Tag Archives: Republican

Eight votes? But Do Iowa Caucus Votes Really Count?

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For anyone of us who ever said or even just thought “My one vote doesn’t really make a big difference, it’s just one vote out of many and I don’t really like any of the candidates anyway,” think about eight votes. Yes, as crazy as it seems only eight votes came between a winner and loser last night at the Iowa Republican Caucus. I mean that is Kate + 8 minus Kate (always a good thing) Eight Maids A Milking, Adam Sandler’s Eight Crazy Nights movie and eerily enough this 2010 documentary; “8: The Mormon Proposition.”  Yeah, I’m sure the eight is a sign from God or some high-up Latter-Day somebody.

So, when the more than 1700 Iowa caucus locations finally hand-tabulated their votes by 2 a.m. this morning, Mitt Romney received 30,015 votes and Rick Santorum got 30,007. Both ended up with 24.6% of the vote. Hardly enough for a good Iowa corn-boil. And considering Romney outspent Santorum 50 to 1, it was actually a good show for Santorum. The rest of the candidates were pretty-much busy trying to pretend how “Iowan” they really were and well, that didn’t work out too well for them, although Ron Paul did much better than expected, coming in third.

Imagine you lived in Iowa and you were on your way to vote in the caucus and you got sidetracked by going to a movie, talking on your iPhone, texting, eating dinner out, having a few beers or visiting friends. If just eight people did that, it could have totally changed the outcome of the caucus vote. But, it probably will not matter or ultimately change the outcome of who eventually becomes the Republican nominee. In 2008, Mike Huckabee won the Iowa Caucus but John McCain became the nominee, George H.W. Bush became President with only 18% of the Iowa vote and Clinton won in 1992 with 2.8% of the Iowa vote.

But, in the political scheme of things although $40 million was collectively spent in Iowa by the potential candidates, the whole scenario still smacks of running for the city council. With CNN and MSNBC trying their hardest to make it out to be a big deal with their flashy caucus graphics, panels of pundits sitting around with not much to say, and television hours spent waiting for the vote counters to finish, It’s still Iowa. A state that has older demographics, mostly white with under 5% of the people voting. It’s not a true representation of all voters at all and yet they have this power of the caucus. Yes, they have very nice people in Iowa but there are more independent voters than either registered Republicans or Democrats. So, why the heck would they be considered a cross-section of America for Republican or Democratic caucuses? Beats me, their midwestern charm, work ethic and integrity is far above any of the politicians they vote for.

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Congress Approval Rating and National Unemployment Rate at 9%

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A New York Times/CBS News poll broke the news this week that Congress’s approval rating is 9%.  Coincidentally, 9% is also our national unemployment rate for September and most of October, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The unemployment figure seems almost eerily connected to our do-nothing-for-jobs Congress and their bottom-feeder ratings as they spent this week in session, once again doing nothing for jobs or the economy. It’s like some weird “here is a nine for you too Congress since you won’t recognize and do anything about ours.” Of course, 9% is only the national average jobless rate, some states like Nevada, have a 23% unemployment rate.

They did however, pass a really important bill in the House that would issue commemorative coins for Baseball Hall of Fame. Also, just so you don’t get the idea that they can’t accomplish anything at all together in a big way, the commemorative coins issue was passed overwhelmingly.  See, when the chips-er coins are down and the issue has nothing to do with Obama or jobs or the economy, Republicans can unite and really make a difference.

Remember that old saying about getting out of something what you put into it?  I think our Congress is actually reaping the rewards of what they have, in fact, done for the American people, our jobs and the economic situation.  I think 9% is actually pretty high but of course who knows how many friends, relatives, lobbyists, insurance companies, banks, other corporations etc. were included in the poll (oh wait, corporations aren’t people I hope they didn’t get polled).

Even though the House is a Republican strong hold right now, many polls are showing that the majority of American people, regardless of party affiliation have made it crystal clear they support President Obama’s Job Act, temporary band-aid or not, because it is at least a plan for doing something for jobs and the economy and they feel he is trying.  But, the Republicans are blocking it in Congress and have yet to come up with their own plan other than a big NO because they can’t possibly vote on an Obama plan, even if it will help the American people. Their plan seems to be politics first, people last. I wonder how low their rating can go?

Since the Republicans now seem to represent everything the American People hate about the economy, it is only a matter of minutes before they will represent everything the American People hate. When you become a politician for all the wrong reasons and you vote as a block not to help your own constituents and the American People, you will not only end up humiliated by a 9% approval rating but sooner rather than later–no job.

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Is 9-9-9 wrong, wrong, wrong ?

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Ask any political PR person and they will tell you it’s great to have a catchy, roll-off-the-tongue, memorable catch phrase associated with a candidate. Unless that catch phrase is doomed to conjure up bad memories like trickle down economics or read my lips; no more taxes among many others. Herman Cain, of Godfather’s Pizza fame (he is the ex-CEO) and the Republican flavor of the month vying for their nomination to be the candidate for President, has such a catch phrase; 9-9-9.  While their field is plenty crowded with Gingrich, Romney, Perry, Bachman, Paul and others too numerous or insignificant to mention, none of them have the edge on the catchy 9-9-9 phrase that has defined Cain’s campaign. But, is it wrong to throw the rich, middle class and poor into the same tax barrel? Or, is it just plain stupid?

On Cain’s own website,  he says his 9-9-9 plan will “fix” the economy. It would abolish our entire tax code including any loopholes or tax credits (like the earned income tax credit for low-income earners) . His plan calls for 9 percent corporate tax, 9 percent personal income tax and 9 percent national sales tax. Cain says it would be simple and fair. I must be missing something here, I don’t see the “fair” part.  There would be no tax on capital gains or dividends so once again the rich get richer. Some of the rich that pay 28-35 percent taxes on their income would pay 9 percent and the 30 million Americans that presently pay no federal income tax because they don’t make enough to do so and are at or below the poverty level will pay 9 percent under Cain’s “simple” plan. All Americans will also have to pay 9 percent on consumer goods for gas, food and medicine etc. which of course, hurts lower-income people far more than the rich.

Since Cain’s plan is for everyone including businesses, all corporations that presently take advantage of every loophole known to mankind and typically end up paying on average 26 percent in taxes, will get a nice slash to 9 percent. Do you think they will take the tax cut and turn that windfall into jobs? Or will the greedy corporations just pocket the windfall and give their CEO’s bigger bonuses? I have my own answer on that one and it doesn’t involve helping others or aiding the general economy.

I am no economist. I don’t hail from a think tank and have a hard enough time balancing a check book but I do know that a catchy slogan does not an economy fix make. This plan is yet another idea from an ex-corporate CEO that still thinks like big business. Making the rich, richer and the poor, poorer is not my idea of “fair.” As it says on Herman Cain’s front page of his website in big block letters; “Let’s Get Real”. I can’t wait until he, or any other politician actually does–but I’m not holding my breath.

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Sarah Palin’s Magical Mystery Rogue Bus Tour Starts Rolling Today

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You don’t need tickets but donations are requested, sought after and as welcome as a homemade caribou stew.  Former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin began a bus tour today that will tour the eastern U.S. and other points unknown (the bus stops are evidently top secret until she is ready to spill the beans).  She calls it the “One Nation Tour” and her “people” say that the bus will tour historical sites that were key to the formation, survival and growth of the U.S.  I don’t quite know what all that exactly means but rest assured it is all very Palin patriotic. I call it the Magical Mystery Rogue Bus Tour because well, after all she is a self-proclaimed rogue and it seems a mystery to me that if she isn’t going to run for the Republican nomination then the bus tour must hold some other to-be-explained magic.

The bus is red, white and blue and has a bigger than life U.S. Constitution painted on it along with some of the lines of the Pledge of Allegiance. The back of the bus has the painted words “Join the Fundamental Restoration of America.” The bus is large and is quite the attention grabber but the bus route outside of “going up the east coast” is mired in mystery. Her website shows a map of a few stops with todays hot spot stop, Washington D.C.  After checking out her website where it noted Palin is embarking on a tour, I could only think what kind of tour? Comedy tour? Speaking Tour?  The fundamental restoration of America thing never crossed my mind. Silly me.  I figured she was testing the waters to be a Republican nominee for President and join the other dozen or so candidates. There are so many candidates and potential candidates now, it’s kind of like club Repub.

So today Palin showed up in Washington D.C. to take part in the “Rolling Thunder” motorcycle ride. It began at the Pentagon and ended at the Vietnam Memorial.  Clad in a leather jacket, she was on the back of a motorcycle driven by her daughter Willow.  Her husband Todd and daughter Bristol were on separate bikes.  Not all the bikers were pleased with the reporters and publicity Palin and her family were receiving.  I guess they felt the Palin’s were stealing their “thunder.” Participants are typically Vietnam Vets and their families.

I don’t know what Palin has up her sleeve or even in her bus but she has purchased a $1.7 million dollar house in Scottsdale Arizona. It could be a respite from the cold Alaskan winters or to keep an eye on Bristol who also has an Arizona home.  It could also be an easier spot geographically to throw her hat into the club Repub ring.  Either way–there goes the neighborhood.

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Newt Gingrich: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner At Tiffany’s To The Tune Of $500,000?

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Now I get it.  A “real” fiscal conservative like Newt Gingrich considers himself suitable to run the country’s budget, finances and economy yet the sky is the limit on his personal Tiffany& Co. jewelry store debt.  I figure you would have to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner at Tiffany’s to accumulate the time it would take to spend $500,000 in a couple of years. I know Tiffany’s is pricey and it would depend entirely on purchases but Gingrich and his third wife Callista sure don’t practice fiscal conservatism in their “real”  life.  Don’t they know they can pick up perfectly good fake Tiffany jewelry on any New York City corner or Mexican resort town?

The ex-Congressman and Speaker of the House who has thrown his hat into the Republican Presidential nominee ring on various changing platforms like family values (he has been married three times and divorced a wife who had cancer) and of course fiscal conservatism. The Tiffany story broke yesterday by Politico’s  Jake Sherman.  It immediately made the rounds of all the usual places but Gingrich and his camp have been busy “no commenting” on his revolving charge at Tiffany’s with an extraordinarily high debt ceiling.  Interest rate? Unknown.

Shockingly, Greta Van Susteren somehow mustered up the nerve (Gingrich was until recently a Fox contributor) to ask him on her show last night about the Tiffany & Co. bill.  She of course, backed down immediately when he said “I’m not commenting on stuff like that.”  Fox has long had this love-affair with Gingrich and his political analyst skills (quite the joke to me).

So, I’m wondering if Gingrich the professed candidate does not want to comment on “stuff like that,” what exactly is he willing to comment on that just might be of interest to potential voters?  Are we really supposed to believe that he is in touch with the masses?  Or that he can be fiscally conservative with our money in Washington?  Does he think  for one minute that just because the wimps at Fox News back down from asking him questions that the rest of the media will too?  This guy is so far out of touch with real people that I can’t even believe Republicans will end up standing for whatever it is he says he stands for. The reality is Gingrich stands for the elitist, business-as-usual, good-old-boy image that even the Republicans are trying to shake.

I’m going to go out on a very short limb here and say that Newt Gingrich is toast. He’ll never win the Republican nomination and he will keep rubbing everyone  (including his own party) the wrong way until the only show he will be wanted on is Fox. That’s how you know you are toast.

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Trump Not Running For President: So When Does The Circus Leave Town?

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Surprise, surprise.  The daily care and feeding of Donald Trump’s supercalifragilistic ego does not necessarily require him to seek the highest office in the land. In a press release issued today, Trump (or whoever wrote it) stated: “After considerable deliberation and reflection (probably reflection in a mirror)  I have decided not to pursue the office of the Presidency…”  Part of his blah, blah, blah also states that he has a strong conviction that if he were to run he would win the primary and ultimately, the general election (yeah, and I’m convinced that this post will go viral and have half-a-million hits by tomorrow).  He adds that business is his greatest passion and he is not ready to leave the private sector. I also assume he wants to spend more time on his delusions of grandeur.

So, is the Trump political circus set to leave town?  Will it be possible for some of the main stream media, most notably Fox, to quit tying up the airwaves with Trump’s fake platforms and obsessive me, me, me pretend issues? It appears that Trump played his cards right under the big top media circus. He was on major news shows, major non-news shows and just about any forum with a microphone or camera. Many of us knew he would never run but he fooled a lot of the media into believing he was the “hot ticket.” I’m sure he was holding off to make sure his “reality” show would be picked up but more importantly this  maybe-I’m-running-maybe-I’m-not stuff was great PR for his show and the infamous Trump “brand.” Aren’t we all just dying for some Trump water or a Trump tie?

Trump’s polling numbers were way down the last few weeks but with Trump’s green tinted (for money) glasses he saw that he had “millions’ of followers that were willing to drink his Kool-Aid. I’m sure the three-time bankrupt business man would have loved the financial scrutiny he would have been under had he decided to be a viable candidate but as many have said he was never going to run anyway so it was never a concern.  I was hoping the Trump circus would leave town but his press release states that he is going to continue to voice his opinions loudly (I’m sure with his usual classy vocabulary) and provide valuable services to the country. If anyone believes this last statement then you are obviously one of the “millions” of his sad followers.

So, with Trump officially going back to TV boardroom land and business-as-usual, it looks like the Republicans will have to send in the rest of their clowns to join the circus. I guess with politics anymore–the circus never really does leave town.

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Donald Trump and Sarah Palin: Dumb and Dumber

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Evidently we now have two quasi-maybe-possible U.S. Presidential candidates that are like-minded when it comes to what they think most Americans find really important. Even with our present crappy economic problems and polarizing political climate looming  Sarah Palin  recently chose to  jump on Donald Trump‘s bandwagon of “Show us the birth certificate” President Obama, which they both seem to feel is unfinished priority business.  I guess because running on this type of platform is better than no platform at all.  And you get to go on those newsy chat shows like Fox and Friends and expound on whatever you want as long as it is shallow, repetitive and without merit. This duo truly is the Dumb and Dumber of our current political scene.

Trump, with his feet planted firmly in egomaniac mode has hired a private investigative team to look under rocks and Hawaiian flora and fauna to find Obama’s birth certificate because he doesn’t believe the one that was presented by the state of Hawaii is real or legal or I guess, up to Trumps standards of reality which of course are based on reality television.

Now Palin, who once actually said she believed Obama’s birth certificate was real and felt the birther movement was annoying and a distraction has now flipped her switch over to the dumb side stating that maybe Trump has a point or something…Of course she also had her own reality show so possibly the reality is that ego trumps all and it doesn’t really matter what facts are presented. Maybe when you are a rogue and a maverick you are supposed to spend your time waffling back and forth between fact and fiction and jumping on the nearest outspoken/crazy bandwagon?

Right now, potential presidential candidates for 2012 are a dime a dozen with no clear front-runner at all for the Republicans. So it could very well be that the most outrageous and off-the-wall candidate could win. While we as Americans concern ourselves with the debt ceiling, jobs, healthcare, taxes and real life matters, we have potential candidates like dumb and dumber that just want to take us all for a ride.  Nothing unusual for American politics to be sure but it would be nice to get rid of the clutter and quit making our politics a joke.

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Should NPR Pander to the Right or Cut Loose With the Left?

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National Public Radio is caught between the proverbial rock and a hard radio place. They can be as liberal as they profess not to be and give up their use/need  of  partial public funding or they can keep taking those tax dollars and pretend to be neutral. 

 NPR hasn’t had a banner PR year. First came the Juan Williams firing fiasco and then yesterday NPR President and CEO Vivian Schiller (resigned and was forced out) after a conservative activist (James O’Keefe) “sting” operation taped a non-news NPR executive bashing the Tea Party and calling its members racist and blah, blah, blah.  Bashing the Tea Party in my book is not a bad thing but if you are a purported non-biased, neutral, down-the-middle-of-the-road publicly funded radio station it is nothing short of catastrophic. At least that is what the Congressional Republicans are saying as some of them discuss pulling the plug on NPR’s funding.

Depending on who you believe, NPR gets anywhere from 2% to 16% public funding from various sources: the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and other federal, state and local sources.  NPR CEO’s have stated for years that hundreds of local stations would “go dark” without the public funds. I’m no expert on their funding but I do know that with public funding it means you have to please all of the people all of the time. An impossible task. You also have to please the politically correct police and every Republican on the planet. But, many Repubs don’t like NPR so that part is a lost cause.

The best thing NPR can do is quit pandering to the Republicans just for the money. Quit trying to feign interest in being totally unbiased when human beings are involved that have obvious opinions and biases. They should also drop the we are better than everyone else attitude because clearly with all these recent problems-they are not necessarily better just different. I like different and so do tons of NPR listeners and backers but they need to get off their high horse and call a spade a spade. Yes, they are more unbiased than most news entities out there but yes, they lean-to-the-left.

But most importantly, NPR stands for PUBLIC and without PUBLIC  like myself and millions of others who give money during their “pledge” drives there would be no shows. We give because of the on-air talent, people in the field and behind the scenes workers helping to produce shows. Many could care less about their CEO’s unless they are doing something stupid, which seems a common thing lately. Maybe it is time for NPR to pander to the masses that actually listen to them and quit pretending to be something they are not. They are a great liberal news entity with excellent reporters and writers. And, that’s not a bad thing.

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Sarah Palin tells Entertainment Tonight she might run for President in 2012

How appropriate is it that Sarah Palin chose an entertainment venue to let us know “she would consider” running for President in 2012?  In an Entertainment Tonight piece airing Thursday and Friday,  She told the tabloid host Mary Hart that she would think about running after it was discussed with her family and all were in agreement and if she felt that no one running (as a Republican) could do a good job. She said right now, she is just getting the lay of the land. I don’t know what that statement means, so I guess it is open to interpretation, kind of like a definite maybe. I am really curious about the yardstick she will use to measure the other potential candidates on doing a good job. I also wonder if Newt Gingrich, Mike Huckabee and Mitt Romney are aware they are being closely monitored by Palin and her crew and if she doesn’t deem them up-to-snuff then she just might have to jump into the fray of  the I’m-not-running-but-really-I-am candidates.

In the Thursday ET show Palin showed Hart around her home in Alaska, quite a large estate that Palin said “Todd and his buddies built’. She called it a nice, homey, shelter. Making it sound like Todd and his buddies built some kind of lean-to-tree-house thingy. It is actually a large house on a lake with what appears to be a lot of property. So much for the down-home, we’re just regular folks living in the back-woods of Alaska tour.

Television viewers however, will get to see much more of Palin and her family Nov. 14 when her TLC program “Sarah Palin’s Alaska” premiers and  the “event” as it is being called will air for eight weeks.  Even though the show consists of her real life, with her real family, in her real home town. Palin told Hart on ET that this is not a “reality show”. The trailer for the new show does show her doing “real” mom type things however like; fishing, kayaking, skiing, watching bears etc. , the type of things most regular moms can relate to.

So while Palin mulls over her television future with TLC and her political future with the RNP, Americans can be assured that as an ex-Alaska Governor who quit before her term was up to write books and join the circus, (political speaking for money circus), she will keep the interests of all us regular-folk Americans in mind when making her decision to run or not. You Betcha!

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