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A recently reaquainted high school friend recently asked me how I got so interested in politics.  I write and occasional diary on Daily Kos, but rant on facebook regularly.  She commented that I was not really political in high school.  That question lead to the self reflection below the squiggle.

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I believe we can all agree that we need to support a strong public education system for ALL our children.  

Wisconsin's voucher program is clearly a move to privatize education, support religious schools, and set up our community with a "winners" and "losers" school system.  The winners being the strongly supported private schools (religious and for profit), and the losers being the kids in the increasingly underfunded public schools (who pay not only for their education, but also subsidize the voucher system).  This is a competitive model that is well understood by business interests.  This works well for many things, but is exactly the wrong model for public education.  The best public education model recognizes that ALL children deserve an excellent education so that they may reach their full potential in life. This is a collaborative model where the goal is only "winners".  

This may all seem like hyperbole, but it is not intended that way.  Some facts are below the squiggle.  

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In a perfect world we could vote for a candidate that would closely reflect our views.  In a perfect world we would have more choices so that we could find a candidate that would most closely reflect our views.  But we do not have a perfect system.  In general, we have to chose between two candidates.  So we need to own the whole package.

I will say it is assumed that both Democrats and Republicans wish for their tax money to be spent wisely and with the best outcomes.

On the Democrats side we have a President who inherited a mess.  For those who have conveniently forgotten, President Obama inherited an economy in free fall and a financial system in danger of collapse.  He also faced a congress where several members publicly stated that their primary goal was to make him a one term president.  So our deficit grew, and our economy slowly recovered, thanks in part to the stimulus money provided.  The deficit could be lower now, however the Republicans refused to let the Bush tax cuts expire.  

In general Democrats value the environment, education, social supports, and more equitable distribution of wealth among other things.  We can complain if these thing do not happen, but should not complain about higher taxes, more restrictive environmental restrictions (that may hamper our outdoor fun) and occasional abuses of the social support system by those who unfairly take advantage of it.  There will be some abuse in any program, including some unneeded bureaucracy in any complex system.  We should minimize these and always strive to eliminate them, but logically we know they will exist.

On the Republican side.  I get it. You want less government, less taxes, and to operate businesses with less restrictions.  Everyone is responsible for themselves.  That is a perfectly coherent philosophy.  But Republicans must realize that their political base includes those that use personal interpretation of the bible to govern, and those that do not want any restrictions on guns, and those that want to show our military might around the world.  
So Republicans can be proud of their lower taxes, but should not complain when we impose religious norms on everybody (christian or otherwise), tragic shootings occur, and we get involved in oversea wars.
States run by Republicans have poor education systems.  So Republicans should not complain when their child cannot get the extra help they need in school to be successful.
Since the wealthy take the bulk of the tax breaks that congress gives out, low income Republicans should not complain about their taxes, because they could pay less if the wealthy paid more.  
Since limited government means limited services and governmental oversight.  Republicans should not complain when they do not have social support services from firefighting to unemployment insurance.  They should not complain when toxic wastes are in the foods they eat, or water they drink, or the town they live in.

Single issue voters really annoy me (Right and Left).  They want their neighbors to agree with them on one issue, but are oblivious to the fact that their decision has consequences in many other areas.  

I would say that we all want governmental services when we think we need them, we just do not want to pay for them.  We all want a clean environment, we just do not want this to inconvenience us in any way.  

Ultimately the best decisions are made from both parties talking to one and another.  Unfortunately, the Karl Rove and the Tea Party do not negotiate.  So we have a dysfunctional government and an obstructionist Republican party.

We can have a functional government again. We just need to have the guts to kick out the extremists. We need to reward politicians that have a true knowledge of the issues, and are willing to work across the isle with the moderates on the other side.  For those who know me I will say it again.  We need to get the corporate influence out of politics so we can return it to the people.  


Wed Sep 19, 2012 at 06:46 AM PDT

The 1% vs. the 1%

by cheesehead77

Mitt Romney and his 1% are at war with another 1% (possibly himself).  If Mitt Romney had stated this more elegantly and factually, he could have used the chart below to report how many people are possibly "freeloading" off of society.  

1% is the percent of individuals that do not pay any federal income tax, and are not employed, elderly, or low income. I know that Mr. Romney and his friends at Fox News would like you to believe that this number is much higher, but it is not.  

Actually Mitt Romney and some of his millionaire friends at his Florida fundraiser may be in that 1%.  We will never know about Mitt Romney unless he releases his tax returns.



I cannot understand why we are still having a public conversation about "trickle down economics".  

This is the philosophy where tax breaks are given to the wealthiest  among us, in the hopes that they will create jobs, and eventually money will trickle down from these wealthy individuals to everyone else. This does not make sense.  Our economy is driven by supply and demand, not the philanthropic interests of the wealthy.  

If we turn this upside down, and support the middle class, our economy will grow.  This is "trickle up" economics where money recycles throughout the economy, and everyone prospers.  

Details will be discussed below the squiggle.  

The basic logical rules are:
1) Tax Revenues are increased when money is "recycled".
2) The critical factor for economic development is demand, not loan rates or tax breaks.
3) Tax "Breaks" are really publicly supported expenditures.
4) Tax avoidance by transferring money overseas is EXTREMELY expensive to everyone else.

Logical Solutions are:
1) Tax all income the same.
2) Tax all US economic activity.
3) Look at the 90's for solutions - this was a time when everyone prospered.
4) Limit corporate influence in politics.

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Sun Jun 03, 2012 at 02:06 PM PDT

Why I am a Liberal

by cheesehead77

I have often wondered why I am a liberal.

I was raised in a middle class family where my parents voted Republican.  I heard about "lazy people who do not work" and others who abused the welfare system.  I am a Family Physician who finds myself in a profession where most of my colleagues are Republican.  I pay taxes at the top rate, and paid the Alternative Minimum Tax for the first time this last year.

I used to consider myself more moderate, but as the Conservative/Republican Party has moved to the Right, I find myself moving relatively Leftward.  

I find I have both specific policy reasons and general philosophic reasons for my political views.  Specifically, I believe that our government should act as a force that promotes the common good.  It should act as a safety net, and provide opportunity for all.  Philosophically, our government should represent everyone equally.  The individuals in Big Business/Wall Street/Corporations may have only one vote, but they certainly control our government with political donations and lobbying.  Our current Democratic system has accepted ever increasing plutocratic elements.  I am truly afraid that class warfare will be the next step.

Lots more below the squiggle

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I just received an e-mail from my representative that was very proud that one of Scott Walker's statements was judged "true" by PolitiFact.  So I went on line to check it out.

I found that more than 75% of Scott Walker's statement were judged by PolitiFact to be Lies.  (Judged false, mostly false, or pants on fire).  

Mayor Tom Barrett does much better, with a majority of his statements being rated mostly true or true.

Here is the link:


Mon Feb 27, 2012 at 09:02 PM PST

Walker Lies with a Straight Face

by cheesehead77

This apparently will be Gov. Scott Walker's campaign strategy for his recall election and probably beyond.  Just tell lies, and go on.  If the lies are every corrected, it does not matter as the damage is already done.  I agree with Puddytat who chastised the media for being "video stenographers". (Then I stole his video link)

If the media goes to their reflexive "balanced approach" and treats absolute 100% lies on one side of the isle just like they treat normal political exaggerations on the other side of the isle, then the "liars" will just keep making increasingly outrageous statements.  There really will be no consequences to whatever they say.  Our political system will rapidly deteriorate into chaos as both sides of the isle will compete for who can make the most outrageous statements.

1) What Walker said: Unemployment rate is the lowest it has been since 2008

What the facts are (and Walker certainly know this fact): Wisconsin is not adding jobs, people are just not looking for work anymore.  We are behind everyone else in the midwest for job growth.

Source of the actual fact:


2) What Walker said: Criticizing outside money that comes in from "out of state to influence this debate"

What the facts are (and Walker knows this): From Campaign filing reports: (

Most of Walker's largest contributions -- indeed, 56 percent of his total receipts since Dec. 11 -- came from people who live in other states.

Altogether, Walker, the state GOP, and the four targeted Republican senators have gotten $6.7 million of their $16.1 million total from out of state, or 41 percent.

The pro-recall groups side has gotten $1.4 million of its $3.9 million total, or 35 percent, from out of state.

3) What Walker Said: Criticizing money from "Big Union Bosses"

What Walker knows: He is heavily funded by the Koch Brothers

Source: David Koch himself -

And this was just in the first two minutes of the interview.  That man can really lie with a straight face.  I bet he is a good poker player.

video at:

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