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Sign petition to stop Keystone XL Pipeline

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Political clock ticking after GOP election win

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Trust in government is 'dead, Jim'

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“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

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A Just Peace

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SIP contract online

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Oreaviationwatch

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Middle East friendship chart

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Corporations enriching shareholders

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- Intel tax abatements

- 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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"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

 Explore Intel emissions

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#1445: Tommy, Riposa in Pace

requiescat in pace

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"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

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Obamacare is working in Oregon!

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

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Mourning for a Judaism Being Murdered by Israel

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Taking on the Pro-Israel Lobby 

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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


 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 


 

 

  

 


  

 

Monday
Oct272014

WHAT IS A REAL “FAN”? 

     I just returned from a weekend road trip to Seattle.  As a season ticket holder (a family legacy of over 50 years from my wife’s side of the family) – we try to get to as many Husky home games as possible while giving our seats to our family on games we can’t attend. 

     But I have been a Husky fan since I was 6 years old beginning in 1948 sitting with my Dad in old Husky Stadium in end zone seats not the choicer ones we now occupy in the renovated Husky stadium but even then we lost our 50 yard line tickets after the Montlake remodel – now near the end zone again!  

     The UW/ASU (A”ass” U, a comment on the obnoxious ASU dude sitting next to us) game was held in a rainy and windy stadium starting at 7:45 p.m.  I guess this was somebody’s sneak preview of Halloween.  It was also Homecoming but nobody told ASU…   It was a close game (10 to 10) until the 4th quarter but again the Huskies offense was “offensive”.  

     But despite the bad weather, a late night game @ 50 thousand plus fans showed up despite the weather people telling us the game would be played in 20-40 per hour wind gusts and a down pour.  For us in the stands it wasn’t a problem for the players it obviously was.  

     Given the Huskies less than stellar record over the past decade, why does anyone care or show up?  At Nike U, a wholly owned subsidiary of Phil Knight, losing a game causes their fan base to have a collective mental breakdown.  Quack Attack U fans are cocky but insecure and still looking for that BCS ring!   

     My point is simple, as a Dawg fanatic – I’ve been there in the good and the bad years.  Like a Chicago Cub fan I’m faithful to the purple and gold no matter what because I grew up as a Dawg fan and continued to be so even when we moved to Oregon in ’52.  

     It’s got nothing to do with being a UW alum (I’m not) or the win/loss records, it’s just those memories of sitting with my old man watching Don Heinrich and Hugh McElhenny play teams like the Golden Gophers from Minnesota (my grad school alma mater) et al.  It's the same reason I attend Pacific football games, out of respect for players I had as students!   

     One of my lasting memories is being at a church youth conference assembly in Eugene and hearing the half-time score of the UW/UO game held that year in Eugene – the Dawgs were ahead and won eventually.  Out of several hundred high schoolers, I was alone in cheering… 

     I’ve always heard a different drummer!   Woof Woof...   

Friday
Oct242014

A VOTE OF "NO-CONFIDENCE" ON THE TROIKA

TV HighwayEDITOR'S NOTE:  This will appear in the Portland Tribune Oct. 28th.  It already was run in the Beaverton Valley Times. 

http://www.pamplinmedia.com/bvt/16-opinion/238049-103631-mileage-tax-would-be-better-than-vehicle-registration-fee.

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     I’m voting NO on Washington County’s Ballot Measure 34-221 – the $30 vehicle registration fee for road maintenance and operations.  I’m not opposed to improving county roads what I oppose is a “penny wise and pound foolish” approach to improving roads in the County. 

     Keep in mind this is a road preventive maintenance levy not a new or improved roads levy.  It’s a temporary fix to a long-term problem.      

     In their discussions on this issue the County Board were all over the map.  First they were going to pass a vehicle fee without a referral to the voters.  Then they changed their minds after months of back and forth discussion realizing that a board only decision would backfire down the road. 

     The board also chocked on how much the vehicle registration fee should be, $30 or $45 dollars.  The board during its final meeting admitted the $30 dollar fee would not be enough to cover long-term repairs of bridges and other more expensive repairs needed. 

     The board in effect “kicked the can” on the altar of political expediency fearing the $45 fee would be voted down.  What this really meant to me is that the board was unwilling to go to the citizenry to make the case for the higher fee even though in the long run such a case will have to be made. 

    The board often claims they are “the deciders” hereabouts.  But in this case the “deciders blinked” so the voters get to decide.  OK but read the fine print!  The measure before us is a half-measure not a real solution – we’ll be back at the drawing boards sooner than later given the need. 

     The problem the board faces is that federal and state gas tax money which funds transportation projects is subject to the whims of a gridlocked Congress or legislature which puts local leaders between a rock and a hard place since the "gas tax" at the pump is the major funding source for highways. 

     The more efficient our cars are, the less gas we use and the less gas taxes we bring in.  It's time we entered the 21st century in how we fund our highway and bridge infrastructure.  Adding insult to injury a vehicle registration flat tax is regressive since the owner of a low cost or high cost vehicle will pay the same tax. 

     It’s in effect a “hidden tax” on the working poor and the increasingly marginalized middle class. Also this “tax” does not apply to non-residents of the county including the thousands of employees of the hi-tech industry who commute to work from outside county – they get a free ride!  

      A better and fairer alternative is a mileage tax.  It wouldn’t matter whether you drive a hybrid or non-hybrid, a big car or small car, a pick up or SUV.  The tax you’d pay would be based your annual mileage. The other pay off is the cost at the pump will go down. 

     But our local “deciders” don’t want to engage the public, state legislators nor Congress is real solutions just quick fixes that they think they can get a gullible public to OK.  Instead of leadership they prefer to simply muddle through. 

Thursday
Oct232014

CAMPAIGN MONEY, AN ECONOMIC STIMULUS PACKAGE!  

 

     EDITOR'S NOTE: As the 2014 campaign comes down to the finish line it's very predictable that each campaign be it for a candidate or ballot measure comes down to the so-called money game.  And in Oregon this year big money from outside Oregon is flooding the state.  If one feels that money distorts the political process - which it does - this is bad news!  But if you feel "money is speech" then the more $$$ - the more speech you get. 

     The folks at OUR OREGON, a liberal activist group are following the money game - here's some highlights from today's Our Oregon e-blast.    

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In midterm home stretch, campaign cash floods Oregon races
Bend Bulletin

     "Control of the Oregon Senate is up for grabs, but donors are overwhelmingly flooding Bend’s House race with cash in the homestretch of the November general election. Republican candidate Knute Buehler has raised more campaign cash than anyone else in any House or Senate race in the state, according to The Bulletin’s review of campaign finance records on Tuesday.

     Meanwhile, Republicans are eyeing the chance to take the Senate, where Democrats held 16 seats and Republicans had 14 last session. The Senate races identified by both parties’ leaders months ago as contentious are among the most expensive in the state in terms of campaign fundraising. They will also likely break the million-dollar mark in coming days.

     RAD:  Back in the '90s legislative races cost $100 to 250K not anymore!  Who is flooding the campaign coffers?  Not individual donors but the "big daddy" pro-business PACs and pro-union PACs in the state and well beyond Oregon.  Thanks to Citizens United the money game is the elephant in the room.  With soft money that is undisclosed and unlimited interest group PACs not the candidates dominate the messaging. 

New report tracks big money coming into northwest for midterm
OPB News

     "The Center for Public Integrity is out with a report that shows Oregon’s (and to a lesser degree Washington’s) ballot initiatives are attracting big outside money. Ballot measures in only two states – California and Colorado – are attracting more money, according to the report. The report looks at TV ad spending through Oct. 20 and found that nationwide about $119 million has been spent so far on state ballot initiates.

     In Oregon, $7.6 million has so far been spent, which according to the report breaks down to $2.68 per eligible voter. Oregon’s Measure 92 has received the most ad spending. CPI reporter Liz Essley Whyte writes:"

     RAD:  Measure 92, the GMO measure is a major turf battle being waged by agri-business and their retail grocery allies against an equally well moneyed organic food industry located in California.  This will probably break previous records.  But ironically one side will win and the other will lose - so does "big money" speak?  It may be a necessary but it's not a sufficient condition in ballot measure mania.  The key will be which side can get out the vote!  

Midterm registration sets record in Oregon

Bend Bulletin

     "The final numbers are in: More voters are registered for the Nov. 4 general election than in any other nonpresidential election in Oregon history. Now it’s a question of who will turn out. In the two weeks leading to the Oct. 14 voter registration deadline, Democrats added more voters than Republicans. There are 832,814 Democrats eligible to vote this year versus 658,107 Republicans. The state also has more voters registered to neither major party than it has in its history."

     RAD:  This has to be good news for the Democrats who want to keep control of the legislature.  Kitz has a lock on the governor's race despite "Kitz's follies."  If up registration means bigger turnout for the D's, this should give the Ds wind at their backs.  But in the May primary in Washington County over 6,000 Ds did not show.  And with the top of the ticket having "image" issues - will this turn off likely D voters?  Off year elections usually favor the party out of power, in this case the GOP.  

Thursday
Oct232014

CANADA'S GOVERNMENT ON LOCKDOWN

Armed RCMP officers head towards the Langevin Block on Parliament Hilll following a shooting incident in Ottawa October 22, 2014. A Canadian soldier was shot at the Canadian War Memorial and a shooter was seen running towards the nearby parliament buildings, where more shots were fired, according to media and eyewitness reports. (REUTERS/Chris Wattie)

     The shootings in Ottawa Canada this week illustrate that nobody is immune from the reach of global terrorism especially as jihadism is “outsourced” via internet and social media chat rooms.  Like it not we live in a global village.

     My "CC" sent me an article which details even more horrific "gun violence" incidents in a nation like the US where guns are part of the culture and ironically where the current government has relaxed gun laws!  

     But the attacks in front of Canada’s War Memorial and within the chambers of her Parliament when Prime Minister Harper and MPs were meeting in their party caucuses suggests the “targets” were chosen to make an ideological point.  

     On 9/11 the World Trade Center was a symbol of US economic hegemony, the Pentagon military hegemony and Capital Hill the power center saved by heroic passengers. Never mind those killed were innocent victims of Islam turned into ideology.    

     Events like this in Canada, as in the US, will spur debate about guns and  how we balance freedom vs. security in the age of terrorism.

     Such events may even rachet up the debate over the national security state on both sides of the US/Canadian border even more?  Given the ubiquitous reality of data mining by government and business will this increase Big Brother's role in our lives?  

     In this latter case my "CC" forwarded me a missive which raises the paranoia level in an oddly ahistorical context.  Critics on the Left often don't distinguish between Bush I and Obama - they in fact conflate them (see more in "Comments" section). 

     Some will assert that if we quit “meddling” in other people’s countries – the terrorists wouldn’t bother us.  Sounds reasonable enough at first but if that’s true why does ISIS target the innocent in its emerging Caliphate?  

     The fact is we weren't meddling that much until after 9/11...   Nobody was watching the Taliban except foreign policy wonks, nobody knew about al Qaida except CIA spooks and the boots on the ground in the Middle East were minimal.  

     The historic origins of modern terrorism go back to the French Revolution and the Russian Revolution. The point of terrorism is to strike fear into the hearts of the average citizen to bring down the power structure of the “evil empire.” 

     The terrorist’s goal is to tear down the nation-state by re-creating a Hobbes-like state of nature while substituting the state with their dystopian vision of paradise by subjecting humanity to a “war of all against all.” 

     The terrorist is not a rational actor as game theorists assume – quite the contrary.  Like the plotters of the Oklahoma bombing of the federal building they are so alienated that they prey upon the innocent.

     The terrorist’s furtive imagination conjures up an “enemy” then strikes out.  In the USA the KKK terrorists hated Blacks, Jews, Catholics and Commies.  So they targeted such people. Jihadists are caught between the old order and modernity. 

     Todays terrorists strike out against symbols of modernity – and Western society’s have given them many targets from the days of European colonialism to Pax Americana – US economic and military hegemony in the post Cold War era.  

     But the events in Canada illustrate the trip wire of the terrorist mind is not deep but reactive.  A war memorial or parliament building become targets.  It makes me pause about the risk factors of driving to the Puzzle Palace in Salem…   

     Life must go on.  But we can’t afford to put our heads in the sand and assume if we’d just leave ‘em alone, they’d leave us alone.  Despite Eric Snowden’s conjuring the demons of the NSA while he sits in Putin’s safe haven – we live in a global village. 

     There is no safe haven largely because “the other” be it people like you or me living abroad or “the other” immigrants living in the USA, Europe or Canada occupy the same spaces. 

     Fortunately for most of us the risk of being a victim of terrorism is the same as getting Ebola – it’s much riskier just walking across the street to get a latte at one’s favorite java joint here in the Grove or in Portlandia.  

     As they say in golf – stay in the moment and hope for the best!  I don’t want to live in a gated nation or play golf anywhere where I have to go through a security check.  But alas one never knows, does one as Ottawa found out on Wednesday. 

    As I told Pacific students on 9/11 “your days of innocence are forever lost.”  It’s time we understood our impact on other people but the same holds true for the “other” as well – we all inhabit the same small thing called spaceship earth…   

     Things wouldn’t be so messy had four things happened in the USA in 2000 – had Al Gore been a better debater, had Nader not taken 90,000 votes in Florida, had the Supremes not stolen Gore’s victory and had Dubya not been POTUS. 

     When I come home from playing golf my wife asks “how I did” – my response is the classic “if only….”  On a larger scale I take consolation from the words of a young girl at the beginning of a life cut short by the “terrorists” of her day.  

     “In spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart. I simply can’t build up my hopes on a foundation consisting of confusion, misery, and death. I see the world gradually being turned into a wilderness, I hear the ever approaching thunder, which will destroy us too, I can feel the sufferings of millions and yet, if I look up into the heavens, I think that it will all come right, that this cruelty too will end, and that peace and tranquility will return again.” 

Anne Frank, The Diary of a Young Girl

 

 

Tuesday
Oct212014

IN THE KITZ HOUSE - IS THERE NO SHAME?  

"Kitzgate" goes on and on and on...

   

State announced $150,000 contract to wife of key Kitzhaber advisor before competitive bidding
Oregonian

    

     "Oregon Health Authority officials announced the selection of the wife of a former top aide to Gov. John Kitzhaber for a $150,000 contract before any formal bidding took place."

     The Oregonian has learned. A state manager internally announced the hiring of Kate Raphael to produce videos about the governor's health reforms on July 31, documents show. That was eight days before a formal competitive-bidding solicitation was issued, and nearly a month before a contract was signed.  Two other firms bid on the contract, including one with a $100,000 lower price tag.

     Raphael got the job. The contract illustrates the cozy relations in political circles and how they contribute to the public's skepticism of government. Raphael's husband, Tim, served as Kitzhaber's communications director until December 2013. Now advising the Democratic governor's re-election campaign, he also works with First Lady Cylvia Hayes, coordinating her Oct. 9 public apology for an illegal green card marriage in 1997."

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     RAD:  Given what in the Nixon era was termed "the horrors" now Kitzhaber's horrors - the Nike and Intel "deals", the CRC failure, the CoverOregon debacle, the walkout of Rudy Crew, Cylviagate and now cronyism in the governor's office, if Kitz is re-elected he will have lost the "moral authority to govern." 

     His trust with the voters of Oregon will have been broken. His reputation will be in tatters inside the Puzzle Palace.  He should simply leave office before January and turn the keys to Mahonia Hall over to Kate Brown, the Secretary of State who is next in line to succeed the governor. 

     A victory over a flawed opponent will be a pyrhic victory.  The Kitzhaber era is over!  If he truly cares about Oregon Kitz should have the deceny to leave office and allow his successor to take the gavel and begin the process of repairing the breach Kitz has created by his arrogance, incompetence and hubris.  

 

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