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RANTS

Where writers get to blow off a little steam.

RANT TO THE SPINNERS

It has been several interesting days, since Political Bad Boy Blagojevich was arrested for a “political crime spree” that rendered several politicians shocked and awed.   Well!  You say,”shocked and awed”.

Really?

Isn’t that a gross exagerration of what you really felt.

Really?

Aren’t you seriously overstating your reaction?

How could those of us witnessing this, not suffer any of those shocking and compelling reactions?

Those of us who witnessed this via cable news, and are not elected officials, nor are we Federal Prosecutors, thought “so what’s new”?  Why did we not have any of those reactions?   Because it is what we expect. On a regular and ongoing basis. Again and Again and Again.

How would Watergate rate against this? (Suggested by Gov. Blago on Monday, December 8, during an appearance at Republic Window & Door during an employee protest regarding their job loss).

Blago, I suggest you ask former presidential candidate Pat Buchanan or former Special Counsel to the Nixon Administration John W. Dean. They can answer that question for you.

This “stuck as Governor” Bad Boy on a political crime spree makes our days. He inspires us to further our grassroots campaign to end the culture of corruption that is so pervasive in government. When we don’t think we can stand another political spin from the spinners, another ill gotten bailout, another self aggrandizing political statement,  his arrogance, narcissism, and what his co-horts call delusional political reality rears its’ ugly head and the media goes crazy all over again. We thank you!

The spinners start spinning, my head starts spinning, the phones start ringing, the dog barks, and anyone who has ever spoken to this tough guy “stuck Governor” runs for cover as if they were walking through Baghdad and Blackwater was on patrol.

There is a deafening silence until some artful dodger AKA a high ranking Illinois State official, Senate or House leader throws the media a bone with an artfully prepared statement saying nothing other than that they are  shocked and awed. The tone is set for what should and should not be said, while any and all in the sphere of influence of this man are making and releasing their politically correct and partisan statements. LET’S END THE POLITICAL CORRECTNESS AND CALL A  SPADE A SPADE. The constituents of Illinois need to immediately call for his resignation AND the Illinois General Assembly must rigorously begin impeachment proceedings. Illinois State Attorney General Lisa Madigan is also preparing to go the the Illinois Supreme Court and have him declared unfit to serve.

 The US Senate Democratic Caucus (50 members)  issued the following letter: (from swamppolitics.com)

December 10, 2008

Dear Governor Blagojevich:

We write to insist that you step down as Governor of Illinois and under no circumstance make an appointment to fill the vacant Illinois Senate seat.

In light of your arrest yesterday on alleged federal corruption charges related to that Senate seat, any appointment by you would raise serious questions.

It is within the authority of the Illinois legislature to remove your power to make this appointment by providing for a special election. But a decision by you to resign or to step aside under Article V of the Illinois Constitution would be the most expeditious way for a new Senator to be chosen and seated in a manner that would earn the confidence of the people of Illinois and all Americans. We consider it imperative that a new senator be seated as soon as possible so that Illinois is fully represented in the Senate as the important work of the 111th Congress moves forward.

Please understand that should you decide to ignore the request of the Senate Democratic Caucus and make an appointment we would be forced to exercise our Constitutional authority under Article I, Section 5, to determine whether such a person should be seated.

We do not prejudge the outcome of the criminal charges against you or question your constitutional right to contest those charges. But for the good of the Senate and our nation, we implore you to refrain from making an appointment to the Senate.

Sincerely,

 

Earlier in the day, the senior senator from Illinois, Richard Durbin, sent a letter to Blagojevich asking him to step down. It was a reversal for Durbin, who just Tuesday said that such calls were premature, and that Blagojevich deserved a full and fair trial on corruption charges. Although even then, he said that the state would be better off with a new chief executive.

Here is that text of that letter.

Dear Governor Blagojevich:

I am writing to ask you to step down as Governor of Illinois. Beyond guilt or innocence, the charges against you raise serious questions about your ability to carry out your duties as chief executive of our state.

I also ask you not to appoint the next United States Senator from Illinois. Because of the nature of the charges against you, no matter whom you were to select, that individual would be under a cloud of suspicion. That would not serve our state, our nation, or the United States Senate.

Legislative efforts to impeach you or remove your ability to appoint the replacement for the United States Senate have been initiated but those options could take some time accomplish. I urge you to choose the path that will be the most beneficial for the people of Illinois and the nation, and resign immediately.

At this moment, I am the only United State Senator from Illinois and within weeks we will begin the next Congress facing unprecedented challenges. Illinois should not be underrepresented in the Senate during this critical time in our history.

I urge you to search your heart and summon the strength to put your state and your nation above any personal considerations.

Sincerely,

 

Richard J. Durbin

The two errors in Senator Durbin’s request is that first there must be an assumption that he has a pumping heart, and clearly he has no conscience to make a selfless consideration for his state and nation. The appeal was well intended, but stay tuned. I am certain that the Honorable Senator Durbin will yet again have another take on this in a few days as the CLIMATE changes. There must be some sunshine out there. Clearly Gov. Blago thought so on Monday when he invited the world to “tape” his calls both openly and notoriously.

LONG TERM FORCAST: TORNADIC

Public outcry toward Bad Boy Blago and his media friendly wife Lady Macbeth (a media reference) heightens while as public servants they continue to count their personal sacrifices.

No board to be appointed to.

No Secretarial appointment in the new Administration.

No Warren Buffet Foundation to lead.

No SEIU Union to defraud.

Clearly A GREAT PERSONAL TRADEGY at the very least.

I heard one political strategist suggest that if this had been a republican that was arrested, that the Federal Prosecutor and the media would be making a point of emphasizing his party affiliation. Geez, I didn’t think  corruption had a party. I thought it was a state of political being. A characterization. A REALITY, if you will Mr. Spinner. I don’t THINK Patrick Fitzgerald cares about PARTY affiliation when he investigates. Are you suggesting that he does? Some of us don’t give a hoot about what party it is, we care that it happens. REPEATEDLY!!!!

A self serving vote, a tainted dollar, a sold vote, an illegal contribution. It happens! REPEATEDLY!!!

Please all you strategists, review your banter and edit your political “wittisisms” before going on air and exposing us to this idiocy. You look a fool! It irritates CLINICAL THINKERS. We are AWED that you have left personal integrity and decency out of your rhetoric. That you will SPIN THE TRUTH to further your political agenda!  Alas! I am shocked and awed.  

I can deal with the crime spree, I can’t deal with the nonsense by some spinners.

To bailout or not to bailout is the question.

A RANT:

UPDATE: Dec. 15, 2008

UPDATE: Dec. 11, 2008
Since I started this rant the bailout has passed the house. It sucks! We better hope and pray the Senate has more common sense and sends EVERYONE back to the drawing board or we will be revisiting this issue early next year.

My first inclination was an emphatic NO NO NO!

I have a billion questions about this whole situation … I will not list them here since there certainly is not the time, space or bandwidth to cover it all.

After putting a bit of “Clinical Thought” to it all I have decided it is a must on some level.
There is no point in the “blame game” we need to embrace the “fix game”. I looking over the offered solutions and those promoting them it crossed my mind NOT MANY offering solutions have ever run a business.

Come to think of it most would probably fall flat on their faces in the real business world. So they are offering a business solution?
HOW SMART IS THAT?
Let me answer that for you … NOT VERY.

Add to all of that who they are “sleeping with” (lobbyist “payoff” “kickback” “campaign donations”) and we have further skewed solutions.
How about we kick “Politically Correct” aside and call a spade a spade.
That whole can of worms is another article by someone wiser than I coming soon.

Handing over billions with a CAR CZAR to oversee?
Who the heck would want that job?
It will be most interesting to see who has the real wherewithal and guts to step up to that plate.

Anyway so far what I have seen appears to be pouring TAX PAYER MONEY down a rat hole.

What is expected of this program?
Is this a warning shot across the bough of all auto workers?
Get prepared to lose your jobs in 6 mos.?


AUTO MAKERS:

Here are the down and dirty facts … you think you can’t survive on what you make today?
Well how well are you going to survive on zilch?
If you think you can count on the government as a safety net you are sadly mistaken.
If you think you can count on your union you are equally sadly mistaken … both ARE/HAVE/WILL miserably fail you.
Keep in mind YOU ARE BOSS OF THE UNION not vice versa … make your voices heard before you are in some unemployment line while your company/union bosses are sipping mojitos in Dubai.

You want to know why the Banks got bailed out with few questions asked?
The bailers saw their own asses slipping into the great abyss.
Its called VESTED INTEREST!
NOW “Barney Baby”, “Pelosi the Shrew” Dodd and a whole slew of others are safe and can make an example.
YOU AUTO MAKERS ARE IT!

I just ran into the latest Republican Solution (below).
It would be refreshing if both sides of the isle FOR ONCE drop partisanship and hammer out a solution to help get an ICONIC industry back on its feet.

There are no better workers in the world than here in the USA there are just cheaper workers elsewhere. For those who say these American companies can not compete? The naysayers ARE DAFFED!
Perhaps a level playing field would help.


WASHINGTON, DC – House Republican Leader John Boehner (R-OH), Republican Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA), Conference Chairman Mike Pence (R-IN), and other House GOP leaders today put forth an alternative to the $15 billion taxpayer-funded auto bailout proposed by House Democratic leaders.

The American Automotive Reorganization and Recovery Plan

Working families throughout our country are struggling to pay their bills and facing economic anxieties not seen in America for generations. Employers are finding themselves torn between staying in business and laying off people over the holidays. Nowhere are these challenges more acute than in states that are heavily dependent on auto manufacturing. It is essential that Washington address these challenges not through taxpayer-funded bailouts that prolong working families’ pain and put taxpayers’ money at risk, but by fixing problems and removing barriers that make it harder for working families to prosper.

Washington has failed this basic test with respect to the American auto industry. Republicans want to make certain that in its response to the resulting crisis, Washington does not fail American taxpayers as well. A responsible plan should do two things: it should protect taxpayers, and it should help auto workers and their families by allowing the Big Three to become competitive again. The Democrats’ plan does neither. Congress should not be stampeded into rubber-stamping a plan that guarantees failure at the taxpayers’ expense.

The Democratic Bailout proposal has three fundamental flaws:

  • The only thing crazier than trusting the same management and union officials who got the Big Three into this mess to get them out is trusting a bunch of Washington politicians and bureaucrats – the very same people who ran up a $455 billion deficit last year. American auto workers and their families deserve better.
  • If no private investors believe the Big Three restructuring plans are realistic enough to support with their own money, why should we put up taxpayer money? American taxpayers deserve better.
  • The Big Three restructuring plan and the Democratic proposal lack accountability. There is no guarantee that once they get taxpayer money the restructuring they promise will occur. Once the taxpayers prop them up once, there will be a big incentive to keep bailing them out – keeping the industry dependent on government aid and further denying American auto workers the security of a viable industry that is back on its feet and ready to compete. American auto workers and their families deserve better.

What We Should Be Doing: The American Automotive Reorganization and Recovery Plan

Hard Benchmarks:

On December 2, the Big Three presented to Congress their plans for restructuring. While the plans included laudable goals, too few details were provided as to how the companies will actually achieve the restructuring and the savings they have promised. In some instances new agreements to achieve the savings would not be entered into for months or perhaps years.

The Big Three must lock in the restructuring they have promised in a matter of weeks, not months or years. Congress should instead establish firm benchmarks and a tight timeline for

restructuring. Such benchmarks will include for example requiring that by March 31, 2009 each company should reach agreement whereby:

  • The companies’ creditors agree to a framework to reduce each company’s indebtedness by at least 1/3.
  • The UAW holds to concessions already made and further:

o Concedes the elimination of Supplemental Unemployment Benefits;
o Concedes elimination of the Jobs Bank Program;
o Agrees to either reduce company retiree health care obligations or otherwise convert a portion of such obligations into equity; and
o Agrees to reduce wages and benefits to the levels paid by non-Big Three manufacturers.

A Process for Reaching Expedited Agreement, Instead of Nationalizing America’s Auto Companies

Because of the many legal and contractual hurdles to restructuring, the companies are urged to accomplish their restructuring through the use of a pre-packaged bankruptcy or another mechanism to bring all stakeholders to the table for an agreed-upon determination of their future. It is important that these stakeholders reach reasonable compromises amongst themselves. Creating a government bureaucracy or a “car czar” to arbitrarily pass judgment on the thousands of details involved with a restructuring is akin to nationalizing the auto companies.


Interim Financing: Insurance, Rather than a Taxpayer-Funded Bailout

The Big Three may need some form of interim financing as they finalize their restructuring. In normal economic times, if their restructuring plan is considered viable, such financing should be available in the private market. Because of the current credit crisis, limited assistance may be appropriate in the form of insurance, rather than a taxpayer-funded government bailout that replaces private investment. We propose that the government provide insurance, funded by the participants with a modest FDIC-like fee, which would cover up to 50 percent of the losses of new investment in the case of default, helping to unlock immediate private investment (not unlike debtor in possession financing). Such insurance would expire on March 31, 2009. This proposal ensures that taxpayers are protected and provides a powerful incentive for the Big Three to quickly implement their restructuring plans.

Its a start so get your dead asses to work and earn the paycheck and benefits that are way to high for the amount of successful work you crank out for “we the people”.

The PDF is HERE

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