THIS Op-Ed at Truthout should be required reading. When you cut through the who, to the heart of the debate, the actual record of results, good policy is good politics. Too Terrified to Enter an Arena of Ideas? The Debate Over Cornel West’s Critique of Ta-Nehisi Coates Thursday, January 04, 2018 By Ejike Obineme, Truthout …
Jul 15 2011
Why We Say Save Our Schools
copyright © 2011 Betsy L. Angert. Empathy And Education; BeThink or BeThink.org
I am but one who will stand strong to ensure an equal education for all. All who do or plan to, will express themselves in various ways. Some will March. Others will Rally or gather in Conference. Several have, do, or expect to act locally. Countless change what they can for children within the dynamics that define their family. Nationwide, innumerable Americans join hands and embrace a common cause. Let us Save Our Schools.
Dec 02 2010
WikiLeaks and What It Says About Us
It is easy to be cynical in light of the Wikileaks revelations. The automatic believers in the worst case and the perfidious have had confirmation followed by confirmation in the past few days. An intelligence community and a President promising greater transparency has not followed through on its lofty promises. Do as I say, not as I do, would seem to be its modus opperandi. While I recognize that having the strongest hand at the bargaining table is considered the key to diplomacy, the behind-the-scenes sausage factory present here only confirms the fears of many Americans. The timing could not be worse, especially when a strong anti-government sentiment swept the GOP to power in the House.
Nov 17 2010
If Sarah Palin Did Not Exist, It Would Be Necessary to Invent Her
The celebrity gossip website TMZ has published an immature tirade/flame war involving two of Sarah Palin’s daughters, Willow and Bristol. In it, both Palin daughters frequently exchange profanities with other posters and Willow, aged 14, uses a homophobic slur. This exchange, carried on over Facebook, was in response to a poster’s criticism of their mother’s new TLC show. The whole story would be little more than the softest of soft news, unless their mother had not set herself up to be the eventual leader of the party which claims sole rights over morality. There is a certain gotcha, gutter journalism quality to this story, in keeping with many Palin revelations, but it also fits well within the canon of what we already know about their mother.
Nov 02 2010
111th Congress put policy before politics
Nov 05 2009
Legislative Worrywarts Need Not Apply
Two days have passed since the 2009 election cycle ended and the second-guessing and arm-chair quarterbacking has quite predictably arrived. Everyone has a theory or a unique explanation and each is in the camp of either imminent demise or nonchalant shrugs. I suppose I lean much more to the latter than to the former. I have no alarmist, chilling words of caution to impart to any Democratic candidate up for re-election or election in a year’s time. When some are questioning whether we should let up on the gas pedal, I advocate strongly for pressing down firmly and keeping it there. We have a right to push our agenda just as strongly as Republicans pushed theirs when they were the majority, and skittish popular opinion will always exist in times where discomfort reigns and its end is not clearly visible. That’s how humans are, particularly when they have been led to believe that good times are a birthright.
Nov 01 2009
Nuclear Electricity, the Must Have for the Meantime 20091101
I know that this essay is likely not to be popular with progressive folks, but I am not only a progressive, I am a scientist as well. In my opinion, the only relatively clean option for power that we have, other than natural gas (which is less plentiful and not as clean as the TeeVee adverts say) is the fission of uranium and plutonium.
I realize that this sounds pretty bold, but please bear with me whilst I build my case. We need power in the meantime for the transition between fossil fuels and truly sustainable ones, and nuclear power is the only one that can provide that power. First the physics, then the economics, and then the future.
Sep 10 2009
Republicans, The Loss of Balance, Loss of Sanity, Loss of Relevance
When you are involved in politics there is often a level of paradox. There is the need to stand firm on your agenda, yet there is the requirement of being open to compromise if you are to get that agenda enacted. There is the need for cold, hard eyed realism, yet there must be passion to push forward, even when it looks as though you are going to lose. It all seems to come down to the idea of balance, the Yin and the Yang, constantly opposed, yet each needed to balance the other, if there is to be a harmonious whole.
“Originally posted at Squarestate.net“
Sep 07 2009
Is There A Fair Trade For Giving Up The Public Option?
To achieve anything in politics or anything else in life one critical factor is to have a clearly defined end state. Without this you can not know when you have actually crossed the finish line. We all know, either from watching politics or being involved directly, how easy it is to get so focused on the fight you lose track of the over all goals. It seems to the Dog this has become the case with Health Care Reform in general and the Public Option in particular. Over the last few months the Netroots has been strongly engaged in trying to get a version of the public option enacted as part of the over all health care reform.
“Originally posted at Squarestate.net“
Sep 05 2009
Japan’s Sea Of Change
On Sunday August 30 voters in Japan did something that most thought would never take place a change of government. Unlike previous times one Liberal Democratic Party leader wasn’t replacing another. In a complete about face voters took a huge leap of faith and voted in the opposition Democratic Party of Japan led by Yukio Hatayama.
In what Americans call party platforms (manifestos in Japan) the Democrats laid out what they hoped to achieve if elected. One plank of the platform stood out: Bureaucratic reform. Unlike America lawmakers don’t have large staffs which include experts in several fields of the members interest. Because of this elected officials have become overly dependent upon carrier bureaucrats for any research or relevant information needed when crafting legislation. Given this the final bill will mirror not the original ideas put forth by its sponsor but those of the bureaucrat providing the information because its their job to promote policies of the ministry which employees them rather than those of the government in power.
Additionally there are few independent think tanks in Tokyo able to provide a further layer of expertise unlike Washington which has hundreds of them reflecting the ideas of the political landscape.
The Democratic Party of Japan could achieve the changes in the current system if the choose to be bold.
First they could have civil service reform enacted through legislation which would if done right keep the ministries independent but allow for parliamentary oversight which doesn’t really exist at this time. Once a person joins the civil service they should no longer be allowed promotions based on seniority rather than merit.
Second they should increase the size of the members staffs so that one: They will have access to their own experts and two they can lose their reliance upon the bureaucracy.
While these are simple ideas the fact remains that this is still Japan and change here usually comes at a glacial pace no matter which party controls the Diet.
Jul 15 2009
Late Weird Update! Time To Tax The Ultra Wealthy Appropriately
One of the most pernicious frames the Republican Party and Grover Norquist have ever placed on our nation is this idea that the rich should not be taxed at much higher levels than the rest of the nation. This frame is so well placed it has become nearly and article of faith for the nation if we some how put a significant amount of tax on those who can most afford it this punishes the whole nation. The Dog thinks this is flatly insane.
“Originally posted at Squarestate.net”
So who says we are shouting down a whole or only talking to ourselves? Today the Dog got an e-mail from the Neil Cavuto show on Fox “Going out of” Business Network asking if he would like to be on the show to talk about raising taxes on the rich. After thinking it through the Dog has turned them down, why be a chump they can treat like a punching bag? If this were one of the Dog’s signature issues it would have been different, but since this was a one off essay, it is not worth outing the hound to look like a putz. Still we are getting attention on our humble blogs, so as Buhdy says “SHOUT LOUDER!”
Jun 18 2009
Question about DD Policy re Tocquedeville Essays
I have been meaning to write this for the past week, but with a certain overlord’s antics and another overlord’s pronouncements I’ve been a bit distracted. My question is why do Tocquedeville’s diaries not seem to show up in the list on the right hand side of the page? He published an excellent diary late (est time very late) the night of June 9th on globalization (https://www.docudharma.com/showDiary.do?diaryId=14130) that was barely noticed by most people because by the time they awakened the next morning it had slid down the front page. My guess is that had it been on the list on the right hand side of the page it would have been read more widely. He has long been one of my favorite writers in orange and it’s great to know that he will be publishing here. A review of essays published just now showed me that I have missed a good number. Is it because I was too busy writing about ATJs and autobanning patrols and other b.s. and Tocquedeville’s essays are actually included in the list on the right, well, then I will have learned a lesson and will waste less time in other places.
If this essay makes no sense, please tell me and I will delete.