Navigation
More About This Website

Top 5 causes of homelessness

- Lack of affordable housing

- Lack of a livable wage

- Medical issues/lack of accessible health care

- Domestic violence

- Mental illness

----------------------------

Hundreds of Oregon Corporations Escape the Minimum Tax

---------------------

Half of the US Is Broke

------------------------

The myth of the Christian country

----------------------

“The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.”

FDR, 2nd Inaugural Address, Jan 20, 1937

-------------------------

A Just Peace

-----------------------

SIP contract online

--------------------------------------

Oreaviationwatch

--------------------------------------

Middle East friendship chart

--------------------------------------

Corporations enriching shareholders

--------------------------------------

- Intel tax abatements

- INTEL, come clean!

- Leashing INTEL  

- Free to Be Hungry

-------------------------

Facts not fiction on universal gun background checks

------------------------


-----------------------------

"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: 


 

  • An Independent View

Oregon Outpost

  • 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.   

 

 

    

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

Invisible People

http://www.npr.org


 Homelessness

    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

---------------------------

Putting corporate Oregon ahead of our people

-----------------------

#1445: Tommy, Riposa in Pace

requiescat in pace

--------------------------

"There are men who believe that democracy... is limited or measured by a kind of mystical and artificial fate [and that] tyranny and slavery have become the surging wave of the future..." 

FDR, 3rd Inaugural Address, Jan 20, 1941

--------------------------

Obamacare is working in Oregon!

Oregon's uninsurance rate cut more than half following federal health reforms

________________

Mourning for a Judaism Being Murdered by Israel

----------------------

Taking on the Pro-Israel Lobby 

-----------------------

Sign the petition ►

Walgreens - pay your fair share of taxes!

"Let me issue and control a nation's money and I care not who writes the laws." - Mayer Amschel Rothschild

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  

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?

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

Paul Krugman - The New York Times

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


 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 


 

 

  

 


  

 

Wednesday
Jul012015

USA's & CANADA's DUBIOUS LEGACY 

“Justice will not be served until those who are unaffected are as outraged as those who are.” - Benjamin Franklin

     My Canadian Connection sent me this article, which came on Canada Day, our neighbor to the north's version of the 4th of July.  It speaks eloquently to the problematic and schizophrenic history of our two nations. 

Simons: In our home and native land, we are all Treaty people http://a.msn.com/01/en-ca/AAcq33e?ocid=se 

     One could make the same point about US history and add to it the genocidal practice of slavery...  which began with Native Americans who couldn't survive plantation life so the owners "outsourced" labor from Africa so to speak!    

     My only quibble with the article is that many First Nation people or Native Americans are disproportionately affected by alcoholism, poverty and unemployment. Enabling tribes to reclaim their legal status as tribes has been a positive step but I'm not sure a sufficient one.  How many casinos does it take to reach the Promised Land?   

     Pacific at one time housed a school for Indian orphans, a sad history we acknowledge in our museum but in little else. Looking at pictures of those young "made to look" white Indian faces makes one wonder how terrible that must have been for those children.   

     And then I sit here with my grand daughter sleeping peacefully at our home tonight after a day including a pre-school swimming camp where her mates included an African-American girl with a big joyful smile, an Asian girl (Chinese I suspect) and 3 other kids one boy and the rest girls in a community center in the Jewish section of Portlandia.  

     Several of the lifeguards were African-American and I noticed a Sudanese mother fully clothed including a headscarf playing with her little girl in the pool.  That's a sea change from the era of Southern resistance to public accomdation rules in the Civil Rights Act of '65 and   sundowner laws in Oregon!  

      And then I turn on NPR and listen to reports of ethnic cleansing all over the world and wonder "have we've learned nothing?"  And I'm still haunted by those pictures in Pacific's Old College Hall...

      Happy Canada Day and Happy 4th of July!  But let's temper the celebrating with reality, then and now! 

Tuesday
Jun302015

OREGON'S "PUZZLE PALACE" BATTING AVERAGES

     Willamette Week published its rating of metro area legislators June 24th (see below).

     Nigel Jaquiss did the dirty deed rating “The Good, The Bad & The Awful.” 

     WW was indulging in grade inflation. 

     I don’t think the members of the current session deserve more than a C-/D+.  

      Based on the issues I advocated for our legislators and the leadership batted 1 for 5.  Batting .200 for the Mariners may keep you on the roster but you’re a bottom feeder like the current Mariner crew. 

RAD’s List:  

  1. Inclusionary zoning HB 2564 – stuck in Senate Rules (“Bad” result)

  2. TRIA – HB 2077 died in House Revenue (“Awful” result)

  3. Urban/Rural Reserves – SB 25, SB 718 – Killed in committee (“Good” result)

  4. Dirty Diesel - SB 824/HB 3310 – passed on to an interim task force (“Bad” or a Yuck result)

  5. Banning pesticide spraying on timber lands…  (DOA – “Awful” result);  

     Beyond my short list, the denizens of the Puzzle Palace never did tax reform, took a pass on the “kicker” and ended up with egg in their faces on PERS reform.  So what’s to be proud of in their kicking the can routine. 

     Even a “good” bill on clean energy left out dirty diesel.  And it got caught up in the battle over a transportation package thanks to the GOP leadership ultimately dying last week!  Good for Governor Brown, the only positive presence under the dome!

     This “do nothing” Democratic super majority squandered its chances to go for the fences time after time.  At best they have managed a status quo budget with no real attempt to deal with long term K-12 and higher ed funding challenges.  

     Clearly the “politics of lowered expectations” was in play in the Puzzle Palace.  If you can’t move major pieces of legislation such as upping the minimum wage when you have a super majority it doesn’t say much about your leadership skills.  

    WW’s ratings are laughable: 

    Speaker Tina Kotek – “Wickedly smart and intensely strategic” a 7.97 rating…   Really?  Inclusionary Zoning (?), Minimum Wage (pulled the plug).  WW gave her points for pushing a low carbon fuel bill and gun background checks through her “fractious caucus.”  

     What’s the problem here with a super majority of Ds?  Could it be that too many of the House and Senate Ds are really closet Rs of the moderate sort we had back in the day?  Intel Democrats and not just from Washington County!  

     Like I said “politics of lowered expectations.”  Now if one reads WW’s comments on each area legislator – there’s not much to feel good about any of them.  Don’t look at the ratings, check out the “comments” based on gossip and opinion!  

     What such ratings fail to grasp is that “legislating” is not a “solo” sport but a collaborative game. What should be measured are not just accomplishments but wild pitches, fielding errors and strike outs with men on bases!  

     PS:  It’s too bad WW’s ratings don’t include legislators outside the Metro area. I’d love to see how they’d rate Senate President Peter Courtney  who looks like he’s in pain. Maybe it’s time Peter retires, there is life after sitting in the Puzzle Palace dug out! 

     But WW's "stark" conclusion is worth noting -

     "The House overall looks more effective... while the Senate is increasingly ossified and adrift. On average, the scores for the Senate are well below those of the House—the first time in memory that’s happened. And all the legislators rated “awful” are in the Senate."

     Peter - it's time to move on!  

Sunday
Jun282015

LEARNING BEGINS AT HOME

EDITOR'S NOTE:  I read about Stanford's Ready4K program fellow Oregonian Nick Kristof's NY Times column  Tearing Down the Confederate Flag Is Just a Start  who at the end of his op ed opined that -

     "...[E]arly childhood programs... offer the most cost-effective interventions to create a more even starting line. These include home visitation, high-quality preschool and literacy programs. 

     A Stanford University randomized trial examined a simple, inexpensive program called Ready4K!, which simply sent three text messages a week to parents to encourage them to read to their preschoolers — and it was astonishingly successful. Parents read more to children, who then experienced learning gains — and this was particularly true of black and Hispanic children. And because this was text messaging, the cost was less than $1 a family for the whole school year."

     As the spouse of a former elementary teacher (grades 1, 2 & 4 in Minnesota and Pennsylvania) and for the past 36 years a children's librarian in the Grove I've heard time and again of the importance of parents reading to their children BEFORE they go to school - pre-school, K or after.  More importantly I saw the result of her modeling this strategy with our two sons and now with our grand daughter.  

     Now there's evidence that backs up a life long experience. 

    When kids are born, Mommy is given instructions at a hospital or by a midwife how to care for the newborn.  How about including Ready4K information at the same time?  It's never too early ya know.  I can remember when my very pregnant wife came home from her elementary school job telling me how our first baby kicked when Ann was reading to her class!  Her students thought it was very funny!    

     Maybe it's time for parents, educators and care givers to weigh in with legislators to make this happen!  Minnesota is ahead of the curve, why not Oregon next up?  After all everyone sings the praises of early childhood education!  But it should begin BEFORE pre-school and K.  This might get me back into the Puzzle Palace in 2016!  There ought to be a law...  

--------------------------------------------------------------

Stanford 'tips-by-text' program helps boost literacy in preschoolers, study finds

Researchers found that the texts, which prompted parents to engage in literacy activities with their children, had a positive impact on learning.

L.A. Cicero

Stanford researchers find promising results from a program that uses text messages to support parents in helping their children learn to read.

     When it comes to spending quality family time together, text messaging doesn't have to be a villain. It could be an enabler.

     Stanford researchers have created a promising new text-messaging program that is designed to support parents in their efforts to teach their children their ABCs and prepare them for kindergarten. The program, called READY4K!, sends weekly cell phone texts to parents of preschoolers to give them bite-sized tips and easy, specific actions related to developing early literacy skills.

     "Texting is the medium du jour," said Benjamin York, a doctoral student at the Stanford Graduate School of Education, who created the texting program with Professor Susanna Loeb. "That could change, but for now, it seems to be the best strategy."

     A successful pilot of the texting program was conducted during the 2013-14 school year at 31 preschools in the San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD). The district, which has a robust, ongoing partnership with Stanford to integrate research with real-world practices, has been seeking ways to boost family engagement.

     "I believe that all families want to be involved in their child's learning, but many feel they don't have the time or perceive that supporting their child's learning might be labor intensive or something that the teacher is better at," said Meenoo Yashar, executive director of program quality and enhancement at SFUSD.

     "The texting program offered some simple nuggets around literacy strategies and validated that families do want to be involved, if given information that is easy to receive and useful."

     An accompanying study of the pilot found that the texts, on average, helped increase the frequency with which parents engaged in home literacy activities, such as telling stories, going over words that rhyme or completing puzzles together. Participating parents also showed higher levels of engagement by asking teachers questions about their children's growth.

     Perhaps most important, the increases in parental activity and involvement translated into learning gains for children, York said. The children of parents who participated in the eight-month pilot program and received the READY4K! texts scored significantly higher on a literacy assessment than those within a control group of families who received only placebo texts of school-related announcements.

     "Our text messages had enough of an effect on the parents that it trickled down to the children, which is really encouraging," York said. "But it's not parenting-by-text. The texts are there to just help facilitate authentic parenting."

Prompting teachable moments

     The suggested actions in a text message, for instance, are as simple as "Say two words to your child that start with the same sound, like happy & healthy."

     In another set of texts aimed at addressing several literacy skills, parents get tips to make the most of bath time – by pointing out the letters on a shampoo bottle and asking the child to name those letters and the sounds, and then on another day, asking the child vocabulary-building questions to identify body parts and their functions.

L.A. Cicero

Teacher Teri Cummings reads with a pre-K class at Sheridan Elementary School in San Francisco.

     "The barrier to some of these positive parenting practices isn't knowledge or desire, but it's the crazy, busy lives," said Loeb, the Barnett Family Professor of Education and the faculty director of Stanford's Center for Education Policy Analysis. "It's difficult to have the time or focus to make all these choices as parents, and we're helping parents do what they know they should do and what they want to do."

     The text messages are meant to prompt the teachable moments, by eliminating the hassles of decision-making and simply spelling it out for parents, she said.

     Parental tips-by-text may seem unconventional, but in a world where texting has become a common communication medium and attention spans have gotten shorter, it's not far-fetched.

     A vast majority of American adults have cell phones; nearly all of them use text messaging; and texting rates are particularly high among Hispanics and blacks, the study noted.

     In another sign of the times, an increasing number of health care causes are already using text messages – with proven success – to help people lose weight or quit smoking.

     With this growing body of successful texting apps for other complex behavioral changes, York and Loeb set out to develop one for parents.

     "To reduce the barriers to good parenting, we immediately thought of texting because it's so pervasive," York said. "Surprisingly, no one else was doing this – providing educational content during the preschool year, using this approach."

     However, Loeb added, "we know that changing parental behaviors has proven to be very difficult, so to get these positive effects from our texting program was very exciting."

Scalable, inexpensive, accessible

     York and Loeb worked to break down early literacy standards into educational snippets that would be compelling for parents to carry out in their daily routines without adding burden or costs. The text messages – their sequence and scope, as well their tone – were all carefully crafted to not add stress to parents.

     An underlying objective was to make the texting program easily scalable, inexpensive to administer and widely accessible. Indeed, the costs for sending texts for the entire school year were relatively minimal – at $1 spent per participating family – and costs are expected to decrease as the program expands to a larger group of users, York said. School districts can also implement the program in large part by adding a check box on enrollment forms, asking parents if they want to receive texts with educational tips, he said.

     "The texting program was experimental, but it made so much sense – it was worth trying," said Laura Wentworth, director of the Stanford University/SFUSD Partnership.

     Before launching the texting study, Loeb and York had partnered closely with SFUSD on a number of projects related to early literacy. These relationships supported the tight coordination needed to make this texting project happen, and to make the project useful for the district.

     The pilot READY4K! program at SFUSD, which was featured in a working paper published Nov. 10 by the National Bureau of Economic Research, has already piqued the interest of other school districts in the nation as well as other literacy organizations, York said.

     A total of 440 families participated in the program. Of that group, half of the families were randomly chosen to receive the literacy-based texts, while the other half received placebo texts with district-related announcements.

     Three texts were sent each week throughout the school year to the participating parents of 4-year-olds. On Mondays, parents received a general fact about the benefits of a certain literacy skill. On Wednesdays, parents got a specific tip on something they could do to work with their child on building that skill. On Fridays, parents received ideas on how they can take it a step further.

     The contents of the text messages are based on preschool standards outlined by the California Department of Education. They are also aligned with the curriculum practice of making tasks increasingly more challenging and interspersing reviews of concepts along the way.

     In evaluating the pilot program, researchers found that the text messages had a positive impact on the students' knowledge of both lowercase and uppercase alphabet letters as well as letter sounds. The preschoolers acquired about two to three months' worth of learning during the pilot program, York said.

     The parents who received the texting tips also spent more time doing literacy-related activities with their preschoolers, when compared with parents in the control group, researchers found. This difference was equivalent to about 9 to 13 percentile points.

     Because of the pilot's success, SFUSD expanded the program for the current school year to not only all of its preschool families but also the parents of kindergarteners.

     "It would be great to see how we can continue texting as a way to inform families not just about literacy, but about their child's learning in other ways as well," Yashar said.

     In the meantime, Stanford researchers have added early math skills into the weekly texting program and will be looking to gauge their effectiveness.

     "Parents really are the first teacher that a student has and are the most important teacher at that [early] age," Loeb said. "They don't have to do it the way teachers do it; they just have to work things in with their daily life."

Brooke Donald, Graduate School of Education: (650) 721-1402, brooke.donald@stanford.edu

Dan Stober, Stanford News Service: (650) 721-6965, dstober@stanford.edu

Friday
Jun262015

SAME SEX MARRIAGE

     It's been a very busy two days for the Supreme Court.  Yesterday a 6-3 majority enshrined Obamacare as the law of the land.  And today the Court in a 5-4 decision sanctioned same sex marriage from sea to shining sea in the USA.  In the first case Chief Justice Roberts wrote the majority opinion, in the second case Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote the majority opinion.  Both cases give evidence of that the US is governed by the rule of law and that our checks and balances system works. 

     In both cases a conservative court could have ducked the issues but it didn't.  It illustrates that the majority of the court understands public opinion, the politics of issues and the law.  In no small measure the Court's historical integrity was on the line. 

     The long arc of justice though often agonizingly slow was clearly in evidence this week.  While we as a nation often move 2 steps forward and 1 step backwards - illustrated by the former in the two cases this week in contrast to Citizens United in the latter case - ultimately justice cannot be denied.  But my juxtaposition of these 3 cases illustrates a fundamental problem inherent in the American legal system.  What drove each of these cases was not purely moral suasion but economics. 

     What made Obamacare pass muster was the economic fear that if the ACA was unraveled, the economic damage to the health care and health insurance system would have been monumental.  What put same sex marriage on an inevitable glide path to success was the economics of this issue causing many US mega-corporations to join in the fight along with the consumer and political power of the gay rights lobby.  And of course Citizens United is a cash cow for the media industry. 

     As Bill Clinton's ads said in '92 "it's the economy, stupid."  One is always in a more powerful position if one can line up a moral issue with hard cold business logic!  In Oregon during the current legislative session this convergence has been harder to manage on issues of the homeless, spraying of pesticides, banning toxic chemicals from children's products or passing a transparency bill.  By contrast President Obama has surprisingly succeeded in getting his "fast track" agenda moving in a GOP Congress!  

     Shall we say "follow the money?"  It's been a good week for a so-called Lame Duck Potus now facing his toughest issue - a deal on nukes with Iran.  If he gets this - it will be a very good yeari  Now if only the M's could get some "big Mo."  

Thursday
Jun252015

SUPREMES SAY "YES" ON THE ACA - WHOOPIE!  

OBAMACARE, HOW TO LOVE IT!   

    The Supreme Court for the second time has vindicated ACA aka Obamacare. 

This is health care in America.

      As Chief Justice Roberts noted - "Congress passed the Affordable Care act to improve health insurance markets, not to destroy them." 

     In other words, the Court didn't want to put 6 million people out in the cold nor lose 6 million consumers of health care because of a "technicality" of a poorly drafted phrase in the ACA.   

     The winners - millions of Americans who previous to ACA had no health insurance AND the health care industry. Economics trumped right wing nut rhetoric!      

     Moving forward, any GOP presidential candidate who continues to blast the ACA will be displaying how blind they are to the fact that no American wants them or a new Congress to unravel what has brought us a better health care system.  Is it perfect no but as Bill Clinton once said of welfare reform - "mend it don't end it."  It's time to end this debate and let those on the Right who have a political death wish wander into political oblivion.  

     Like Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid -  Obamacare is now "established law."  Now eat that apple sauce Justice Scalia!  Despite a long gestation period the "system" in its usual convoluted sausage making way "worked" - while justice was delayed it will not be denied.  And President Obama did what no POTUS before him could do - illustrating that victory goes to the long distance runner!