Monthly Archives: November 2013

Molly Ivins: I will not support Hillary Clinton for president

It’s amazing that almost 8 years after this was written, it’s still the same issues and the same usual suspects.  True then, true now.  I miss Molly Ivins.

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January 20, 2006
AUSTIN, Texas — I’d like to make it clear to the people who run the Democratic Party that I will not support Hillary Clinton for president.

Enough. Enough triangulation, calculation and equivocation. Enough clever straddling, enough not offending anyone.  This is not a Dick Morris election.  Sen. Clinton is apparently incapable of taking a clear stand on the war in Iraq, and that alone is enough to disqualify her.  Her failure to speak out on Terri Schiavo, not to mention that gross pandering on flag-burning, are just contemptible little dodges.

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Will Rogers Cocktail – Funny Cowboy Ropes A Signature Drink

A change of pace tonight.  From Barina Craft on Tumblr.

Will Rogers

Will Rogers Cocktail Toasts A Man Who “Never Met A Man He Didn’t Like”

The Will Rogers cocktail is a namesake drink with gin, vermouth, orange juice and curacao. Once voted America’s most popular actor, the Will Rogers drink recipe had already been published in the 1930 Savoy cocktail book before his tragic 1935 death in an airplane crash at the age of 55.

In addition to acting in 48 silent films and 21 movies with sound, the cowboy philosopher started in show business performing twirling rope tricks along with a pony act in Texas Jack’s Wild West Circus. This led to extended stints in Vaudeville and the Ziegfeld Follies where he introduced satire into the mix and Will Rogers transformed himself from the “Ropin’ Fool” to the “Talkin’ Fool”.

“Our Constitution Protects Aliens, Drunks, and U. S. Senators.” ~ Will Rogers

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Hard-working? If you pay me, I’ll do a good job. That’s the deal

By Alex Andreou, Guardian newspaper, London.

There comes a time in every man’s life when he needs to stand up and be counted; when he needs to take a shrewd, critical look at himself and come out. This is that time for me. I am tired of living a lie. It is time to admit it to myself and to the world: I am not naturally hard-working. (Cue hissing from the crowd, ladies fainting, shouts of “monster”.)

That is not to say I have never worked hard – I have. My working life has fallen, largely, into two categories; either doing what I love, sometimes for money, or doing something I don’t love strictly in exchange for money. In the case of the former, when I am writing, acting or directing and getting paid for it (yes, it happens), it never feels like hard work. In the case of the latter, I go about my work professionally, enthusiastically and with gusto, but I do precisely what I am paid for – no more.

Hard-working is just not my natural state. I know very few people for whom it is. My ex-partner was one such person. Even on holiday, he used to bound out of bed at 6am, so full of energy that I wanted to shove his face into my grapefruit. When I am on holiday, I spend hours frolicking in the waves, looking at starfish through a mask and reading the same paragraph of a terrible thriller for hours. In the evening, I might mix a cocktail which involves vigorous shaking, for exercise.

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Notes from the Heartland

Since August 22 when the NDP website went live officially launching the NDP, we’ve been talking to people in Illinois and Wisconsin about the NDP’s position on issues and its vision for the country.  About 2700 people to date.

Comments about our vision have been interesting, ranging from “over the top” to “wish list” to “that’s what the New Deal stood for”.  Almost everyone dislikes Washington and the two-party system, and they want an alternative.

Some in Illinois have tried to get millionaire Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) to commit to “no cuts” on Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, BUT HE WON’T DO IT.

People in Wisconsin are worried that Gov Scott Walker will completely ruin the state if he wins re-election with the help of the Koch Brothers and other out-of-town money.  Low job production has moved Wisconsin near the bottom in the country.

The top concerns people are most worried about are:

  1. Jobs jobs jobs
  2. Social Security & Medicare
  3. Retirement (many people now feel they’ll be working ’til they die)
  4. The country’s direction and America’s place in the world
  5. The never-ending wars
  6. The bad economy’s effect on young people
  7. The future
  8. The financial inequality
  9. Post Office closures
  10. The inability of the government to fix problems, and in some cases, causing problems (this goes back to the 2-party system)

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Progressive Party Platform of 1912

As you read through this, take note of some of the issues from 101 years ago.  Teddy Roosevelt had a keen sense of what people were thinking about as far as what the issues of the day were (and in some cases, still are today).  Some of the issues raised in TR’s campaign became law in FDR’s administration.

 

Progressive Party Platform of 1912 November 5, 1912

The conscience of the people, in a time of grave national problems, has called into being a new party, born of the nation’s sense of justice. We of the Progressive party here dedicate ourselves to the fulfillment of the duty laid upon us by our fathers to maintain the government of the people, by the people and for the people whose foundations they laid.

We hold with Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln that the people are the masters of their Constitution, to fulfill its purposes and to safeguard it from those who, by perversion of its intent, would convert it into an instrument of injustice. In accordance with the needs of each generation the people must use their sovereign powers to establish and maintain equal opportunity and industrial justice, to secure which this Government was founded and without which no republic can endure.

This country belongs to the people who inhabit it. Its resources, its business, its institutions and its laws should be utilized, maintained or altered in whatever manner will best promote the general interest.

It is time to set the public welfare in the first place.

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Declaring “War” on the Great Depression

FDR's First Inaugural

By late winter 1933, the nation had already endured more than three years of economic depression. Statistics revealing the depth of the Great Depression were staggering. More than 11,000 of 24,000 banks had failed, destroying the savings of depositors. Millions of people were out of work and seeking jobs; additional millions were working at jobs that barely provided subsistence. Currency values dropped as the deflationary spiral continued to tighten and farm markets continued to erode.

During the previous summer the Democratic Party had unveiled a generalized plan for economic recovery in its platform. They called their platform a “contract” and set forth in it a series of provisions to remedy the economic disaster. Although frequently lacking specifics, the platform addressed a wide range of issues: among them were agricultural relief, Prohibition, unemployment, and old age insurance. While not followed very closely by Franklin Roosevelt’s administration, the platform did indicate that election of the Democratic candidate would result in unprecedented governmental growth to deal with the problems pressing on the nation. Roosevelt set about to prepare the nation to accept expansion of federal power. Roosevelt recognized that the programs he was about to introduce for congressional legislative action to relieve the dire effects of the Great Depression were unprecedented in peacetime.

In his 1933 inaugural address Roosevelt stated: “Our Constitution is so simple and practical that it is possible always to meet extraordinary needs by changes in emphasis and arrangement without loss of essential form. That is why our constitutional system has proved itself the most superbly enduring political mechanism the modern world has produced. It has met every stress of vast expansion of territory, of foreign wars, of bitter internal strife, of world relations.” Yet, at the same time, he was prepared to recommend measures that he knew could succeed only with strong public pressure in support of extraordinary federal powers to deal with “extraordinary needs.”

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Make War Unprofitable

General Smedley Butler was a Major General in the Marines.  Gen Smedley Butler

In his 34-year career as a Marine, he participated in military actions in the Philippines, China, in Central America and the Caribbean during the Banana Wars, and France in World War I.

In 1935, Butler wrote a book titled “War is a Racket”, where he described and criticized the workings of the United States in its foreign actions and wars, such as those he was a part of, including the American corporations and other imperialist motivations behind them.

Butler points to a variety of examples, mostly from World War I, where industrialists whose operations were subsidized by public funding were able to generate profits essentially from mass human suffering.

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