Okay, back on the Eric Greitens allegations---if not scandal. This, from the New York Times:
Mr. Greitens, a married father of two, acknowledged last month that he had an extramarital affair with a woman in 2015, before he was elected governor. The woman’s husband, who eventually divorced her, made secret recordings that were published last month by local news outlets.
In those recordings, the woman said she had gone to Mr. Greitens’s house and engaged in a consensual sexual encounter. But while she was blindfolded and bound with tape to an exercise machine, she said, Mr. Greitens took a nude photograph of her without permission and threatened to publicize the image if she spoke about their affair.
There's more but let's leave it there.
I haven't seen "50 Shades of Gray" or read the book but...
Doesn't this read like that plotline? Isn't that so?
Did Mr. Greitens, the Guv, just not have enough money to get away with it?
Also reads like a daytime soap opera, gone wildly out of hand. These are "The Days of Our Lives..."
Besides the fantastic leaders the Republicans have foisted on us---think Nixon, Trump and Greitens, as just 3 quick examples--it seems we just keep getting yet more gifts from these people. This news story broke today.
So they railed against big budgets and too much spending for 8 years while a Democrat was in the White House but when they get their own man in there, what do they do? Do they slash spending and whittle down the deficit they hate so much?
They've done quite the opposite, as we keep seeing! First it was with their budget giveaway for the already-wealthy and corporations.
Then look what they've done to "Obamacare" and health care in the nation, folks.
The stupidity of Trumpcare: Government will spend $33 billion more to cover 8.9 million fewer Americans, as premiums soar
They wanted to make sure they undid President Obama's legacy on health care, for sure. So we'll all be paying more for health insurance, fewer will have coverage and so, access to health care and then the nation will spend more to get it all.
Finally, here are just two of the results of their tax plan.
They famously, even infamously did it in and to Kansas, as we all watched, right next door, from 2012 to today with Governor Brownback's and the Republican Party's tax cuts for the already-wealthy and corporations.
Did anyone learn?
Oh, heck no. So here we go again. Some more. But on a larger, national scale now.
God help them if they go after Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and other budgets.
For the love of God and all that's good, someone, someone tell me why anyone but the wealthy votes Republican.
Our local Kansas City Star did a fantastic thing yesterday. They printed an op/ed piece from their editorial board that is clear, simple and very true on how and why we must reduce the numbers of innocent Americans shot and killed in our nation.
A gun buyer should be required to obtain a federal clearance document, reflecting a background check, which would then be presented before any weapons transaction. Failure to do so would result in criminal liability for the buyer and the seller.
Law enforcement officials must have the resources to make sure background check information is accurate and easily shared.
They’re tired of attending church, or school, or a movie or concert fearing for their lives. They’re tired of sending their kids to school wondering if they’ll come home.
They’re tired of politicians more concerned with campaign donations than doing what’s right. They’re tired of burying the dead.
They are not elites. They are everyday Americans. They want to end the slaughter. They will be heard. We join our voice with theirs.
What's important to stress is that no one, no one is calling for an end to the Second Amendment, first, and that no one is coming after all the guns, all the weapons in the nation. The alarmists on the other side of this opinion assume and go to that nearly every time. It's untrue and wrong. These simple, intelligent, reasonable measures pointed out here above would go a long, long way to saving innocent American lives in our nation, going forward.
Don't think for a moment it's just the Democrats or Liberals or "Lefitists" or Progressives that don't hold this President Trump in high regard. As the title says, check out what they think of him over in Europe, in the UK. They're not afraid to put it in bold headlines.
President Donald Trump does not read - except in small doses and when his own name appears prominently. Prior to the presidency, his only activities were work and golf. He does not mingle with intellectuals, cultural trend-setters or artists
It should come as no surprise - and it has not - that he is sorely lacking in sophistication, knowledge of the world, understanding of government and a rudimentary grasp of economics.
Sitting atop arguably the great resource on the planet - the body of knowledge retained by American government experts on everything from economics to medicine to military history - he remains blissfully ignorant on a range of subjects.
It goes on to give examples of at least his irresponsibility, if not his recklessness and, not surprisingly, his obvious and even blatant ignorance.
And mind you, this was printed back in June, 2017 when he was only in office 4 months.
As many of you know, my daughter Sari is a sophomore at Stoneman Douglas in Parkland. She wrote the letter below and has sent it to many government officials. She has asked me to share her message with as many people as possibe. Please feel free to re-post and share on your own timeline.
Hello, my name is Sari Kaufman and I attend Stoneman Douglas. I am a sophomore and I am a survivor of the 2/14 attack.
The morning of the attack seemed like a normal day. The weather was very nice and I was excited to receive carnations for Valentines Day. Sadly, this all changed at the sound of a routine fire drill.
I remember leaving my classroom at 2:22 pm. This was the second fire drill of the day so it seemed abnormal. Once I went outside I heard five consistent noises that sounded like gunshots but my mind did not let me accept the fact that it were sounds that caused 17 lives to be lost. My memory from this day is a little vague but I remember my teacher saying this is not a drill.
We ran behind a fence and made sure we did not fall in a canal while we were running for our lives. There was so much confusion and we did not know what was going on. The only clear thing I remember which made me feel at ease was when a police officer protected us and helped us to safety. I was able to run to a nearby restaurant and watch the unthinkable news story develop in my 5th period classroom.
Unfortunately, some of my friends are not able to share their story today.
My city and school will be forever changed and even some of my closest friends are forever changed due to this traumatizing event that has affected them, not just physically, but also mentally/emotionally. I have had to go to funerals and watch parents bury their 14 year old sons and daughters.
Following the attack, I wanted to talk to the news right away, but at the same time, I first wanted to understand the gun control debate a little more in-depth. Now, after a few days and after this traumatizing event is not feeling like a dream anymore and the fact that we lost 17 people including coaches, teachers, administrators, and classmates, I want to make a change.
In November, I researched about the NICS (the gun database background check system) and about universal gun background checks for the November Public Forum debate topic. I remember finding many flaws in our system. For example, according to “The Trace” in 2015, the NICS Improvement Amendment Act was introduced in the wake of the 2007 Virginia Tech massacre. The legislation gave more than a billion dollars in grants to states and territories to improve record keeping systems and reportings to NICS. This seemed like a very common sense and great way to fix a robust system.
However, since the bill became law, Congress has given out only 11.5 percent of that money for spending. Former Congressman James Moran explains the reason behind this. He says that the NRA worked with allies in Congress to cut off funding for these grants when the committee put each year’s budget together (July 27th, 2015).
Unfortunately, this was a very common theme and each article I read had a recurring conclusion. It is either that the proposed bill never passes Congress due to backlash from other funding parties, or in some cases, a bill passes but Congress does not put the money where it is supposed to go due to influential organizations like the NRA.
Therefore, do I think that my friends and I protesting for a change is going to change your mind? No. But maybe real facts, research, and uniting politicians together to save lives at school will lead to a change.
I am only 15 years old but I understand that politics are extremely complicated. However, I believe that we can fix these issues in our systems so other kids do not have to go through the same trauma I have gone through. I hope that the next time that you (government leaders) make a deal or receive money which hinders your judgment, just remember kids having their blood spilled out on classroom floors.
Also, remember that your community might be next.
Please do not wait and just be sad for a couple of days that 17 people died and please do not think American lives are disposable. Let this shooting be the last school shooting. Do not wait until it is too late, until it happens in your community, to your daughter or son, or your friends.
There is so much we can accomplish in this revolution, even if it will take several small steps. For example, after Sandy Hook, Connecticut required information on mental health records available to federal and state agencies while performing background checks. According to Giffords Law Center, federal law cannot require states to make information identifying these people available to the federal or state agencies that perform background checks, and many states fail to voluntarily report the necessary records to the FBI’s NICS. So instead of just letting Connecticut be alone and do this because they were affected, let's motivate every single state to do this on a federal level.
I want to be optimistic about these political changes but the sad fact is that in only my 15 years of existence there have been more school shootings than someone who lived from 1910 to 1980. There is a repetitive pattern that has a very similar dialogue: Another shooting, let's improve our system, let's unite and worry about the people on each side of the political aisle.
Children's lives are more important than our political differences.
Let’s do something about our flawed system. Following this, very little is ever accomplished. Words are very different than actions. I want to be optimistic but the truth is I am very pessimistic about new political changes. How is this generation going to have faith in our system if time and time again it fails to protect our lives? Every day in school we learn how great the United States is, yet we are one of the only countries in the world to have classmates die in the very place we learn. There could have been so much to prevent this horrible tragedy. I am just asking for a change no matter what it is. I just want our system to improve to save lives. I hope we unite across political parties to protect my friends and future generations to be safe in school.
In keeping with the national movement and marches on this day, Saturday, March 24, we'll be having our own "March For Our Lives" here in Kansas City. It will start at 1 pm at Mill Creek Park on the Country Club Plaza.
If we can't be in Washington, DC, we'll do the next best thing and still have our voices heard.
The pesky Second Amendment, NRA set keep going back to the same, tired arguments, it seems, even now, on the heels of yet another slaughter of innocents here in the US. The "thoughts and prayers" crowd. The "It's too soon to talk about it" and "Don't politicize this event", ad infinitum.
What gets me about this is their complete, total denial of facts, of the facts on these matters.
And of the entire article, I'll break it down to just this one simple fact, this paragraph, from the beginning of it:
Analyses by the Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence show that, with few exceptions, states with the strictest gun-control measures, including California, Connecticut, New Jersey and New York, have the lowest rates of gun deaths, while those with the most lax laws like Alabama, Alaska and Louisiana, have the highest.
That one alone will make them choke but there they are. Facts. All those pesky facts and statistics and hard data.
I love it when the truth, the facts come out, especially on politicians who take money from organizations and who then put that organization and its preferences ahead of the American public, ahead of the nation.
Nowhere is this any more true than with our own Senator Roy Blunt and the money--the big money--he takes from the NRA, the National Rifle Association. Here's that article. It ran June 14, 2016:
Unfortunately for Senator Blunt, he is no longer the top recipient of funds and funding--money--from the NRA. This article in the New York Times, showing the latest of who takes in the most from them came out October 4 last year, after the Las Vegas slaughter:
Don't get me wrong here. You needn't feel sorry for the good Senator Blunt, however. According to that same article, he did take in more than four and one half million dollars from the NRA alone. In all, he got a cool, whopping $4,551,146 just from the NRA. Poor kid, he's fallen back to the number 3 position on how much he raked in from that greedy, selfish, self-serving organization.
Think about this. I know I have and for a long time. I saw this as a Facebook post today then found it's original source as a tweet from one Dan Pfeiffer, a former Obama staffer in the White House.
It is worth noting that the Russians believed that the best way to damage America was help elect Donald Trump.
I only wish Republicans and all Trump supporters could and would wrap their minds around this. How proud and happy can a person be if the Russians, of all people, wanted to make sure YOUR CANDIDATE wins the election?
From The New York Times:
"The indictment presented in astonishing detail a carefully planned, 3-year Russian scheme to incite political discord in the U.S., damage Hillary Clinton's campaign and promote Donald J. Trump.:
"Trump’s own Justice Department has concluded otherwise. A 37-page federal indictment released Friday afternoon spells out in exhaustive detail a three-year Russian plot to disrupt America’s democracy andboost Trump’s campaign, dealing a fatal blow to one of the president’s favorite talking points."
You can find Dan Pfeiffer at Pod Save America and Crooked Media:
It's gotten so tiresome over the years, trying to discuss weapons in our nation and the damage they do to us all. The Right Wing and Republican Party and NRA and all their supporters insist nothing will work, nothing will help and, gosh, we have to support our Constitution and the oh so precious Second Amendment.
The fact is, the facts are, the facts need to be looked at and accepted.
This is not a political issue. This is not a Constitutional debate. This is a pandemic that's killing children. And it's perpetrated by hypocrites who preach a doctrine of "life" but take money from a profit-driven gun lobby.@RoyBlunt@SenatorBurr@SenThomTillis@SenCoryGardner
We have to finally, at last, get things done about weapons in America. I propose the following, at minimum:
1) Require background checks for ALL weapons purchases, coast to coast, for criminal history
2) Require background checks for ALL weapons purchases, coast to coast, for mental stability and finally
3) Ban the purchase of all automatic weapons, including and especially the AR-15 and all like it, again, nationwide.
These are not difficult things but they are important. If they save even one life, let alone more, they will have achieved their goals and what we so desperately need in our country. We need to bring back the Assault Weapons Ban.
The time for "thoughts and prayers" and inaction is over.
You hear that, Senator Blunt?
The days of putting money and the NRA before the people, before we Americans, needs to be over and soon as possible.
As with our health care, we must put people and American lives ahead of profit and profits.