Tag Archives: Politics

On The Economy: Sequester, Revenues, and Timing

Lets Make a Deal

Jared Bernstein’s blog On The Economy breaks down how the Republicans could have had a much better deal on spending cuts a few months ago. A combination of timing and GOP sedition are bringing the country to the economic brink, yet again. Republicans refuse to govern with the first black President. How many more scenarios like this do we need to draw this conclusion?

The New Republic: Original Sin

Failed GOP

Sam Tanenhaus writes a compelling article in The New Republic about the inevitable decline of the GOP if it remains the party of just white people, which is its current trend. The GOP not only needs to change its messengers, it needs to change its message. The Republican Party of the present day is certainly not the party of Lincoln, but, more apparently, the party of John C. Calhoun. Conservatism has become the code word for bigotry with many Republicans channeling Jim Crow Dixiecrats. I’m happy to say that the Southern Strategy is exposed and failing.

…the GOP is in jeopardy, the gravest since 1964, of ceasing to be a national party.

The article offers a great history lesson of conservatism and the GOP in America. During the 20th century, liberalism is equated to communism. Sound familiar?  But Tanenhaus details that John C. Calhoun, pro-slavery politician and author of “nullification” (also known as state’s rights) influenced countless conservatives for more than a century, including William F. Buckley, Jim Crow proponent and the founder of National Review magazine, Barry Goldwater and the GOP icon, Ronald Reagan.

The politics of “nullification” is nothing new yet it is veiled in the rhetoric and claims of “big government”. It is simply the desire of some conservatives, to no longer be a part of our democratic collective. Tax avoidance is the ploy used to “starve the beast” or make sure that certain groups or factions that are deemed undesirable by the extreme right-wing do not benefit from taxpayer dollars.

We hear the echoes of nullification in the venting of anti-government passions and also in campaigns to “starve government,” curtail voter registration, repeal legislation, delegitimize presidents. There is a strong sectionalist bias in these efforts.

As Tanenhaus asserts, the GOP strategy is a losing strategy stuck in a bygone era of white supremacy. The country has changed both philosophically and demographically, but I surmise the GOP will be the last to acknowledge that fact.

The State of the Union, Stronger

SOTUTogether, we have cleared away the rubble of crisis, and can say with renewed confidence that the state of our union is stronger.

I am frequently inspired by President Obama, and tonight was no exception. I thought Mr. Obama’s State of Union speech was very good overall. It was well-delivered and touched on the policy issues that are at the forefront some of our country’s most vigorous debates — gun control, immigration reform and sequestration to name a few. The speech was chock full of policy and struck a tone that demonstrates that Mr. Obama is leading in his second term with a greater resolve.

The surprise for many in the speech was the President’s proposal to raise the minimum wage to $9 an hour, and his announcement to bring 34,000 American troops home from Afghanistan this year. Great news after 10 years of war. The President also brought several visionary, forward thinking ideas to the speech, but what I found most interesting about the speech was Mr. Obama’s vision for America’s economic future through innovation. As well, Mr. Obama’s vision for education in America from preschool to post-secondary remains a consistent theme in many of his speeches. The Washington Post highlights five takeaways from the State of the Union speech, and the Los Angeles Times provides a breakdown by topic.

For me, what separates Mr. Obama from so many other leaders in American politics today is his focus, perseverance and willingness to be a pioneer and trendsetter in the face of great obstinacy and resistance from the GOP. His Presidency is progressing toward being truly transformational for the future of the United States. Forward.

Immigration Reform

Immigration ReformOn January 2nd, the White House ruled that foreign spouses and children can stay with their U.S. citizen relatives if they are applying for green cards (permanent residency). This is another step in the right direction as the Obama Administration moves toward comprehensive immigration reform. Nancy Pelosi mentioned immigration reform in her remarks at the opening of 113th Congress, but there was no mention from John Boehner. President Obama has promised to introduce an immigration reform bill shortly after his inauguration that will give legal status to approximately 11 million undocumented immigrants. I think he will do just that. Besides, something must be done on immigration reform in his second term, and after garnering 71% of the Hispanic vote in the 2012 Election, I think that President Obama has a mandate.

The Republicans will charge that President Obama needs to secure our borders, but Mr. Obama has been doing that and more. In fact, according to Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) under the Obama Administration in FY11 alone almost 400,000 immigrants were deported, and in FY12 over 400,000 immigrants were deported. Recent deportations, within the last fiscal year, and as a matter of priority, fell into the category of immigrants who were convicted of felonies or misdemeanors as the Obama Administration fine-tuned its deportation policy.

One might ask, what happened to the significance of the sonnet, “New Colossus” inscribed at the base of the Statue of Liberty, “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free“. Or does this phrase only have application if the immigrant population is European? Conservative Republicans do not want immigration reform, and if the GOP remains on its same course, immigrants who may someday become U.S. citizens represent yet another constituency with whom they will have no influence, especially Hispanic immigrants. With the political composition of 113th Congress, immigration reform promises to be another gritty battle for the Obama Administration. Nonetheless, now is the time for comprehensive immigration reform.

Read the ABC Univision piece: Analysis: 6 Things Obama Needs To Do for Immigration Reform

The Emancipation Proclamation, 150 Years Later: Hear the Many Voices That Cried Freedom

EP2On the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, Time Magazine examines this historic abolitionist document.

“This is truly a democratic literature. It begins in the late 1600s as far as the records show, mostly with religious writings. What’s in here are writings of every genre: there are sermons and religious tracts; there are novels and poems and plays and short stories and magazine articles; there are even children’s books and alphabet books with little rhymes that areabolitionist. Everything you could imagine in terms of human utterance and the scope of human imagination.”

Read the full article at http://nation.time.com/2013/01/01/the-emancipation-proclamation-150-years-later-hear-the-many-voices-that-cried-freedom/

By Jan. 01, 2013

Ambassador Susan Rice Withdraws

Rice WithdrawalIn my time, I’ve seen most women, especially minority women Democrats rejected, verbally attacked and the content of their character assailed by these right wing Republican “Dixiecrats”. Senators like Lindsay Graham defends that slave-owning rag they call the Confederate Flag. It took the nomination of Barack Obama for President before John McCain claimed he was wrong for 25 years in voting against the Martin Luther King national holiday resolution passed through the Senate. They attacked Anita Hill and assailed the content of her character just to place an unqualified “Uncle Thomas” on the US Supreme Court. They went after a very qualified Lani Guinier for Attorney General because she is a Civil Rights Activist. They verbally attacked Hillary Clinton as First Lady because she championed causes and spoke out and dared not to act like a Republican Stepford Wife.

Both Lindsay Graham, John McCain and others put Sonia Sotomayor through the mill for saying “I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn’t lived that life”. What did Justice Sotomayor say that wasn’t true, especially considering they are the very same white males of which she speaks? Condoleezza Rice was nothing less than inept as secretary of state, yet the very same “Dixiecrats” dare attack a scholar like Ambassador Susan Rice. And now, that Ambassador Rice has withdrawn, we get both John McCain and Lindsay Graham hypocritically wishing her well and respecting her decision – those dirty bottom dwelling bastards. I’m not going to stand on eloquence to express how loathsome these bigoted bastards really are. I’m going to call them for what they are, dirty women hating (expletive deleted).

This post contributed by Victorio Loubriel 12.13.2012

Read about the Republican response at http://firstread.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/12/13/15889339-republicans-give-measured-response-to-rice-withdrawal?lite

 

Right To Work

imagesCAMT40TI

Don’t be fooled by the term, “Right To Work”. It’s the most insidious plot by Republicans to make sure that Unions are busted and workers are given the shaft. State legislatures must be controlled by Democrats or worker’s rights will be further undermined.

Read the Washington Post article at the following link: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2012/12/10/the-michigan-right-to-work-battle-explained/

Governing While Black

Obama BMH

“Black people do not lead as white people do. The styles are uniquely different, as they should be based upon cultural characteristics and societal influences. Black leaders face unique challenges.”

See my recent post entitled Governing While Black under Salient Points.