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Boot the pseudo deciders aka "TROIKA" out

Vote for candidates -   

Elizabeth Furse for County Commission, District #4

elizabethfurse.com

Allen Amabisca for County Chair

allenamabisca.com

Re-Elect Greg Malinowki to County Commission

Greg Malinowski

- Intel tax abatements

- The Knight fix - Brother can you spare...

- INTEL, come clean!

- Leashing INTEL  

- Free to Be Hungry

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Facts not fiction on universal gun background checks

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Sneaker Politics

Kitzhaber and legislators got rolled by Nike. 

More

 


"Injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere"

Letter from Birmingham Jail, April 16, 1963

Martin Luther King, Jr.


The GOP - Not One of US.

Wall Street, our new criminal class...       

   Business in the USA is sitting on $2 trillion dollars refusing to invest their own funds in expanding and hiring workers.  

   When one adds to this the reserves that banks, equity firms and hedge funds have - the picture is clear - "capitalism in the USA is on strike." 

   The engine of our economy - the spirit of entrepreneurship is not in evidence today.  So much for business being dynamic and risk taking. 

   They hire K- Street lobbyists and their ilk at the state level because they are averse to risk taking - pleading for tax breaks, tax credits and endless loopholes. 

   The "business of business" in America today is not about job creation, it's about wealth hoarding and redistribution from the middle class to the top 1%. 

   So for those who claim government doesn't create jobs, my response is that business doesn't either until given "corporate welfare" by government.  The fact is that the private and public sector are highly integrated, something the anti-tax, anti-government Tea Party types don't understand. 

   Job creation requires public/private partnerships but the benefits of such collaboration should go to the 99% not just the 1%.  


 

RAD'S

WEBSITE PICKS: 


 

  • A Middle East View      

Rami G. Khouri

  • RealClearPolitics:

Realclearpolitics

  • Jim Hightower:   

Jimhightower.com

  • Robert Reich:

Robert Reich

  • Thomas Friedman: 

Friedman Column

  • Nicholas Kristof: 

Kristof Column


Oregon's Motto: 

She flies with her own wings! 


Hard Times in Oregon: 

Hardtimes

The Oregon story - the rich get richer, the poor and middle class lose ground.  Check this front page Oregonian article out. 

Oregon wage gap widens

Homelessness in Oregon - a call to action

Chuck Currie The crisis of homelessness


  

      Oregon's coming 34th out of 41 states in the Obama "Race to the Top" illustrates the failure of leadership from Governor Kitzhaber and his predecessors as they have built an educational bridge to nowhere called high stakes testing.

   Instead of being in a race to the top we seem to be dumpster diving to the bottom despite doing education reform since 1991.  Insanity is termed doing the same thing over and over again.  When can we put a fork in this stupidity? 

   To confuse matters more the Oregonian's editorial board has pontificated that this was a lost opportunity to get federal funding for innovation.  How firing principals and teachers equals innovation is a mystery to me.   

   The way to reform schools is to reduce class sizes, to encourage teacher collaboration and to support their continued education.  High stakes testing and performance based assessment of teachers are NOT the answer!    

   If you want students to succeed you first have to resolve the issues they confront before they come to school.  Children who face poverty, hunger, homelessness, health care issues and family instability require wrap around services for them and their families, 24/7.   

   Every child needs a safe home of their own and parents who know how to be good parents.   

There is only one way to address this impending crisis.  Schools must have a stable source of funding. Until that happens - we will limp from crisis to crisis.   

 

Steve Duin Schools get the blame 

School Reform/slate.com 



    

    Why does the richest nation in the world have the moral blight of homeless people?

Invisible People

http://www.npr.org



ahomeoftheirown.com/  

    Connecting the dots between homelessness, hunger & health care disparities in Oregon and Washington County: 

Homelessness:  

•    The faces of the homeless are families with children, single men and women, vets, and many who are impaired. It is estimated that in Washington County up to 56% of homelessness occurs to families.

Hunger:

•    Hunger is highest among single mother households (10%) and poor families (15%) as well as renters, unemployed workers and minority households. 

Heath Care Disparities: 

•    Adults in Oregon without insurance represent 22.3% of the state’s population compared to 19.7% of the nation.  In Washington County approximately 


A RAD rhetorical question - Were Madison & Marx "Marxists"?  

"History records that the money changers have used every form of abuse, intrigue, deceit, and violent means possible to maintain their control over governments."   

- James Madison

 

"Philosophers have only interpreted the world in different ways. The point is, however, to change it. 

- Karl Marx

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RAD Lines

 

Boot the psuedo deciders aka "TROIKA" out

Vote for -

Elizabeth Furse for County Commission, District #4

elizabethfurse.com

Allen Amabisca for County Chair

allenamabisca.com

Re-Elect Greg Malinowki to County Commission

 Greg Malinowski

Miguel de Cervantes, from The Duke - "I accuse you of being an idealist, a bad poet and an honest man."  Cervantes' response - "Guilty as charged, I have never had the courage to believe in nothing."   from Man of La Mancha


Sign the online petition on Intel emissions in link below:  

Intel failed to report fluoride emissions for almost 30 years   

     Why do Intel employees who are house hunting in Hillsboro, Aloha or Beaverton refer to an area within a 5 mile radius of Intel plants as "the dead zone?"  

      Do they know something we don't?  QuestionIntel.com  We couldn't trust banks "too big to fail," so why should we trust Intel?

Rediscovering Government

Is the US #1? 

 

Professor Kingfield, from the Paper Chase

   "I'm not a teacher: only a fellow traveler of whom you asked the way. I pointed ahead – ahead of myself as well as you." 

- George Bernard Shaw

 

 

BLOGS:

From the Left Wing:

Paul Krugman 

krugmanonline.com 

 

Democracy Now
democracynow.org

The Daily Kos

dailykos.com

Blue Oregon

blueoregon.com

 

"Children are made readers on the laps of their parents." 

- Emilie Buchwald 

 

    "Although we may never know with complete certainty the identity of the winner of this year’s Presidential election, the identity of the loser is perfectly clear. It is the Nation’s confidence in the judge as an impartial guardian of the rule of law." 

- Justice John Paul Stevens, Bush v. Gore, 2001


    The state of our union - check out the map, it's a reality check for those who can't figure out why people are so ticked off... 

americanobserver

    Here's Garrison Keillor's rap on the rightwingnuts:   

GarrisonKeillor

 

   Garrison Keillor - "...The Founding Fathers intended the Senate to be a fount of wisdom... but when you consider...  moon-faced Mitch McConnell, your faith in democracy is challenged severely. Any legislative body in which 41 senators from rural states that together represent 10 percent of the population can filibuster you to death is going to be flat-footed, on the verge of paralysis, no matter what. Any time 10 percent of the people can stop 90 percent, it's like driving a bus with a brake pedal for each passenger. That's why Congress has a public approval rating of [11] percent...." 



"Great is the guilt of an unnecessary war"

- John Adams

 

"Loyalty to country always.  Loyalty to government when it deserves it."  

- Mark Twain  

 

“Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”  

- George Santayana 

 

"The love of one's country is a natural thing.  But why should love stop at the border?" 

- Pablo Casals

 

"Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold; mere anarchy is loosed upon the world, the blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere the ceremony of innocence is drowned; the best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity." 

- William Butler Yeats  

 

"You see things; and you say, 'Why?'

But I dream things that never were; and I say, "Why not?" 

- George Bernard Shaw, "Back to Methuselah" (1921)

 

"...the most common and durable source of factions has been the various and unequal distribution of property. Those who hold and those who are without property have ever formed distinct interests in society...  The regulation of these various and interfering interests forms the principal task of modern legislation, and involves the spirit of party and faction in the necessary and ordinary operations of the government..."

- James Madison, Federalist Papers #11


"Why … should we have government? Why not each individual take to himself the whole fruit of his labor, without having any of it taxed away?”  

The legitimate object of government, is to do for the people whatever they need to have done, but which they can not do, at all, or can not do, so well, for themselves – in their separate and individual capacities … There are many such things … roads, bridges and the like; providing for the helpless young and afflicted; common schools … the criminal and civil [justice] departments."

- Abraham Lincoln

 

Taxes are the price we pay for a civilized society

- Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

 

"Parliament is not a congress of ambassadors from different and hostile interests, which interests each must maintain, as an agent and advocate, against other agents and advocates, but Parliament is a deliberative assembly of one nation, with one interest, that of the whole..."

- Edmund Burke 

 

“It is a maxim among these lawyers that whatever hath been done before may legally be done again, and therefore they take special care to record all the decisions formerly made against common justice and the general reason of mankind.  These, under the name of precedents, they produce as authorities, to justify the most iniquitous opinions.”

- Jonathan Swift

 

" Every satirist who drew breath has flung pots of ink at this parade of tooting lummoxes and here it is come round again, marching down Main Street, rallying to the cause of William McKinley, hail, hail, the gang’s all here, ta-ra-ra-boom-de-ay."

- Garrison Keillor

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 


 

 

  

 


  

 

Tuesday
Apr152014

THE IRS COMETH...  

      I think the IRS should be stopped in their attack on the middle class.  It's shameful how the IRS and Congress can look a blind eye at corporate tax scams and instead focus on innocent family members years/decades latter. 

Treasury targets hundreds of thousands of taxpayers for parents old debts

     I can see the IRS going after the estates of deceased persons to collect back taxes, even the ill gotten gains of family members if such has happened knowingly or not.  But this current IRS scheme is way over the top.   

     A similar scam is happening to ex-pats and their children who are citizens of other nations such as Canada.  This is the government as "collection agency" after the low hanging fruit instead going Wall Street crooks like Goldman Sacks et al...  

     The IRS out sources this "stuff"  - as Joe Biden might say.  It's become a shakedown operation like a criminal loan shark scheme.  I've not gotten any letter from the IRS - just a pissed off citizen...  I may join the Tea Party! 

     Here's an example of what's wrong in the tax code: 

     Intel polluted our air with fluorides for 30 years and lied about it to DEQ and still get tax breaks galore:  SIPs, property tax abatements and now this...  I believe in R&D but I want proof of such on an annual basis reported to the state and feds.  Intel is the largest employer in Oregon and yet this past year had a $40,000 negative income tax!   What a deal...   

Oregon businesses pay attention as tax breaks get traction in Congress, Oregonian

    "Tax breaks being closely watched by businesses in Oregon are gaining traction in Congress and could pass this spring. The business tax credits, called extenders, can mean real money. The popular research-and-development credit, for example, lowers Intel Corp.'s federal tax rate by 1.5 percentage points – saving Oregon's biggest private employer $189 million in a year…


    More tax schemes for the 1% -

    

    

     Shameful

     - The Red Tory

 


Sunday
Apr132014

OREGON TAXES, WHO PAYS 'EM, WHO DOESN'T

     EDITOR'S NOTE:  The fight for tax equity in the Puzzle Palace is an uphill battle especially when Governor Kitzhaber and so many suburban D's are "corporate liberal" shills for the likes of Nike and Intel. 

     As a housing advocate it is especially bothersome that one has to work hard to get a pittance out of the state for help to the working poor.  Sunday's UnOregonian included an article titled "Rising Rents, falling pay create 'affordability gap'". 

     That says it all.  With an average rent @ $1100/month a family of 4 would needs an annual income over $40K to keep their rent at the 30% level.  Since the poverty level for a family of 4 is @ 23,000 this puts a real strain on family budgets.  It forces families to chose between their rent, food or clothing.  

     So giving "cradle to grave" tax breaks to corporate Oregon takes money out of the hands of the most needy Oregonians and puts it in the pockets of the top 1% as the information from OCPP illustrates.  This is simply morally wrong and a politically bankrupt view of how to grow the economy.  

     Too many in the liberal establishment of Oregon have forgotten what it means to be a Democrat.  

    On "Tax Week" it's important to know who gets the goodies and who pays for them!  Check out the links below and then let your state legislators know you are "mad and hell and won't take it anymore."  That fight began with FDR's "four freedoms" and extended to LBJ's "Great Society."  

     For an historical perspective check out Bill Moyer's latest interview.  "In January 1941, FDR’s State of the Union address made it clear that a fight was inevitable, a fight to preserve, protect and defend four essential freedoms: freedom from fear and want and freedom of speech and religion."

 

Tax Facts That Matter: 2014 Edition


As Tax Day approaches, OCPP has compiled 44 key facts about Oregon's tax system.

In the style of a Harper's Index, Tax Facts That Matter: 2014 Edition answers questions such as,  
  • Who pays more, low- or high-income households?
  • What share of capital gains income goes to the top 1 percent?
  • How has Oregon's economy performed since voters raised taxes on the wealthy and corporations?


While Oregon children sit in overcrowded classrooms and college students face unaffordable tuition, some corporations with millions in profits and sales collected in Oregon pay no income taxes. That's wrong. 
 

Sunday
Apr132014

DEMOCRACY IN AFGHANISTAN AND THE USA 

The election results from Afghanistan: 

     Over 7.5 million Afghans voted in the elections this week to replace Karsai and to elect members of parliament.  The cynics will argue that this is much ado about nothing.  This will not end the violence caused by the Taliban in the wake of US troops withdrawals.  Ultimately, Afghanistan will descend into chaos, just like the cynics claim is happening in Iraq.  I beg to differ.  

     According to one report there was a 57% turnout, I've heard it was higher from NPR reporting.  But taking the lower turnout number that's near the level of voter turnout in US presidential elections, which in a good year is 60% - keeping in mind in many states  unlike Oregon where we get depressed if turnout is lower than 70% - turnout rates are 40% or lower.  And we don't have jihadists running amok! 

     I'm no apologist for the US getting into wars of invasion or occupation.  I thought we learned our lesson in Vietnam but clearly Dubya and his henchmen didn't.  And Obama inherited the mess and had to pick up the pieces trying to put Humpty Dumpty back together again.  Nation building is not easy and at some point like parenting one has the "let go" which we have done in Iraq and are doing in Afghanistan. 

     Lets do a quick review of US history.  If the arrival of the Mayflower in 1620 is the beginning of the American Republic, then a longitudinal view of is instructive.  First let's acknowledge that the creation of the 13 colonies was from the view of Native Americans a phased in act of occupation, invasion, conquest and ultimately virtual genocide.  Just for the record, this narrative also applies to Canada and Mexico.  

     Second, the roots of democracy implanted by our English forebears took over 156 years before the locals wanted to go it alone being fed up with British colonialism, taxes and the Red Coats.  But that of course required a bloody Revolutionary War.  And then there was the minor problem of governance, moving from the Articles of Confederation to the ratification of the Constitution in 1789, another 13 years! 

     Let's not forget that the American revolution was supported by maybe a third of the population in the colonies, another third were indifferent and wiling to stick with being a British colony, the other third moved to Canada during the war fearing for their lives not unlike refugees in other war torn nations across the world in the current era.  Change always bring collateral damage with it.  

     And as we know, things did not go smoothly with the divisions between the North and South caused by the peculiar institution of slavery brought to the New World by our former colonial masters and their local supporters in both the North and South.  So we had a Civil War to save the Union.  Is this all sounding familiar now?  Do Iraq and Afghanistan have a Lincoln in the wings?  

     And let's talk about political corruption.  You think it's bad in Baghdad or Kabul.  Read your American history.  Politics was a rough and tumble sport fought among the so-called Founding Fathers.  And as we "matured" into a continental nation - with more conquest, blood shed and people removal - the old fashioned ethnic (tribal) urban and rural political machines took over with their ballot stuffing and tough love!   

     When considering the level of corruption in Afghanistan et al, it's wise to remember votes were bought in the USA back in the day and after Citizens United one could make a good case that corruption has been institutionalized in the USA.  

     The emergence of what we call "democracy" in the USA has been a very steep slope going on for just under 500 years from the arrival of the Mayflower.  Later chapters involved Reconstruction, Jim Crow, WW I, WW II, the Internment, the battle over women suffrage, labor union rights and then the Civil Right's Revolution.  More recently the disability and Gay rights battle has been added to the saga. 

     So the USA and other democracies like India, the largest in the world, shall we say are "works in progress" not a artist's canvas fully filled in.  And so the dance of Democracy is not without many blemishes - violence, social unrest and polarized politics which divides the citizenry along the way.  So when I keep saying democratic politics is a marathon not a spring I mean it. 

     Let's hope that the sacrifices made over the last 11 years in Iraq and Afghanistan as well on the home front in the USA ultimately prove the cynics wrong.  But let's keep in mind history's timeline is not measured in decades but in centuries, generation after generation.  We messed around and screwed up a lot and we should have stayed out of their fight but the Fat Lady ain't singing yet.   

     So as we depart, sort of...  one hopes the "locals" Keep Hope Alive.   But as a parent we know it's a crap shoot and the final returns will come when none of us is around to see the vote count!  

 

 

 

Wednesday
Apr092014

NEWS UNFIT TO PRINT  

 The UnOregonian aka not worth reading:    

     In reading today's hardcopy of the UnOregonian my jaundiced opinion about the new dummied down format is reinforced by Jeff Mapes reporting on Hillary Clinton's speech to 3000 fans at Keller Auditorium Tuesday night. 

     The coverage by Mapes, an excellent political reporter, was no deeper than the local TV clips of her visit on the 11 p.m. news!  This is shocking since Hillary is clearly the most likely Democratic candidate for POTUS in 2016.  Her visit here deserved more and deeper coverage.  It's obvious trips to the Left Coast, the Bay Area and Portlandia, are testing the waters visits.  So far, so good.  

     As the creator and founder of Pacific's Tom McCall Forum, in its 25 year run, we got better coverage than Hillary did.  Just for the record we tried to get her but she was otherwise occupied.  

     I know we live in a digital age where eyeballs suffer from an attention deficit problem.  But as the state's traditional paper of record, the UnOregonian has an obligation beyond its bottom line.  If this trend continues, I can see voters will know less and less about the issues, their government and politics because it's being squeezed into a US Today/tabloid news format.

     Where is the news "fit to print"?  Given the new format you can't find it...  

     As local ownership of media is lost - their is no investment in the state or local community.  The out of state owners are only focused on ratings.  As a result we've seen less and less coverage of local government and state government minus scandal focused gotcha journalism.  There is little coverage of local or county government and when the Puzzle Palace closes down news out of Salem disappears into a sink hole.  

     Another casualty - Christian Gaston has left the sinking ship at the UnOregonian.  Who will cover the Puzzle Palace in 2015? 

     A local polling firm has documented the lowered level of knowledge of government.  People don't know who the governor is, who their congress person or US senators are and  no clue who their legislators in the Puzzle Palace are let alone local mayors, city council or school board members.   Newspapers once had the role to fill this "knowledge" gap.  But that is rare these days.  So as the media dummies down, so does the public!  

      Oh, and that stupid NCAA political bracket game is being manipulated by partisans - in effect garbage in, garbage out.    

 

 

Tuesday
Apr082014

SEACHING FOR COMMON GROUND

      I spoke to a local group of Washington County business people this morning at a local golf course. 

      When I looked at their website I was worried I was being set up or headed into the lions den.  At at 7 a.m. in the morning I'm not geared to have my pundit "A" game on.  But getting to the venue 15 minutes early helped a lot. 

      The first person who arrived just ahead of me was a local radio personality who does a morning drive time show which I've been on back in my Pacific days.  He's a flaming conservative but I've managed to avoid the red meat he offers up at times and just due my political scientist thing.  It also helps that we are both Dawg fans living in Quackville.  

     He mentioned that the group got started because the local Boys & Girls club was being hammered by the City of Hillsboro to pay a rather steep $35K water hook up fee as part of their moving into Hillsboro.  These business folks rolled up their sleeves and offered a helping hand.  My take away is that when people step up they create "common ground" not ideological warfare. 

     I didn't convert anyone to my brand of politics.  But after over an hour of Q&A I think I was able to get the message over that when push comes to shove what we all care about - Red, Blue or Purple voters - is having safe communities for our kids and grandkids.  Too much of politics is engaged in shouting at each other rather than finding what we have in common and then working together. 

     As President Obama has said time and time again, we are NOT the red or blue states of America, we are The United States of America.