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Saturday, August 2, 2014

#KeepmyTV Advocates Are Getting Jerked Around

My public service announcement
because a lot of people are getting jerked around on Twitter 
they don't know it
and they need to know it


Nastiness in the cable TV industry and it's got a real piece of nasty associated with it.
Real nasty!

Background:

Anyone who has antenna (free) TV is seeing ads from the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) telling them to contact Congress to KeepMyTV

Here's why
The cable companies are up to some real nastiness in DC that NAB is warning may end up
in free broadcast antenna TV being eliminated
AND
your local broadcast channels being moved from basic service to premium service on the cable lineups

I have every reason to believe NAB 
- if nothing else it doesn't hurt to sent a message to Congress
- just in case
cause the public is always the last to know.

WELL
Here's where the right-wing, pro-corporate cable funded slimeballs step in

If you tweet
keepmytv.org
or 
#Keepmytv
You immediately gets spammed by the American Television Viewers Association

A twitter activist will send this:
and they get spammed with this.

Misleading Nana - becausetheycan

AND
its happening
over and
over and
over again
(Just proof that this is a major undertaking by ATVA)


American Television Viewers Association (ATVA)
is a division of 

American Television Alliance
  a lobbying group representing multichannel-video providers and cable networks
  a lobby group representing cable and satellite providers
  formed by Time Warner Cable in 201

Time Warner Cable has been one of ATVA's biggest supporters, and has led the funding for its lobbying efforts.

In 2010 the Heartland Institute listed ATA as
Victories: The American Television Alliance, a The [sic] 31-member industry coalition,was formed in July 

The board of American Television Alliance as noted on their 2012 990  included
    American Cable Association
    Charter
    DirecTV
    DishTV
    USTelecom
    Insight
    MediaComm
    Time Warner Cable (2)
    past Turner Communications employee

In relation to this issue the American Television Alliance defends themselves in a blog entry
with
"a sampling of what conservatives are saying"
Who are those conservatives
     Free State Foundation - ALEC member
     Mercatus Center - funded by Koch
     Citizens Against Government Waste - ALEC member 
     L. Gordon Crovitz - who writes for Murdoch media - ALEC member
     National Taxpayers Association - ALEC member
     Taxpayer Protection Alliance - Founded by ALEC scholar - Stephen Moore
     R Street Institute - Cofounded by ex ALEC exec director Alan Smith
     Heritage Foundation - ALEC member
Pro-corporate, free market conservative organizations - all with indirect ties through the American Legislative Exchange Council to the cable and satellite providers that fund American Television Alliance.

Soooo - - - 
The American Television Viewers Association
A group that lobbies for cable and satellite providers
is telling every person like NanaG out there that emails Congress or tweets to friends and family
to #keepmyTV

"Don't worry - Be Happy"
The NAB is lying and
the cable companies will look out for your best interests.

Bullshit!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Republicans - Its all About Them

A little under 100 days until the midterm elections and what do we know?
The Republicans have made it clear – it’s all about them - they will not compromise on anything – it’s their way or the highway - to hell with anyone else.
The Republicans have made it clear – it’s all about them - they support the wealthy and tax cuts for the wealthy and to hell with everyone else.
The Republicans have made it clear – it’s all about them - they will continue to block anything that is not on “their agenda” -  to hell with everyone else.
The Republicans have made it clear – it’s all about them - they will repeal everything that is not on “their agenda”  - to hell with anyone else.
No compromise – it’s all about them – no other voice(s) in this country exist or need to be heard– except the Republicans  - to hell with anyone else.

I found this quote on a web page about a year ago and it made me think:
“Wake up America – Republicans are uncaring, unpatriotic and marching down the path of destroying the United States.”

In my opinion they have a point
– but may be missing the main point of current Republican (and Tea Party) behavior.  
 I’m just thinking  that you need to look at the Republican behavior from a new and different “Republican paradigm”.

So what does the “Republican paradigm” look like?

Republicans are caring people – they care about Republicans, specifically rich Republicans.  I would even question if they care for the “tired, poor, huddled masses” Republicans.

Republicans are patriotic – in fact in their minds they probably believe they are the only true patriots.  This is their country and only Republicans have the right to claim “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

Republicans are not trying to destroy the United States. They probably believe that this was written for them and only for them. 
“When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them,…” 
– they are trying to destroy everyone and everything that is not Republican. 

It’s very possible that in their warped sense of reality, they believe that the “Republican States of America” shall prevail.
Then the Republicans can re-write the Pledge of Allegiance.
I pledge allegiance to the swag
of the Republican States of America and
to our republic for which it stands, one nation,
under our God, with liberty and justice for us.

They can change the country’s motto to read
In the Republicans God we trust.

The Republican motto may have become:
Love the Republican Party, love thyself –
hate everyone else and hate everything else
because no one else matters and nothing else matters
except the Republican Party of America; God bless us one and all.

Blaming Boomers for Social Security Crisis is a Crock!


Every time I hear a news report that Social Security is in grave danger and we have to make drastic changes to retirement benefits – I want to scream.  Every time they talk about drastic changes it is always about retirement benefits needing change – I want to scream. Yesterday CNBC suggested Boomers were going to bankrupt Social Security and I WANT TO SCREAM!

To a topic people don’t like to talk about.

BOOMERS ARE GOING TO DIE! 
Got it?  Do you understand that? 
Does it make sense to you?
Pay attention here – this is really important when talking about “aged benefits” and Social Security solvency. 
One webpage suggests Boomers are dying at a rate of 1 boomer dead every 35 seconds and they have a death counter for Boomers.
Because Boomers are a big part of the population - they will account for a large percentage of deaths over the coming years
- more than any age group
DEAD = not getting Social Security Anymore.

Life expectancy: 
Defined as
Average number of years an individual could be expected to live based on current patterns of mortality. (Public Health Agency of Canada)

Life expectancy in the US
78.4  (World Bank)
77.9  (CDC)
According to the Social Security Administration (2006) the life expectancy of a 60 year old male was 20.7 more years, a 60 year old female 23.78 years.
Based on those numbers we can pretty much agree that the US and the world reporting agencies agree that people are going to continue to die.

Wikipedia reports that there were approximately 76 million boomers born in the US between the years of 1946 and 1964.
·    3.4 million boomers were born in 1946  (US  Dept HEW -  registered and unregistered births recorded)
·    Boomers born in 1946 will reach full retirement age in 2011
·    40 – 60% of boomers born in 1946 don’t have enough money to retire in 2011 (depending on which article you believe) (Still working? = still paying into Social Security)
·    Boomers born in 1946 will start dying (on average) in 2026
o   In 2007 – 23,000 died; In 2006 -  26,000 died; In 2005 – 25,000 died  (CDC)
I could go on and on, Boomer birth year by Boomer birth year – but what’s the point - you do get the point don’t you – we’re dying. 

By 2043 over 97% of the Silent Generation will be dead
By 2043 over HALF of the Boomers will be dead (based on average current patterns of mortality).
By 2043 about 90 million people will be in the US workforce, paying into Social Security.

I'd write more
but why?

and besides - I'm a Boomer and  I’m dead tired.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

ALEC - Cronyism, Corruption, Perversion



But - no - that's not what they are writing about. 

Ever heard the old adage
Poking at a Hornets nest
Ever been told
Don’t do that?

Well - - - -

As the Right-wing reports it

A new report released by the American Legislative Exchange Council looks at widespread state government favoritism through the tax code, in which specific individuals and businesses are treated unequally and given tax carve-outs.

, which according to ALEC, distorts the market and should be replaced with a simpler and more competitive tax code.

ALEC’s report arguing, “Specialized carve-outs in the tax code are distortionary and ineffective at best, and examples of government cronyism at worst. These carve-outs run contrary to the principles of sound tax policy and the basic fairness of a level playing field for all businesses.”

Oh my - - - - 


Snips from ALEC’s report

The Unseen Costs of Tax Cronyism: Favoritism and Foregone Growth
And
Of course – it has a piece of legislation at the end of it – only one piece of legislation, although I’m sure there are probably a dozen, based on past ALEC history.
(It's on the ALEC webpage - you can find it there - I won't link to it)

Seems fitting that ALEC's new groundbreaking report would have the word "cronyism" in it the week before the annual meeting of state legislators and corporate lobbyists.
Cronyism
ALEC writing about Cronyism
Oh, my - - - -
    ALEC
    Legislators 
    Epitomize 
    Cronyism
But - no - that's not what they are writing about.

“policymakers can embrace cronyism by providing certain businesses and industries with special targeted tax breaks and tax carve-outs.”

And by God – ALEC legislators do that every day!
But - no - that's not what they are writing about.

They go on to say that the tax cronyism (that most ALEC legislators have been practicing for decades) leads to
             "precipitating tax rate increases"
and
of course
               "subverts market outcomes"
Oh, no - the 1% and the market are at risk - - Oh No!

But the biggest complaint ALEC makes in this report is about the potential for public corruption.
     Now let me get this straight –
     the organization that puts legislators behind closed doors to meet secretly 
     with corporate lobbyists –
     meetings which by the way are totally funded by the corporations that the
     lobbyists work for –
is now worried about public corruption.
Really?   REALLY?
Get real – there’s more to this story that we won’t know about for awhile yet. 

Cronyism—the perversion of sound economic policy to create a system that benefits one firm or industry at the expense of all others—is a serious public policy problem.

ALEC wrote that – sounds pretty much what they do every day
But - no - that's not what they are writing about.

"the perversion of sound economic policy"
is done everyday, in every way - by "perverted" ALEC legislators

"serious public policy problem"
should be on every piece of ALEC literature
    ALEC the serious public policy problem.
ALEC should own that phrase everyday, in every way

But later in the report ALEC  re-writes their mumble jumble
- they like to do that to confuse people 
- confusing people makes spreading mistruths easier.  
You see, ALEC reports suck you in at the beginning of the report with happy crap and then hope you don't bother to read to the end - where the real evil is. And most idiots - don't read the whole thing - so the happy crap on the first couple pages becomes the news stories.

Later in the report

Cronyism is the substitution of political influence for free markets. It comes about when government has a lot of power over private- sector decisions and when the government officials in power have great discretion over how to use it.

Oh, my – the real issue is now evident

has a lot of power over private- sector decisions and when the government officials in power have great discretion over how to use it

Oh, boy – ALEC corporations must be pissed about something.  But we won’t know what that something is until ALEC releases their next batch of malicious legislation.

Evidently a couple of their corporate members didn’t get the tax breaks and subsidies they wanted
SO
ALEC to the rescue – doing what they are paid millions of dollars each year to do for their corporate members
     protect the profits of corporate members and
     this time they do it with a new report on how unfair
     the current system is 
     new legislation to follow.

It gets even more bizarre in way when you consider that
ALEC is claiming that the current systems is unfair when ALEC has been controlling the state legislatures in many states for many years.

BUT
The story doesn’t end there.

“In an ideal world, each and every state would publish an expenditure report every year. This is not the case at all, and it was pretty difficult trying to put this together,” ALEC’s William Freeland told reporters on a call Thursday.

Pretty difficult to put together – eh?
Nope!

ENTER  GoodJobsFirst.org
(which by the way has published their own report on ALEC “Selling Snake Oil to the States

A growing number of state and local governments are disclosing which companies they are giving tax breaks and other subsidies in the name of job creation and economic development. Yet much of that information is being disseminated through hard-to-find reports and web pages. SUBSIDY TRACKER brings together the information from those far-flung sources--along with unpublished data obtained through open records requests--to create the first national search engine for economic development subsidies.
SUBSIDY TRACKER brings together the information from those far-flung sources
The left does - what the right-wing finds difficult to do.

SOOOOOO
Let's take a look at tax breaks and other subsidies, 
that the left is capable of documenting in a searchable database found at Subsidy Tracker.

Past and Present ALEC Private sector Board members
     ALTRIA
     State Subsidy Total:  $43,083,398

     AT&T
     State Subsidy Total:  $58,628,721

     DIAGEO – a British owned company
     State Subsidy Total:   $40,012,492

     EXXON
     State Subsidy Total:  $340,271,846

     GLAXOSMITHKLINE
     State Subsidy Total:  $25,792,840

     INTUIT
     State Subsidy Total:  $1,618,107

     JOHNSON & JOHNSON
     State Subsidy Total:  $34,669,906

     KOCH INDUSTRIES
     State Subsidy Total:  $89,172,767

     KRAFT FOODS
     State Subsidy Total:  $15,205,849

     PEABODY ENERGY
     State Subsidy Total:   $278,095,289

     PFIZER
     State Subsidy Total:   $201,959,919

     STATE FARM INSURANCE
     State Subsidy Total:    $24,050

     UNITED PARCEL SERVICE
     State Subsidy Total:   $133,306,952

     WALMART
     State Subsidy Total:    $149,942,595


TOTAL   $1,411,784,731.00

ONE and half BILLION DOLLARS

And that’s just a small piece of the pie
It is reported that WalMart gets
$7.8 BILLION in tax breaks and subsidies
Needy Walmart – only makes $16 BILLION IN PROFIT

Looking at the numbers above - there is a caution
This list is only 14, yes only 14 - of the over 300+ corporate members of ALEC.
AND this doesn’t account for items from the Federal government

ONE and half BILLION DOLLARS tax breaks and other subsidies
      that the left is capable of documenting 
      in a searchable database found at Subsidy Tracker.

For fourteen ALEC corporations
Fourteen.
 
It was really handy for these corporations to have ALEC legislators in their pocket when they needed them

Take my word – or don’t – that absolutely nothing good will come out of this report.
It takes a mental contortionist to try and figure out what is in the sick, twisted brain of American Legislative Exchange Council members and staff.
It takes a mental contortionist to try and figure out what the outcome of this newest ALEC report will be.

The timing of the release of the report leads me to believe they are going to be pushing this at the ALEC Dallas meeting next week
        where your state legislator will be meeting privately 
        – behind closed doors – with Corporate lobbyists
        that want tax breaks and other subsidies
and then
your ALEC legislator will bring some nice sounding bill back to your state about tax cronyism 
– that helps no one except ALEC corporate members.

    ALEC         
    Legislators 
    Epitomize  
    Cronyism   
#VoteNo2ALEC

Monday, June 30, 2014

ALEC Transparency - Ain't what it used to be

ALEC trans-par-ency
ain't what it used to be,
ain't what it used to be,
ain't what it used to be,

ALEC trans-par-ency
ain't what it used to be,
just a few years ago.

ALEC has learned to mislead the press very well when it comes to the issue of transparency.
Unfortunately for the reader - the press writes what ALEC says - doesn't check to see if it is true - so the press feeds the public lies.

ALEC Distorts Transparency

because of member concerns about transparency, Meierling said.



“The fundamental issue is people want to know,” Meierling said. “Critics of the organization and supporters of the organization say let sun shine on everything.”
****

"We really believe in transparency," ALEC spokesman Bill Meierling told The Huffington Post. "We believe that more eyes on our model policies will create better policies.

****


After “taking it on the chin” for a few years, ALEC is making an effort to be more transparent, said state Senate Republican Caucus Chairman Bill Ketron of Murfreesboro.



Bull crap
ALEC only makes transparent - what ALEC wants the public to see.
ALEC intentionally distorts its policy and mission - by only publicizing what they want others to believe.

Everything of importance for the public to know is still secret at ALEC

Just a couple of examples of how ALEC is less transparent now - then it was before.


The NEW supposedly more transparent agenda
   doesn't show which corporation is sponsoring the bill
   doesn't show which corporate representatives are doing all those presentations

HIDING information

And then there is this agenda.
The International Relations Taskforce
Corporations and lowly STATE legislators meeting with foreign nationals outside the purview of our state department.  AND writing legislation that affects the US.

The NEW supposedly more transparent agenda
      doesn't show who is the Private Sector (Corporate) Chair of the Taskforce
      doesn't show which corporation/foreign national is doing the presentations
      doesn't show who is sponsoring the bill 
        -evidently the corporate lawyers haven't hooked up with a legislator yet
         to intro the bill
    and that is important - as demonstrated here:
DECEITFUL and HIDING information of who actually wrote the bill and who is the corporation (profit or not for profit)  promoting the bill.
AND it was planned this way - to execute just like this - by ALEC
LYING!

And the you have this!!!
The American Legislative Exchange Council use to be extremely open back in the '90s - that also has changed.


ALEC Less Transparent Now Than It Was In 1995
If Meierling wants to talk about the past, explain this.  How is it that ALEC is owning up to its secretive "past," when the group published full task force membership lists and the text of all model legislation until 1995?
Important Caveat for the Future
The 2011 agendas shown above were on the Common Cause webpage - Common Cause has recently dropped these documents from their webpage.
This is a shame.

Now that historical information that proves - beyond a reasonable doubt -  how ALEC REALLY operates,  behind closed doors, is no longer available to the general public - who needs to know this information and see this information.

Friday, June 27, 2014

2014 - Ridding the US House of ALECers



ALEC and the US House
ALEC members in the House that retired this year

There are 11 - and if we don't watch ourselves they will be replaced with 11 other ALECers.

We need to start now 
to support the Dems with money or volunteer time
to educate our friends and neighbors about ALEC
NOTHING WILL CHANGE
if we replace one ultraconservative pro-corporate extremists of the American Legislative Exchange Council party, with another

#VoteNo2ALEC

RETIRED 
Spencer Bachus (AL)
Runoff election July 15th.
State Rep. Paul DeMarco and policy analyst Gary Palmer
     DeMarco is probably ALEC, hasta be to attend an ALEC? Taskforce meeting
        Was a presenter on an ALEC panel
         Exploring the Development of ALEC Principles on Workers Compensation Reform
        Civil Justice Task Force
        States & Nation Policy Summit | Grand Hyatt | Washington, D.C.
        November 28, 2012
Could be replaced with nother ALECer

John Campbell (CA)
   Mimi Walters GOP – ALEC lover – will face Dem Drew Leavens in November
   Walters probably ALEC – definitely an ALEC lover

Could be replaced with ALEC lover


Rodney Alexander, R-La.
Replaced in November 2013 by Vance McAllister – who resigned in 2014 amid multiple reports of scandal
Primary October 5, 2014 for November election
No known ALECers on the primary ballot as of this point – 2 ALECers declined to run for the position – but then you have the Duck Dynasty nephew running

Mike Rogers (MI)
   Primary for this position on August 5
   Both GOP candidates are ALECers Tom McMillin and Mike Bishop
Could be replaced with nother ALECer

Dave Camp (MI)
   Primary for this position on August 5, 3 GOP candidate, 1 ALECer
   Camp endorsed ALECer John Moolenar to take his place, running against Dem Jeff Holmes
   Will be a hard seat to keep away from ALEC without lots of boots to ground and money
Could be replaced with nother ALECer

Howard Coble (NC)
  Runoff – election July 15 - ALECer Phil Berger is vying for this seat will run against Mark Walker for GOP endorsement 
    Berger is endorsed by ALECers Coble,  Gingrich  ALEC loving Virginia Foxx
Could be replaced with nother ALECer

Jim Gerlach (PA)
  Ryan Costello, GOP – not known ALEC - will face Dem Manan Trivedi
  Will be a hard seat to keep away from ALEC without lots of boots to ground and money

Doc Hastings (WA)
   Primary is August 5 for this seat, 12 candidates
   Known ALECers running Janea Holmquist
Could be replaced with nother ALECer


RUNNING FOR SENATE
Cory Gardner (CO) to run for senate
  Won primary – will face Mark Udall in November

Jack Kingston (GA) to run for senate
   July 22nd Runoff GOP election
   Runoff election in July between Kingston and Perdue

Phil Gingrey (GA) to run for senate
   Did not advance in primary for senate
   GONE, probably to his high paying lobbyist job for an ALEC corporate member

The entire house is up for re-election this year.
I heard a buttwipe on the radio this morning say that 98% of the seats are safe.
I refuse to accept that
and as many as possible must not be re-elected.

#VoteNo2ALEC

and then of course you also have

ALECer Eric Cantor who lost his primary bid