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Thursday, May 25, 2017

Quote of the Day -- On Taking Down Confederate Statues


Image result for removing lee statue



"The Confederacy was on the wrong side of history and humanity. It sought to tear apart our nation and subjugate our fellow Americans to slavery. This is the history we should never forget and one that we should never again put on a pedestal to be revered." 

--New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu


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One of the Best Promotions of Our City


There are a lot of good to great things about and in Kansas City, as we know, and the world seems to be learning of them and that's great, of course. One of the best ways our city is getting promoted, though, from within and without is the fairly new, annual "Big Slick" fund raiser. Here's some about this year's event from our own Kansas City Star.



Want to play a game of softball with the Big Slick celebs at the K? 

Here’s your chance.

Big Slick KC is kicking off this year’s fundraising campaign with an online raffle for the chance to participate in the softball game June 23 at Kauffman Stadium with hosts Rob Riggle, Paul Rudd, Jason Sudeikis, Eric Stonestreet David Koechner and their celeb friends.

The winner will also take in the Royals game afterward from the swanky Hall of Fame suite and get VIP tickets for two to the next day’s events: watching the bowling tournament in Prairiefire and attending the sold-out evening party and auction at Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland.

Big Slick partnered with the website Omaze (omaze.com/bigslick) for the raffle, which, like all Big Slick events, will benefit Children’s Mercy hospital.

Donations can range from $10 (good for 100 raffle entries) to $2,500 (25,000 entries) and, depending on the amount, also can include an iron-on “Slick” decal, a custom Charlie Hustle Big Slick tee and autographed poster.

Prizes include airfare and hotel in case the winner lives outside Kansas City.

Over the years the event has generated more than $4.5 million to help Children’s Mercy cancer center expand research, provide new hospital amenities and purchase medical equipment.

Details at bigslickkc.org.


It's gotten great coverage, too, on national TV.



Rob Riggle, Paul Rudd, Jason Sudeikis, Eric Stonestreet & David Koechner are inviting you to join them for a game of softball at Big Slick Celebrity Weekend 2017. 

No really. 

Enter to win: http://bit.ly/Big-Slick-Epic-Weekend

You and a friend will:
  • Play in the Big Slick Celebrity Softball Tournament with Rob Riggle, Paul Rudd, Jason Sudeikis, Eric Stonestreet and David Koechner
  • Watch a Kansas City Royals game from the Hall of Fame suite
  • Score VIP access to two days of exciting events at Big Slick Celebrity Weekend
  • Get flown out and put up in a 4-star hotel
Yes sir. (and ma'am).

A fantastic fund raiser for a great cause with lots of fun and gets the city some terrific national coverage, all.

It doesn't get much better than that.

So what are you waiting for? Git on over there and make your contribution!

And good luck!


Saturday, May 20, 2017

Donald Trump Even Scares People on the Right


From none other than the extreme Right Winger himself, Erick Erickson, yesterday in the Washington Post.


"The president exudes incompetence and instability. Divulging classified information to the Russians through bragging; undermining his staff’s defense of his conduct through inane tweets; even reportedly asking the FBI director to suspend an investigation of a former adviser — all these strike me not so much as malicious but as the ignorant actions of an overwhelmed man. Republicans excuse this behavior as Trump being Trump, but that will only embolden voters who seek greater accountability to choose further change over stability. The sad reality is that the greatest defense of the president available at this point is one his team could never give on the record: He is an idiot who does not know any better."

Read the entire article here:


And think happy thoughts, campers.

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Fun in Kansas City Today


This is apparently National Orange Popsicle Week, according to my trip across Kansas City today, to Mill Creek Park and the JC Nichols fountain on the Plaza.


And our buddy Slugger, of the Kansas City Royals showed, too.


I've no idea what it's about or why Slugger, of all people (people?), would be there, along with a table for KU Med Center but the fountain was flowing orange, as you can see. It was fun, if not nearly completely unexplained.

Have a great weekend, y'all.

And maybe have an orange popsicle.


Wednesday, May 17, 2017

What a Trump Presidency Begets



We warned about this guy, this Trump. We said he didn't have the temperament or experience for the job and he's already proven he wasn't up for it. He even said it was harder than he thought. So now, today? What's happening? What do we get?

Asian markets mostly down as dollar 

continues to fall





That's all bad enough. Now for our own markets. This just broke.


How long until our own markets are hit, and drop, given the uncertainty and unpredictability that is Donald Trump and now, his Presidency?

Again, even Republicans themselves warned about Donald Trump as President.


It's as I wrote earlier.


How long, America?

How long are we going to put up with this boob of a President? You deserve better than this, America. We all deserve better than this. Much better than this. We need better than this. We need logic and calm and thoughtfulness and deliberation and all the things that go with maturity and experience and familiarity with national and international politics and history and all the rest.

How long, America?

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Tuesday, May 16, 2017

The Quickly Developing Presidential, Constitutional Saga That Is Donald Trump



It's getting so it's tough to keep up with all that's happening, all that's unraveling from and out of this White House and administration. It's nearly dizzying. Check out this brief analysis of the last 18 hours or so:

"So last night a story breaks that Trump gave classified information to the Russians. Trump sends all his top staff people out to deny it, say it's a dirty lie. Then this morning Trump sends out tweets saying that he did give classified information to the Russians and explains why. No information yet on whether his staff will continue to deny it."

--Bruce Bartlett

It's important we keep this man and his actions in perspective.

"...John McCain was a prisoner of war for 5 years and didn't reveal as much classified information as Trump..."

--Bob Minor, Professor, retired, KU; also with Missouri Jobs with Justice and friend.

And the hell of it is, it's not just that he's stupid or very stupid, though God know that's more and yet more apparent, it's that he indicts himself with what comes from his own mouth.


Who could even begin to guess what's next?

Congratulations, again, Republicans. You got your man in the White House, all right.


Monday, May 8, 2017

Facebook Wouldn't Let Me Post a Link to This Article Last Evening


I was reading and also on Facebonkers last evening when I ran across this article.


I wanted to post it on a page, a group I belong to. This one:


Facebook said it "didn't recognize the url." I tried to post it, also, from the source, The Daily Kos, but that wouldn't work, either.

I've never felt I was being censored out there until this.

Big, corporate brother?


Quote of the Day -- Timely II



“If ever a time should come, when vain and aspiring men shall possess the highest seats in Government, our country will stand in need of its experienced patriots to prevent its ruin.”

Samuel Adams


Sunday, May 7, 2017

Quote of the Day -- Timely



"The problem with the world is that the intelligent people are full of doubts, while the stupid ones are full of confidence."

--Charles Bukowski


Friday, May 5, 2017

Republican Handiwork, This Week Alone


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I first started writing this blog as reaction to the George W Bush administration and what I saw as the horrible path and paths they were taking us all, as a nation, on. Since that time, there have been other deplorable things done, certainly, and by others as well as Republicans, individually, and the by the Republican Party, collectively. But this presidency, this Trump Presidency and his Republican cohorts in Congress are doing the most damage and on tge most issues, I can ever remember. Herewith is just a sampling in the last few days.

First, they had to vote to take money away from the working and middle and lower classes, by voting for corporations, instead, taking away overtime pay for us, their constituents. They did this two days ago.


Then there’s this from yesterday.


They’re voting to repeal Obamacare which will have the results of kicking millions of Americans off health insurance plans, as well as putting back into place the possibility and capability of health insurance companies to deny coverage to us out here on the basis of pre-existing conditions.

Their bill is so bad, they didn’t even want to let the Congressional Budget Office, the CBO, to look at, evaluate and report on it. They just voted on it and pushed it through. It’s that bad.

And what's really crazy?

The House Republicans voted on their replacement for Obamacare BUT THEY HAVE NO IDEA WHAT'S IN IT. It was reported last evening on PBS.

Next up, as though that alone isn’t bad enough, is this, also yesterday.


Church and state? Not a problem for this President. He actually WANTS religions mixing their beliefs with their---our—politics. Well, unless, of course, that religion is, oh, I don’t know, something like Muslim? Fortunately, even some in the religious community realize this is a mistake and far from a good idea.


Not done there, they figure that pesky 2008 near complete financial collapse corporations caused shouldn’t be guarded against so they want to repeal the banking regulations that grew out of it. This came out also yesterday--they were busy.

Finally, as if all that isn’t enough, Trump’s head of the VA wants to shut down Veterans Administration facilities.

If it’s closing unused and/or empty facilities, sure, I am, we are all for it. If that’s the case. Reportedly, there are 430 vacant buildings and 735 that VA Secretary David Shulkin describes as “underutilized.” If that’s the case, God bless ‘em. If it has to do with closing working, important facilities, even one, there should be problems.

So that’s it. For now. For today. Once again, the Republicans and Republican Party show they are all about and working for the already-wealthy and corporations and not for the American middle- and/or lower-class, the working class.

Fortunately, even some on the Right Wing, some Conservatives, are pointing out what we warned of before Donald Trump ever became President. Well known columnist George Will states what no Democrat or person on the Left could point out.




Quote of the Day -- On Yesterday's House Health Care Debacle


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How can you prescribe a cure for heartlessness? 

What a deplorable day for America. 

Perhaps the Senate will stop this assault; we will see. 

Meanwhile the congressional GOP, and its fundamentalists, are full of real bastards, replete with the hubris and conceits that blind white people of privilege. 

It’s the stuff of fiction. 

All of them are the pious and stunted Babbits who have shown up time after time in American history. In the 19th century, these ignoramus moralists used to tar and feather the wicked and clutch their skirts and get the vapors, when their real motive was fleecing someone. 

And now? 

Snake Oil comes in Red, White, and Blue with a GOP pin. 

Once again, the officiously comfortable afflict the poor, elderly and vulnerable, and proclaim their righteous glory and salvation while killing them, Alleluiah. No dunking chairs, stocks or nooses are being used here, and no one is quite being run out of town, but it's a bonfire of hubris. 

And of course, a rancid lecher like Trump and his administration target women and the poor. 

He is enabled in so many ways by those who obsess over the organ Trump is so fond of and yet horrified by, the organ which does all those things he and his coterie are so terribly, demonstrably, shamed by. Misogyny, racism and an orgy of white class privilege define today; NOT American ideals. 

This is ancient, orgiastic Rome on the Potomac. 

Or, leap ahead to the 17th century: You don't have to endorse everything HRC did in her campaign to be appalled by her burning at the stake by Comey and the rest with casual, partial, deadly “reveals". (Comey tosssed letter bombs.) 

So, friends, what comes next? 

Demonstrations, protests, and 2018. 

The Democrats may have been less than elegant today -- but really, who can blame a visceral reaction in the face of an Orwellian overload of cant? We're watching democracy be trampled, and decent people be trampled, and our way of life -- I don't think I'm exaggerating here -- be peeled off to appease and enrich the exalted triumphalists. 

They should start wearing togas. 

Staid, pleasant rhetoric doesn't cut it for me in these times. And unless we're really willing to do the hard work of connecting people, this ugliness dominates. I think we're on the cusp of a radical act: Democracy, and yanking it back in 2018 from the worst, most venal characters since the days of Vigilantes, boss rule and segregation and other nativist elements. 

Can we provide the cure for the diseased heart of the American power structure? 

For the heartlessness and greed which lie at the heart of Trumpism and the GOP? 

That's my definition of palliative care: vote them into oblivion. Whatever it takes, wherever we are, but link arms, and do not be silent.



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Yet One More Lily White "Ruckus" Last Evening


KCPT:  Minorities Don't Matter In Kansas City?

Yes sir and ma'am, yet one more lily white, bleached white, exclusive, exclusionist "Ruckus" news weekly last evening on our PBS station KCPT. Not one--not even one--person of color on the show. One woman but that, as usual, is as close to a minority as they got.

They go out of their way, every week, to include a middle-aged, middle-class, irrelevant white guy who calls himself a "Libertarian" but again---not one person of a minority.  And then there's always the really old, white guy with silver hair and moustache because, you know, old white guys' opinions just aren't "out there" enough already, right? (Other than the moustache, isn't that what Mike Shanin is already there for?).

The only question now is, will they do the same thing, yet again, with their other news weekly show, Nick Haines' "Week in Review"?  It's usually what they do, of course.

Pitiful


Sunday, April 30, 2017

Entertainment Overnight - Ironic


Updated




Think We Don't Need to Raise the Minimum Wage?


Many people say we don't need to raise the minimum wage in America. I see it repeatedly.

It made me think.

I remember, distinctly, how I was proud of making $21,000 per year as assistant manager of a men's retail store I worked at in 1979. It didn't make me rich, no way, but I very clearly remember that wage landmark at that time.

So I took that amount and time and put it in a inflation calculator online. The results were stunning.

It showed that that amount, $21,000 per year in 1979 would be the equivalent of earning over $74,000 today. In fact, it would be nearly $75,000 in today's money.

Don't believe it? See for yourself.

CPI Inflation Calculator


Mind you, a great, great deal has changed since, what with retail stores continually being hit and hit hard by "big box" and now online stores, these wages, at least from retail positions, are no longer possible. That said, other industries could, in fact, pay far more reasonable, fair and living wages.

The statistics prove this out.

For most workers, real wages have 

barely budged for decades




And corporations have made out very, very well.


As have the CEOs and executives.



The problem is especially American, too.


It's pretty outrageous what is happening and what we're letting happen to and with the nation's wealth.




We need to fight. We need to fight back. We need to end the Citizens United ruling and end campaign contributions entirely. It's the only way we'll get it back where the government and nation work for the people again, for all the people and not just for the already-wealthy and corporations.

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"Liar-In-Chief"


In case you missed it, comedian Husan Minhaj rightly frames this President.




Switching America to Solar -- How Possible?


This video shows how very possible it could be, that it is, to switch America to solar energy.



Not only is this true, factual, but actually, if we would use our glass skyscrapers, in our cities, to have and use transparent solar cells on them, as well as the roofs of our homes, the land needed to power the nation shrinks yet more and very likely, dramatically.


Saturday, April 29, 2017

Friday, April 28, 2017

Quote of the Day -- 1960 to Today


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1960

No Democrat Could Get Away With All This



Imagine:

Hillary Clinton is president. 
  • It's learned that she has deep ties to Putin and the Russian spy agency. 
  • Additionally, Russia's President Vladimir Putin helped get her elected.
  • She puts utterly unqualified billionaires in cabinet posts. 
  • She pursues public policies that benefit her and her billionaire friends. 
  • She puts her daughter Chelsea in a position of influence in the West Wing, giving her her own office and allows her to use that position to forward her own business interests. 
  • Chelsea's husband is her chief advisor. 
  • The private business trips taken by Chelsea and her husband are paid for by the taxpayers.
  • She refuses to release any tax returns. 
  • She blocks access to the visitor logs in the White House.
  • Husband Bill refuses to live in the White House so our tax dollars are spent keeping him safe in New York City.
  • Hillary spends almost every weekend lounging in her own, privately-held resort. 
  • Hillary raises the prices of staying at this/her private resort because after all, she is now President.
  • Her private resort gets reimbursed for any and all "official" government functions (including security) because she chooses to conduct all her "business" and personal functions there. 
  • She and her family live in three White Houses at the same time.
  • In an interview, she names the wrong country she bombed while bragging about the chocolate cake she was eating while she ordered said bombing.
  • Hillary starts churning up concerns of war, possibly nuclear, with Kim Jong Un and North Korea.
The Republicans would be eating her alive.

Which all begs the question....

Why are we putting up with this?

Adapted, largely, from a post on FB by one Carmen Norwood