Posts Tagged With: Republicans

TRUMP VISITS MURPHYS

DSC08008 (Copy)Imagine my surprise when I found out my best friend Jim is related to Donald Trump. The resemblance is pretty startling. And he has gone gung ho, preaching the merits of a Trump presidency.

DSC08006 (Copy)Personally, I think Trump decided to run as a lark and now he can’t insult enough people to get himself out of the election. He’s sort of stuck. This trumper doesn’t agree.

DSC08005 (Copy)Jim is quite an actor himself. He’s convinced the Trump hairstyle will become the rage as his popularity grows, so he did a pretty good imitation of the hair, the scowl, the whole persona. I get all these emails asking to sign petitions against Trump. I refuse to sign because I think Trump and Sanders have shaken up our corrupt establishment and I’m just cheering on the sidelines.  I hope he wins the Republican nomination since Kaisch doesn’t have a chance. Then the party of obstruction can hold their noses to vote Republican.

Meanwhile, I’ll vote for a sensible, sincere, non billionaire, Sanders, who has the heart of the people and started this whole revolution. Go Sanders. I hate the vilification of Hillary that is going on. She is no worse than most of the beltway wheelers and dealers, but they vilified her when she was a First Lady and they continue to do so now. It is ugly. We need someone clean, like Sanders.

And, just for the record, Jim is not really related to Donald Trump, but he is a supporter.

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REPUBLICANS USED TO BE GOOD GUYS.

I had an early morning appointment with a massage therapist yesterday and on my way I heard Senator Dave Camp badgering the woman who is in charge of the Medicare website about why she cannot tell him how many people are signed up for Affordable Health Care. She kept telling him the figures would be available mid-November.  What hypocrisy. The Republicans, YES, THE REPUBLICANS, have done everything in their power to make sure Obamacare wouldn’t work. They shut down the government and backlogged thousands of programs so, now it is okay to badger this employee?

Ted Cruz brags that he will do everything he can to stop Obamacare while he also boasts shutting down the government was a great idea and he will do it again?

No leeway for the fact that when the government asked for bids on a company to provide a website they had to include every possible eventuality in the specifications before it could be bid.

Last spring, when the senate finance committee asked for outreach funds to implement the Affordable care Act, the outreach, to educate and pay the Department of Health and Human Services to assist people to enroll and for the technology experts to navigate the complicated needs of the system for privacy, medical records on-line, etc. Funds allotted? NONE. ZERO.  (Information from CNN)

The Public Relations part of the bill was required. When HHS director, Kathryn Sebillious asked the insurance companies who would benefit from this and non-profit organizations to donate to this, a very controversial move, Republicans were outraged. She got ZIP. No money. All of her requests for funds to implement the act was refused and blocked by Republicans.

When Sebelius tried to shift money from other areas to help do what needed to be done,  she was attacked by Senate Republicans. At every step, Republicans fought measures to get money to put towards implementation.

Let’s remember that original versions of the bill called for one big national exchange. This would have been much easier to implement. But conservatives declared that insurance should be left to the states and kept out of the hands of the federal government. So as a compromise exchanges were made state-based instead of national.

As a precaution, the law stipulated that if states failed to do their duty and enact exchanges, the federal government would step in and pick up the slack. This was to prevent obstructionism from killing the law. Surprisingly, it was many of the same conservative states that demanded local control that refused to implement state-based exchanges, leaving the federal government to do it for them.

There have been books, webinars and meetings explaining how to sabotage the implementation of Obamacare. There have been campaigns trying to persuade young people from signing up for Obamacare.  It is, therefore, somewhat ironic that many of the same people who have been part of all of this obstructionism seem so “upset” by the fact that people can’t easily use the exchanges.

(Information from Aaron E. Carroll is a professor of pediatrics at the Indiana University School of Medicine and the director of its Center for Health Policy and Professionalism Research. He has supported a single-payer health system during the reform debate.)

But, wait, we do have a Republican who stated sincerely:  “Now it is time to move forward again in a critical area. Health Care. Without adequate health care, no one can make full use of his or her talents and opportunities. It is thus just as important that economic, racial, and social barriers not stand in the way of good health care.”

That was President Nixon, who got impeached and resigned before he had a chance to follow through. Or, who knows, maybe he didn’t really mean it.

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THE IRISH, MORE THAN BLARNEY

 

Being part Irish, I learned more about them from books and history than my own parentage. My father would sometimes say, “Greetuns’, greetuns and salutations,” when  he was in a good mood. And he’d say, “mournin’ boys” to my girl friends, which kind of embarrassed me as a teen. We got the great big “eye”, a television set, when I was about 16 and he didn’t let me watch old British films because they aggrandized the British. (I really understood that after I read Trinity.)
He believed in political debate at the dinner table and never let us forget that the working man had to fight for every right he ever had and if it weren’t for the unions, we’d all be working in sweatshops.
“I’ve worked all my life, and I never had a day of sick leave, and I’ve been plenty sick,”  he would say.
Even so, he was grateful for seniority, the right to organize and ask for pay increases, the right to complain if an individual thought he was fired unfairly. They won pension benefits, and health care, which in my father’s time was simply a nurse on the job to report and treat injuries and provide a record that injuries happened on the job so the union could investigate if any safety rules were ignored.  They won the right to have written evaluations and records of their work so the boss couldn’t lie about a man’s worthiness. Companies didn’t just roll over an capitulate. They fought it tooth and nail, and had other ways of forcing an older man off the job so they wouldn’t have to pay a pension.
In my father’s case, he worked for Pacific States Steel Company. They didn’t like guys who wouldn’t tow the line or complained to their union about infractions of the union rules and safety violations. He suffered through many attacks;  acid in his locker which ate holes in his clothes. Tacks under his tires, which gave him flat tires. His lunch sandwiches filled with sand; midnight phone calls and threats to my mother. (This happened in the 1960’s.) They finally quit the harassment when the bosses had a meeting with the union and my dad appeared with my husband and my brother-in-law, both dressed in suits and ties carrying brief cases looking like lawyers, and holding a tape recorder. My dad got his pension of  $98 a month. When he died, my mother got $76 of that which was considered very generous. 

My husband’s job as a cop was subject to the whim of the Board of Supervisors. In the forties, cops would be fired if they tried to organize into a union and were told so. In fact, at one time you had to be a Republican and join the Masons to become a cop. Later, you had to be a Republican and a Mason to get a promotion. During one bitter strike by a local cannery in Alameda County, CA. cops were instructed to beat back the protesters with their batons even though the cannery workers had the right to protest. Even forming a deputy sheriff”s association was done with trepidation. Deputies served at the whim of the Board of Supervisors. They could not negotiate for better pay. They did not receive overtime pay. Eventually they received compensatory time, but certain bosses wouldn’t sign their comp time cards and refused to give it to them. Other supervisors would come on the job and say, “You-take your vacation this week.” Just like that. You took your time, with no opportunity to plan, and you were grateful that you got vacation at all.

The Irish were very much at the forefront of unions and union organizing in many communities.  They suffered so much from the British, they made sure it wouldn’t happen in their adopted countries, US and Australia. So, Happy St. Patricks day, and here be a Salute To The Irish, by gorrah!

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