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Hello and Welcome:

Over the summer of 2010 I began to ask myself, "what do you do if two of our Rights, as citizens of these United States, are diametrically opposed?" I came to the only viable conclusion: you compromise. Our great Nation works when there is compromise.

Right now most of you will agree with me that our political system is broken. What we currently have is: the politics of destruction; special interest groups who have the power and money to dictate policy; politicians who must spend their time raising money for the next election instead of doing the People's business; and, there are those who are so concerned about getting re-elected they cede their responsibilities to the citizenry to those groups making the loudest noises and the greatest threats.

The attacks that we were inundated with during the this election cycle belittled the democratic process. Shame on everyone involved. And, shame on the political obstructionists who are more interested in gaining and maintaining power than doing the people’s business. During these very difficult times all of us should be supporting our President. The challenge for all of us is, how do we improve upon this imperfect union that we call the United States of America? One thing I know for is not by dividing us.

I can remember when I was sixteen years old there was a day when my father called out to me, "Jackie, come quickly. You have to hear this. It's Winston Churchill. Come listen." I raced to the radio and for the first time heard a recording of Churchill's speech to a Nation standing alone against the greatest evil the world has ever known: "...we shall defend our island no matter what the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; and we shall not surrender, and even if, which I do not for a moment believe, this island or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our Empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the British Fleet, would carry on the struggle, until in God's good time, the New World, with all it's power and might, steps forth to the rescue and liberation of The Old."

That day my hero was born. Where are our heroes today? jkt

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Voter Suppression

Ohio Republicans are attempting to end early voting, which is favored by minority voters, over the last weekend before the 2012 election. 93,000 Ohio voters voted the weekend before the election in 2008. Our Republican Secretary of State says we don't need it this year because he is mailing out absentee ballots to everyone. Well. What about all of the voters who have moved in the past year? How many of those will not receive ballots?

In 2000 the Ohio Republicans thwarted many Democrats who went to vote by putting too few voting machines in the precincts that favored Gore (e.g. in the inner city and on campuses) and packed Republican-leaning precincts with machines. People waited in line for up to 8 hours. Many had to leave and never got to vote. I was a poll watcher for MoveOn in a heavily Republican Precinct that day. At some point I went inside. There I espied a room full of voting machines and not one voter, while elsewhere Democrats were waiting for hours to exercise their right to vote.

OLIGARCHY. "A government in which a small group exercises control especially for corrupt and selfish purposes; also: a group exercising such control." -Merriam/Webster-

Make no mistake about it, the American Corporate and Wall Street Oligarchs are making a final grab for complete and total power, abetted by the Republican Party.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

"Legitimate" Rape

Well, it finally happened. Rep. Todd Aikens' remarks about "legitimate" rape of women, his suggestion that a woman raped cannot get pregnant, and his opposition to the availability of an abortion for those victims of rape left me speechless for two days. Let me tell Mr. Akin and the other conservatives who are marketing and promoting their gobbledy goop....6 blocks from my home a man shot and killed his wife and two children. He violated his wife horribly; the police could not tell whether it was done while she was alive or after he murdered her. He raped her and mutilated her. That is the reality of rape. And, to go off topic for a moment, the man had commited an act of violence against another woman and was convicted, but still was able to obtain the guns that slaughtered his wife and children. The man was able to obtain a concealed carry permit, even though he was not eligible. I can't get the vision of this poor woman and her beautiful babies out of my mind. So, when you read my comments going forward, know that all of this is up close and personal with me. It is not some abstract. Has Mr. Akin no pity? Throw the rapist in jail and protect a fertilized egg. But no mercy for the woman abused.


I cringe when I think of the possibility that the GOP and Right to Lifers may succeed in banning abortions amd restricting birth control. I grew up when women didn't have the rights they enjoy today. The Republicans are chipping away at women's freedoms and our privacy. I hope the young women of today don't wake up one morning and find themselves stripped of those rights.

When I was a young woman, someone very close to me got pregnant. The father was a military man temporarily stationed near by. He had no interest in becoming a father. This young woman was desparate. The social stigma attached to an unmarried pregnant woman, fear of her father and her inability to raise a child on her own drove her to seek an abortion. Desparate, she flew all alone to her destination and had an abortion. She made it back home, thank God. However, within a day she was hemorrhaging and was rushed to the hospital. She survived, but she was never able to bear children because of that botched abortion performed in a back room in the slums of Pittsburg, PA.

Women have always sought out methods to prevent pregnancy and there have always been abortions. The fact is that there will always be abortions. It's just a matter of whether they will be available to everyone, no matter their socio-economic class and whether they will be performed safely in a sterile medical environment.

Statistics show the links between family planning and a Nation's increased prosperity and security. Do we want a strong and prosperous country or do we want to sink back into the dark ages of servitude?

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

On the Deficit

Did some people really believe we could go to war, two wars in fact, and not raise taxes to pay for them? Instead, Bush, et al cut taxes and turned a budget surplus into a deficit. I have to wonder, if George Bush had said to the citizens, "I want to invade Iraq, (which the UN inspector on the ground insisted was of no imminent danger to us) and I am going to raise your taxes to pay for it", would the American people have marched to the beat of the drums of war? Would Bush have gotten away with his lies and deception? I'll go even further out on a limb and ask...if we had not fought the war in Iraq, the war that helped drain our treasury and killed thousands, would the Iraqi people have risen up on their own during the Arab Spring and overthrown Saddam Hussein? Was the war all a tragic waste?

Raise the damned taxes. And make sure that those who can afford it the most, pay the most. It's time to pay the piper for our folly.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

The Choice is Clear

Regarding Republican Mitt Romney's choice of Paul Ryan as his running mate: Paul Ryan is a follower of Ayn Rand. I'm familiar with her philosophy. According to Wikipedia, "In ethics, Rand argued for rational egoism (rational self-interest), as the guiding moral principle. She said the individual should "exist for his own sake, neither sacrificing himself to others nor sacrificing others to himself. She referred to egoism as "the virtue of selfishness" in her book of that title." Sound familiar? The new mantra of the Right Wing Republican Party. 

I would remind the reader that Alan Greenspan, Federal Reserve chairman — was an economist and a disciple of Ayn Rand. "The super-low interest rates Greenspan brought in the early 2000s and his long-standing disdain for regulation are now held up as leading causes of the mortgage crisis. The maestro admitted in an October congressional hearing that he had "made a mistake in presuming" that financial firms could regulate themselves."

Need I say more? If elected, Ryan will be a heartbeat from the Presidency. I might add that Rand was also an atheist. I heard yesterday that Ryan has distanced himself from Rand's atheism, however his proposed budget is evidence that he still clings to Rand's economic philosophy of "selfishness". 

90 faculty members and priests at Georgetown, the Jesuit University in Washington, criticized Paul Ryan:

 "Your budget appears to reflect the values of your favorite philosopher, Ayn Rand, rather than the gospel of Jesus Christ."

 "We would be remiss in our duties to you and our students if we did not challenge your continuing misuse of Catholic teaching to defend a budget plan that decimates food programs for struggling families, radically weakens protections for the elderly and sick and gives more tax breaks to the wealthiest few." 

If the Democratic Party and the news media do not highlight the philosophy driving the agenda of the Republican and Tea Parties then they have done a disservice to the American voters. -jkt-