Thursday, January 31, 2008

We sink or swim together

This opinion piece is in the Northern Light Blaines weekly paper. It's some very good food for thought.
Who comes first?
By Billy Frank, Jr.
Chair, Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission

Minority state house leader Richard DeBolt asked this important
question recently, criticizing salmon protection measures he believes contribute
to increased flooding in the region.

He’s understandably upset because his community of Chehalis was ravaged
by this winter’s floods. Our hearts go out to the thousands of people in western
Washington who suffered through some of the worst flooding in decades.

Salmon and people are not in a race. There is no first or second place.
People and salmon must succeed together. ...

... Clearly, we need to focus our energies on helping the people of western
Washington recover from the devastating floods. But let’s not let that deter our
mission to recover the salmon resource—a true indicator of our own well

Tribes have always known that people and salmon share the same boat
when it comes to survival. We sink or swim together. With that in mind we should
be better prepared for the next big flood. (full article)

John McCain is Dr. Strangelove

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Pacific Fisher Returns

A healthy natural environment is essential to our survival. We are faced with the need to correct past mistakes and create a sustainable balance. the reintroduction of the Pacific Fisher is a positive step toward that balance.

Pacific Fisher Returns to Washington
Conservation Northwest welcomes the return of a native forest mammal to our state

Port Angeles, WA Sunday Jan 27, 2008

With fresh snow on the ground and blue skies above, the Pacific fisher returned home to its habitat in Washington State for the first time in over eighty years. The fisher, a relative of the weasel family that thrives in old-growth forests, was eliminated in Washington State due to over-trapping and the loss of big trees and snags found in old-growth forests. Biological studies determined that active reintroduction efforts were needed to reestablish fisher populations in Washington, identifying the Olympic National Park as the best initial location.

In 2002, Conservation Northwest partnered with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife to initiate the reestablishment of a native population of fishers to the forests of western Washington.

After five years of planning, eleven Pacific fishers were released today into old forests in the Olympic National Park, including a location near the Elwha River. A crowd of forty onlookers, which included students from Stevens Elementary School in Port Angeles, were on hand to witness the historic event. The partnership ultimately involved five agencies (Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Olympic National Park, Olympic National Forest, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Geological Survey) and two non-profit organizations: Conservation Northwest and Washington’s National Park Fund. (full press-release)

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

John Edwards participates in Political Courage Test

John Edwards and Mike Gravel participated in the Political Courage Test at (non partisan)Project Vote Smart. this amazing organization gives us citizens a chance to be armed with the facts as we try to make decisions about who should represent us and craft the policy our nation follows.

What is the Political Courage Test?
The Political Courage Test is a key component of Project Vote Smart's Voter Self-Defense system. Major leaders of the media, major parties and Project Vote Smart repetitiously ask candidates one central question: "Are you willing to tell citizens your positions on the issues you will most likely face on their behalf?"

The Political Courage Test is administered to all candidates for presidential,congressional, gubernatorial,and state legislative offices.The Political Courage Test asks candidates which items they will support if elected. It does not ask them to indicate which items they will oppose. Through extensive research of public
polling data, we discovered that voters are more concerned with what candidates would support when elected to office, not what they oppose. If a candidate does not select a response to any part or all of any question, it does not necessarily indicate that the candidate is opposed to that particular item.

Cheap Political Ploys - Over and Over Again

This video brilliantly makes the point that "Getting tough on crime" is a cheap political ploy used over and over again by politicians who's only real interest is getting re-elected.

Noemie Maxwell has a dandy post at Washblog that expands on the subject.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

more John Edwards supporters meet.....

some more John Edwards supporters met was an informed, enthusiastic, inspiring crowd!!

everyone shared the reasons they support John Edwards and how we will get more people to caucus for John Edwards. the overwhelming take home for me was....this is not anywhere near over. going to caucus for John Edwards is really important. he has said he is in it until national and those of us who believe in his message should be too. people spoke eloquently about his economic message, his healthcare message, his position on the Iraq occupation and many other issues.....

we will meet for a caucus planning potluck ....Saturday Feb 2nd .....more information to follow
click HERE to contact Whatcom4Edwards.

i look forward to caucus on Feb 9th. the delegate count so far is still close. our delegate counts may be very important.
caucus information can be found at Whatcom Democrats
candidate presentation by local Democrats here
this is a site i like for delegate numbers and beyond

If I get stimulated......

As politicians of all stripes talk about “stimulus packages” and tax rebate checks, and I ponder the insanity of charging billions of dollars on my great-great-grandchildren's credit cards, I wonder what I should do with the $$$$$$$$ if I get stimulated. Hmmmm...let's see, it's a presidential election year. I could give the $$$$$$$ to my favorite campaign. Somehow that falls short. I hear people talk about “possible” recession....(scooby-do moment here).......the pyramid scheme is coming to a head. We are in the cancerous phase of unregulated capitalism. I heard someone speak of a “deep recession.” Let's just call it a decession. That way no one will
actually have to say “recession” or, god forbid, “depression.” In the background, C-span is running dead-eye dark-side dick telling us to be afraid, be very afraid. So, getting back to the stimulation. It's very exciting to think of being stimulated with a windfall check in the middle of this whirlwind presidential election campaign year. It almost feels like bribery or at least medication. I want to make sure the great-great-grandchildren at least get something for their $$$$$$$$$. I will look for someone who is working for a peaceful, sustainable, just future for the humans living on planet earth. I know an organization of kick-ass women in our community who fit the bill. They also know how to squeeze a nickel till the buffalo shits. They will get some stimulation done.
Good luck to all of us. wake up america........

Easter-eggs of Mass Distraction

Keith Olbermann and guest Sam Seder discuss the Republican Presidential candidates weird outlook on the occupation of Iraq.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Who Should Choose The Candidate

I feel that the Washington State Presidential Primary is an effort by political insiders to cut grassroots activists out of the nominating process.

Although the Secretary of States FAQ says:

Q: Why does Washington have a Presidential Primary?

In 1988, more than 200,000 Washington voters signed an Initiative to the Legislature proposing that a Presidential Primary be held. The Legislature adopted the initiative in 1989, and it is authorized in Chapter 29A.56 of the Revised Code of Washington. The law states:

The...presidential nominating caucus system in Washington State is unnecessarily restrictive of voter participation in that it discriminates against the elderly, the infirm, women, the disabled, evening workers, and others who are unable to attend caucuses and therefore unable to fully participate in this most important quadrennial event that occurs in our democratic system of government.

The Legislature further emphasized that the presidential selection process must be more open and representative of the will of the people.

A Presidential Primary allows each Washington voter to participate in the nomination process, not just political party insiders who participate in the caucuses.

The truth is that a primary means that a candidates only needs a few big-buck contributers who will pay for TV ads, not grassroots supporters who have been convinced that he/she is the best candidate. The argument about discrimination is bogus. The contention that only political party insiders participate in the caucuses is simply a lie, unless you're prepared to say that anyone who puts in a couple of hour once every four years is a party insider.

The 1988 initiative creating a Presidential Primary was instigated in an attempt to weaken political party's here in Washington State.

What the imposition of a government mandated primary does is violate the right of free association of those persons who choose to join a political party. Political party's are not a part of the government and they are not funded with tax moneys. They are voluntary associations, funded exclusivily by members contributions and those members are entitled to set their own rules.

Whether it's Presidential precinct caucuses or State-wide Presidential primaries, it is part of the political Parties nominating process in which only declared members of the Party do the selecting.

On the Secretary of State's website in the FAQ on the Presidential Primary you'll find this:

Q: What do I have to do to participate?

Every registered voter may vote in the Presidential Primary. Depending on the county, just as in a regular primary, voters will either receive a consolidated ballot or separate party ballots. Each voter must sign a one party oath, which will appear in the poll book for those voting at the polls, or on the envelope for those voting by mail. The major parties drafted the oaths to which voters must attest. They are:

Republican: I declare that I am a member of the Republican party and I have not participated and will not participate in the 2008 precinct caucus or convention system of any other party.

Democrat: I declare that I consider myself to be a DEMOCRAT and I will not participate in the nomination process of any other political party for the 2008 Presidential election.

Q: Will others know which party ballot I voted?

Each party will receive a list of voters who chose to vote in that party's Presidential Primary.

After the dust settles from caucuses and primaries and conventions, there will be a Democratic Party candidate and candidates from other minor political parties (/snark) running for President of the United States... then there will be an election and "each Washington voter" can participate.

The DLC, the Industrial Authoritarians of the Democratic Party, hate caucuses. They say "Caucuses like Iowa's shut out independents and give too much power to party activists."

A political party is supposed to be a group of individuals with shared ideals and a platform that spells out their political goals, not just a source of campaign workers for politicians who get their talking-points from focus groups.

Call me cranky, but since Washington State voters have always been so adamant about their independent status and refuse to register by Party, as an active member of the Democratic Party, I resent the idea that I would be expected to go out and campaign for a candidate that was selected by whichever couch-potatoes happened to dig a pen out from between the cushions on Feb. 19th.

It's clear to me that the Presidential Primary is an attempt by elitist factions to dumb things down and cut grassroots activists out of nominating process.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Kucinich Drops Out

From The Plain Dealer

Kucinich drops presidential bid

For more coverage of Dennis Kucinich,
go to the Openers blog.

But John Edwards is still in the race... come join us.
Sunday, January 27, 1 pm, Edwards Campaign meeting

LOCATION: Fantasia Expresso & Tea. 1324 Cornwall Ave, Bellingham
CONTACT: Michele Kammerer 360.393.2121,

Calling all John Edwards fans! Senator Edwards is a top tier candidate for the presidency and his campaign has started in Whatcom County! The party caucuses are less three weeks from now, so lets get together and talk about the John Edwards campaign, to motivate supporters and encourage folks to run as Edwards delegates. We need people to campaign at the caucus sites February 9th and are in need of funds for such things as signs, stickers and buttons.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

935 lies....

but who's counting......certainly not the corporate media shills who were the megaphones for these greedy, cruel, shameless bastards who have seized our county.

False Pretenses
Following 9/11, President Bush and seven top officials of his administration waged a carefully orchestrated campaign of misinformation about the threat posed by Saddam Hussein's Iraq.
By Charles Lewis and Mark Reading-Smith
President George W. Bush and seven of his administration's top officials, including Vice President Dick Cheney, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, made at least 935 false statements in the two years following September 11, 2001, about the national security threat posed by Saddam Hussein's Iraq. Nearly five years after the U.S. invasion of Iraq, an exhaustive examination of the record shows that the statements were part of an orchestrated campaign that effectively galvanized public opinion and, in the process, led the nation to war under decidedly false pretenses.
full post

wake up america

Great video...the real state of the union!

this came in today from David Sirota:
Call Bush's State of the Union Bluff
In advance of the State of the Union, the Campaign for America's Future (CAF) has constructed this terrific video highlighting some of the ways President Bush has used the event to mislead the country.

The Real State of The Union…Call Bush’s Bluff CAF STAFF Submitted by Anne Thompson
Produced by Institute for America's Future January 22nd, 2008

Democratic Presidential Caucuses - HowTo

An informational video about the Washington State Democratic Precinct Caucuses on Feb. 9th at 1:00 PM

Another Bad Bill From Doug Ericksen (R)

Not satisfied with dumping raw sewage into the State's waters, Doug Ericksen is introducing a Bill to destroy salmon spawning habitat.
House Bill 2677 would amend several laws to allow local authorities to remove gravel from waterways without a permit from the Department of Fish and Wildlife. Under the proposed law, the removal would be allowed if it is considered to be “beneficial in reducing the impact of potential flooding.”

County government, diking districts and flood control districts would have to contact WDFW for suggestions on how to least impact fish life and except in an emergency situation, local authorities “should” remove the gravel as close as possible to dates suggested by the state regulatory agency.

Bill sponsor Rep. Doug Ericksen, R-Ferndale, who is sponsoring the proposed law, contends environmental regulations regarding fish habitat have prevented proper management of rivers, which poses a danger to private property when flood events occur. (source: The Chronicle - in Lewis County)

His proposal is red-meat for his ultra-right base. Although Ericksen is quoted as saying; "I want to make clear that no one wants to go out and dredge. We’re talking about scalping water beds at the low water times." the language in the bill removes WDFW's authority to regulate dredging.

Ericksens bill is nothing but an anti-environmental stunt. That's clear because there is already a bill addressing the problem that was introduced last session and is moving forward this session.

Flood and Erosion Bill Receives Wide Support
Report from washington State Farm Bureau
February 9, 2007

Olympia, WA - The House Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee heard testimony this week on flooding and erosion issues from across the state. HB 1748, sponsored by Rep. Brian Sullivan (D-Mukilteo), would require a declaration of chronic danger for people impacted by floods or erosion for two or more consecutive years. The bill would require the state Department of Fish and Wildlife to issue an expedited permit to prevent future damage. (source: washington State Farm Bureau, LegisLetter)

This bill has the support of the WA State Farm Bureau. The Senate version of the bill (SB 5733) is moving forward this session. Interestingly, the Senate version is sponsored by Sen. Val Stevens (R) 39th LD. She is notorious noted for her farrrrr to the right views.

(note: the 39th LD takes in a sliver of Whatcom county including Newhalem and Diablo)

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

The Cholera Kid - Doug Ericksen (R) Ferndale

Yes, Doug Ericksen (R), "state representative for the 42nd District", wants to "repealing the state mandate on septic tank inspections". Never mind that growing population and aging septic systems are having an impact on water quality all over Washington State... somebody grumbled about paying an inspection fee and Doug smells a chance to pander to his ultra-rightwing base. For his indifference to public health and safety, I think Ericksen should be dubbed The Cholera Kid.

But enough with the Medieval mirth... and on to serious analysis.

In his Bellingham Herald op-ed "deputy Republican leader" Doug Ericksen's claims he's "working on comprehensive solutions for the entire state". Unfortunately he goes on to trot out the same old unpalatable, unworkable Republican proposals.

First, he complains that the Democratic majority won't accept Republican ideas on health care.
But he doesn't mention that those ideas are about protecting insurance companies profits, giving insurance co. and hospitals immunity from prosecution for malpractice and removing accountability so that insurance co. can provide less coverage at higher prices without telling their customers. Doug and his fellow Republicans want to give us "choice"; unfortunately, all the choices they offer are bad ones.

Second, he complains about property taxes. He does some funky math to make it sound like State spending is out of control. But he doesn't explain that, when you figure in inflation and population growth, spending has stayed level. Nor does he mention that taxation in Washington State isn't all that high. Nationally the average total state and local tax burden is 11% and the total of state and local taxes in Washington State is 11.1%.

Third, he rehashes the wsrp's standard scare tactic; sex offenders. Two years ago the Republicans sent out fake sex offender notification postcards in an attempt to frighten voters, this year they're idea is to propose what the Democrats are already in the process of doing.

There's a good reason the Democrats out number Republicans 2 to 1 in the State Legislature... The Washington State Republican Party is intellectually exhausted and morally bankrupt.

Monday, January 21, 2008

A Critique of Doug Ericksen's Agenda

I've been accused of unfairly criticizing "deputy Republican leader" Doug Ericksen, so I'll let someone else kick-off the criticism of his latest op-ed in the B'ham Herald.

From HorsesAss.Org:
The GOP’s legislative strategy is literally full of s***
by Will, 01/20/2008, 2:10 PM

Doug Ericksen (R-Ferndale) has some truly neat-o ideas for getting the GOP back into the game!
Our state must also do a better job of monitoring and addressing sex offenders. State government needs to be proactive, not reactive.

Start with your own caucus, homeboy.
On the local front, I’m working on many issues including repealing the state mandate on septic tank inspections, creating public trails districts, and ensuring local transportation projects are delivered. At the end of the legislative session we will know we were successful if we can say, “They said it couldn’t be done — but together we proved them wrong.”

Putting the kibosh on septic tank inspection? Gov. Dan Evans had his “Blueprint For Progress”… Rep. Doug Ericksen has “repealing the state mandate on septic tank inspections”.

Nothing says “solid strategy for winning back the majority” like septic tank reform.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

John Edwards supporters meet...

we had the chance to have coffee with some local John Edwards supporters today. as i listened to others talk about why they supported his nomination a couple of things resonated strongly with me. people feel strongly that Edwards understands who we are up against, he states it clearly and he is willing to fight. and i certainly believe we will always have to fight this fight. right now the corporatists are winning. and they have no interest in "let's all get along." they use marketing to put a friendly face on their corporatist agenda to herd us all along. no surprise the corporate media acts as tho John Edwards doesn't exist. and several people mentioned his personal commitment to this fight. at a time his wife is ill, their family decided it was important to continue. i'm not sure many would make that decision.

click HERE to contact Whatcom4Edwards.

i look forward to caucus on Feb 9th. the delegate count so far is still close. our delegate counts may be very important.
caucus information can be found at Whatcom Democrats
candidate presentation by local Democrats here
this is a site i like for delegate numbers and beyond

my cat "girlie" seems to think she has something to do with this post.....

Friday, January 18, 2008

do nothing Democrats????

seems the Democrats in Washington state have some "do something" ideas about addressing healthcare. seems by taking the profit motive out of healthcare it changes the whole equation. healthcare infrastructure(clinics, hospitals, etc) should be properly funded and healthcare providers should be paid well for their services but william mcguire should not be obscenely wealthy for "doing what"??????
great piece by David Sirota and
Kudos to Sen.Karen Keiser!!!!

David Sirota
Digging in the right place
January 18, 2008

...........In a move making health care lobbyists quiver, Washington state Sen. Karen
Keiser (D), chairwoman of her legislature's powerful health committee, this week
introduced the nation's most far-reaching universal health care proposal. Her legislation is the American West's version of a parallel Wisconsin initiative,
and the replication suggests this model may begin building the universal health
care system our country wants.The plan is simple: Employers and employees
pay a modest payroll tax in exchange for full medical benefits, with no premiums. Patients never lose coverage and pick the doctors they prefer. And for the spendthrifts, here's the best part: According to an analysis of the Wisconsin proposal by the nonpartisan Lewin Group, the plan would save middle-class families an annual average of $750 on their existing health care bills. In all, the state would save almost $14 billion over the next decade.
Seem too good to be true? That's because you're used to being bilked by an insurance industry that drives up premiums, drives down benefits and gives executives like former UnitedHealth CEO William McGuire $1.6 billion worth of stock options in one year.

Eliminating that greed is precisely how the Washington state and Wisconsin proposals simultaneously save money and cover everyone.Unlike the much-touted Massachusetts law forcing citizens to buy insurance from the private profiteers, the Washington and Wisconsin models pool all existing health care expenditures and then replace the middlemen with one publicly controlled, not-for-profit system. That structure attacks problems beyond the immorality of allowing 18,000 Americans to die each year because they lack health coverage.
For businesses faced with crushing health care costs, the Lewin Group predicts the plan will save private-insuring employers almost $700 million a year. For politicians looking to provide economic stimulus in the face of a recession, the nonpartisan Families USA estimates the proposal's investments will create 13,000 new jobs. Even tax reformers have something to like, as Wisconsin's version directs much of the system's savings into property tax relief.
The Royalist Right is distraught about the plan. When an initial draft passed the Wisconsin Senate last year, the Wall Street Journal's editorial board attacked it on the grounds that it "reduces out-of-pocket copayments" and "increases the number of mandated medical services covered" for patients. Wow. Sounds just awful.
full article

O'Reilly Wrong As Usual

Bill O'Reilly, arrogant, ignorant, insulting.

To Bill O'Reilly:
Homeless veterans exist. I met some.

BOR was either ignorant to or
consciously ignoring a recent study from the National Alliance to End
Homelessness (using data from the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Census
Bureau) that found "In 2006, approximately 195,827 veterans were homeless on a
given night — an increase of 0.8 percent from 194,254 in 2005. More veterans
experience homelessness over the course of the year. We estimate that 336,627
were homeless in 2006."

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Excited About Change

Americans are excited about the race for President and Democrats are more fired up than Republicans.

By 62%-28%, voters say they're more enthusiastic about voting than usual. That's 17 percentage points higher than at this point in 2000 and 6 points higher than in 2004 — a year in which November turnout was the highest in a generation.

Democrats are significantly more keyed up about the election than Republicans, a major advantage if the feeling continues to November.

Republicans and independents who "lean" to the GOP say by 49%-37% that they're more excited than usual. For Democrats, it's 74%-19%. (LA Time)

The desire for change is noticable locally. I suspect that there'll be record turn-outs for the Democratic precinct caucuses on Feb. 9th and the County convention April 5th.

# # #

And just because it's so nice, here's an Al Franken campaign ad...

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

just another "boo boo"

the bush administration thumbs their nose at the american people again..... just a bunch of adolescent bullies with weapons and a cash flow. seems, according to them, it's none of our business what is being done in our name.

White House e-mails 'may be lost'

The e-mail records in question date back to President Bush's first termThe White House has acknowledged it recycled back-up tapes of e-mails sent over eight months of 2003, which may mean millions have been lost forever. The taped-over e-mails could include messages discussing the Iraq war and leaking of a CIA officer's identity.
The e-mail records in question date back to President Bush's first term.

The White House disclosure was forced by a lawsuit brought by private groups.

BBC NEWS article here

Wexler Wants Hearings-update


join Rep. Wexler and the parade of American citizens calling for hearings NOW, accountability NOW.

Last night, I took to the floor of the House of Representatives and outlined our case as to why this Congress must hold immediate hearings on Rep. Kucinich’s Articles of Impeachment.I didn’t do it alone: I was armed with nearly 200,000 signatures of support from you and so many others. Please watch the video of this speech and forward it to as many people as possible.

I've posted it on the front page of Wexler Wants Hearings.
This morning, I delivered letters to all of my colleagues in the House of Representatives, urging them to support Cheney Impeachment Hearings. You can read a copy of both the letter to my colleagues as well as the letter to Chairman Conyers I am asking them to sign here

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

on Washington caucus vs primary

this whole situation is confusing to many people and i include myself in this group. for me it starts knowing we do not declare party in this state. the primary came about as a result of an initiative. the Democratic party selection of their delegates to the nominating convention does not use the results of the primary. this decision is made by Democrats from all over the state, as it was this spring in Bellingham when they met. the parties choose how they select delegates. it is as grassroots as it gets. the caucus is a chance to meet with Democrats in my community and mix it up. as i was trying to get my 82 yr old mother to go to her republican caucus she was not to interested until i told her she could go as an undecided. she said, "you mean people would be trying to win me over" yep mom, eye ball to eye ball. and i pointed out if no one was convincing she could remain undecided. as the Democrats in Michigan are urging democrats to vote in their upcoming primary if their candidate is not on the ballot.
anyway i want the people, who care enough to suit up, saddle up the SUV and show up once every four years to pick the nomimee for my party. and i want everyone to vote in the general election.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

the Pap attack

greed is not a family value..... mike really sticks it to george ....

George Will the Shill
Mike Papantonio of GoLeft TV and Air America's Ring of Fire talks about how conservative columnist George Will has become a corporate shill for big business by fighting the rising tide of populism in the US.

just for fun....

i have really enjoyed talking to people about Mike Huckabee's position that women should graciously submit

and i am looking for any reason to be attracted to team Hillary and tweety bird almost gets me there

is freedom on the march?

it was an interesting day at the friday vigil.......the Ron Paul people were out in impressive was also the 6th anniversary of the opening of guantanamo bay......i gave myself the luxury of thrift shopping (frivolous video here) for an orange shirt to show up calling for it's closure......just makes me heartsick thinking of what is being done in my's a few photos and video......


Jan 11 2008: 400 march, 80 are arrested in Washington DC
January 11, 2008 – Early this afternoon, over 80 activists organized by Witness Against Torture delivered a message to the U.S. Supreme Court demanding the shut-down of the U.S. prison at Guantánamo and justice for those detained there. About 40 activists were arrested inside the Court building and another 40 on the steps. The arrests followed a solemn march from the National Mall of 400 persons that included a procession of activists dressed like the Guantánamo prisoners in
orange jumpsuits and black hoods – part of an International Day of Action that
was endorsed by over 100 groups and that included 83 events around the world. DC Photo Albums: 1 2 3 4 DC Press: AP Washington Post Al Jazeera VOA AFP
Other cities: SF Miami London
More photos, videos, reports and press clippings of this international day of action
will be posted to this site in the coming days. Please check back regularly!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

California Nurses rock!!!!

We All Deserve CheneyCare--Sign Up For It Now
Posted by Shum Preston on January 7, 2008 - 6:02pm
From Nataline Sarkisyan to Angela Dispenza to ten-year-old Preston, we all deserve the kind of care that Dick Cheney has.
Pre-existing condition? No problem. Guaranteed healthcare? Of course. Heartless insurance bureaucrats meddling in medical decisions? No way. A single standard of quality care? Nothing less will do.
But why just Cheney? Why not everyone?


Whatcom Democrats prepare for upcoming caucus

i had the pleasure of participating in the monthly meeting last night. we had standing room only, lively presentations and discussions. with our caucus coming up February 9th, it was very inspiring to see so many people involved. the crowd was very diverse.

speaking as a "just another dope-less hope fiend" it was a big infusion of hope.

a big thank-you to excellent presenters and all who came....

videos from the evening can be seen here

find information on attending caucus at Whatcom Democrats

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

no way to the fox propaganda machine

the lies and spin from the fox agents are soooo responsible for moving this country to the place we are now.
Obama stands up to fox and oliely....

sign on to support him

Monday, January 07, 2008

judy riuliani

who ya gonna believe???

learn about the real rudy from the real heroes here

is freedom on the march??

scarey "top of the hour" story about Iran.....what could it mean??? alls i'm sayin'.......

Iranian boats harass U.S. navy ships: Pentagon
Last Updated: Monday, January 7, 2008 12:29 PM ET
CBC News
Three United States navy ships on their way to the Persian Gulf were harassed and provoked by Iranian boats, a Pentagon official said Monday.
The U.S. cruiser, destroyer and frigate encountered five boats believed to be from the Iranian Revolutionary Guard's navy at 5 a.m. local time Sunday while traversing the Strait of Hormuz, a Persian Gulf shipping channel.
full article

Iran tells a different story......

Iran plays down Gulf incident with US
By ALI AKBAR DAREINI, Associated Press Writer 28 minutes ago
TEHRAN, Iran - Iran's Foreign Ministry said Monday that a confrontation between Iranian boats and U.S. Navy ships in the Persian Gulf over the weekend was "something normal" and was resolved. It suggested the Iranian boats had not recognized the U.S. vessels.
The Pentagon said that in the incident early Sunday, five small Iranian boats repeatedly "charged" U.S. warships in the Gulf's Hormuz Strait and dropped boxes in the water. The boats warned the U.S. ships that they would set up "explosions," a U.S. Defense Department official said.
The U.S. craft were on the verge of opening fire when the Iranian boats fled, the official said, calling the incidident "the most serious provocation of its sort" in the Gulf. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak on the record.
full story

how come we never get to know who says?

and bush steadfastly refuses to let facts get in his way

During Mideast tour, Bush to insist Iran remains a threat
by Laurent Lozano Mon Jan 7, 3:48 AM ET
WASHINGTON (AFP) - US President George W. Bush will try this week to reassure US allies in the Middle East that his administration continues to view Iran as a threat and will not abandon its friends in the face of it. Bush leaves for the region Tuesday in a bid to give a boost to the peace process between Israelis and the
But another key purpose of the trip is to repair damage caused by a recent radical
reappraisal of the nuclear threat coming from Iran that was undertaken by the US
intelligence community."Part of the reason I'm going to the Middle East is to make it abundantly clear to nations in that part of the world that we view Iran as a threat, and that the NIE in no way lessens that threat, but in fact clarifies the threat,"
Bush told the Israeli newspaper Yediot Ahronot as he referred to the National Intelligence Estimate produced by US intelligence agencies.
full article

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Naomi Wolf

Colbert: Naomi Wolf and Fascism in America
a great interview by Steven Colbert.......

Naomi Wolf can be read on The Huffington Post..........

Finally, Action! Ron Paul Introduces Bill to Defend Constitution!
Posted October 18, 2007 05:45 PM (EST)
..........On Monday, Rep. Ron Paul, the outsider Republican presidential
candidate who has long upheld these values and who was an early voice warning of the grave danger to all of us of these abuses, introduced the AFA's legislative package into Congress. (The mainstream press has an irrational habit of disparaging outsider candidates -- as if corrupt money and machine endorsements equal seriousness of purpose -- even though the Founders hoped that the system they established would lead citizens, ideally those unembedded in the establishment, to offer their service to the nation.) It is the American Freedom Agenda Act of 2007 [PDF], and you should read it in its entirety: just as accounts of the recent abuses send chills down your spine, this beautifully argued document feels historic and has the ring of great power to correct great injustice.

What does it do? According to an alert put out by the American Freedom campaign, it would accomplish the following: "The American Freedom Agenda Act would bar the use of evidence obtained through torture; require that federal intelligence gathering is conducted in accordance
with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA); create a mechanism for challenging presidential signing statements; repeal the Military Commissions Act, which, among other things, denies habeas corpus to certain detainees; prohibit kidnapping, detentions, and torture abroad; protect journalists who publish information received from the executive branch; and ensure that secret evidence is not used to designate individuals or organizations with a presence in the U.S. as foreign terrorists."
Ron Paul was the first of all the presidential candidates, red or blue, to step up in this way -- and all credit is due to him for getting there first. May the others of both parties race to follow his lead. These days, as we have seen from how reluctant some candidates have been -- even on the Democratic sign -- even to sign a mere pledge to uphold the Constitution, it takes some courage to stand fast against the assaults of this administration -- and their manipulations of the terms "patriotism" and "terror threat" -- and insist with legislation on the Founders' vision and on restoring democracy.
A groundswell of millions of Americans of all parties rising up to insist on passage of the AFA legislation means that we are awake -- we get it -- and that we assert that an alert citizenry, not a whipped-dog Congress or a violently abusive executive, decides what happens in this nation still. I am not a voter on his side of the ballot -- but I will move heaven and earth to support the passage of this lifesaving agenda. (Interestingly when I run into Paul's supporters -- who are deeply alert to the abuses of democracy -- and I demur by saying I am a Democrat, it is they who rightly assure me that these issues transcend party).
full post

this bill only has 2 cosponsors and has been sent to committee....step up congress and speak out presidental candidates!! H.R.3835 Title: To restore the Constitution's checks and balances and protections against government abuses as envisioned by the Founding Fathers. Sponsor: Rep Paul, Ron [TX-14] (introduced 10/15/2007) Cosponsors (2) Latest Major Action: 10/15/2007 Referred to House committee. Status: Referred to the Committee on the Judiciary, and in addition to the Committees on Armed Services, Foreign Affairs, and Intelligence (Permanent Select), for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned.

buy her book .....
The End of America:Letter of Warning to a Young Patriot
and listen to her talk about it here

wake up america.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Iowa Caucus - Some Context

Juan Cole points out what the mainstream media is overlooking... ending the occupation of Iraq is still a top issue for Americans.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Iraq, the Youth Vote, Women and Iowa

The conventional wisdom among the inside the beltway pundits is that Iraq is no longer a leading issue for American voters.

This conventional wisdom is demonstrably untrue. First, some December polls (scroll down) show that it was the most important issue for 25% of likely voters, with other issues trailing substantially.

In part it derives from conceptual confusion. In some polls, Iraq is no longer the single issue for voters that outweighs all others in importance. But it is still one of three major issues that come at the top of voter concern, sometimes tied with health care or education or the economy. That it is tied with health care does not mean it isn't important to voters. It means it is just as important to them as the health of themselves and their loved ones, which is to say, it is very important. ...(more

The Iowa Caucus attendance numbers tell as important a story as who won. Democratic Caucus goers, half of them first timers, out numbered Republicans two to one. This is one more bit of evidence that we are moving into a progressive era and that conservatism is defunct. Republicans insiders see the handwriting on the wall:

'NYT' Sunday Preview: David Frum Is 'Terrified' GOP Is Heading for 'Defeat'

By E&P Staff Published: January 04, 2008 1:50 PM ET

NEW YORK David Frum, the conservative writer and former Bush White House speechwriter -- currently working for Rudy Giuliani -- tells The New York Times Magazine this coming Sunday, "What I am terrified of is that the Republican Party is heading into a period of political defeat....I am terrified that we can lose the election in 2008. We can lose in 2012, and it will take us half a dozen years to do the rethinking we need to you."

He also tells Deborah Solomon, "What I am saying is that there is exhaustion, intellectual exhaustion on the part of Republicans and conservatives." ...(more)

The signs of Republican/conservative desperation and disarray are all around. Not only are rank and file Republicans disillusioned, the Republican Party is in terrible financial straits. It's so bad, the NRCC is recruiting candidates rich enough to self-finance their own campaigns. Yes friends, Republicans/conservatives are intellectually exhausted and morally bankrupt...

UPDATE: A local indication of how bad things are for Republicans:
Roulstone ends bid for Congress
The Everett Herald reports that Doug Roulstone (R) has ended his campaign against WA-02 Congressman Rick Larsen (D).

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Democrats Win in Iowa

So the Iowa Democratic Caucus results are:
Barack Obama - 38 percent
John Edwards - 30 percent
Hillary Clinton - 29 percent
Bill Richardson - 2 percent

Des Moines Register's political columnists David Yepsen sees the bigger picture, Democrats turned out in record numbers, nearly two and half times as many caucus goers as Republicans.

Democrats Win Caucus Night
Posted 1/3/2008 9:40 PM CST

Over 227,000 Democrats attended their precinct caucuses Thursday night in Iowa.

There were 93,000 who showed up for the Republican meetings.

In other words, the Democratic turnout was more than double the Republican one. It speaks volumes about what may happen on election night come November.

The Democratic turnout was almost double what it was four years ago and set another record. Republicans haven't had a record since 1988.

In short, Democrats are enjoying more energy and their candidates attracting more support and attention than the Republicans.

This does not bode well for the GOP in November. Republicans need to be asking what they and their candidates can do about their turnout loss on caucus night.

Washington State Democrats Straw Poll

The results are in from the Washington State Democrats Presidential Straw Poll. Make of it what you will.

Straw Poll Results
The Washington State Democrats conducted a straw-poll from November 29th through December 14th.

Congratulations to Kucinich supporters on their great organizing efforts.

Rep. Dennis Kucinich ------ 1083
Sen. John Edwards -------- 1042
Sen. Barack Obama -------- 960
Sen. Hillary Clinton -------- 761
Undecided ----------------- 368
Gov. Bill Richardson ------- 319
Sen. Joe Biden ------------- 171
Sen. Chris Dodd ------------ 36
Sen. Mike Gravel ----------- 16

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

The Nation Magazine:2007 The Most Valuable Progressives

this is a great list and recognition of some fine Americans!!!

The Most Valuable Progressives
Let down by a dangerous Republican White House, a compromising Democratic Congress and a distracting and dysfunctional mainstream media, progressives
persevered in 2007, laying the groundwork for what we can only hope will be the
different and better politics of 2008. The list of heroes and champions is endless, but here are some of the MVPs -- Most Valuable Progressives -- from the activist, political, media and cultural spheres of the last full year before the last full year of the Bush-Cheney interregnum:

....i found this article when i was looking up Rep Wexler. he made this list!!!!!!

* Most Valuable Congressman: ROBERT WEXLER, D-Florida, was appropriately savage in his Judiciary Committee questioning of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. Wexler almost single-handedly restored the separation of powers. Then, after Ohio Congressman DENNIS KUCINICH forced House consideration of his proposal to impeach Vice President Cheney, the Florida congressman grabbed the issue and organized a push by key members of the Judiciary Committee to open hearings on the veep's high crimes and misdemeanors. If he keeps this up in 2008, Wexler could yet force the House to be what the founders intended: a check and balance on executive lawlessness.

full post

John Edwards on Global Warming

i like what i hear from him. i think he will challenge us to rise to occasion....i think he's capable of talkin' about sweaters and wool socks.

A Look Back at 2007

Happy New Year. I've slapped together a little video of some Whatcom County doin's we covered here on the blog in 2007. Enjoy!

free Gov Siegleman

Gov. Don Siegleman voiced his intention to come back and fight another day. i don't think he imagined it would be from a prison cell, held incommunicato, convicted of bogus charges by the same people who stole the election from him in 2002 . these people will do anything to hold power and this is a great case study in just how they do business.
wake up america!!

his daughter will fight for his release....

Siegelman's Daughter Says Former Governor Remains optimistic
Reporter: Violet Parker; Web Editor: Dana Franks of WAAY-TV.
"The reason I am here is because I know without a shadow of a doubt my dad is innocent and I want him free," she said. "I want him home."At 22 years old, the recent college graduate put her career temporarily on hold to fight for her father. This month, she sent more than 1,000 letters asking people to support the investigation into his trial.Convicted of bribery, racketeering and mail fraud, Don Siegelman now works as a prison janitor for nine hours a day. Dana said her dad prays and reads a lot, and he also looks forward to working on his appeal. The media is not allowed inside the jail, so his daughter decided to speak publicly for him."Each time we talk to him, he just encourages us to keep fighting to get him out and to tell the truth and to make sure people know a grave injustice has occurred," she said
full story

this Times editorial is good and thanks to Thom Hartmann for bringing this out on his radio show(repeated on new years day) and he points out the importance of looking at the US attorneys NOT FIRED!

The Work Remaining
Published: December 26, 2007
It has been nearly a year since the United States attorneys scandal broke, and much
has changed. Many people at the center of the scandal have fled Washington, and new laws and rules have been put in place making it harder to useprosecutors’offices to win elections. Much, however, remains to be done, starting with a full investigation into the misconduct that may have occurred — something the American people have been denied.

and they go on to say reforms passed were a great start but not enough. ATTENTION:CONGRESS

........These changes are important, but are not enough. Congress must hear from all of the major participants. The House Judiciary Committee has voted to hold Joshua Bolten, the White House chief of staff, and Ms. Miers in contempt for ignoring
Congressional subpoenas. The Senate Judiciary Committee has voted to do the same for Mr. Bolten and Mr. Rove. The full House and Senate should affirm those votes and refer the witnesses for prosecution if they still will not cooperate.
Times editorial

Siegelman Speaks

Monday, December 17 2007 @ 10:00 PM GMT
Contributed by: Symbolman
From the Man who Cannot be Interviewed - a Political Prisoner
This is a Travesty of Justice, here is a Democrat who has been hounded into a Federal Prison, kept from his family while he's shuttled about from state to state, reduced to a janitorial position when he once made history by being the only man in the US to hold four of the top positions in his State of Alabama. He's another Rove
casualty - soon I'll be listing the people that Rove has destroyed.How DARE they treat this kind and gentle man, who only cared about the people of Alabama and
his country like a criminal when his opponent, as you will hear from his own mouth, was taking more than a million from Abramoff's cons - specifically the Indian Casinos in Mississippi.You will hear how Riley and his henchmen slammed the doors of the Baldwin County courthouse shut after midnight on the night of the Election and spirited thousands of votes electronically from Siegelman's column to his own, then had his Republican pals Certify the vote the next day, when Alabama law stated that the results would be certified the Friday following the Election. Listen to the horrors of our country being treated like a third world nation, the Primordial Theft, the template for stealing State Elections carried out by corrupt officials, as per Don Siegelman's own words.I'll be writing more on this story, meanwhile write to Congress for the sake of this man, hammer the Media, DEMAND that they tell this man's story, there's a virtual black out in the Media at this time.We at Take Back the Media, hereby DEMAND that Members of Congress, or any of the Contenders for the President of the United States VISIT this man, hold him up, make his safe, put him in a REPUBLICAN Prison where they wear Golf shirts and write memoirs at the least.Scooter Libby will never spend a day in jail, while this fine man pushes a
Broom. And please, if you can, donate to Take Back the Media, this kind of investigative reporting takes money! There may be a film on this in the offing.

full post

Scott Horton is following with blog posts at Harpers