Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Palin Protester Punched, Manhandled, Getting What He Deserved, Says Pat Buchanan.

While the Republican propaganda noise machine denies they've been fanning the flames of revolution against their own government, they've been getting some help from the main stream media, like MSNBC. While Time's Mark Halperin paints a glowing picture of Palin, tea partiers and free speech, Pat Buchanan had this wonderful way to deal with dissent in the crowd:

Buchanan: "If somebody goes to a rally to disrupt it, and shout down a speaker, and deny the speaker their first amendment rights, and they get punched in the nose, it's their fault."

Andrea Mitchell: "Well, assault is assault Pat. There's rules of law here."

Buchanan: "People have a right to speak at these rallies, and someone to go in there and disrupt the right of 18,000 people...that's an outrage, and they should be thrown out of the hall. And if they get punched in the nose, I'd say that may be simple assault and the guy may be charged, but they insighted the assault, and some people would feel, maybe they're getting what they deserved."

One of the Few Doctors in Congress who Gets it, Rep. Steve Kagan Made a Difference.

Here's Rep. Steve Kagan's health care ad from the Democratic National Committee.

Keep Your Hands Off My Comic Super Heroes.

KSGF's James Harris finds Rep. Paul Ryan's idea of a Dickensian America so attractive, he's willing to take a comic icon like Captain America, and make him into a Ryan vigilante. "When Ryan speaks, liberalism dies."
What's the Republican preoccupation with killing and death?

Here's the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities breakdown of Capt. Ryan's horrific plan:

"All in all, the Ryan Roadmap charts a radical course that, if they understood it, few Americans likely would want to follow."

Forget the Plug in Electric Car. Let's Go Hands Free!

Fox News, Shepard Smith:

Violence, what violence: Part 2

Threats of violence? Where did you ever get that idea? The following is a compilation of right wing pleasantries.

John Oliver made a great point in this comedic health care bit.

Rachel Maddow on militia movement and anti-government threat from "real" Americans:

Conservative Dodo and Radio Host Heidi Harris: Threats? What threats?

Conservative radio host Heidi Harris did her best to dispel the idea that Republicans, tea party protesters and conservative media would ever threaten anyone, ever:
"Who threatens people, Ed, nobody. Oh stop, nobody does that."

Ed Schultz went on to describe four or five recent examples, but still failed to convince Harris.

Even after a driver and his 11 year old daughter were harassed because of an Obama bumper sticker on their car, Harris saw nothing wrong with Sarah Palin telling the Searchlight, Nevada crowd the next time they see an Obama bumper sticker:

"You should stop the driver and ask them, how is that hopey, changy thing workin' out for ya."

Harris tossed of the inappropriate comment by insisting it was just a joke.

And maybe that's why Harris and others conservatives don't understand the real threat. The right wing jokes aren't meant to incite violence. And if it does, it was unintended and an isolated act.

We're Finally Making Sense: Rerouting voucher money from cash strapped public schools not the answer!

We're finally getting to the point where the honest problematic details of charter/voucher school proposals are leaking out to the public. The following video clip pretty much encapsulates the new debate that leaves the voucher advocates grasping at straws.

Progressillinois: As one of the state's most outspoken advocates of public education, State Sen. James Meeks (D-Chicago) stunned some of his biggest supporters last month when he introduced a proposal to hand out private school vouchers to public school students … But after clearing the Illinois Senate … the prospect that Chicago could become ground zero in a statewide voucher experiment gained some credibility.

Still, critics are calling Meeks' efforts a diversion that will only reroute more public money from cash-starved schools. Among them is State Sen. Kwame Raoul (D-Chicago). "We can't just say give them a voucher," he said on Fox's Good Day Chicago this morning, "and that's going to solve the problem."

As Raoul points out, the measure is based on two questionable premises: that there will be enough private school openings to accommodate the students and that those private schools achieve better educational results. The Center on Tax and Budget
Accountability's executive director Ralph Martire echoed those sentiments, adding that there is no guarantee that a private school must accept disadvantaged students, either.

"The concept of public education is that every child, regardless of where they grow up, can get a quality education," Martire tells us. "If you don't have the resources to hire more and better teachers, to put technology in the classrooms, to have enrichment and afterschool programs to extend the school day ... how is competition [with the private market] going to make schools any better?"

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

GOP Lt. Governor Candidates Oppose Future, Focus on Voter ID and Support Tea Party Movement. Now That's Bipartisan.

Jobs, jobs, jobs!!!

That's what this election is all about. So what was it the Republican candidates for Lt. Gov. put forward that deals with unemployment, the economy and education? Voter ID and ....?Wispolitics:

Wisconsin’s four Republican candidates for lieutenant governor expressed nearly identical viewpoints on the issues at their first joint forum, but one hinted that his competitors may not be as conservative as they appear. Given equal time to answer each question, the four agreed on every issue, professing vehement opposition to light rail, national health care and early release of certain prisoners, along with enthusiastic support for voter photo IDs and the national tea party movement.

Caterillar, AT&T are Whining the Money Taxpayers are Giving them will now be taxed.

I've been stumped for weeks trying to figure out what all the corporate whining was all about from Caterpillar, AT&T, Deere and Co. and 3M when it came to health care reform. It took this long for the news media to reveal the outrageous details of a Bush era corporate handout, paid for by taxpayers, twice. You won't believe this one:

NY Times: An association representing 300 large corporations urged President Obama and Congress on Monday to repeal a provision of the health care overhaul that prompted AT&T, Caterpillar and other companies to announce substantial charges for the current quarter.

White House officials (said it was an) effort to eliminate what they said was an unusually generous tax loophole.
Pushed by Republicans and the Bush administration, the attempt to privatize Medicare Part D was only a part of the cost taxpayers would pay to corporate America:

When Congress and President George W. Bush enacted a prescription drug plan for seniors in 2003, the legislation encouraged companies to continue providing prescription coverage to retirees, instead of shifting retirees to Medicare Part D, by having the government give those companies large subsidies for each retiree — and also allowing them to deduct those subsidies from their income taxes.

Under the health care overhaul, the federal government will continue providing those subsidies — amounting to 28 percent of a drug plan’s costs — but companies will lose the tax break.
Jaw dropping isn't it? According to the Wall Street Journal: "The current health-care overhaul doesn't eliminate the subsidy, nor make it taxable. What it changes is that companies will no longer be able to deduct the portion of the drug benefit paid for by the subsidy."

Henry A. Waxman, chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, criticized the charges by the companies, asserting that the health reform would save companies more money than it cost them. Waxman sent AT&T, Caterpillar and Deere a sharp letter, questioning the charges and saying he wanted top officials from those companies to testify at an April 21 hearing he has scheduled on the issue.

Their letter said AT&T’s moves “appear to conflict with independent analyses,” including a finding by the Business Roundtable, an association of chief executives, that health care reform would reduce insurance cost trends for businesses by more than $3,000 for each employee over the next 10 years.

Gerry Shea, the A.F.L.-C.I.O.’s chief strategist on health care, stopped short of calling for a repeal of the provision. “We’re very concerned about the disruption that could be caused because of this, with people being pushed out of employer plans.”

Bottom line: Lose the insane tax deduction for the government subsidy.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Who Needs a Constitutional Law Professor when you've got the Tea Party Experts?

Can we finally agree that Sarah Palin is really really dumb. Say it often, say it loud.

According to and radio host Thom Hartmann:

I'm getting dizzy. Sarah Palin at a Tea Party rally paid homage to the Constitution. She said, "Our vision for America is anchored in time-tested truths that the government that governs least governs best, that the Constitution provides the path to a more perfect union - it's the Constitution." So it's puzzling that she also said, "In these volatile times when we are a nation at war, now more than ever is when we need a commander-in-chief, not a constitutional law professor."

The Republican Party of "Authority" and the Wealthy Elite continue Spending Spree, But Promise Fiscal Usual.

As Dick Cheney once said about the rise of the Republican Party and conservative policies, "We're getting our just due." And so they plundered the government coffers and bankrupt the global economy. Now comes this from the party leadership.

Washington Post: The Republican National Committee spent tens of thousands of dollars last month on luxury jets, posh hotels and other high-flying expenses, according to new Federal Election Commission filings, including nearly $2,000 for "meals" at Voyeur West Hollywood, a lesbian-themed nightclub that features topless dancers in bondage outfits.

The RNC spent more than $17,000 on private jet travel in February as well as nearly $13,000 for limousines, according to the documents. The GOP's main political committee also ran up tabs at numerous posh hotels, including the Beverly Hills Hotel ($9,000); the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons ($6,600) and the W Hotel in Washington ($15,000), and spent more than $43,000 on its controversial midwinter meeting in Hawaii, not including airfare.

The disclosures create another spending controversy for the RNC and its chairman, Michael Steele, The committee had more than $22 million on hand when Steele arrived last year, but is down to under $10 million now despite raising $96 million during that time, records show.

Steele's spending habits have prompted angry complaints from wealthy GOP donors and party officials, who fear the chairman is making poor financial decisions and undercutting the GOP's attempt to cast itself as the party of fiscal responsibility.

Tea Party Thug who Lambasted Parkinson's protester for Health Care Freeloading, is Sorry Now….that he's caught.

Here we go again. Another right winger apologizes for getting caught just being himself. The media might give him a pass, but we shouldn't.

The man who berated and tossed dollar bills at a man with Parkinson's disease during a health care protest last week says he is remorseful and scared. "I snapped. I absolutely snapped and I can't explain it any other way," said Chris Reichert of Victorian Village, in a Dispatch interview.

"He's got every right to do what he did and some may say I did too, but what I did was shameful," Reichert said. "I haven't slept since that day. I made a donation (to a local Parkinson's disease group) and that starts the healing process."

Earlier this week, Reichert, 40, denied any involvement in a confrontation. He said he's fearful for his family after reading comments about his actions on the Internet. "I've been looking at the web sites," he said. "People are hunting for me."

"That was my first time at any political rally and I'm never going to another one," Reichert said. "I will never ever, ever go to another one."

Yes, the "armed" left wing are out to get ya! Unless he's afraid of "verbal abuse," this mean spirited, angry, anti-government thug doesn't have much to worry about. What he can't do is take back what his heart and spirit put on public display for all Americans to see.

Walker hires Wackenhut the Wire Tapping-Commie listing-Gov. Spying-Contra Terrorist supporting-Antilabor-Silkwood killing & Prison Profiteer Guys

The "liberal" media and freedom fighting tea partiers appear to be giving governor candidate Scott Walker a big pass on his association and hiring of "security" contractor Whackenhut Services Corporation.

Eye on Wisconsin: We also know that (Scott Walker) awarded a contract to foreign-owned Wackenhut, to replace those jobs … it appears that Wackenhut not only had a convicted felon guarding the Milwaukee County Courthouse, but that it also shipped in workers from Ohio, Chicago and even Florida (temporary workers?) .... Wackenhut has about 45 security workers on the county job now, far more than the 27 they've replaced. Wackenhut will hire 11 or 12 of the laid-off county security workers.
But what do we know about Wackenhut? If you thought William Ayres was a problem for Obama, freedom and liberty loving conservatives should go nuclear over Walker's bizarre, scary choice to put Wackenhut in charge. From

Wackenhut's surveillance services were fined in 1999 by a federal district court in Alabama for illegal wire tapping, theft of business documents and corporate sabotage. This should come as no surprise as Mr. Wackenhut, a fervent right-winger, made his money in the 1950s creating dossiers on suspected communists, achieving by 1966 over four million files, or one for every 46 adults in the country.

In the same above mentioned SPY Magazine article, 18 year terrorism expert and CIA analyst, William Corbett, stated "For years, Wackenhut has been involved with the CIA and other intelligence organizations, including the Drug Enforcement Agency. Wackenhut would allow the CIA to occupy positions within the company [in order to carry out] clandistine operations." He went on to say Wackenhut provided the intelligence agencies with information and was paid in return "in a quid pro quo arrangement". This would explain in part the huge number of contracts awarded to Wackenhut in delicate areas of the national security, such as embassies and nuclear plants, and the $150 million increase in work under the Reagan Administration.

Wackenhut was also involved in illegal US operations in Central America in the 1980s. By exploiting the Cabazon Indian reservation as a sovereign nation, they intended to produce and export explosives to the Contras, evading Congressional law to the contrary. According to Edward Herman and Gerry O'Sullivan in The
Terrorism Industry, "Wackenhut quickly got involved with right-wing terrorists
who were themselves linked to state security agents" in Belgium. They left in the early 1980s after some of their guards were accused of luring immigrant children into basements and beating them.

Wackenhut is known for providing muscle and force against organized labor and protesters. They provided strike breakers at the Pittston mine in Kentucky. Their armed guards have beaten protesters at nuclear sites for the Department of Energy. Among nuclear weapons lab employees, Wackenhut was better known for “wacking” radiation whistleblowers like Karen Silkwood and attempting to run Dr. Rosalie Bertell off the road.

(Despite stamping out the idea of private prisons), the Reagan Revolution reversed those accomplishments and allowed the prison market to develop. Once a State-responsibility, prisons now rely on criminals for profit and labor Wackenhut entering the prison business in 1987. By 1997, they controlled one third of the prison market contracts, were paying out minimal wages. They have become notorious for cutting programs out of prisons to increase their profits. Programs include drug rehabilitation, counseling and educational services. They were investigated in 1995 for diverting $700,000 in drug rehabilitation funds from facilities in Texas.
Can you imagine the firestorm of controversy and conspiracy theories put forth by the right wings nuts if a Democrat hired a security firm with this kind of contract history?

Charter and Voucher Schools Help the Few at the Expense of the Many-Diane Ravitch

With the upcoming elections and growing Republican wave of popularity, a supposed public desire to give the reigns back to those who crashed the U.S. economy, the advocates of charter and voucher schools will once again push their privatization wet dream. Education historian Diane Ravitch offers up a number of possible Democratic talking points that will make their debates so much easier to win.

Milwaukee, in the strongly revised opinion of Diane Ravitch, is almost a textbook example for showing that the prediction that the tide of school choice will lift all educational boats is wrong.

"One might wonder about how much (Milwaukee Public Schools) is coming apart at the seams because of the competition," Ravitch said in a telephone conversation. "The competition was supposed to make things better."

She says … it is time for emphasizing the needs of the mainstream of public school students. "…the consensus says, what is needed is testing and accountability and charter schools." That was the philosophy under … Bush, and Obama is adhering to the same principles. My book says no," she said. She criticizes charter schools for contributing to making things worse for the larger majority of children attending conventional schools … by the mid-2000s, "I didn't see any evidence that the voucher schools and the charter schools were making public schools better."

"What about the 80,000 kids in Milwaukee public schools? What are we doing for them? What is the strategic plan, just to 'voucherize' and 'charterize' the entire city?"

Ravitch's sharp criticism brought a strong response from John Gee, executive director of the Wisconsin Charter Schools Association … "the core of criticism coming from people like Diane Ravitch is disingenuous and uninformed."

In the book, she writes: "I concluded that curriculum and instruction were far more important than choice and accountability."

In an e-mail, I described to her some of the rapid change on the charter school scene in Milwaukee, with some schools closing, new ones trying to open, and others trying to switch which of several public bodies are giving them the OK to operate.

She wrote back, "As a parent and grandparent, I say that kids need stability. So do teachers. The free market doesn't work as the basic mechanism for providing education. Schools are not like shoe stores, opened and closed in response to consumer demand. Or should not be. I'd like to have a full, rich curriculum," Ravitch said. "If I were the new superintendent, I would immediately bring in the Core Knowledge curriculum for (kindergarten through eighth grade)."

Here's a comment that followed the above article, which pretty much reflects my own perspective on the whole charter/choice argument:

The problem became the school choice proponents were insincere in their contention they wanted to help poor students … Choice proponents did not want the DPI to have any say in curriculum standards, teacher certification, attendance, and so on. In other words they wanted the money but didn't want to be held accountable for how that money was spent. Sorry, but it doesn't work that way, when you stick your hand out for public funds it is only right the public has a vested interest in how those funds are spent and how the beneficiaries of those funds conduct their 'business'. Choice proponents also used helping 'poor' students as a cover to seek public funds for private schools in the hopes of lowering the tuition expenses for current and future students. For years these parents have complained they paid tuition and still had to pay taxes to public schools at the same time, that was the real goal of Choice, to help the poor was just a PR tactic.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Wisconsin, like Massachusetts, in Good Shape for Federal Health Care Reform

Under Republican Governor Tommy Thompson, "in 1999, Wisconsin became one of the first four states to take advantage of the opportunity to use federal SCHIP funds to provide Medicaid coverage to more parents as well as children."-Families USA

Sustained and expanded by Governor Jim Doyle, Wisconsin is now in a much better position to adapt to the federal health care reform requirements without spending a lot of money. That can't be said for those states with artificially low taxes, a lack of responsibility, no compassion and no hindsight. Take Arizona for instance. They had a budget shortfall and decided health care for children was a wasteful luxury item, so they dropped it.

NY Times: Arizona lawmakers must now find a way to maintain insurance coverage for 350,000 children and adults that they slashed just last week to help close a $2.6 billion budget deficit. “Any flexibility we used to have is gone with the new mandate,” said Tom Betlach, director of the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System, which runs Medicaid.
For Arizona politicians, budget "flexibility" includes cutting kids health care. For everyone else, humane people and Democrats, such an option would be a last resort. Red states like to say they look less to government for help, brag about people doing without things like health care, as a sign of freedom and independence.

States with the largest uninsured populations, like Texas and California, are being required to significantly expand their Medicaid programs, they are precisely the ones that will face the biggest financial strains, In contrast, states like Massachusetts and Wisconsin, which already have extensive health care safety nets, do not expect to spend much more money, while still taking in billions in federal grants.
Even after Massachusetts voters voiced their objection to health care reform for everybody else, it turns out the state will actually save their citizens money. Ironic?:
In Massachusetts, for example, which already has a form of universal coverage, the federal government will wind up taking over from the state a significantly larger share of the costs of Medicaid coverage for adults without children, officials said. “On balance, it’s definitely a gain,” said Judy Ann Bigby, secretary of the Massachusetts Office of Health and Human Services.
But for all the whining, states will still have three years plus to plan ahead and make adjustments.

For the first three years, the federal government will pick up the entire cost of these new enrollees, but the state share then gradually increases until it reaches 10 percent in 2020. “Any flexibility we used to have is gone with the new mandate,” said Tom Betlach, director of the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System, which runs Medicaid.

The Crazy, Fanning the Flames Right Winger Armstrong Williams: "People are afraid...(threats) are happening on both sides

MSNBC's David Shuster gets shoveled loads of "both sides" bull from radio Republican Armstrong Williams, the ultimate fear monger.

Williams: " it's happening on both sides...the American people are just angry and upset David over the health care bill. They're afraid of their way of life, they're afraid of what's going to happen ... I hope that you're applying the standard for all that have been threatened, because I'm just as outraged about the Democrats being threatened as the Republicans being's the people who are afraid of the health care bill..."

Shuster: "The problem is a lot of Americans don't know what's in this bill because they've been so confused and so mislead particularly by members of congress and some members of the conservative media.."

Williams: "Both sides David, both sides."

Shuster: "That's not both sides, there has not been an equivalency Armstrong, you know better than that."

Coulter Claims she has "free speech rights" in Canada. Not only that, the public decided!

New Rule for Radio and TV hosts: Guests who lie are not invited Back.

Tired of the "both sides do it" lie that seems to be so eagerly excepted by media news? Ed Schultz ripped apart "the BIG LIE" from yesterday below. Let's start with the "both sides" camouflage whipped up by Republican Rep. Eric Cantor.

ThinkProgress: Yesterday, House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA) falsely charged that his office was “directly threatened” in a gun attack. Cantor used the incident to provide partisan cover to his unruly GOP colleagues, who have been pandering to tea party activists with increasingly unhinged and extreme rhetoric.

The quick aside by Schultz was this; He wondered by he should even try to have any Republicans on his program, since they all lie.

I would go one better; Put in place a rule where any guest who lies, whether it's the over the top fictional "what if" scenario or just outright BS, is never invited back on the show. This wouldn't include half truths, where only a few well chosen facts are used to spin the issue in a way to benefit the guest. The host is expected to know something to balance the conversation.

Remember, even the wacky politicians are looking for on-air time and can't afford to lose face time. It would also help to have in place a basic expectation of quality and truth.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Republican Lawsuit against Reform Mandate is Repudiation of their own Brilliant Idea.

It's well established fact that the whole idea of mandating the purchase of health care by every American was a Republican Party construct. But what you didn't know about the GOP proposal in 1993 was the lack of thought that went into the requirement, or so they would like us to think.

Rachel Maddow exposes some shocking comments from Senator's Grassley and Hatch. For instance:
Grassley: "The only difference between 1993 and the, if it was unconstitutional today, it was unconstitutional in 1993, but I DON'T THINK ANYBODY GAVE IT MUCH THOUGHT."


The 2008 Republican presidential debate shows Mitt Romney proudly proclaiming, "Oh no, I like mandates..." It gets worse, check it out.

(AP) - Republicans were for President Obama's requirement that Americans get health insurance before they were against it.

The obligation is a Republican idea that's been around at least two decades. It was once trumpeted as an alternative to Hillary Clinton's failed health care overhaul in the 1990s. Mitt Romney signed such a requirement into law … in 2006 … defended it as "a personal responsibility principle" and Massachusetts' newest GOP senator, Scott Brown, backed it.

Republicans say Obama and the Democrats co-opted their original concept, minus a mechanism they proposed for controlling costs.

How do you control costs? Republicans are pushing the no minimum required coverage, free market principle that has worked so well in the private sector so far. No matter how minimal the benefits and cheap the premiums, those premiums will go up each year based on rising hospital and doctor services, just like today. People with costly pre-existing conditions will be paid for by taxpayers and not effect the insurers profits.
Not long ago, many of them saw a national mandate as a free-market route. In the 1990s, the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, embraced an individual requirement. health economist Mark Pauly of the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School. "Because the Democrats were in favor, the Republicans more or less had to be against it."

8 Republicans Guilty of Election Fraud, 0 ACORN Workers Found Guilty

I've stressed the importance of the psychology of "projection": Psychological projection or projection bias (including Freudian Projection) is the unconscious act of denial of a person's own attributes, thoughts, and emotions, which are then ascribed to other people. Thus, it involves imagining or projecting that others have those feelings.-Wiki

Such is the case for voter and election fraud. Would it surprise you to know one in five Republicans believe that ACORN stole the 2008 election. 55% are "not sure" if they did or not-Research 2000.

The following is a dramatic, extreme example of projection, and they got caught.

Bradblog: All eight (Republican) defendants in Clay County, Kentucky's election fraud trial have been found guilty today by a federal jury. Six of those eight were high-ranking election officials, including the county clerk, a circuit judge and the school superintendent. The conspirators were charged with having manipulated federal elections in 2002, 2004 and 2006 by buying and selling votes and manipulating electronic voting machines.

According to AP, each of the now-convicted felons (were a part of) a conspiracy to manipulate elections for decades in the rural, heavily Republican county … several of the defendants were also convicted of charges that included mail fraud, extortion and laundering money used to buy votes. The greatest security threat to such systems come from election insiders, not from the voting public and dubious claims of "voter fraud".

Here's one example that should be of concern to other states with the same paperless machines:
The testimony of one of the witnesses … described how she was trained by the county's chief election official, Clerk Freddy Thompson (one of those convicted today), to change votes cast by voters on the county's ES&S touch-screen voting systems after they'd left the voting booth. Wanda White also detailed how she was instructed to change her own voter registration from Republican to Democratic so that she could serve as a Democratic precinct official.
Subversive? Yes. How bizarre is it to imagine undercover Republicans working as Democrats corrupting the electoral process from within. Oh, by the way:
The community organization ACORN has never been charged with, or found guilty of aiding in the illegal casting of a single vote. Ever. Anywhere. No actual evidence has ever been presented in support of such a charge either
ACORN workers have been known to meet quota's by falsely adding names to their registration sheets, felons have voted by mistake and one couple voted twice so they could influence the results of a local issue at their second home. Criminal intent, hardly.

AG Lawsuits Made to Fund Mid Term Campaigns.

Can congress force everyone to buy insurance?

For awhile, before the Democrats decided the mandate was a good idea, Republicans thought the mandate on Americans was the only way to make health care affordable.

Miami Herald:
"The truth is this is a Republican idea," said Linda Quick, president of the South Florida Hospital and Healthcare Association. She said she first heard the concept of the "individual mandate" in a Miami speech in the early 1990s by Sen. John McCain … to counter the "Hillarycare" the Clintons were proposing … (including) other leading Republicans (like) Tommy Thompson, secretary of Health and Human Services under President George W. Bush. Seeking to de-radicalize the idea during a symposium in Orlando in September 2008, Thompson said, "Just like people are required to have car insurance, they could be required to have health insurance."

Mitt Romney: "Some of my libertarian friends balk at what looks like an individual mandate," Romney wrote in The Wall Street Journal in 2006. "But remember, someone has to pay for the health care that must, by law, be provided: Either the individual pays or the taxpayers pay. A free ride on government is not libertarian." Romney was referring to the federal law that requires everyone to be treated in emergency rooms, regardless of their ability to pay.
Thanks to BloggingBlue for the heads up on Thompson.

Vanderboegh, the libertarian leader of brick throwers against government health care, on gov. disability

Mike Vanderboegh, the 57-year-old former militiaman from Alabama and libertarian who has advocated violence, terrorism and brick throwing vandalism, says
"The central fact of the health-care bill is this, and we find it tyrannical and unconstitutional on its face. The federal government now demands all Americans to pay and play in this system, and if we refuse, we will be fined, and if we refuse to pay the fine, they will come to arrest us, and if we resist arrest . . . then we will be killed. The bill certainly doesn't say that, but that's exactly and precisely what is behind every bill like this."
Shocker Alert!!! He's on GOVERNMENT DISABILITY! I think fellow conservatives would call that a "taxpayer handout."
Vanderboegh said he once worked as a warehouse manager but now lives on government disability checks. He said he receives $1,300 a month because of his congestive heart failure, diabetes and hypertension. He has private health insurance through his wife, who works for a company that sells forklift products.
Will Vanderboegh give up his taxpayer paid disability check for the cause, to stand on his own two feet and organize a community car wash or bake sale to pay his bills? Sen. Tom Coburn was pushing that solution at his town hall meetings. Or is Vanderboegh a hypocrite?

Vanderboegh's message is also an act of terrorism, because of the following statement:

"To all modern Sons of Liberty: THIS is your time. Break their windows. "Break them NOW. Break them and run to break again. Break them under cover of night. Break them in broad daylight. Break them and await arrest in willful, principled civil disobedience. Break them with rocks. Break them with slingshots. Break them with baseball bats. But BREAK THEM."
Journalism note: The Washington Post article detailing the above information should have focused on Vanderboegh's government health care protests, with his own government health care checks, first and foremost. That's the story. It didn't.

Here We Go Again. Republican Sen. Tom Coburn Blocks Jobless Benefits before he Leaves Town.

Hey Republicans, not feeling good about yourself? Kick the cat, the dog or take it out on your wife and kids. Make them squirm. Or take it out on an unemployed stranger.

AP-Republican senator Tom Coburn blocked a stopgap bill to extend jobless benefits, saying its $9 billion cost should not be added to the national debt …

He's "insisting that the measure be "paid for."

How? By taking money out of the stimulus fund, money meant to created jobs for people out of work.

Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., the majority whip said, "We really believe that the unemployment situation is an emergency economic situation. Republicans do not accept that. They want to cut off unemployment benefits or pay for it with stimulus funds that are creating jobs."

Thursday, March 25, 2010

You Can't Argue with Mike Vanderboegh's Sick Mind.

While Rep. Eric Cantor tries to nuetralize the Democratic death threats vilifying his party, by suggesting "both sides" are threatened (the first time we're hearing about this new ploy, which took awhile to come up with a way to market), the real mindset continues to boil over on the right.

Alan Colmes interviews the crazy "break their windows" madman himself, Mike Vanderboegh. Not only does he take credit for the Democratic politicians vandalized offices, but he also claims that if the IRS can't collect the fine from you for not buying health insurance, they will kill you!

VANDERBOEGH: I am telling you we are motivated to break windows, we feel a deadly threat from the Federal government and the orders that the Democrat party has given us. [...]

COLMES: You’re telling people to break the windows of Democratic headquarters. You’re telling people to commit acts of vandalism. You’re supporting breaking the law.

VANDERBOEGH: May I tell you my personal motive for doing this? I’m trying to save the lives of Nancy Pelosi, and every one of these people who do not understand the unintended consequences of their actions. [...] Because they are not paying attention to the million of people across this deepening divide that politics no longer avails them. [...] We refuse to participate in the system, and we refuse to pay the fines, and we refuse arrest. Now where do you suppose that’s going but a thousand little Waco’s.

Vanderboegh is another conservative genius who knows just what the founding fathers were thinking. Colmes has the uncanny ability to get the most insane responses from his conservative guests without even trying. If you've wondered how "they" think, this scary look inside the thought process of the radical mind will chill you to the bone. Think for a moment after watching the video how you would reason with this sicko.

Here's Rachel Maddow on Vanderboegh and the other threats against Democrats.

AG's Ignore Reform Option Where States can Remove Mandate! according to Sen. Ron Wyden.

Wait a minute, do the 13 AG's who are suing the federal government know they don't have to mandate anything in their states, if they don't want to? Check this out:

Think Progress:
"…as Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) points out, the health care law already allows states to “go out and do its own bill, including having no individual mandate” as long as “they can meet the coverage requirements of the bill.”

“Why don’t you use the waiver provision to let you go set up your own plan?” the senator asked those who threaten health-care-related lawsuits.

“Why would you just say you are going to sue everybody, when this bill gives you the authority and the legal counsel is on record as saying you can do it without an individual mandate?”
I also thought this was an interesting take against joing the lawsuit:
Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway announcedyesterday that “he will not file a lawsuit against the federal government in trying to refuse the legislation.” “I do not intend to use my authority as Kentucky Attorney General to sign our Commonwealth onto a health care lawsuit against the federal government, because I will not waste taxpayer dollars on a political stunt,” Conway said. “Trey Grayson’s gimmick may be good ‘tea party’ politics, but it’s based on questionable legal principles,” Conway said, referring to the Secretary of State’s request that he file a lawsuit.

Rep. Jim Clyburn Takes Down Cantor's "Blame the Democrats" Speech.

Hey, did you know the Republicans were getting death threats? It's their new marketing ploy to falsely claim "both sides are doing it."

Rep. Jim Clyburn responds to Eric Cantor's attempt to change the frame, to reverse the GOP stoked threats of violence, and blame the Democratic Party. Clyburn easily lays the blame and exploitation where it belongs, in the laps of the Republican strategy, reminding everyone that both "baby killer" and "you lie" were used to raise campaign funds.

Rep. Eric Cantor Blames Press for Death Threats, Warns it is Reckless, Democrats are FANNING FLAMES for More Violence.

Suddenly, Republicans are getting death threats by socialist peaceniks! What an idea!

Flipping the blame of death threats against Democrats, as a problem created by Democrats, Rep. Eric Cantor and party big thinkers have again astonished Americans sense of common sense and logic. Cantor's message; don't head off the problem by warning the public. After all, the upcoming midterm election campaign and RNC PowerPoint presentation focused playing up the fear of socialism and loss of our liberty and freedom. Don't talk about the escalating violence and extremist rhetoric from the right wing crazies .

MSNBC's Contessa Brewer starts with Rep. John Barrasso, who continues the heated rhetoric and victimization stoking the tea party death threats, and moves on to Cantor's bizarre leap into reverse reality. I will let Rep. Eric Cantor's shocking upside down "Alice in Wonderland" logic speak for itself (2 min. in):

Cantor: "Legitimate threats should be treated as security issues. And they should be dealt with by the appropriate law enforcement officials. It is reckless to use these incidents as media vehicles for political gain. That is why I have deep concerns that some -- DCCC Chairman Chris Van Hollen and DNC Chairman Tim Kaine in particular -- are dangerously fanning the flames by suggesting that these incidents be used as a political weapon. To use such threats as political weapons is reprehensible."

Washington Post:
Cantor concluded … releasing threatening messages "can easily fan the flames" and lead to more threats. "Enough is enough, It has to stop," Cantor said.
The message delivered, Cantor could not afford to take questions.

After leveling serious accusations against Democratic leaders, Cantor left the press conference without taking any questions from reporters.
Cantor knew the sludge he just threw at the panting press was indefensible.

Republicans Warn Obama, NO Recess appointments…zero…unlike the record breaking 7 installed by Bush. Base Voters Don't Object to Double Standard.

More unabashed, unashamed hypocrisy that the Republican base will predictably not question.
(AP) - Republican senators and business groups urged President Barack Obama against using the Easter recess to name a union lawyer to the National Labor Relations Board.

Opponents portray the lawyer, Craig Becker, as a radical who would push an aggressively pro-union agenda. All 41 GOP senators wrote Obama urging him not to appoint Becker when Congress takes a break next week. "His writings clearly indicate that he would use his position on the NLRB to institute far-reaching changes in labor law far exceeding the board's authority and bypassing the role of Congress," the lawmakers wrote in a letter.
But support for employee rights is the last thing business wants. Not able to except the electoral process and the new direction reflected the last two elections, Republicans don't get the change in ideological direction:
Despite the outcry from Republicans, recess appointments to the NLRB are nothing new. Bush used the tactic to install board members seven times, more than any other president.
It's horrific to see the "radical" anti-union right wingers fade from the NLRB. This damn two party system is a bitch.

Sonny Perdue's "I Hate Health Care" Lawsuit re-election campaign

Attorney General and constitutional scholar Sonny Perdue...I mean Governor Perdue is NOT injecting politics and taxpayer spending into his ideological opposition to health care reform. It's simply an issue of principal. See for yourself...

(AP) -- Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue is butting heads with the state's top lawyer, threatening to ''go it alone'' and sue the federal government over a new federal health care law. Democratic Attorney General Thurbert Baker declined Perdue's request to sue over the health care law, arguing the state doesn't have a ''a viable legal claim.'' ''I cannot in good conscience file a lawsuit against the United States that I believe has little or no chance of success and will undoubtedly consume significant state resources in a time of severe budgetary crisis,'' Baker wrote in a letter to the governor.
Flipping national criticism on its head, where Republican AG's are pressing the suit and four are running for governor, Perdue is saying NOT pursuing the lawsuit but still running for governor is behind the efforts of some to use none action as a way to inject politics. Huh? They said it, not me:

But Perdue spokesman Bert Brantley suggested politics might be behind Baker's decision not to sue over Democratic-backed bill. ''We know that he's a candidate for governor and so we know that there are multiple things that he's looking at or thinking about and that's fine,'' Brantley said.
The childish "I know you are but what am I" defense that works like magic on conservative brain mush.
Oh, by the way, Perdue's determination to sue over the federal mandate has nothing to do with HIS gubernatorial run for re-election.

Good-bye Robert Culp.

He's the guy I tried to be like in junior high. He was cool, smart and witty. He was actor Robert Culp, as "I Spy" character Kelly Robinson. After all these years, it's odd that I would feel this way, like a part of me is missing.

The last time I remember seeing Culp was his guest appearance on the Cosby Show, where Cliff Huxtable dreamed he was a spy teamed up with, you guessed it, Culp. It was nice to see these two good friends together again, just for the fun of it.

I will truly miss this childhood TV role model. I put together the following short clip.

(AP) - Robert Culp, the actor who teamed with Bill Cosby in the racially groundbreaking TV series "I Spy" and was Bob in the critically acclaimed sex comedy "Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice," died Wednesday. Culp was 79. Manager Hillard Elkins said the actor was on a walk when he fell. He was taken to a hospital and pronounced dead just before noon. The actor's son was told he died of a heart attack. Los Angeles police Lt. Robert Binder said no foul play was suspected. Binder said a jogger found Culp, who apparently fell and struck his head.

"I Spy" greatly advanced the careers of Culp and Cosby and forged a lifelong friendship. Cosby said Wednesday Culp was like an older brother to him.

"The first born in every family is always dreaming of the older brother or sister he or she doesn't have, to protect, to be the buffer, provide the wisdom, shoulder the blows and make things right," he said. "Bob was the answer to my dreams. "No matter how many mistakes I made on 'I Spy,' he was always there to teach and protect me," Cosby said.

"I Spy," which aired from 1965 to 1968, was a television milestone in more ways than one. Its combination of humor and adventure broke new ground, and it was the first integrated television show to feature a black actor in a starring role.

Culp played Kelly Robinson, a spy whose cover was that of an ace tennis player. (In real life, Culp actually was a top-notch tennis player who showed his skills in numerous celebrity tournaments.). Cosby was fellow spy Alexander Scott, whose cover was that of Culp's trainer. The pair traveled the world in the service of the U.S. government.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Tea Party Motivation: Toxic and Dangerous?

While violence and chaos continues against Democrats and their associates, escalated by tea party members nationwide, Americans are starting to get a better look at their motives and lack of civility. Rush has given them their orders, "They are going to be exposed and hassled and chased from office ... We must defeat these bastards, we must wipe them out."

I'm not sure if he talking about a lively debate with Democrats or target practice.

Law breaking will escalate over time. But the real question will be-how far will this go? Public intimidation is the likely result. Think about it; you're at the bar, checkout counter, pool, bike path, street corner or party, having a political debate with an armed angry zealot or drunk. Who's going to back down?

Columnist Eugene Robinson: "It's not quite libertarian, but it's fundamentalist in terms of constitutional rights and founders intent and anti-government."

Rep. Jim Clyburn: "When you look at some of the signs out there ... you know that much of this is not about health care at all. All of this is about people who have been led to believe that for somebody else to get insurance coverage, would take something from them."

Olbermann on Tea Party Protesters and GOP Encouragement: "Self Rationalizing Refusal to Accept the Outcomes of Elections"

MSNBC's Olbermann sums up the "spirit" of the tea party movement in the video below.

My own take is that the new Republican/tea party, would much rather leave everything up to chance. From their own health, to food safety, pollution, medical errors, education and employment. Their freedom, liberty and chaos trumps my own desire for regulation, order, freedom, liberty and consumer safety. But because Rush Limbaugh believes liberals should be "wiped out," I'm getting the uneasy feeling my freedoms don't really matter. My life would be much better under the authoritarian rule of the conservative, after all they have always said that they were the "real Americans."

Take, for example, the following point of view from one of our nations "hero's:"

A Tea Partier Responds on Health Care By Allan Olds at Veterans Today
The tea party is good for veterans for several good reasons, one of which we fought for freedom and the capitalist system, not socialism. We were taught to fight to excel and be successful, not sit on your lazy butt and be given the same thing as a guy who bust his butt to get ahead.

Also one of the fringe benefits of serving my country was my health care, why should some low life draft dodger get the same for nothing?

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Here's a list of Immediate Health Care Benefits, and the Push to Repeal them All.

Rachel Maddow lists the immediate effects of reform and the insanity of repeal.

13 (12 are Republicans, 4 running for higher office, Notice a pattern?) Attorney Generals want to "Constitutionally" protect Health Care Freeloaders.

MSNBC's Chris Matthews takes the issue of mandating health care coverage to Nebraska's partisan Attorney General Jon Bruning, who along with 12 other AG's, have filed a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the new requirement.

AG Bruning appears utterly unprepared to make his case. Which leads to one undeniable conclusion: Republicans are extremely confident about bringing any kind of "constitutional" question to what we now know is one of the most activist supreme courts in American history. Precedent is ignored and the strict conservative constructionist "theory" is now the interpretation du jour of the land.

Winning their lawsuit doesn't cancel reform, but would seriously injure its funding formula, which depended on a large insurance pool of premiums. One "choice" already talked about is a five year opt out, allowing Americans the option of not buying coverage, while preventing them from changing their minds for the remaining five years period.

Chris Matthews point is a good one; The Republican AG's are really advocating the cause of health care freeloaders. They are described here by AG Bruning, as people "who can afford to take care of themselves." "...the next thing they can do is ... if they can force you to buy insurance, they can force us all to buy electric cars." Cars? A persons healthy body is like a car? God help us.

The All American Freedom Fighting Health Care Freeloader: not too smart.

Do you admire those anti-health care tea party protesters? Are you taken in by all the talk of freedom and liberty? Do you find their stupidity and risk taking a gutsy lifestyle you would like for your family? Well, welcome to the world of individualistic, devil may care freeloaders.

Donald Bowles (not pictured) should be a winner, too. The self-employed Oklahoma City man and his wife can't afford insurance on an income that's usually below $30,000 a year, often much lower. They seldom go to a doctor. When they do, it's often a free clinic.

But Bowles, 51, doesn't want the government's help. He'd rather take his chances and fend for himself. "I won't take Medicaid, and I will not pay the fine. They'll give me good health benefits in prison, I believe," he quips. "If you can't provide for yourself, why should everyone else provide for you?"

Good god, this is the voice of the opposition?

GOP Health Care Threats Revisited...

Monday, March 22, 2010

Ryan's Free Market Health Care Vision Discount Race to the Bottom. Anyone up for Cheap Bypass Surgery?

I've decided to post a section of the following Rep. Paul Ryan interview with Ezra Klein to demonstrate the extreme flaws in his plan and naive answers that support a blind faith in the free market.

The bottom line: As the medical markets competes in Ryan's vision, prices will fall in a dramatic way. But that's the problem. Cutting prices will attract health care "consumers," sure, but it also means providers will be cutting quality and service in a race to the bottom. Discount care brings with it discount clinics and low priced doctors, the Wal-Marting of health care.

That's Ryan's plan, and he doesn't even know it. You'll also love his enthusiastic exceptance of self "rationing." Hey, it's better than insurers or government rationing....wait, rationing shouldn't happen at all. Not according to Ryan:

Washington Post: Klein: Looking at your proposals for Medicare and Medicaid, I’d characterize your approach as privatizing programs and then capping the government’s contributions to them.

Ryan: The whole point I’m trying to make here is that we have to understand these programs are growing themselves into extinction. The question, at the end of the day, is who’s going to be in control of this system. Is it the individual or the government? I don’t want the government more in control of the system.
Klein: A word we should bring into play here is "rationing."

Ryan: Rationing happens today! The question is who will do it? The government? Or you, your doctor and your family?
Klein: That ends up being the interesting question. The theory of the Medicare system, of the European systems, is that the best way to do this is to have the government fund research to discover the effectiveness of treatments and then use its purchasing power the same way Wal-Mart would – to drive prices down. Medicare, as the CBO said in its report to you, pays less than private insurance.
Ryan: But Medicare is growing at an unsustainable rate. And yet it underpays doctors.
Klein: But private insurance is growing that quickly as well. And this question of underpayment is doctors and hospitals making less than they expect to make. What you’re talking about, bringing Medicare spending down very sharply, is even more vulnerable to that critique. You do it on the patient side, not the provider side, but they will feel they’re getting vouchers that aren’t generous enough to keep up with health-care costs.
Ryan: So what I’m saying is that rather than having government ration care to manage decline, let’s take those market signals that work in every sector of the economy to reduce cost and improve competition. I got Lasik in 2000. That’s a cash surgery. It cost me $2,000 an eye. Since then, it’s been revolutionized three times and now costs $800 an eye. This sector isn’t immune from free-market principles.
Klein: The Lasik thing is interesting because it gets to the question of whether health care is a market. When I think of getting Lasik, or buying a television, I can walk out of the store. That’s what gives me as a consumer my power in the market. But if I have chest pains and my doctor prescribes a bypass, how do I walk out of the store?
Ryan: In Milwaukee, the price of bypass ranges from $47,000 to $100,000. Nobody knows where to go for quality, or the prices. So wouldn’t it be good for the prices and quality metrics to be publicized? And let people make a decision. There’ll always be some level of co-pay or deductible or co-insurance that’s going to push people towards the best value. Then, when you have those chest pains and you’re being rushed in the ambulance, you’ll be rushed to a hospital that’s all along been competing for business and has been improved by that process. You’ll get better health care than you otherwise would. That’s how you improve the system.
Klein: You’re arguing that the benefits of competition accrue, and so even if you don’t choose at the moment of emergency, there’s still an effect from a higher-functioning market.

Ryan: Absolutely.
Klein: But take cars. Lots of people buy crappy cars, or bad televisions. I make bad purchases all the time. Liberals and conservatives are together on the publishing of quality metrics. But this stuff is more complicated and diffuse than cars. That’s not to say the consumer shouldn’t have a role.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

House Health Care Bill Passed, Stupak called "Baby Killer" by Republican Lawmaker.

(AP) -
President Barack Obama says the health care legislation passed Sunday night by the House is "a victory for the American people" and "a victory for common sense."
The bill "will not solve every problem" in the health care system, Obama says, but "moves us in the right direction." Obama praised Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other Democrats for getting the bill through Sunday night's 219-212 vote, saying they proved that the government "still works for the people."

Washington Post:

Rep. John Campbell (R-Calif.) acknowledged late Sunday night that a Republican yelled "baby killer" as Democratic Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.) urged his fellow Democrats to vote down a Republican amendment on abortion services in the health-care legislation. Campbell, initially suspected as the lawmaker who shouted the phrase, told reporters that he didn't say it and believed that it came from a member sitting a row behind him, where the Texas Republicans usually sit. Campbell said he heard "a Southern accent".

"The people who know won't give it up," Campbell told reporters. He said the
remark was "clear as a bell."

Why are they so MAD? Tea Party protesters, part 2

I found this piece to be right on the money.
Ezra Klein: Jon Cohn spent part of Saturday wandering through the patches of protesters on Capitol Hill. What surprised him, however, was that the protests seemed less about health-care reform than about redistribution itself. To the protesters, Jon says, health-care reform is "about having their money taken for the sake of somebody else's security. When they hear stories of people left bankrupt or sick because of uninsurance, they are more likely to see a lack of personal responsibility and virtue than a lack of good fortune."

There are three major subsidies operating in the health-care system. The first is Medicare, Medicaid … then there's: The tax break for employer-sponsored health-care insurance. At $250 billion a year, it's much more expensive than health-care reform, and it subsidizes people with good jobs that offer health-care benefits.

Another group: People with jobs, but not jobs that are good enough to offer them health-care benefits. People with paychecks, but who aren't making quite enough money to bear the cost of insurance. People who're buying insurance on their own, which means they don't get the good deals that big employers get, and they don't get a giant tax break to help them out. But these aren't lazy people, or layabouts. These are people who've been left behind in the system. We spend a lot more money to give a lot more help to a lot of folks who need it less than this group does.

The new rules on insurers go to help another group: People with bad luck. A preexisting condition is not the fault of the individual. When someone who has coverage and then gets sick finds their policy rescinded, that's also usually not their fault. They had the bad luck … to have an insurer looking for a loophole to deny them coverage, and then the bad luck to have their insurer actually find one.

These are the folks health-care reform is meant to help. The fact that they can't afford insurance, though, isn't evidence of some abdication of personal responsibility. It is evidence that they're not old, or very poor, or employed by a large corporation that offers health-care insurance. Sickness and health might be capricious, but access to health care doesn't have to be. It isn't in other countries, and if Democrats win the vote tonight, it won't be in ours, either.

The Election is all about JOBS! So Say Republican Primary Candidates, When they're not arguing about gay marriage.

Republicans keep saying, it's jobs, jobs, jobs, jobs, jobs….only after they determine who most personifies "family values" and sufficiently bashes gays. Keep reminding yourself, as you read the following Republican "debate," that's it's all about jobs, jobs, jobs....
Wisconsin State Journal: A GOP challenger in a northwest Wisconsin congressional district is condemning his primary opponent and former reality television star for having appeared in a movie dealing with gay marriage. "I will not keep quiet or look the other way on these issues. It is in my heart and in my soul and I cannot keep still," Dan Mielke said in a statement about his opponent Sean Duffy. Mielke said Duffy's appearance in the movie amounts to condoning gay marriage and goes against conservative principles. Mielke's site states, " Sean and Rachel both participated in has an admitted long history of promoting acceptance of the homosexual lifestyle."
Jobs, jobs, jobs, jobs.....

Duffy is the Ashland County district attorney and a former cast member of the MTV reality show, The Real World. He said "The film my wife and I participated in 11 years ago was a mockumentary - a spoof of reality television. Mielke's … latest attempt to smear my wife and me is shameless, and a clear indication he is grasping at straws."
Jobs, jobs, jobs...How did Duffy's wife get "smeared?" This is almost too surreal to believe:

WISCNEWS: Rachel approached Mielke's booth … Mielke said Rachel tried to rip a duct-taped label, which described the video, off his table. Duffy spokesman Darrin Schmitz said, "He responded by violently grabbing her by the arm. She’s 5-feet tall and eight-and-a-half months pregnant and is a threat to no one, including someone twice her size. "She was getting ready to rip them off," Mielke said. "I stopped her and pushed her hand off the tape..." After the argument … Mielke said then he called police to document the incident. Schmitz said the call was an abuse of the 911 system and "a publicity stunt to save his failing campaign."

Officer Brion Stecky spoke with Mielke … Mielke suggested he put a piece of paper with "view at your own risk" over the computer screen so only people who wanted to see the video would see it.

Honest, the election is about jobs, jobs, jobs….no really.