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




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%.  





  • An Independent View

Oregon Outpost

  • A Middle East View      

Rami G. Khouri

  • RealClearPolitics:


  • Jim Hightower:

  • 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: 


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


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


•    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 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?  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



From the Left Wing:

Paul Krugman

Paul Krugman - The New York Times

Democracy Now

The Daily Kos

Blue Oregon


"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... 


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



     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







































     The historic preliminary agreement with Iran to terminate its ability to manufacture nuclear bombs could be President Obama's greatest achievement eclipsing his rescuing of the US economy from the throes of the Great Recession and the passage of Obamacare.  Of course it all hinges on the next step to get the fine print into shape.

     Sadly the GOP led Congress along with their presidential candidates seem intent on derailing the agreement by imposing more sanctions on Iran aided by Israel's PM, Benjamin Netanyahu using the bully pulpit in a Joint Session of Congress thanks to Speaker Boehner to voice his opposition.  This reminds one of President Woodrow Wilson's failure to get the US Congress to pass the League of Nations treaty after WW I.  That inevitably led us into WW II. 

     It would be the highest tragedy if history were to be repeated by such ideological blindness.  Does anyone really want a nuclear armed Iran in a region with other nations with nukes - China, Pakistan, India and Israel?  The folly of such thinking would risk the highest tragedy imaginable in the Middle East and South Asia.  And once this genie is uncorked the world will not be able to put the cork back in the bottle.   

     It would make one nostalgic for the Cold War era of mutually assured destruction.  We would be in a multi-polar nuclear world worse than imagined by the movie Dr. Strangelove. 



Dear Senator Dembrow and Representative Greenlick

From:  Russ Dondero, Chair WC CAN

     Sitting in both hearings on Wednesday on HB 3310 and SB 824 was like watching two trains passing in the dark.  This of course is not surprising but where do we go from here? 

     I hope that Senator Dembrow moves ahead with his comment about bringing the various stakeholders together to "talk" this out to begin a serious discussion. 

    If this doesn't happen then doing anything on "dirty diesel" this session will be DOA. 

     I was dismayed that nobody made the connection between dirty diesel and our school bus fleet in Oregon. That would be perhaps a common ground we could focus on - getting a fully retrofitted yellow bus fleet - maybe the unused DEQ money could be directed at that challenge? 

     In the Intel settlement agreement with DEQ they agreed to start retrofitting of Hillsboro school buses.  Again, this is not just an inner city Portland issue!  

     We have 190 school districts in Oregon - how many kids are put at risk every day before school and after school?  Why not start there? 

     The other part of my dismay during the hearings was the framing of this issue as a Metro area problem which it clearly is not - the last I looked I-5, I-84 and 97 go border to border in Oregon.  

     Growing up in Roseburg, I grew up with log trucks and still do living in Forest Grove - the DEQ map shown in the hearings includes most of the west metro area in dark... indicating serious air pollution.   
     I know that in truck stops along the I-5 corridor it's the practice to keep those engines running while the drivers take a rest stop - putting more dirty diesel in the air. 

     What bothered me the most was the framing of this issue as a public health risk vs. economic trade off.  This is a false choice.   
     But if that's the trucking industry, construction industry/union line when did the health of Oregonians become second fiddle to raw economic interests? 

     I also noted the silence about people of color being most at risk despite the industry lobbyists suggesting how poverty is more of a health risk than dirty diesel.  Actually, they are highly correlated.  So spare me the false crocodile tears coming from the truck "polluters."  

     Over the last several years, the pendulum in the Capitol has swung to the industry side of the coin.  All one has to do is to wave the "jobs" flag and the discussion is over.  

     This transparent mobilization of bias has gone too far.  It's time to redress this imbalance but it can only be done by bringing all parties in the room for a "serious" discussion not just walking into a public hearing with their all too  familiar talking points.  

     The goal is to phase out dirty diesel over 7 years by 2022. To hear the industry talk it was as if the retrofitting was happening tomorrow.  That's non-sense as they know. 
     If there are hardships involved - be it ag uses of dirty diesel or small truckers - that can be mitigated by a variety of tools - tax credits or exempting certain small businesses with such trucks from these regulations.  That should all be put on the table in a negotiation process with all stakeholders in the room. 

     So, here we are - the work of several years over two sessions can just go away or we can finally begin a real conversation.  I hope Sen. Dembrow's offer is taken up by both sides... 


     PS:  I know that wood burning stoves and cars pose major health risks.  But there are regulatory programs, like our DMV/DEQ car testing system, in place to update or phase out the old technology.  Isn't it time the pro-truck lobby stepped up?  





  • House Committee on Health Care: 1p

HB 3310 - Adopt Comprehensive Diesel Rules by 2020

  • Senate Committee on Environment & Natural Resources; 3pm

SB 824 - 1% for Clean Diesel



APRIL 10, 2015


For Talking Points - see "Comments" section...       


The Evidence is Clear: Oregon has an air pollution problem!



11 concepts and their readers fail to grasp: 

How the politics of denial clouds one’s vision –

1 - After WW II the US bankrolled the re-building of Europe, including Germany and Japan…  They didn’t do it themselves…  

2 - What other nation in world history has rebuilt two society’s it went to war against?  If that’s not “exceptional” – what is?

3 - Since the Cold War the US has been the military protector of Europe vs. Russia and Japan vs. China… 

4 - If our allies had to pay the full measure of their national security – they wouldn’t be able to afford their welfare state, mass transit system etc.  

5 - Aside from Canada, no nation in the world is officially bi-lingual and that’s really a "legal fiction" there outside of Quebec.  By contrast, the largest TV audience in the US watches Spanish language TV…  

6 - The class system in most of the world is the source of ethnic, racial and religious conflicts which often end up in communal riots, civil war and/or genocide – but not in the USA…   Ferguson is not Rwanda…  

7 - The ethnocentrism of France based on language, Germany based on blood and other European nations based on being historically white Protestant or Catholic nations – is the dirty little secret causing ethnic hostility and the failure to assimilate its immigrant population…  

8 - Within one generation – immigrants to the USA are fully integrated into American society much more than can be said in Europe… 

9 - The 1% of Europe, Japan et al are an oligarchy based on ethnic, class, educational and economic status.  Crony capitalism is alive and real in a way that makes it hard for “the other” to break into the elite…  Where are the Barack Obama’s of Europe or Japan?  

10 - The failed nation states of the Middle East and Africa are a legacy of European colonialism - sins of the fathers. 

11 - Terrorism was born in the Frence Revolution of 1789.  The monarchy was toppled, then the Reign of Terror commenced and ended by the Napoleonic dictatorship.  This French "import" has become the pattern of 20th century autocracies.  





   UnOregonian reporter Mike Rogoway’s article in Wednesday’s paper is an example of the familiar saying “follow the money.”  Here’s the lowdown: 

   MR:  “The Oregon Senate signed off Tuesday on a package of property tax breaks aimed at Comcast, Google Fiber and Oregon data centers.

   “The state House of Representatives approved the bill Friday 52-2 and it now heads to the desk of Gov. Kate Brown.” 

   RAD:  “Comcast is a regular contributor to Oregon campaigns; the company has given nearly $130,000 since the start of 2014. CenturyLink, which also stands to benefit, contributed more than $54,000 in the same time period. Facebook contributed about $26,000...”

     While Apple, Amazon and Google haven’t made campaign donations since the start of 2014 one would anticipate these firms will make contributions in the 2016 campaign to reward their supplicant friends in the Puzzle Palace. 

     This doesn’t mean individuals from those firms haven’t made personal contributions. It’s also common knowledge that the national Democratic Party is enriched by contributions from the hi-tech industry in every election cycle and this money is recycled down the food chain to legislative races.  

   Billions of “soft money” campaign loot is not disclosed nor limited at the federal level thanks to Citizens United and Oregon reciprocates by having the most porous disclosure aka nondisclosure law in the 50 states with unlimited money flowing to candidates or parties. 

     So I don’t buy Rogoway’s conclusion that Apple, Amazon and Google are non-players in Oregon’s election “money game” cycle.  Among the 400 registered lobbyists in the Puzzle Palace many represent hi-tech firms and in the off-season run PACs which funnel “soft” money to candidates.  

   Governor Brown as Secretary of State signed a letter in support of Comcast’s ongoing quest to increase its communications empire by buying Times Warner.  And if our new guv signs this bill what does that imply?  What’s her price?  Well Kate has to run in 2016 – I can’t imagine Comcast won’t get an “ask” from Kate!    


   “In the interest of time we need to get this law to the governor, who promised me yesterday she will sign it this week,” said Sen. Mark Hass, D Beaverton, who has shepherded Senate Bill 611 through the Legislature. But that won’t be the final word on the matter — the Legislature will need to do additional work to satisfy Google Fiber.

   Tuesday’s 28-2 vote in the Senate addresses a thorny, unusual Oregon taxation methodology known as “central assessment,” which has been tangled up in state court since 2009. SB611 is supposed to provide clarity to companies and local governments and technology companies.

   Central assessment values telecom companies’ property, in part, based on the value of their brand and other “intangibles.” Cable TV companies and data centers say this is an extremely unusual methodology and creates a considerably higher property tax burden in Oregon than in other states.”

   RAD:  I find it odd that the brand value of a firm isn’t considered in deciding its tax obligations. When firms like Facebook are put on the market and/or sold investors are doing just that – buying based on presumed brand value.  If not entities like Facebook would never have gone public.  

   Why the race to the bottom in taxing such firms – just because other states do it?  Oh yeah, they will not come to Oregon and/or leave!  If so good riddance.  The price of doing business in Oregon should be paying one’s fare share in income and property taxes. 


   “Google Fiber says it won’t come to Portland without a change to the tax language, though language in the current bill appears to exclude the company. Lawmakers say they will begin working on a Google Fiber fix later this week.

   “Here are 8 things to know about the bill:

   1. History - Central assessment” dates to the 19th century, when counties sought to value railroads running through their county by applying the value of the overall railroad network. Oregon updated its law multiple times to account for new technologies, including the telegraph and telephone. The current version dates to 1973, written with microwave towers in mind. Lawmakers sought to apply the methodology to future telecommunications technologies, and that’s gradually expanded to include cable TV and even data centers, which aren’t commonly thought of as telecom.”

   RAD:  Why is this a wrong-headed approach to taxation?  If such companies have property in Oregon, it should be taxed on it’s market value not some lesser amount.  The employees of such companies are not given property tax breaks, why should their employer get such breaks? To do this is to “cost shift” the burden of supporting local government and schools to their employees and other local taxpayers. 


   “2.The law: “Comcast has been fighting central assessment in court since 2009, when Oregon began applying central assessment to cable TV companies. Comcast won in lower courts but lost in October before the Oregon Supreme Court. That decision could send several million dollars in tax revenue to the counties, but some issues still have to be litigated.” 

   RAD:  If one loses in the courts, go to the legislature!  So what if counties lose several millions in tax revenue - even though some counties in Oregon are virtually bankrupt – Coos, Curry and Josephine?  Even rich Washington County, the home of hi-tech, can’t finance its road maintenance scheme voted down by the voters in May!

   Corporations may be “people,” but don’t expect them to pay their fare share in property or income taxes – that would hurt their profit margins and investor appeal – you know those hedge fund and equity players on Wall Street – the same folks that gave you a system with “banks too big to fail.”   


   “3. What the companies pay:

   Telecom companies and data centers say Oregon’s application of central assessment is extremely unusual, and pretty weird, because they aren’t usually taxed on the value of their brands. Comcast says it pays property taxes at more than three times the rate it does in other states, with an annual Oregon property tax bill of $26.1 million.” 

   RAD:  Comcast is a gigantic media conglomerate, in the old days we called it a “monopoly.”  Its annual revenue is in the billions each year.  Its property tax bill is paltry. The fact other states have caved in to them, with Oregon now headed in the same direction, just illustrates how corrupt our politics have become. 

   We have a government controlled by the “highest” bidders on the road to lowered taxes which translate into crowded classes, a shredded social safety net and a higher ed system which increasingly depends on tuition revenue to fund it which means every generation of college grad starts their post-grad life in huge debt.   


   “4. What local governments get:

   Oregon’s Legislative Revenue Office estimates the changes would cost [affected] local governments about $8 million annually.

     The bill’s advocates note the local governments haven’t been collecting anything from central assessment while the issue has been litigated in court. They say the bill provides some financial assurance to companies and to local governments, because litigation over the issue continues in Oregon’s tax court.”

   RAD:  Financial assurance for local governments = $8 million in lost revenue annually?  The Grinch has stolen Christmas again!  Who will make up the difference?  Or will we face a future, not unlike the past since Measure 5 passed in 1991 of “doing more with less?” 


   “5. Data centers:

   The Oregon Department of Revenue concluded central assessment also applied to data centers, but state lawmakers passed a bill in 2012 that exempts data centers from the tax methodology so long as they participate in another program of property tax breaks. The companies apparently fear a mammoth tax hit when those tax breaks expire. Lawmakers say Amazon and Apple have delayed expansion plans while waiting for the Legislature to act.”

   RAD:  Read this carefully -  data centers were already “exempt” if they got other tax breaks – such as SIPS, enterprise zone tax breaks, tax credits and other breaks. Given the politics of this the legislature will not sunset these other breaks – so getting rid of central assessment will add another layer of tax breaks which shifts the tax burden to you and me!

   Amazon, Apple et al are just playing a “chicken little game” crying the “sky is falling” with the folks in the Puzzle Palace – it’s a “shakedown” strategy?    


   “6. Google Fiber:

   The company says it’s “extremely unlikely” to build a high-speed fiber network in Portland unless central assessment is resolved. But language in the bill, intended to provide an exemption to gigabit service providers, appears to actually make them ineligible for the tax breaks. Lawmakers say they will fix the goof in a separate bill.

   RAD:  The leader of the band, Senator Mark Hass (D. Beaverton) will no doubt be rewarded in the next campaign cycle by Google Fiber once the Puzzle Palace caves in…  


   “7. Other Oregon tech tax breaks:

   Generally speaking, states with the biggest economies -- Texas, in particular -- can afford to offer the biggest breaks. But Oregon has a variety of programs for tech companies, led by the Strategic Investment Program, which exempts Intel’s equipment from most property taxes. The company’s most recent deal is worth $2 billion or more to Intel over 30 years.” 

   RAD:  The point is Oregon’s economy is not a big as Texas or California so we can’t afford to play this game.    

   Oregon delegates to the 1988 DNC in Atlanta wore a tee shirt, including yours truly as a Jackson delegate, proclaiming proudly that “things look different here.” 

   Now we want to be just like Texas! 


   “8. Political contributions:

   Comcast is a regular contributor to Oregon campaigns; the company has given nearly $130,000 since the start of 2014. CenturyLink, which also stands to benefit, contributed more than $54,000 in the same time period. Facebook contributed about $26,000. Apple, Amazon and Google haven’t made Oregon campaign donations since the start of 2014.

   Apple built a 330,000-square-foot data center in Prineville but plans for additional facilities and a big solar farm to power them haven’t materialized. Public officials say Apple and other data center operators are holding off on their Oregon plans while awaiting resolution of a thorny Oregon tax issue.”

   RAD:   These dudes play hardball while Oregon rolls over!  So much for the “Oregon Difference” of the McCall years.  We all know what to call this game – we’re just haggling over the price!   


Page 1 ... 4 5 6 7 8 ... 604 Next 5 Entries »