Thursday, December 30, 2010

A real conversation

In-coming Governor Rick Scott (Florida) recently said he wants those collecting unemployment for more than 12 weeks to do community service and to have proof they're looking for a job. That's a great sound bite and God knows we live in the world of sound bites! Heaven forbid we take the time to look any deeper. OK Heaven, forbid away, but here I go ... deeper.

Consider the single parent that was making, say, $70K a year before losing that job 6 months ago. Let's also say this single parent has 3 (2, if you prefer) children still young enough to need child care. At $70K a year, this parent had no problem paying the child care bill along with all the other stuff that needs to be paid in a month. Now that the parent is unemployed, paying for childcare is out of the question! Not only is it no longer affordable, but in this electronic age, most days it's no longer necessary.

In comes Rick Scott's "new rules": now this parent has to do community service and that means paying for childcare again. Just how is said parent suppose to come up with the money? Not to mention the next issue of community service hours taking away from job-search hours. (Is the community service idea starting to sound a little less "right on!!!" ??) And if the parent is out doing community service, how is the parent suppose to prove that he/she is looking for employment?

That's just "five minutes worth of thought" into the sound bite. What may sound like a great idea on the surface (long live our great American sound bite) is usually like the onion just waiting for more layers to be peeled away. Whether I voted for Rick Scott or not is irrelevant; he is our new Governor and I want him to be successful. This is not a good start, though. He's off the campaign trail and into the Governor's mansion (well ... in a couple of days) so he needs to ix-nay the sound bites and start thinking a little deeper. Let's have some real conversation about ideas. (And I haven't even talked about WHAT community service would be performed... would we end up putting even MORE people out of jobs?)

I'm just sayin'......

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Senator and Mr. Miller

Joe Miller, the Tea Party Republican candidate in the Alaska senate race, has just filed an appeal to the Supreme Court in his continuing challenge of the election results. The esteemed Mr. Miller has every right to do so, but in my humble opinion Mr. Miller shows blatant disregard for the plurality of voters of Alaska by continuing this fight. Ms. Murkowski (Mr. Miller's esteemed Republican opponent) lost the primary, yes, but continued on as a write-in candidate. Surprise, surprise! She got more votes than the other two candidates!

Mr. Miller is not questioning the number of votes cast for Ms. Murkowski, nor is he questioning the intent of the voter. Instead, Mr. Miller is attempting to win this Senate seat by questioning how the state counted the votes for Ms. Murkowski. Seriously, Joe? If a voter wrote "Murkowsky" instead of "Murkowski", you want the vote thrown out. Is the voter's intent not clear enough for you??? The voters clearly voted for her. Take your loss and try again next time. What does this fight do for anyone besides cost money and show that you're a really sore loser! I live in Florida - ask me about voter intent! I mean ... really, dude!

Mr. Miller disrespects his party and his would-be constituents by showing us that he's willing to do anything to win this seat even if it means disenfranchising the voters of his great state. It is but one sign of what has gone wrong with this, The Great Experiment: if you don't get your way you'll whine and sue and hold your breath until you do (except for Ms. Angle, of Nevada, who believes we should take up arms if we don't get our way!!) Bow out, Mr. Miller. It's way too late to do so gracefully, but bow out anyway and give the voters of Alaska the Senator of their choosing. I'm just sayin'.....

Friday, November 26, 2010

Who's patting down Mr. Limbaugh?

I've not been watching too much politics for the last few days. It's very frustrating when I do watch, though. The latest buzz on the right is about the pat-downs at the airport. You'd think every person was having nude body cavity searches right there in front of God and everybody. But no - it's about 2% of flyers being patted down. And I'm thinking the TSA folks aren't all that happy about having to fondle people, either. I mean - there are people in this world to whom "hygiene" is a foreign language! Pity the TSA person that's patting down the traveler that hasn't washed body nor clothes for the last two weeks! Yuck!

But my rant today is about Rush. Yea, Limbaugh. He blames Mr. Obama, of course (since the TSA folks are government workers). You'd think Rush actually had to fly commercial and is personally inconvenienced. The real issue for him is, of course, that he has yet another opportunity to bash our government for the sake of ratings. I really really intensely dislike Mr. Limbaugh - to the point of not being able to tolerate his voice for more than 5 minutes at a stretch anymore - but I will ALWAYS defend his right to say whatever he wants. HOWEVER ... even though he considers himself an entertainer first (thus meaning that we should put ZERO credence in what he has to say since he'll say anything for ratings), he should have enough respect for our country (AND our system of government) to accept that fact that words have consequences.

While Rush may know that he's simply spouting drivel to drive up his advertising revenues and line his pockets with even MORE money (what's he going to buy with all that money anyway??), he should also know that his words encourage the lunatic fringe. Just as the anti-abortion protesters say they don't advocate violence as they spout their inflammatory words yet cheer when another doctor providing abortion services is murdered by one of their ilk, Rush really should step up to the plate and quit trying to enrage the lunatic fringe for the purposes of feathering his nest. After all - don't you think Rush would be the first person to scream outrage if one of our planes was blown up because the TSA didn't do enough checking??? So Rush ... chill, dude. You've got lots of followers who believe every word you say. Try to do some good in the world. I'm just sayin'......

Friday, November 19, 2010

Sharks being jumped

Have the Republicans already blown their political capital? In the world that is current-day politics, where no one respects any one else, or even the office of anyone else, I think it's still bad form to disrespect the office of the President. When he invites you to dinner, you show up and the hell with your schedule. The Republicans blew off the White House: how can we expect to see any "working together" if this is how the new Congress starts (before it even starts!!)? But wait ... it gets worse.

Yesterday the House failed to extend unemployment benefits to millions of our fellow citizens because the Republicans wanted to actually pay for it. Hey - that's fine with me! I think fiscal responsibility is a terrific idea! I'm willing to see cuts made to pay for extending benefits. But I want some consistency. The Republicans are NOT willing to pay for extending the Bush-era tax cuts yet "demand" that they be extended for all income brackets. OK dudes and dudettes - how are we going to pay for that? Could that deafening sound that I don't hear be the silence emanating from the right side of the aisle? Two bad moves in as many days just might have cost the Republicans all the good will they had the day after the mid-terms.

I'm just sayin' .......