Tuesday Open Thread

"Stand with anybody that stands right, stand with him while he is right and part with him when he goes wrong."

–Abraham Lincoln

27 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. dwyer says:

    I want to look at the Republican and Democratic power bases for 2014.  The Republicans currently control 30 state governorships. Of these, they also control state legislatures in 24 of the 30.    Democrats control 13 states – governors and state legislatures.  The Democratic strenght is in the national elections; but, 2014 elections occur solely in states. 

    This is what the Republicans have been able to do with their state control:

    1) Redistrict to their advantage

    2) Introduce voter ID laws; the Dems have been successful in stopping some  and delaying others, but we can expect continuing legislative action along these lines. Pennsylvania is a key state to watch.  Its voter ID law goes into effect for the 2014 election.

    3) Successfully introduce right to work laws in states like Michigan.

    4) Took back the state senate in Wisconsin, even as Obama took the state. Walker is emerging as a national figure.

    5) Maintained control of the House of Representatives.


    OFA has morphed into Organizing for Action.  It is a nationally based, top down organization, issue orientated.  My question is:  Can this take the place of strong

    state Democratic party organizations?  Calling ScottP:  This is a great thesis or dissertation topic for Political Science students.

    If the Republicans maintain the control of the 24 state governments in 2014, I anticipate a full blown strategy to win in 2016 by changing how the electoral votes are awarded in the key states of Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Virginia. (I think that the Republicans backed away from this strategy, today, because they want to wait until after 2014)  I also anticipate political attacks on the cities of Detroit and Philadelphia as examples of liberal policies gone bad.



    • BlueCatBlueCat says:

      Wow just clicked on "?" quick check editor, came back and and lost my whole comment. That'll teach me.  Here goes again.

      It isn't  an either or choice between OFA  and local organizing.  Most people are blissfully unaware of what their local Dems are doing and orgs like OFA and national media make them aware.

      Already the Governor of VA, for instance, is backing away from the concept of electoral college gerrymandering, along with many other GOP grownups because of all the negative national attention the idea coninues to receive nationally.  They like to do this kind of stuff under the radar.  They don't want to broadcast the message  that they know people dislike their policies so much that they've given up on competing for majoities in favor of rigging elections against the American voting majority.  They also know what a great fund raiser it is for Dems.  It's because of national media and national Dem org attention that they have been backing down.

      In 2004 when three times the former number of people showed up for my precinct at caucus it wasn't because of local organizing.  The local orginiation was so anemic, most never even had heard from them.  People were incensed over national issues, over Bush, over the 2000 presidntial election being stolen, and made it their business to find out what they could do to participate.  Since then our local party has grown in strength and effectiveness in outreach because of the volunteers brought in by national attention who stayed. Even so, the tuned in are a very small minority. Three times next to nothing is still pretty close to nothing.

      OFA and other national orgs and local political structure are mutually beneficial   Most people aren't going to know what's happening in state legislatures they are barely aware of without their attention being captured by the national media in the first place.  That's what national orgs drive; media attention and fundraising for more pressure and more attention.  It's all good.

      • dwyer says:

        I appreciate your comments on my analysis. The two, OFA and state Democratic parties, may be mutually beneficial, certainly in Colorado. 

        The problem I identified is that the Republicans control, governor and state legislatures, in 24 states. The most significant of these are: Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Virginia.  All of these states went for Obama in 2012, but the Republicans won at the state level.  In Wisconsin, they took back the State Senate.  So two questions:

        1) How did the Democrats win at the national level and lose at the state level?

        2) What can the Democrats do to win back some control in these key states in 2014?

         I think that the electoral college proposed changes are being mothballed until after 2014.  That is one reason why I think it critically important that the Democrats strenghten their power base in these key states and take back at least one house of the state legislatures or governorships.  

  2. roccoprahn says:

    If there's any question how deep the abcess is re: gun safety, how loony the pro mass school shooting lobby is, and how low the gun sissies are willing to go, it should be answered by following the story of Neil Heslin, father of a SIX YEAR OLD VICTIM of the Sandy Hook massacre, and how he was forced to endure heckling from several, maybe dozens, of pro assault weapons loons in Hartford Ct. yesterday.

    Huffpo's got it up this morning.

    The irony of males no longer possessing the testicular fortitude neccessary to enlist in the armed forces while at the same time feeling the need to possess firearms capable of killing 20 six year olds in seconds can't be ignored.

    Whether these "toughguys" were cheney/nugent/limbaugh/boehner/mcconnell/romney/rove/caplis/boyles type Vietnam era draft dodgers or the next generation of cowards, or a mix of both, isn't clear from the clips. But one thing's for sure. Shooting unarmed children is preferable to these "second amendment patriots" than defending their nation.

    While the guys are murdering children, the women of of the nation are now being asked to serve in combat roles. Somebody has to do it. 

    Thank you for your service, ladies.


    • dwyer says:

      Like your chain of chicken hawks, but boyles served in Vietnam.

      • AristotleAristotle says:

        I need to look it up, but someone here claimed that Boyles stopped making claims to military glory after the Stolen Valor law was enacted.

        • AristotleAristotle says:

          Here it is. Looks like a lot of the old Pols site isn't online, but google cache still has it.


          Rocco said:

          <blockquote>Boyles has zero credibility.

          The furthest back I can remember listening to Boyles was the late '80's.

          He was on one of his "crusades", and it had to do with the assassination of President Kennedy, E. Howard Hunt's possible implication, and the fabulous book by Mark Lane, "Plausible Denial"

          That broadcast was the first of many in which I heard, with my own ears, Boyles wax poetically and sentimentally about his days in the US Army Airborne.

          I heard Boyles mention it more than a few more times during the next 15 years, and then came the Stolen Valor Act.

          The killer jargon ended. He never mentioned those "tough guys I seved with" again.

          Ever. He never brought up anything even remotely close to military service again.

          There's no mention of any military service on his clear channel bio. Or anywhere.

          It is what it is.


          • roccoprahn says:

            Absolutely correct, Ari. Boyles never served. Thanks for the research.

            Of course our author of the nasty terms referencing Representative Degette could obviously rebutt this by blogging a reply.

            Surely there's someone……..agop, somebody………..that still listens to the local birther chapter head loon that could give him a heads up on this.

            Looking forward to this one.

          • dwyer says:

            WOW. You mean that the main birther in Colorado has a bio problem?

            That he never served in the military or has chosen not to present any proof?

            If true, that is dynamite.  Jason….check this out for god's sake. 

            So boyles need to produce his DD214..he can post it on his website right next to Obama's birth certificate. 

            PS.  SCOTUS found that lying about one's service was protected speech, if I am not mistaken.  But Boyles shouldn't have any problem producing proof that he is a Vietnam vet…..he should be eager to prove his patriotism….This could go national.




  3. Sir RobinSir Robin says:

    Nice video of what a 3-D printer can do. The future of sculpture and proto-typing? Of course, this will never replace a true sculptor, nonetheless, great technology.


    A mechanical engineer, an electrical engineer, an aerospace engineer…..and the 4th guy at the table must be the money.


  4. Duke CoxDuke Cox says:

    Hey kids! I have been out for a while and am departing for Missouri this afternoon. I will be in and out for a day or two…..I'm driving, so any road and weather warnings will be appreciated. TTFN



    • dipplegangerdippleganger says:

      looks like you are pretty clear on up through the front range. Got some stuff ahead of you in Kansas.

      Drive safe brother! 

    • Sir RobinSir Robin says:

      Good travels Duke. I'd like to say good weather, but I'd be lying. There is a snow storm coming in from Utah. I want to see a lot more snow:-) It sounds as if you have a window of good driving, between the storm coming in from Utah, and weather ahead in Kansas.

    • GalapagoLarryGalapagoLarry says:

      Drive on the right side of the road and always signal when changing lanes and turning. And have a safe trip.

    • Duke CoxDuke Cox says:

      Holy crap!!! I made it in safely, I am responding to my own post so you guys will see it. Interstate 70, this morning, from Hays, Kansas to Ft. Riley was arguably the most harrowing drive I have made in years…I lost count of the flatlanders in the ditch…probably 15 semis, two or three times that many cars…cops everywhere…thankfully. After Ft. Riley, the roads cleared and I found Rush on the radio. If you haven't listened to Mt. Rushbo, lately…now would be a good time.

      He is busy nowadays trying to put a spin on the incredible backflip the pubs have done on immigration. The Republican sound machine has become comically self-contradictory…and Rush is not handling it that well.

      • GalapagoLarryGalapagoLarry says:

        Home safe. Obviously, you followed our advice smiley. (Except for listening to what's his name on the radio, of course. Would never recomment that, even on a trip to Missouri.)

  5. La Libertad says:

    Situation: Your son is charged in a $5,000,000 insider stock trading scheme by the U.S. Attorney in Manhatten and the S.E.C. He faces decades in prison and tens of millions in fines and disgorgements. http://www.denverpost.com/breakingnews/ci_19164247

    What do you do to assure he faces few fines, serves limited time if any and only disgorges $2.5M?

    From: BrownsteinCommunications [mailto:communications@bhfs.com]
    Sent: Tuesday, January 29, 2013 12:06 PM

    Subject: Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck Ranked Fourth Among US Lobbying Firms

    Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck Ranked Fourth Among US Lobbying Firms

    Brownstein's government relations team ends 2012 ahead of the pack with strong momentum going into 2013

    News outlets confirmed that Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck was the only government relations firm within the top 10 revenue-generating firms in Washington, DC, to post gains in 2012. Brownstein is currently ranked fourth among US lobbying firms for 2012 revenue. The firm reported a total of $22,545,000 for its federal lobbying revenues in 2012, which represents a 2.2 percent increase in revenue over 2011.

    • roccoprahn says:

      The circumstances are somewhat different, but when oxycontin addicted and Vietnam era draft dodger rush limbaugh was charged with felony fraud, felony dr. shopping and felony drug prescription procurement, he hired Roy Black AND elicited the aid of the ACLU for his defense.

      He was able to cut a sweetheart deal with a very sympathetic Florida pinko D.A. and escaped very serious, time in jail if convicted charges.

      If you're advocating for this young man, I suggest you contact the drug addled limbaugh and connect him to Mr. Black.

  6. dipplegangerdippleganger says:

    "The crisis is a crisis in consciousness, a crisis that cannot anymore accept the old norms, the old patterns, the ancient traditions and  considering what the world is now, with all the misery, conflict, destructive brutality, aggression and so on. Man is still as he was, is still brutal, violent, aggressive, acquisitive, competitive and .. he has built a society along these lines." Jiddu Krishnamurti

    As my Pop's always says, more or less. : Most people can't see outside themselves. Their selfishness consumes them and they don't see or care about the results of their actions. The only way we can change is by being out looking back in.  

    We are coming to an evolution again in our history, an explosion of progressive thought, reasoning, and understanding. The old ways aren't working, and we are seeing more and more of history's flaws. Maybe if our fellow Americans were to learn the truth on this one topic, it would collectively spark them to look back onto themselves.

    Since this is open thread I would love to hear some thoughts. Anyone serious about learning and living in truth, can spare some time to let this play, and listen to it. La libertodd, if you would speak that would be an honor.. I use you as a check for confirmation bias,  I find that useful. Even if Duke and several others may not.


    oh by the way. love this blog. So glad to finally get to interact with you cats.

    I understand, even I thought the subject may be a bit cliche, but the questions just keep coming back up.



  7. BlueCatBlueCat says:

    Anybody post this yet?

    John Kerry has been confirmed as the new U.S. Secretary of State.

    The U.S. Senate voted Tuesday to approve the five-term senator from Massachusetts for the position in President Barack Obama's cabinet.

    Hours earlier, the Foreign Relations Committee unanimously approved the man who has led the panel for four years.



  8. BlueCatBlueCat says:

    I have a question for our lawyers about immigration reform proposals. One of the requirements proposed is about paying back taxes.  Where does that leave all the undocumented workers who have been paying taxes through false social security numbers? Lots of undocumented workers in the restaurant business and who get paychecks, not cash under the table, are in this situation. If they come forward and admit that they have been using these numbers,  what happens to them?

  9. There are a lot of details to be worked out, I'm sure.

    Asking every undocumented worker to come forward and reveal their tax situation could be "interesting" at best, and not just for the workers. Employers, people smugglers, the outfits that support the whole undocumented worker network – all of them have a vested interest in not saying a whole lot because it was all under the table. Putting it on the table exposes a whole lot of people to potential criminal charges and/or fines – many of them will resist in different ways. It could get ugly.

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