Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Obama Campaign sues to protect voting rights

The Republican Party is a bunch of thugs; they are unprincipled and completely without moral character. They are without honor. What more can I say? Oh yes, John McCain and Sarah Palin are Republicans. Why am I so pissed?

The Michigan Messenger is reporting that The Obama Campaign and Democratic Party have filed a lawsuit in federal court in Michigan to stop the Michigan GOP's plan to use foreclosure lists to challenge voters at the polls.

Bob Bauer, General Council for the Obama Campaign, called the plan to use foreclosure lists, "A new and especially repellent version of caging." You may recall from 2000 that caging is the practice of sending a mailing to a person's address labeled "do not forward" with the intent of removing them from the voting rolls. If a mailing is returned or undeliverable for any reason it is assumed that the person no longer lives at the address and therefore is not eligible to vote in that precinct. That voter is then challenged when they try to vote. It puts the voter in the position of having to prove a negative; that they have not moved to a different address.

"Bauer noted that using foreclosure lists to challenge a voter’s address is “false and illegal” for several reasons. First, because getting a foreclosure notice is not evidence that the person’s address has changed. In Michigan, homeowners have the opportunity to redeem the foreclosure even after a sheriff’s sale has occurred, which means they can stay in the home for many months after a foreclosure notice has been sent. Second, because under Michigan law a person can vote at their old precinct if they lost their home within 60 days of the election."

Mark Brewer, Chairman of the Michigan Democratic Party, "...noted that in July alone 11,000 Michigan residents received foreclosure notices. The McCain campaign, he argued, “wants to add insult to injury” by denying those residents their right to vote. “The right to vote is one of our most fundamental rights as Americans,” said Brewer, “To try to strip our fellow citizens of their right to vote is un-American and unconscionable.

"Last week, James Carabelli, chairman of the Macomb County GOP, told the Messenger’s Eartha Melzer in a phone interview: “We will have a list of foreclosed homes and will make sure people aren’t voting from those addresses.” The Michigan Republican Party has denied that Carabelli made the statements that the Michigan Messenger reported, but Bauer said that the complaint includes quotes from Republican operatives in Ohio and other states saying much the same thing Carabelli said and defending the legitimacy of using foreclosure lists and voter caging techniques.

"Bauer also said that they expect that the lawsuit will allow them to subpoena emails and memos from the state and local GOP officials that will prove that they had obtained foreclosure lists and were planning to use them for this purpose."

I don't even want to live in the same country with such bottom feeders. There should be criminal penalties for illegally depriving Americans of their right to vote. This is not something that should be adjudicated via civil law.

So, Michigan and Ohio, two very important battleground states where the Republican Party will do anything to win!

I was born and raised in Ohio and much of my family lives in Michigan. I spent most of my summers in Michigan as a child and I am sad to say that I have no problem believing that the Republican Party is up to such sleazy behavior.

The 8th congressional district where I lived is represented by John Boehner, the Minority Leader of the House. If he were a man of honor he would put a stop to this crap! But that won't happen because Boehner is a machine politician; a sealzy bottom feeder who will conveniently look the other way while his party breaks the law.

And now you know why I'm FROM Ohio and live in San Francisco. And they call us the fruits and nuts. Go figure.

Don't Forget to Cancel Your Credit Cards Before You Die

I received this in an email from my niece. I wasn't a witness to it but certainly have no problem believing it.

This is so priceless, and so, so easy to see happening, customer service being what it is today.

A lady died this past January, and Citibank billed her for February and march for their annual service charges on her credit card, and added late fees and interest on the monthly charge. The balance had been $0.00 when she died, but now somewhere around $60.00. A family member placed a call to Citibank.

Here is the exchange:

Family member: 'I am calling to tell you she died back in January.'

Citibank: 'The account was never closed and the late fees and charges still apply.'

Family member: 'Maybe, you should turn it over to collections.'

Citibank: 'Since it is two months past due, it already has been.'

Family member: So, what will they do when they find out she is dead?'

Citibank: 'Either report her account to frauds division or report her to the credit bureau, maybe both!'

Family member: 'Do you think God will be mad at her?'

Citibank: 'Excuse me?'

Family member: 'Did you just get what I was telling you - the part about her being dead?'

Citibank: 'Sir, you'll have to speak to my supervisor.'

Supervisor gets on the phone:

Family member: 'I'm calling to tell you, she died back in January with a $0 balance.'

Citibank: 'The account was never closed and late fees and charges still apply.'

Family Member: 'You mean you want to collect from her estate?'

Citibank: (Stammer) 'Are you her lawyer?'

Family member: 'No, I'm her great nephew.' (Lawyer info was given)

Family member: Would you like her new billing address?'

Citibank: 'That might help...'

Family member: 'Odessa Memorial Cemetery, Highway 129, Plot Number 69,'

Citibank: 'Sir, that's a cemetery!'

Family member: 'And what do you do with dead people on your planet???

Priceless!! (wonder if it is was a Master Card).

Underwear with pocket for condoms

The Local, Sweden's news in English, is reporting today on a fashion school that challenged its students to come up with something new and different. Two of the top winners of the competition were:

Fashions for women prisoners, a population that had previously been relegated to unisex t-shirts and jogging pants. In pastel colors and made from organic cotton in a range of styles they are a big hit with the women at Faringso Prison.

But the winner is underwear with a pocket for condoms.

"Three high school students from Helsingborg received the national Young Enterprise (Ung Företagsamhet - UF) award in a ceremony held in Stockholm on Tuesday, Dagens Nyheter reports.

"A little mistake can have major consequences. It's important to have a condom at the ready when it's needed. It's no use if it's in your jacket pocket," Nick Larsson told the newspaper.

Larsson is one of the co-founders of S.T.A.T (Sooner Than Already There), a UF-funded company that has so far managed to sell 350 pairs of underpants."

I don't know about you but I think this is really smart and predict it will be a HUGE success. And if I'm right there will be underpants with pockets for women in the future. Click on the title to this post and read the whole story.

Wonder if the daughter of a certain vice presidential candidate might have benefited from this product.

A tip of the hat to Jan Rosenqvist iin Yterrby, Sweden, for putting us on to this story.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Palin Warned by Court

Yesterday, 9/9/08, Newsweek Magazine posted a story (click on title above) on its website about how Sarah Palin was warned three years ago by an Alaskan judge to "...stop "disparaging" the reputation of Alaska State Trooper Michael Wooten who at the time was undergoing a bitter separation and divorce from Palin's sister Molly."

"Court documents show that Judge [John] Suddock was disturbed by the alleged attacks by Palin and her family members on Wooten's behavior and character. "Disparaging will not be tolerated—it is a form of child abuse," the judge told a settlement hearing in October 2005, according to typed notes of the proceedings. The judge added: "Relatives cannot disparage either. If occurs [sic] the parent needs to set boundaries for their relatives."

The McCain campaign knew this was coming and launched a preemptive strike: a fallacious ad stating that Sen. Obama pushed legislation that would have subjected kindergartners to sex education. They know this is a lie; that there is no truth to it. Sen. Obama supported legislation that would protect children from sexual exploitation.

John McCain has lost all sense of propriety. He has gotten so desperate to win this election that he has sold his sole to the Karl Rove machine.

Newsweek's story continues: Judge Suddock
"...heard testimony from an official of the Alaska State Troopers' union about how Sarah Palin—then a private citizen—and members of her family, including her father and daughter, lodged up to a dozen complaints against Wooten with the state police. The union official told the judge that he had never before been asked to appear as a divorce-case witness, that the union believed family complaints against Wooten were "not job-related," and that Wooten was being "harassed" by Palin and other family members.

But this is not about Michael Wooten; his behavior was apparently pretty dumb. It is about John McCain and whether there are any limits to the slime he is willing to produce in order to gain the highest office in our land. I say there is no limit else he would not have invited onto the ticket with him a person who does not respect the rule of law.

Remember, the State Troopers had investigated Michael Wooten's behavior and disciplined him for it but that didn't satisfy the governor. She wanted his head and continued to go after him. And since she came onto the McCain ticket she has requested that the investigation into her behavior be removed from a bipartisan legislative commission and turned over to the state personnel operation which answers to - that's right, herself - the governor.

The Newsweek story continues:
"Allegations that Palin, her husband Todd, and at least one top gubernatorial aide continued to vilify Wooten—after Palin became Alaska's governor and pressured state police officials to take action against him—are at the center of "Troopergate," a political and ethical controversy which has embroiled Palin's administration and is currently the subject of an official inquiry by a special investigator hired by the state legislature."

I don't know about you but I want a president and vice president who can focus on my needs: a healthy economy, good public education, universal healthcare, energy independence, respect for our planet, and a responsible foreign policy; one that doesn't consist only of a strong military (although that's important) but that utilizes both hard and soft power to relate to the rest of the world and that leads by example.

And above all I want a president and vice president who respect the rule of law, accept the judgment of our courts, and when they lose can suck it up and behave like adults. What do you think?

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Eve Ensler says: Drill, Drill, Drill

Eve Ensler wrings her hands about how to deal with Sarah Palin, the feminist, in today's Huffington Post. I invite you to read her column (click on the title above), then read my response to it below and then if you agree with me post a response on this blog and share it with everybody you know including the Obama campaign. We have no time to lose.

Eve, I'm an unapologetic, unreconstructed modern feminist who spent the 70s and 80s in the streets and political organizing. My feminist credentials are unquestioned and here's what I think about this situation.

There are feminists and there are feminists. Not all feminists are good people and we make a BIG mistake if we assume that they are.

We're fighting to save the planet, to preserve women's reproductive rights, to save public education, to establish a rational energy policy and to engender a mature foreign policy that isn't just a robust military, (although that is important), but one in which the United States employs both soft and hard power; that leads by example.

If we make the mistake of giving Sarah Palin a pass because she identifies as a feminist we give up the fight. On the other hand if we permit her to dominate this campaign we do the same. We have to take her on without permitting her to appear as the presidential candidate. Treat her for what she is: a demagogue who wouldn't know the truth if it hit her in the face. Treat her just as though she were Karl Rove while remembering that John McCain is the candidate.

Call him out for hiding behind her skirts. Take him on for putting a woman out there to lie on his behalf and name the lies: that she told congress no thanks to the Bridge to Nowhere etc. Put it back on McCain. Don't give him a pass on this. Name her for what she is and place the responsibility for her candidacy squarely where it belongs: with John McCain, a candidate who was losing the battle on experience and who threw a hail Mary pass at the 11th hour (putting Palin on his ticket) because he had nowhere else to go.

And finally, remember: McCain-Palen: a Bridge to Nowhere!

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Memes and anecdotes to Share

John Aravosis shared this one via Americablog:

McCain-Palin: a Bridge to Nowhere. "It's a catchphrase that will stick right into people's skull once it starts spreading. It ties together that freakin' bridge she was on both sides of (hey, there's ANOTHER metaphor)!" Thanks, John.

This morning McCain said Palin sold that jet on eBay for a profit! Not even. She put it up on eBay but couldn't sell it so she sold it through a dealer at a half a million dollar loss. Geeze, McCain can't event subtract so how in hell will he balance a budget? Oh, that's right. He doesn't have to do it, he just has to say it. Pa dum bum.

Palin sneered at Barack Obama for being a Community Organizer. Guess she's more ignorant than I thought. What else could you call a political neophyte who advocates small government and slams private sector non-profit activists who do the government's job?

I give Palin credit for a good joke: What's the difference between a hockey mom and a pit bull? Lipstick. Pa dum bum.

McCain tried to win with experience and when it didn't work he switched gears to "Change is coming." Well I'd call that some real change. Pa dum pum.

Palin claims she told Congress "Thanks but no thanks to that bridge" but she actually was for it before she was against it and then took the money and kept it.

Mayor Palin left her hometown $20 million in debt. That's $20 million for 7,000 people. Guess she can't subtract either. Pa dum pum.

And finally, if John McCain were to die before the election do you think the Republican party should elevate Palin to the top of the ticket? Your answer will tell you a lot.

Pass it on!