in America. But not to the point where they abuse the American English dictionary to the point that real words no longer have real meaning. When a real word like awesome becomes the way to describe any positive moment in one’s life like being able to leave work a half-hour earlier, or something as simple as that, then we have a real problem. Because what word would be use to describe your favorite team winning the Super Bowl that season when they weren’t even expected to make the playoffs. I mean isn’t that a hell of a lot more impressive than getting off work early on a Tuesday in Cleveland in February. All of these things have real relevance in America, but not to the point that it dumbs down our culture to the point that people no longer know how to talk to each other. Because they’re so worried about always looking and sounding cool.
The New Yorker: Comma Queen- Awesome is The New Massive


Friday, March 4, 2016

Crash Course: Craig Benzine- Federalism: Crash Course Government and Politics

This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat: Crash Course: Craig Benzine- Federalism: Crash Course Government and Politics

One of the things that makes America os unique and I at least would argue better in so many ways is how our diverse and large we are. And because of that we don’t have a top-down authoritarian centralized approach to government. We couldn’t and still be a liberal democracy because we’re so big. A unitarian government simply wouldn’t work here, because you would see states like Florida, Texas, California, Alaska, Hawaii and others move away from America and create their own countries. Because you have one government in Washington that’s thousands of miles away from most of the country telling other states and localities how to educate their kids, how to police their streets, manage their safety nets, etc. Even though the Feds don’t know the people they’re ordering around and don’t know their communities.

I’m both a Liberal and a Federalist which would almost sound like an Oxymoron to people who aren’t familiar with liberalism and see it as some socialistic big government ideology. But Liberals created our federalist system and our Constitution. I’m a Liberal-Federalist which means I believe the states and localities have the right to manage their own domestic affairs just as long as they’re within in the Constitution. So if they decided to segregate their schools by race with the good schools left for one race of people, with everyone else going to the failing schools, that would obviously be unconstitutional under the Equal Protection Clause. But if they decided to have both public schools and subsidize private schools for low-income students, that would be their right. Since that’s certainly constitutional.

Federalism, is not anti-government. You still need a military, you still need Federal law enforcement to deal with interstate crime and regulatory state to regulate interstate commerce, a national currency, foreign policy, national security state, etc. The Federal Government obviously has to collect revenue to pay for their limited, but important functions. But you don’t need a Federal Welfare program, you don’t need a Federal health insurance program even for the poor and seniors. You don’t need Federal Unemployment Insurance. You don’t need a Federal Department of Education. You don’t need Federal Public Housing and Retirement Insurance. We need programs like this, but they should be run by the states with a Federal basic standards to ensure that these programs actually serve the people who are eligible for them. But with the state having the resources and authority to run them.

Not talking about anti-government or creating some voluntarist society. But limiting the Federal Government simply to exactly what we need it to do with the resources to perform those missions. And having the states and localities simply run their own affairs. Leaving the Feds to do only what we need it to do including seeing that these programs are run as they were designed, but no longer responsible for running them. In Washington this would be called a block grant system. Turn these vital and important safety net programs, including job training over to the states. With the states responsible for running them properly and then lets see what works where and why and what doesn’t work. And allow for our states to be laboratories for liberal democracy. With an effective limited government to do only what we need it do and do it very well.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Slate: Karina Longworth- The Hollywood Ten Paid The Price For Refusing to Answer The $64 Question

Source: Slate Magazine- Herbert Biberman & Samuel Ornitz-
Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review:

I blog about political correctness and what I at least see as fascism on a regular basis. Perhaps one piece a week, because its such an important issue today with free speech coming under assault practically everywhere in America and even on college campus’ where free speech needs to be at it’s strongest so young people can learn and share views with each other and get as good of an education as possible. But just like Caucasian-Americans don’t own a monopoly on racism and other forms of bigotry in America, the Far-Left doesn’t own a monopoly on political correctness and fascism. Back in the late 1940s and really through the 1950s Americans were under attack from the Far-Right in this country for simply believing what they believed and who they associated with.

It started in Congress in 1947 with the House of Representatives starting an investigation with their so-called Un-American Activities Committee doing an investigation about Communists in Hollywood. And sure there were Socialists in Hollywood and perhaps even Communists. But so what. They were also Americans who went to work everyday producing films and other entertainment that had nothing to do with the Cold War and certainly were not on the side of Russia and other Communists states back then. At least in the sense of propping them up and trying to make them look better than they actually were. They were Hollywood employees. Actors, directors, producers, screenwriters, who simply went to work everyday producing a lot of good films that people wanted to see and paid a lot of money to see. Who ideologically were Socialists who backed Far-Left candidates and causes in America.

The Far-Right and right-wing version of political correctness which is a form of fascism is that people who don’t share their view of the world and what America should be and be about and don’t agree with them ideologically, are somehow Un-American. And not deserving of the same constitutional rights as other Americans. Meaning the right-wing and especially Neoconservative fascists on the Far-Right who see Senator Joe McCarthy as a hero and even speak highly of Russian President Vladimir Putin today for his crackdowns on opposition media in Russia and homosexuality in Russia. And are now backing Donald Trump for president. People like Far-Right columnist and author Ann Coulter. Who is the real-life Donald Trump who actually believes what The Donald says. Even if Trump doesn’t believe his own propaganda.

In 1947 you had the House call members of the so-called Hollywood Ten to testify in front of the Un-American Activities Committee and asked what would normally be seen as an innocent question. “Are you or have you ever been a member of the Communist Party?” The problem is they were asked to do this under oath and on live national TV. When broadcast news was still an infant. With the whole world (at least in America especially in Hollywood) listening. With Hollywood executives and studio heads being anti-Communist and not able to afford to be associated with Communists or anyone else on the Far-Left in America. With these Hollywood employees having a choice to either plead the fifth and look very suspicious, or admit to being Socialists and risk not being able to work again ever in Hollywood. Even though most of them had kids to take care of and needed to work and earn a living.

The Hollywood Ten weren’t asked if they had committed any crimes or even knew any criminals. Or even associated with organize criminals and mobsters. They were put on trial for their political beliefs. They were considered guilty by association and communist political beliefs. Without any trial even though every American is guaranteed under the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution to free speech and the constitutional right to believe whatever they want to. Whatever you think of political correctness on many of our college campus’ right now that is done by private individuals. People getting together in trying to eliminate and censor ideas that they not only disagree with, but find offensive. What happened to the Hollywood Ten back in the 1940s and 1950s was a form of state-fascism. American citizens put on trial simply for their political views.

Monday, February 29, 2016

The Hill- Opinion- Bill Press: Who's The Real Liberal- Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders?

This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat: The Hill- Opinion- Bill Press: Who's The Real Liberal- Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders?

You want to talk about European social democracy and Far-Left socialist politics in America, or do you want to talk about Center-Left pragmatic progressive and liberal politics in America? If you want democratic socialism and social democracy, Bernie Sanders other than Representative Dennis Kucinich in 2004 and 2008, hands down is the most socialist major party candidate for president ever. You can’t out socialist and socialist especially if you’re not a Socialist, which Hillary Clinton obviously isn’t. But if you want to talk about the American Center-Left which in Europe would the Center-Right and perhaps even further right like in Germany with the Free Liberal Democrats, Hillary Clinton hands down is the real and only Progressive and in the presidential race.

This is the danger with lumping in everything on the Left into one political faction and calling everybody the same thing. Communists aren’t Liberals and neither are Democratic Socialists. Liberals are people who believe in equal opportunity, rights and justice for all and individual freedom for all based on the liberal values I just mentioned. Not a big government big enough to manage people’s lives for them. Bernie Sanders and other Socialists go much further than that and say that individual freedom and rights are not enough. And believe in welfare rights based around a big centralized welfare state and that people have a right to essentially to not be poor and be taken care of with their money by government.

So of course Hillary Clinton is more progressive than Bernie Sanders, because she’s not a Socialist. The test to see who is more progressive than the other is not this inside the beltway game about whose the furthest left. But who has stronger progressive values. Who has a better record in seeing that those values become law and come into being. Not whose going to tax and spend the most, but whose going to accomplish the policy objectives that Progressives believe in. And again hands down and even though Hillary Clinton’s only service in Congress was her eight years in the Senate which is less than a third of Bernie’s time in Congress and Bernie is in his 26th year in Congress and served in the House before the Senate, Hillary has a better record of accomplishing progressive objectives. Which is why she has so many more endorsements from actual Progressive Democrats. Like from House Assistant Democratic Leader Jim Clyburn and I could go on.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Slate: Issac Chotiner Interviewing Norm Ornstein- The Fight Over Antonin Scalia's SCOTUS Replacement

Source: Slate Magazine- U.S. Senate GOP Lack of Leadership-
Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

I would love to say I’m even surprised to see Senate Leader Mitch McConnell and Chairman Chuck Grassley and their flat-out obstructionism when to comes to filling Justice Antonin Scalia’s seat on the U.S. Supreme Court. But I’m not, not even mildly so. I would be lying to the point that I was claiming I was Jesus, Moses and Karl Marx, all in the same person if I said I was surprised by the latest Congressional Republican obstructionism when it comes to President Obama’s appointments or when it comes to policy. I mean it started in the early days of 111th Congress when Barack Obama just became President and then Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell gave a speech at I believe the Heritage Foundation. And said his number one priority was to see that Barack Obama was a one term President.

But having said that let’s get to the latest Congressional Republican obstructionism and again in the Senate where it started in 2009. And now it looks like the Republican Party is on a duel suicide trip with Donald Trump as their presumed presidential nominee and the Senate Republicans going into the spring and summer in a very hot and humid Washington (assuming this is a normal year) saying no to any Supreme Court nominee in 2016. Even if that person is one of their current colleagues in the Senate, or in their party like with Governor Brian Sandoval, who is a popular moderate Governor of Nevada. Who looks like a Bernie Sanders Far-Lefty compared with the Tea Party and the Far-Right in the GOP right now. But hardly any Liberal let alone a Bernie Sanders Socialist. Because the Senate GOP says that the President is a lame duck even though he has eleven months left on his current term.

I remember the 2012 presidential election. I voted and remember President Obama getting reelected overwhelmingly by five-million votes in the popular vote and roughly 320 votes in the Electoral College. I also remember my social studies classes in high school and remembering that the President of the United States serves four-year terms and no more than two. So this idea the President is a lame duck when he still has a year left on his second term just doesn’t hold. Imagine a baseball player singing a four-year contract and going into the spring training of his fourth year with his team and he says, ‘you know what, three years is enough. I’m not going to resign with you next year anyway. I’m just going to take the fourth year off. And oh by the way you have to pay me, because I signed a four-year contract.’ Even though the player is healthy. How would the General Manager of the club react? He would probably tell the player, ‘you better show up and play, or you’re not going to get paid.’

And as far as presidential Supreme Court appointments not getting voted on in an election year. Anthony Kennedy now Justice Kennedy was approved in 1988 by a Democratic Senate with a solid vote. Democratic Justice Thurgood Marshall was replaced by Republican Clarence Thomas in 1991. They were as far apart ideologically and had as little in common politically as country music fans have with hip-hop fans. And yet the Democratic Senate approved the Thomas appointment to replace Justice Marshall with a handful of Democratic Senators voting for Thomas. Which is what President Bush and the Senate Republican Leadership had to have to get Clarence Thomas through. There is no precedent for Senate Republican to sit on their asses for a year and not act on President Obama’s Supreme Court appointment. Which should be available by the early spring.

On a lighter note. Imagine what the Republican Party in Washington looks like in lets say June and July. Donald Trump is their overwhelming nominee for president. The Joe McCarthy/Pat Buchanan of the Baby Boom Generation. A man claiming that Muslins don’t legally get Freedom of Religion protections and Mosques are not houses of worship. Who says he can deport eleven-million Latinos with the stroke of a pen. Who says Mexico will pay for the wall on the American-Mexican border. That women are property and that Americans don’t have right to speak out against him and I could go on, but it could get worst. And I don’t want to get stuck with someone future mental health bills, because they became depressed after reading this about The Donald. But it just gets worst, because now the GOP has The Donald and a Republican Senate sitting on their asses over a more than qualified Supreme Court nominee who got 90 plus votes to serve on the lower court.

If you’re familiar with Washington in the summer you know that it’s a hot humid place. Where we only get rain generally in between heat waves and our summers tend to start in May and go through September and sometimes even October. But with all the hot air that we simply get from Mother Nature, is a warm day at the North Pole compared with all the heat and humidity that comes from Congress alone. Especially in the Senate with the cloture rule where Senators at any time can speak until they have to go to the bathroom or fall asleep standing up. It’s going to be a hellish summer for the GOP and bad enough if all they have is an anti-civil liberties, anti-free speech, anti-immigrant and anti-Latino and Muslim fascist as their presidential nominee. How they deal with that plus with their twenty-four Senate seats that are up for reelection with perhaps as many as half of them in play and half of those favored to go to the Democrats. And they have to run with The Donald and try to defend in Democratic and swing states their Leadership’s obstructionism over a clearly qualified Supreme Court nominee to their constituents. This will be a year to remember and forget for the GOP.
CNN: President Obama Responds To GOP's Plan To Block SCOTUS Nominee


Tuesday, February 23, 2016

KQED: Gabe Meline- Kim Novak Opens Up: ‘I Think I’m Appreciated More Now’

Source: KQED-
Source: This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review

This is a good interview from Gabe Meline of Hollywood Goddess Kim Novak and I mean that in the most positive sense. Yes, she was not just hot in Hollywood, but physically hot in general. Great body and yet so adorable at the same time that she generally came off as 10-15 years younger than she actually was, if not even younger than that. But she was so real and convincing as an actress. I think that is what made her great and again as I said before had her career not have been over for the most part by the late 1960s and I think we’re talking about one of the greatest actress’s ever. Same class as Susan Hayward, Rita Hayworth, Lauren Bacall, Lana Turner, Liz Taylor and many others. She was really that great in the 1950s and 1960s.

If you watch the movie Vertigo with Alfred Hitchcock, Madeline is Kim Novak. Either as the Hollywood bomb shell blonde or as the red-hot Hollywood bomb shell. A women who looks like a goddess on the outside. Whose 5’6 and hot with a great body, but also as cute as a baby with a sexy voice. But on the inside she was a like a sixteen year old girl who wants the hottest guy in high school, but not ready to make a move, because she doesn’t think she’s good enough for him. Or thinks he won’t like her at all. As great as Kim was she always had this self-confidence issue that wasn’t that different from Marilyn Monroe, but she was smart enough not to get involved in drugs and abuse alcohol. Especially together which would the slow way to commit suicide.

Madeline from Vertigo, is Kim Novak. This gorgeous baby-faced blonde with the great body and the sexy Czech-Slavic curves. Who is never sure of herself and just wants someone to love her for who she is and just love her. Who is involved with a guy and his fantasy about who she should be. And she goes out-her-way to try to be that person for him. If you like Alfred Hitchcock and you like Kim Novak, you’ll love Vertigo. The perfect Hitchcock movie with the hot sexy adorable blonde with a great suspense/thriller and humor all in the same movie. Like all great Hitchcock movies. And you see the real Kim Novak in it. As a goddess on the outside that every straight guy with eyes whose not blind should love, but who is very vulnerable on the inside. Even though she doesn’t has any real reason to be.
Studio AVC: Full Interview With Kim Novak


Friday, February 19, 2016

The New America Foundation: New America Weekly- Lara Burt- TANF and Teachers: How Current Policies Are Keeping Single Mothers Down and Out of School

Source: New America Foundation-
Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

It’s not that TANF or the Temporary Assistance For Needy Families, hasn’t succeed, because it has. Take away the Great Recession and we’re not looking at a twenty-percent poverty rate today, because under TANF low-income parents are able to go back to school and get skills so they can get good jobs. We were at around ten-percent poverty in the late 1990s. Economic booms only apply to people with good skills who are prepared and qualified for good jobs. And are even leaving unemployment, or moving up for a better job.

And of course opponents of the bill from people on the Libertarian-Right who believe that government should do nothing to help people in poverty, to people on the Social Democratic-Left, who believe that self-reliance shouldn’t be the goal here and want bigger government cash payments instead, will say that the 1990s economic boom was the reason for the low poverty. But low-income adults especially need to have good skills in order to have good jobs.

TANF, was a great 1990s Welfare to Work and anti-poverty program. I believe the best government anti-poverty program ever created, because it encourages work and education over government dependence. And again without the two recessions of the 2000s TANF would have worked very well again, because President Bush supported it and even had Democratic support for it in Congress. What we need now is a Welfare to Work program that builds off of TANF. And says if you’re on Welfare, you’re going to work as soon as possible and that means taking at least one of the first jobs that you’re qualified for.

In exchange government will help you finish and further your education. As well as childcare assistance for your kids. So low-income low-skilled single-parents, have the time and the money to get a good education and to work. But not only will these new workers be going back to school as they’re entering the workforce, but they’ll continue to collect their public assistance benefits that they’re eligible for as low-income workers. Medicaid, Public Housing, Food Assistance, etc.

So we should be investing more and going further with TANF, perhaps better known as Welfare to Work. Which would be a great investment in our low-income communities, but a great investment in our economy. Because we would be moving people off of public assistance all together with all the new educated workers we would be producing. And create a larger middle class and a smaller poverty class. Creating purchasing power for millions of new Americans. Money they would spend and invest in the economy. Money they could put back in their communities instead of abandoning them.

Welfare to Work, shouldn’t be about Welfare to fast food, or retail, or janitorial work, or other low-income low-skilled jobs that don’t come with benefits after these new workers lose their childcare assistance and everything else they were getting from public assistance. But instead Welfare to the middle class and economic freedom. Which only comes through quality education and economic development.
WGBH Forum: Welfare Reform- Did it Work?


Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Los Angeles Times: Patrick Kevin Day- Kim Novak- Hollywood Star Walk

This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review: Los Angeles Times: Patrick Kevin Day- Kim Novak- Hollywood Star Walk

When I think of pure beauty, grace, class, realism, adorableness, Kim Novak is not the only actress I think of, but she’s certainly one of my favorites. I don’t know of another actress who was that hot, baby-faced adorable and that well-built and that real. A hot 5’6 women with a great body and whose also baby-faced adorable, who played all of her roles as if she’s playing herself. If you judge an actress by how real and believable their character is, meaning do the you believe the actress playing the women or not, that alone would make Kim Novak not just one of the best actress’s of her generation that includes Angie Dickinson, Sophia Loren, Dyan Cannon, Liz Taylor and many others, Grace Kelly, but one of the best actress’s of all-time.

And I believe what makes Kim even better is that the women that she played most of the time tended to be very different from who she is in real-life. Kim, was somewhat shy and lacking in self-confidence and never quite sure of herself. Which was perfect for her in Vertigo where she plays Madeline who is very similar in personality. But look at The Man With The Golden Arm with Frank Sinatra and she’s playing the cool always sure of herself character. Whose trying to save a drug addict and gambler played by Sinatra, from himself. Which is my point about Kim that she was so good at playing her characters even people who were very different from herself. But played them so well as if she was playing herself.

I’m not saying Kim Novak is Lauren Bacall, or Liz Taylor, Rita Hayworth, Susan Hayward, but probably in the next group, or the one right after that if not the second one. Because she sort of burned out by the late 1960s and attempted a few comebacks after that without achieving the great roles that she use to have. Had she still been doing well in Hollywood in the 1970s and 1980s, maybe we’re talking about an actress who belongs in the first group of greatest actress’s of all-time. But for her time in the 1950s through the mid 1960s she was one of the best and best looking in Hollywood. And landed a lot of great movies and roles because of that. And someone who clearly belongs in the Hollywood Hall of Fame, or the equivalent of that.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

The Washington Post: Ishaan Tharoor- U.S. Democrats Are Embracing The Term Liberal: What it Means to be a Liberal

This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat: The Washington Post: Ishaan Tharoor- U.S. Democrats Are Embracing The Term Liberal: What it Means to be a Liberal

If you’re someone who believes in the U.S. Constitution, at least most of it and the Bill of Rights, most if not all of it and you’re someone who likes to make their own decisions and choices in life and likes privacy and choice, tolerance, equality, equal rights, justice and treatment under law, quality education and infrastructure and economic opportunity for all, a safety net for people who truly need it, free speech and assembly, freedom of religion for everyone and expression, then I’ll suggest at least you’re a Liberal and might not even know that.

Because this is what liberalism is and I don’t care what country you’re talking about. But not how it’s portrayed in America by either the Right, or the mainstream media. And especially by people who are well to the left of Liberals, who have more social democratic tendencies. But don’t like the terms Socialist, Social Democrat and Democratic Socialist. Liberals aren’t Socialists, or Communists and Socialists and Communists, aren’t Liberals. Liberals believe in government and even positive and progressive government, but put real limits on what exactly what government should do for the people. And how much it should tax before it taxes too much. Socialists don’t for the most part.

I always take any polls that tries to suggest that there a certain percentage of Liberals or Conservatives in America with at least a jar of salt, because of America’s political ignorance as a country. And you’ll see polls with people saying they’re something that they don’t understand and claim to have political positions that fits another political faction other than the one that they claim. For instance you’ll have people who claim to be liberal even though they believe minorities should have the right to never be offended or hear anything that is offensive about themselves or their particular group. When the fact is political correctness is about as illiberal of a movement as you’ll see. Liberals believe in free speech, which is the cornerstone of liberalism, along with assembly and privacy.

In the first paragraph I basically laid out exactly what liberalism is and what liberal values are. If you polled a large group of Americans about how they feel about those values, those issues would do very well. So just based on that whether you’re a Democrat or a Republican, you claim a lot of liberal values in your own politics. And could be described as a Liberal. Even if you believe in lower taxes, economic freedom, using non-profits to solve societies ills and so-forth. Liberals believe in those things as well, because we don’t want to have a superstate that assumes most of the power in the country. But instead an educated society with the freedom to manage their own lives. We’re not anti-government, but anti-big government. Which is a big difference.

I’ve viewed at least as long as I’ve blogged and that only goes back to 2009, but as someone who has been a political and current affairs junky and student longer than that, that America is essentially Center-Left liberal country. That also has a strong Center-Right, but needs things to be going badly under Democratic leadership and for the Far-Left not to bother to vote, for Center-Right Republicans to win nationally in this country and to even do well in Congress. Because Americans believe in the liberal values that I mentioned that Center-Left Democrats are in favor of and push all the time. We’re not a country that wants big government in our wallets, or homes, but we do want a government that does the basics well and helps people who fall on hard times.

Americans overwhelmingly believe in free speech. Score one for Liberals. Americans believe in equality, which means equal rights, equal treatment and equality of opportunity, not result in society. Which is where things like equal rights, quality education and infrastructure for all come in. Score another one for Liberals. We tend to be forward-looking and individualistic as a country and not so much interested in conserving tradition simply for tradition, but like having the ability to try different things and educate ourselves and making our own decisions. Score another one for Liberals. We like associating with other people’s especially if we share similar values and have things in common. Where the liberal value of tolerance comes in. Instead of being afraid to associate with other people simply because they’re different. Again score another for liberals.

America looks like a very liberal country in the sense that we truly believe in liberal values. Not that we’re Far-Left and in love with socialism. But that we believe in liberal values. Which is what being a Liberal is someone who believes in liberal values. Not someone who believes in big centralized government and high taxes on everyone in exchange for a lot of public services. Liberalism is not about government and certainly not big government. But there’s another ideology on the Left that fits in well with big government. Liberalism is about individual rights and using a limited government to promote progress and equality, but not to manage people’s lives for them. And based on this we have a lot of Liberals in America. Even if most Americans aren’t aware of it.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Constitution Daily: Staff- What’s Next For Free Speech?

This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review: Constitution Daily: Staff- What’s Next For Free Speech?

I’ll tell what I hope happens next for free speech in America which is probably going to sound very sarcastic and cynical and hopefully funny and informative like a good comedian. And then I’ll tell you what I think is going to happen.

What I would like to see happen is the generation that sees socialism and I’m sure other forms of collectivism, what I would like them to do is to grow up. Finally graduate from college and quit one of their three jobs so they can get the hell out of college with a degree that is hopefully worth at least half of what they’re paying for it, on their personal debt card. Start experiencing the real world with a job so they can start paying off their college debt that they’ll probably leave their grandkids to pay off. And realize that not everything that anyone says about anyone, including oversensitive minorities and Socialists off all ethnic and racial backgrounds, is pleasant and nice.

And then also realize they also live in a liberal democracy with a liberal guaranteed right to free speech. And that includes saying negative things about anyone that they choose to. Also realize we live in a very funny country and probably are the comedy capital of the world and come from a long line of sarcastic smart asses. (I sure as hell do) And that not every joke that reflects some negative characteristic about someone or some different race of people from your own is bigoted. Generally it isn’t and someone with a good sense of humor will actually not only get the joke, like it and perhaps even wish they came up with it first. You’re actually doing someone a favor if you get them to laugh about themselves, because you’re actually giving them an opportunity at self-improvement.

So that is sort of my positive angle, or less cynical angle. But I got to tell you that the Millennial’s won’t be done with college at least the people who graduate on time until 2021-2022. So we’re looking at another 5-6 years of Starbucks and Red Bull junkies, protesting about someone wearing a Washington Redskins jersey on campus during Thanksgiving. Or Caucasian man dressing up as Santa Claus during Christmas, or Christmas being celebrated at all during Christmas instead of other religious holidays. Or protesting against Black Friday, because it’s not called Rainbow Friday. With the rest of country when they’re not laughing at these protests, wondering who did these kids have to sleep with to get into college. Or how many professors did their father’s pay off.

Young people especially just need to chill. Don’t drink the extra lathe or frappuccino, or give up that junk and the Red Bull to begin with and perhaps take up pot (where its legal) and relax. Let your brains settle down and even fully develop and with that might come with a sense of humor. And you’ll learn the difference between comedy, even comedy about culture and even lifestyle. And even comedy about ethnicity and race and how that is different from actual bigotry. Where you’re not making fun of characteristics of people and what they do, which is what comedy is. But literally making fun of people because of their complexion, or hair, how their nose is shaped, names, etc. And comedy when is done right regardless of the topic is funny. And bigotry is bigotry.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Fusion: Daniel Rivero- An O.J. Simpson Trial Refresher For 90s Kids: A Look Back at The Trial of The 20th Century

This piece was originally posted at The Daily Review Plus

Just to give you a little background of myself, I was eighteen in June, 1994 and about a week out of high school after graduation vacationing with my parents in Delaware. So I guess technically I didn’t count as a kid then, because I was one of the youngest adults from Generation X. Actually, more than twenty-years later I still am. Which makes me feel a little younger now than I’m in my forties. My point being that I remember this case very well, because again as a young adult and having my first real job out of high school and actually interested in the 1994 NBA Finals that was interrupted by this bizarre case.

The O.J. Simpson case represents everything that is wrong with celebrity culture, celebrity news and the country’s obsession with it. We have Americans literally who can’t go to bed until every single text message that they have is responded to and call is returned. Or have checked every single celebrity news story online generally on their phone and have watched all of their so-called reality TV shows. The O.J. Simpson, was the start of the reality TV and celebrity news watch in this country. Where you would have networks dedicated to this, well stuff. (To keep it clean) NBC, breaks into NBC Sports that was covering the NBA Finals in 1994. Arguably the biggest event in sports that year. With NBC News, not to cover even a plane crash, or some terrorist explosion, but a car chase that happened to have a celebrity in it that was suspected of murder. We didn’t have that type of national coverage before 1994.

We had a twenty-four cable news network that dedicated all of their coverage each day during this trial not to coverage of the 1994 mid-term elections that saw House Republicans win the majority for the first time since 1952, or how would Democratic President Bill Clinton work with this new Republican Congress that controlled the House and Senate, or the Oklahoma City bombing, or what was going on in the Balkans with Europe and America, about to get involved there, but again this bizarre celebrity crime trial. That looked more like a Hollywood crime movie than a real-life murder trial. Pre-1994, CNN actually stood for Cable News Network. Before it was changed to the Celebrity News Network. (Ha, ha)

Of course we’ve always had celebrity news and celebrity news coverage and even tabloid news and I’m a big movie fan myself especially classic movies and like bios of my entertainers. But pre-1994 average Americans had lives outside of their celebrity news world and reality TV. They wouldn’t run to the nearest TV and to find out how juries ruled on cases, or skip work to follow murder cases. The O.J. Simpson case, must have been a boom for the brand new internet, that had only been around for a couple of years at this point and started becoming big and more universal in 1994 and the same with cell phones. All because one of the most famous sports/movie celebrities was on trial for murder.

And by the way we’re talking about a very interesting case here and I’m not denying that and denying that it should have been covered. But that is what Court-TV was for and what E is for and perhaps A&E and other entertainment networks. My point is that when you have hard news organizations like CNN and NBC News, dedicating all of their coverage essentially, or at least marathon sessions of it, you’re saying that important news is not real news is not as important, because it doesn’t help the bottom line as much, or that Americans are pretty stupid and have nothing better to do with their lives. Which is too many cases is very true. That news organizations are not so much reporting important hard news, but reporting on things that drives their ratings.

The O.J. Simpson trial, was a gift to Hollywood. They couldn’t have come up with a better soap opera or mini series on their best marijuana high, than what they got from O.J. Simpson, his star power, the people he was involved with and of course how he butchered two innocent people in the prime of their lives and then got away with it. At least in the short-term. Life has been hell for him as it should almost every moment since. But that is what you entertainment networks for to cover these stories. That is what cable TV, but not cable news is for. To cover cases that Americans who have too much time on their hands and not enough going on in their lives, who have the time to follow these stores will watch. And leave hard news organizations for covering real news.