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Sunday, September 25, 2016

Quote of the Day


Fantastic point from Maureen Dowd.

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Vote Republican!



Donald vs Hillary?


NPR had a story this week that, no surprise, had a great deal of truth in it, simple truth and excellent, important points.

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In its first Democratic endorsement in a century, The Cincinnati Enquirer endorsed Clinton on Friday. The last Democrat the board supported was Woodrow Wilson in 1916.

"Hillary Clinton has her faults, certainly, but she has spent a lifetime working to improve the lives of Americans both inside and outside of Washington," the board wrote. "It's time to elect the first female U.S. president – not because she's a woman, but because she's hands-down the most qualified choice."

The Dallas Morning News also endorsed Clinton in early September.

"This newspaper has not recommended a Democrat for the nation's highest office since before World War II — if you're counting, that's more than 75 years and nearly 20 elections," the board wrote.

Also in Texas, The Houston Chronicle endorsed Clinton in late July, saying that to choose Donald Trump "is to repudiate the most basic notions of competence and capability." Although the newspaper's board endorsed President Obama in 2008, it traditionally has endorsed Republican presidential candidates.


And finally, importantly and in sharp contrast:

Trump has yet to receive an endorsement from any major daily newspaper editorial board...

How or why any intelligent, informed, mature, discriminating adult in our nation could support this uninformed, irrational, emotional, immature simpleton for the highest office in the nation and the most powerful position in the world is beyond me.


Saturday, September 24, 2016

Quote of the Day


An unusual yet oh-so-true and accurate description of that one political party. This is from at least a year ago. Not only is it still true but it's gotten worse, with their running the most infantile, irresponsible candidate for the presidency possibly, if not quite likely, in the nation's entire history. Note, too, that the quote comes, not from inside the country, but from clear across the world. It's an international opinion.

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"Let's be blunt and acknowledge the biggest threat to the world's biggest economy are the cranks and crazies that have taken over the Republican party. Despite President Obama's goodwill and strong efforts, the national interest there was held hostage by the rise of the extreme Tea Party wing of the Republican Party. There can be few things more alarming in public policy than a political movement which was genuinely prepared to see the government of the United States default on its obligations in order to score a political point."

--Australia's deputy Prime Minister and Treasurer, Wayne Swan


"Vashington Been Beddy, Beddy Gud" for Senator Blunt


Roy Blunt has gotten rich in Washington.

How is that working out for you?


Vote Jason Kander

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Entertainment Overnight -- Autumn...


...in New York.


And everywhere else.


Blunt Takes a Beating



Senator Roy Blunt takes a pretty good beating of late, with this ad from the End Citizens United organization.



It doesn't stop there. The articles in media about it tell yet more. The following are from the 2010 election.

It's Time to Kick Ass. "Roy Blunt, 

the Very Worst of Washington"


This ad was made about Senator Blunt 5 years ago. It was true then and it's still true today.


And this one from 7 years ago.


And it's not just Senator Blunt. His entire family realized money was the "gravy train" and they wanted on.


Senator Blunt's been at this for some time.

And it's paid well. 

Very, very well.






Monday, September 19, 2016

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Entertainment Overnight --September Song


By Old Blue Eyes.




On Guns in Missouri


This is floating around on the internet today, this week, after the state legislature passed their ignorant, very loose gun law.

I imagine not enough Missourians are aware of the statistic in that 2nd panel. It's true. Our murder rate did increase. I only hope that last frame doesn't come to pass but feel pretty certain it will.


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Democratic vs Republican Economic Policy and Recent, Obvious Results


Things that happened under President Barack Obama and his economic policies. All these reports came out just this week.

Image of all the state flags on a map of the United States.  




Imagine how much better our economy would be if we and President Obama had 2 houses of Congress that worked together, with the President, for the betterment of this same economy and the American people. Imagine if they weren't trying to block any and every good thing he's tried to do.

Meanwhile, in sharp, sharp contract, Republican, "trickle down economics" is famously getting these results, right next door, in Kansas.


An acquaintance of mine has insisted for the last 7 years, and still does, to this day, that President Obama is out to destroy the United States. If that's the case, he's surely going at it completely backwards.

It seems clear who to vote for this November and who to vote against.


Trump Supporters




Friday, September 16, 2016

President Obama, Ruining America



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The Real Eric Greitens, Part IV


And this may be one of my, to date, favorite "real Eric Greitens" videos out there. It's not good quality video since it's video of a video on someone's television but it gets the message across.


To borrow a phrase, "I'm lovin' it."


2016: The Year Guns Took Over Election Campaigns


It really does seem as though this campaign year, 2016, has been the year guns, somehow, inexplicably, took over in our election campaigns. They've nothing whatever to do with the office the candidate is running for but there they are, the men, the boys and their guns.

This was the first one I was aware of locally, here in Missouri. Mr. Eric Greitens, former Navy Seal--he wants to make sure you know--goes out in the countryside and "blows things up real good."


As if that weren't enough, unfortunately, a candidate I'm for very recently--just this week, I believe--released this video.


I ask you, what does assembling an automatic weapon, especially one meant for the battlefield, have to do with running a government, a bureacracy efficiently, intelligently and at small a cost as possible?  The boys seem to have to have their guns and show them off.

Tell me we're not getting more stupid.

This seems to be further proof, further reason More Women Need to Lead the World.

The Real Eric Greitens, Part III


Speaks for itself. Here's the real Eric Greitens, from another former Navy Seal on KTRS 550.




Thursday, September 15, 2016

The Real Eric Greitens, Part II


Here's more of the real Eric Greitens, as promised, Part II. This is from a radio show with a Navy Seal, giving the lowdown on the man.




The Real Eric Greitens, Part I


I'm loving all the "real Eric Greitens" ads that are coming out. Here's the first.



I love this spoof.




The Shameful State of the Missouri Legislature


Missouri got a really dumbed-down, irresponsible "two-fer" yesterday from our state legislators.

This Is the Complex History of Gun Control in the United States of America? | Firearms, Second Amendment


Missouri Lawmakers Loosen Gun Laws, 

Back Voter Photo ID


Fortunately, however, the stupidity is getting a lot of national press.



It's not bad enough cities like Chicago and New Orleans and even our own St. Louis are showing the rather obvious pitfalls of having too many guns in our cities and society, no. Our state legislators have to push for yet more. And not only do they support more "open carry" citizens, they also want to allow them to carry guns virtually everywhere with no training required of any kind.

I say once again, Missouri legislators--the Republican and Right Wing ones, anyway--seem to want to follow Kansas down both a fiscal/financial as well as weapons rabbit hole, so to speak, and wreak havoc on us all.

And as though all that isn't enough, they also want to disenfranchise Americans and take their votes away with these ugly, obscene, un-American "voter ID" laws. It's so bad and blatant what they're doing, one Republican representative even admitted it.

GOP congressman: Voter ID law will 

help Republicans



We need to call "voter ID laws" what they are. It's nothing more than a return to "Jim Crow" laws of the South in the last 100 years. They disenfranchise the poor and minorities. Honestly, they do even more than that, however, since it's been shown that they also effectively take the vote away from the elderly and physically-challenged, as well. (See links, below).

And they--these Republicans and Right Wingers--are getting away with it.

I tell you, folks, once again, we have got to vote these people out, come November. 










Wednesday, September 14, 2016

This Is How Bad American Health Care Is


Here is a perfect example of how bad our American health care is, given that we tie it to profit and profits. From the LA Times:

Pills and bottle on hundred dollar bills, medicine and health care cost concept

Jan Kern was bitten by a stray dog while traveling abroad and ended up with a jaw-dropping illustration of why the U.S. healthcare industry is completely sick.

That’s because she underwent a series of rabies shots in three countries at four medical facilities. What that revealed, and which will surprise no one, is that Americans pay way more for the exact same treatment than people in other nations.

Moreover, her experience highlights the lack of uniformity for drug prices, including commonly used medications. One facility might charge a few bucks for the same drug that costs thousands of dollars at a U.S. hospital.

“There’s no rhyme or reason to our medical system,” said Rick Kern, 61, who contacted me about his 62-year-old wife’s global healthcare adventure after reading my recent column on drug prices...

The Kerns are former Palos Verdes residents who now reside on Lake Tahoe. While traveling in Southeast Asia a couple of years ago, Jan was bitten by a stray pooch near Cambodia’s Angkor Wat temple. The couple went to a nearby hospital, where a doctor recommended vaccination for rabies, necessitating a series of four shots.

The first shot at Royal Angkor International Hospital cost $125. That included $66.75 for the dose of Verorab, a $25 hospital charge and a $25 doctor fee.

Jan received her second Verorab shot at a clinic in northern Thailand. The bill this time: A mere $18.50, which provides the best evidence of the drug’s actual cost. Even with the clinic’s overhead factored in, a shot of Verorab, which is manufactured by French pharmaceutical firm Sanofi Pasteur, was priced well below $20.

Things changed dramatically once the Kerns returned to this country. For her third shot, Jan visited Torrance Memorial Medical Center. It was a Sunday, and she had to go to the emergency room, so that added considerably to her cost. The tab for a single injection: $5,254.85.

Shot No. 4 was administered at the Redondo Beach branch of HealthCare Partners medical group. This time the bill was $427.

It’s important to note that the Kerns weren’t on the hook for any of these charges. They’d shrewdly purchased travel insurance before their trip, which covered all related medical costs, even once back in the United States.

Also, that crazy bill from Torrance Memorial was the hospital’s opening salvo in haggling with insurers. Such astronomic charges typically are paid only by those lacking coverage. The actual insured price invariably will be much lower.

And Verorab, which is commonly prescribed for rabies in Europe and Asia because it’s relatively cheap to produce, isn’t available in the United States. Costlier vaccines must be used.

Even so, the Kerns’ experience demonstrates the financial pitfalls that await anyone with a high-deductible health plan and thus responsibility for a greater share of medical costs. It also underlines the lunacy of U.S. healthcare pricing.

Clearly a big hospital like Torrance Memorial has more overhead expenses than a little clinic in rural Thailand — it’s not an apples-to-apples comparison. But that doesn’t mitigate how a bill for less than $20 in another country can turn into a bill for over $5,000 in this one.

“Even if the Torrance bill was $1,200, that’s still a stark difference in prices,” said Nadereh Pourat, a professor of health policy and management at UCLA. “It shows that the free market doesn’t work for healthcare. It works for buying televisions, but with healthcare, there’s no price transparency.”


It's crazy what we allow for and in health care in these United States.

I keep saying, and its true, we just aren't that bright.

Link:  U.S. Healthcare: Most Expensive and Worst Performing


Monday, September 12, 2016

An Open Letter To White America





Dear White America,

Don't like the silent protests during the National Anthem at NFL games?

Fight for justice. Fight for more equity for all. Fight for fairness.

Do something. Do something about it. Stand up for what's right.

Sincerely,

The rest of America


Sunday, September 11, 2016

CHIEFS COME BACK!!


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Yes sir! Our own Kansas City Chiefs were down and down by a lot, even into the fourth quarter but tied it up in the last few minutes of the game and WON IN OVERTIME!!



So to all the unbelievers and Chiefs (and Royals) haters out there, especially the ones who blog, SUCK IT.



Local Newsman Remembers 9/11


From Kris Ketz'Facebook page today.



"A personal note. 

Sunday. 15 years since 9/11. And on a day when the Chiefs open the 2016 season at home - for me - who could forget that first football game after the attacks. At Arrowhead. And it was the New York Giants in town. I'll never forget walking to my seats that morning and catching a glimpse of a sign hanging from the club level. 'KC NY.'

We all loved New York for all the obvious reasons. 

Anyone or anything from the big apple was a special guest that day. I don't know about the other 79,000 fans in the stadium that day but for me it was hard to think about football - yet - it was good to see it. It was more than a game. It was a step towards returning to some form of 'normal' and at a time when nobody knew what 'normal' would be. We all wanted to see how America and Americans would respond to what happened - long term. We were all so anxious to help in whatever small way we could. 

There was a big "fill the boot" effort in the stadium thanks to members of the KCFD (at least in my section 134) who were busy raising money for the recovery effort in NYC. I may be wrong on the numbers but I think Chiefs fans raised something north of $200,000 that day and then the Chiefs matched what was raised. The singing of the National Anthem that day meant more. 

Like most fans around us there was a lump in my throat and for once we all ended by singing 'Home of the Brave', Chiefs players & coaches had American Flags in their hands. Like I said we all wanted to help. We all wanted to do something. We all wanted people in NY to know that people in KC had their back. I don't recall the final score that day but I remember leaving the stadium thinking in any other environment this would have been just another football game. 

15 years later - KC still 's NY."


9/11


Thank you, George W. Bush.



The Bush White House Was Deaf to 9/11 Warnings






Friday, September 9, 2016

Entertainment Overnight -- September In the Rain





Socialism Worse Than Capitalism?


So many people in America claim Socialism is worse, far worse, frequently, for even people but especially for business.  They should think again.

This, from very Conservative, very Right Wing, very pro-business Forbes Magazine:

The Best Countries For Business 2015 

- Forbes



The U.S. falls in our rankings for a sixth straight year with low scores on monetary freedom and bureaucracy. Denmark leads a strong showing by Europe at the head of the class.

And who are the top ten on this "best countries for business list" from around the world? Check it out:

Denmark has ranked first in six of the 10 annual editions of FORBES’ Best Countries list. The country has been in the news in the U.S. lately thanks to Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, who holds up the nation of 5.6 million people as a model socialist utopia. The country does have one of the highest individual tax burdens in the world in exchange for its wide-ranging services, but it is very much a market-based economy.

Denmark ranked in the top 20 in all but one of the 11 metrics we used to gauge the Best Countries for Business (it ranked 28th for red tape). It scored particularly well for freedom (personal and monetary) and low corruption. The regulatory climate is one of the world’s “most transparent and efficient,” according to the Heritage Foundation.


From there the list goes:

2. New Zealand
3. Norway
4. Ireland
5. Sweden
6. Finland
7. Canada
8. Singapore
9. Netherlands
10. United Kingdom

So there you are.  9 of the 10 "top countries for business" are all in Europe and all Socialist.

Oh, and they all also have universal health care. 

And no one goes bankrupt for health care costs.

So where is our own United States on this list, you might ask?

We aren't even in the top 15. 

The picture isn’t as bright for the U.S., which slides four spots to No. 22. It continues a six-year descent since 2009 when the U.S. ranked second overall. The U.S. is the financial capital of the world and its largest economy at $17.4 trillion (China is second at $10.4 trillion), but it scores poorly on monetary freedom and bureaucracy/red tape. More than 150 new major regulations have been added since 2009 at a cost of $70 billion, according to the Heritage Foundation.

So there you have it, ladies and gentlemen. For any and all who think Socialism is horrible, period, in its own right and that any nation having it is, therefore, bad for business. It just patently isn't so.

Not only is intelligent Socialism better for the people, it can be and is also, in plenty of places in the world,  good for business. 

Let that sink in.

Seems Bernie Sanders was right all along, huh?


Missouri In the News


Yes sir, Missouri is in the news today. These are both from The New York Times.

First this, on our own Senator Claire McCaskill's in put on Hillary Clinton and her race for the White House.

Did Hillary Clinton Have to Be First?


Senator Claire McCaskill and the Times columnist Gail Collins talk about gender, politics and the presidency in our latest podcast.

Then this, on Missouri's Miss America pageant entry presently.


I would never have seen that coming. I would have thought this would be out of New York or Florida or California or nearly any other state but not us, not here.

Enjoy your weekend, y'all.


Largest Employer in Missouri?


I saw this column last evening on Facebook, calling out the largest employer in each state.

The Largest Employer in Each State 

- 24/7 Wall St.


I'll get to Missouri but first, I was struck by what organization it is in Kansas. Perhaps you'll be surprised, too.

16. Kansas
> Largest employer: University of Kansas
> Employee headcount: 13,862

The University of Kansas spans five campuses and 13 schools, including the state’s only pharmacy and medicine schools. The university system employs 13,862 people. Excluding student workers, however, the headcount falls to 10,089, in line with the workforce of another major employer in the state, aviation manufacturer Spirit Aerosystems.

Now, here's the sad part.  

Missouri.

25. Missouri
> Largest employer: Walmart
> Employee headcount: 42,312

Walmart is the largest employer in Missouri by a considerable margin. As of March 4, 42,312 state residents worked in the retailer’s 157 locations throughout the state. The company’s presence in the state may be dwindling, however, as it closed four locations in early 2016 as part of a broader effort to focus on Supercenters and e-commerce.

Low wage paying, tax money absorbing Walmart.

walmart


How disgusting. That's an eye-opener.

But wait. There's more. It gets sadder. And more desperate and pathetic and pitiful.

As the world’s largest retailer, Walmart has an outsized impact on state labor markets. Walmart is the only company to claim the top employer spot in more than one state. In fact, the nation’s largest retailer employs the most people in 19 states.






Remember when the best middle-class jobs in America were for the auto companies and they paid a decent, living wage?

Good luck, fellow Missourians.