Today's word is "blowback!"

Blowback as in what's going to happen once Ohio Governor John Kasich signs house bill 5 into law. It passed the State Legislature last night following a day of debate in Columbus. This bill effectively neuters Ohio's unions by making strikes illegal, outlawing collective bargaining except for safety equipment and eliminating seniority.

Kasich says this will go a long way in helping to balance Ohio's budget. Maybe. But what about the raises Kasich gave his minions upon taking office? If we can't afford to help the people of Ohio by way of social programs, how the devil can we, the people afford to pay wall street salaries to those in government who pretend to have our best interests at heart.

History shows us that a good leader is one who does not ask his followers to do anything that he, himself would not do. So how can Kasich give his cabinet a raise, and take his own paycheck when he is asking the rest of us to bite the bullet and live on less money? 

Are we the people supposed to take our happiness watching the gov and his boyfriends live it up on our nickel? Are we the people supposed to be sustained on the sizzle rather than the steak?

Just askin'.

We, the people can do something, if we're not happy about Kasich and company starting with signing the petitions to place House Bill 5 on the November ballot. If we do this and then actually turn out and vote, we may actually be able to kill HB 5.

State level blowback of the best kind!


Federal Blowback

Teabag hypocrisy is surfacing in DC like turds in a toilet bowl. Seems many of those alleged deficit hawks have been sucking at the public tit for years, by way of farm subsidies. A report out today says they have literally pocketed billions of dollars in the past 15 years or so. Yet, while they are ready to cut off the tit at the breast bone for the rest of us, they are expressing reticence about turning loose the nipple themselves, and these guys are millionaires without the subsidy bucking them up.

Heck, did you know there is a law that allows these jackels to give back some of their salary as well as health care benefits to the government to help pay down the federal deficit?

Did you know that of 535 members of Congress, only two congressmen have chosen to do so?

Some well placed blowback in the form calls to your congressman or woman demanding they divest of their subsidies, their paycheck and their health would go a long way in making me believe that a government shutdown and cuts to all social programs are our only options.


White House Blowback

Word is we're thinking of arming the Libyan rebels against Moammar and his family.  Word is we're spending hundreds of thousands of dollars a day in a country that does not give us oil or anything else for that matter. Libya is important to our allies in the region so that is the justification being tossed around.

Okay, so we arm these guys and what happens....are they the Taliban in the making for the 21st century? That's how we got Bin Laden and Al Qaeda, back in the day.

Just like war...you can't half ass regime change either. What is needed is a 007 type action in Libya. Somebody needs to "sanction" old Moammar and his son and bloodthirsty daughter, but be direct and upfront about it.  A well placed bunker buster bomb or two or three, would do the trick. Done, with no boots on the ground.

America has been half assing war in Iraq and Afghanistan for years, allowing Americans to watch the sanitized version on television from the comforts of our very safe suburban homes, when we should never have been there in the first place. If it is regime change, then go in and shoot the so n so in the head and come home. If it's war, make the country a parking lot and be done with it.

America is the only country known to destroy nations and then spend billions to rebuild them so they can attack us again and again using our money and our weapons to do it.

Or maybe this is job security Pentagon style, ya think?

There is a lot of waste down Pentagon/Department of Defense way...Maybe we the people should harrass our congressmen to make some deep cuts in that direction, if they really want to make some headway on the deficit.

It is not in our country's best interest to keep building outdated weapons systems to fight illegal wars, or funding crooked contractors or blackwater type mercenaries when the people are hurting.

To paraphrase Mr. Spock..."sometimes the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the one!"

Where is our Vulcan when we need him? At least Obama has the ears...

Let's hope he has the heart and fortitude to put an end to this self defeating cycle in which we're stuck.



Forget the Nuke Meltdowns. Jesus is Coming on the 21st

The end of the world is less than two months away, give or take a few days, according to some preacher out in California. He's told his followers and everyone else who'll listen that the Son of God will once again walk the earth starting May 21, 2011. Shortly after that, he says, the fire and brimstone will fall from the sky.

It's the end of the world as we know it.

No need to prepare for the ending as predicted by the Mayan Calendar, which says the world will end on December 21, 2012. Now in full disclosure, the Calendar doesn't predict the end of the world. It just ends, period. Doesn't necessarily mean the world may end. Nobody knows for sure why the calendar stops at December 21, 2012. It just does and since there aren't any Mayans around, any explanations about the abrupt ending are coming from scientists, sky watchers, and the superstitiously deranged who keep track of this kind of stuff.

The guy out in California, meanwhile, is so sure of his prediction that he's put up billboards so that even the non believers will know the day of reckoning and be ready.

Of course, he's done this before. He's prepared at least four other times for Jesus' return. But I guess somebody forgot to tell Jesus. Or maybe JC just wasn't ready. Or maybe JC is a diva who loves keeping folks waiting breathlessly for his big entrance.

Don't know. But preach says JC is really, really coming this time. Really.

End days predictions have become a cottage industry since Barack Obama was elected president. The first Black man to occupy the White House has prompted comparisons to the anti christ and as a first sign that the end as talked about in Revelation is nigh. Some churches have seen their ranks swell as sometime Christians start planning for their future in heaven, like they're part of the chosen few who will actually be raptured and  see heaven.

Rapture occurs when the chosen few are snatched away into the afterlife, while the rest of the uncivilized fall into chaos and ruin down here on earth. Rapture people point to all the natural disasters and wars currently plaguing earth as a sign that end days are upon us.

Maybe it's time to grow dreads so JC can get a good hold, the better to snatch folks up to heaven.

Honestly, I can't wrap my head around the world ending suddenly...just like I can't imagine committing suicide, simply because there is no reason that I would deprive this world of me... Ya'll don't deserve that.

I can' t really conceive that one morning I'm gonna wake up and by noon the earth is going to be torn apart, taking all of humanity with it.

Until I'm dodging asteroids, earthquakes, radiation from a Japanese nuke meltdown,  or looking out my window and see  Jesus walking down Victory Parkway, I'm not going to believe it.

It's one of those things that will happen, when it happens...but not yet...I don't plan on worrying about it until it happens.

Besides, Christians have been predicting the end of the world since they became Christian. There are so many end of times signs and predictions, including one involving the current Pope Benedict. Ya'll better hope the Pope lives an extra long time and he's already really old, now.

What? You say...

St. Malachy, an Irish priest made some end of world predictions back in his day circa 1590. These prophecies are sometimes attributed to Nostradamous, and that Malachy was simply an alter ego of the great prognosticator. Gossips back in the day claimed "NO" passed this one off on Malachy because he didn't want to be blamed for bringing down the Catholic Church.


According to Malachy/NO...This one says there will be 112 Popes and then The Holy See (Catholic Church) will end. It reads like it's talking about Rome and the Catholic Church and not the rest of us, primarily because the rest of us didn't exist. In 1590 there wasn't much to the world at that time.

In fact, the world  was flat according to most...is still flat according to Sherri Shepard, despite the wayward Chris Columbus and the other ancient explorers.

My point is that according to St Malachy, the world is presently seeing it's 111th Pope, Benedict who will reign through the ultimate persecution of the Holy Church.

Benedict will then be followed by the last Pope, referred to as Peter the Roman, who will nourish the sheep through many tribulations, and when he's done, the City of Seven Hills will be destroyed and the fearsome Judge will Judge his people. The End.

Hmmmm....Cincinnati is built on seven hills, just like Rome...Maybe I should just leave Ohio.

Maybe JC is coming back to earth to be Oprah's last interview. She's set her last show date as May 25th. Maybe that's what California preach is reading in the signs.... not the end of the world.

Maybe it's the end of  the Oprah show as we know it....Don't know.

So, who are you going to believe....The California billboard preacher or St Malachy/Nostradamous?

Me, I'm going to do what I always do on a Sunday, which is what the day after May 21st is...I'm going to watch CBS This Morning with Charles Osgood...do some exercise...some meditation....walk my dogs and maybe pick up a hoe to work my garden.


Bigoted Scare Tactics from the Right

Have you seen this commercial? It's been running on Cincinnati stations for several days now.  It's paid for by a group calling itself Citizens Against Government Waste, which self promotes as a private, non partisan, non profit organization, claiming to have more than a million members nationwide.

According to its mission statement CAGW seeks to eliminate waste, inefficiency and mismanagement in the federal government. Well, if that is  the case, then why create a commercial using bigoted stereotypes that pushes every racist button  within white middle America?

Fear tactics....scare the hell out of white people in order to keep America from moving forward into a more diverse and equal future.

CAGW was founded in 1984 by one J. Peter Grace, the Koch brother of his time, and syndicated columnist Jack Anderson. Both have now passed onto that all white heaven in the sky leaving their organization in the hands of paler and younger minions to carry on their xenophobic. message.

The late Jack Anderson was an interesting person. He won a Pulitzer for exposing President Nixon's favoritism toward Pakistan during the war with India. He uncovered Iran Contra, for which Reagan should have been jailed, but wasn't. G. Gordon Liddy, one of the Watergate schemers also tried to have Anderson killed. J. Edgar Hoover didn't like him either and regularly tried to make Anderson's life miserable.

Like much of the craziness that the right keeps tossing around, the CAGW has its root firmly planted in the Reagan  presidency and the Grace Commission which was supposed to promote an end to wasteful  and needless taxation, read that cutback or end of all social programs for poor people while allowing corporations to run free and unregulated.  And just like all right wing nuts, the CAGW refuses to admit that Ronald Reagan actually raised taxes instead of cutting them. Reagan only talked about decreasing taxes and ending the deficit. He never actually did either.

CAGW claims to have saved taxpayers 1.4 trillion dollars by continuing the work of the Grace Commission along with other recommendations of its own creation. If that is the case, then why does the deficit keep growing? Why did Reagan leave office without balancing his own budgets for eight years?

CAGW failing econ 101 by continuing to promote failed Reaganomic policies otherwise known as trickle down economics.


Comitting Mass Sepuku

The land of the rising sun is sinking rapidly in the East. Today comes word of no less than three nuke meltdowns while Japanese leaders watch and wait. What the hell are they waiting for? The way it looks now, these damaged reactors are going to finish the job America started back in 1945 with the dropping of Big man and Little boy, the bombs that took out Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Trouble is if all of those reactors explode, they will take not only Japan, but much of the world, too.  Look on the bright side...we won't need electricity anymore. We'll all be living, glowing human lightning bugs with personal internal power sources.


Obama Explains

President Barack Obama goes on television tonight to explain why he sent our military to deal with Libya. Obama has referred to the situation as a humanitarian crisis that needed to be handled.In other words to keep the crazy man in power from killing his own people.

Despite skyrocketing gasoline prices, America does not use Libyan oil, so there is really no need for America to be there, according to the naysayers. Besides, they say, you didn't ask permission from Congress, meaning the real masters of the universe didn't sign off on such a big order.

It's okay that Dubya did it and his daddy did it...and...Reagan did it...and Clinton did it....But Obama, well he just doesn't have the smarts to do it...that's the problem...he needs guidance....right?

It doesn't matter what Obama does, he is going to be roundly criticized by the right. Case in point, Newt Gingrich who is doing summersaults attempting to explain his own flip flops and still not look like the blatant racist that he is. While Obama studied the matter, Newt wanted to bomb Khadafi...Yet when Obama bombed Khadafi...Newt said we shouldn't be in Libya at all.

In fact, take the last statement and substitute the names of Pawlenty, Palin, Bachmann, Boehner, Huckabee and Paul for Gingrich and you will have the complete picture.

Maybe tonight he should use the Seasame Street approach or School House Rock for those on the right and mainstream media, to make them understand that sometimes you have to help out and not make war for greedy monetary reasons. Once in a while the people count.

And as I recall, aren't we still a part of NATO....so that means that we will be there as long as NATO is there...which is why Obama can't say when we will leave permanently.

Why don't we do something really constructive and shutdown all the military bases not on American soil and bring our people home. That way we won't look like the cop on block trying to keep peace.


Honoring the Black Women of the Great War

The White House has chosen today to mark Women's History Month by posting pics of women veterans of the wars.  The article posted below was written to honor my great aunt and the women with whom she served during World War II.......

 Originally published on 12/08/2008

  Black Women in WWII, Still Fighting for Recognition

The story of the 6888th Central Postal Directory WAC Battalion

Buffalo Soldiers, Tuskegee Airmen, Black men, bigger than life historical figures. Their stories told over and over. Their exploits dramatized on television and in movies. Rightfully celebrated as warriors and men who helped to create this country we call America. In recognition of their accomplishments, President Elect, Barack Obama, has invited the remaining members of the Tuskegee Airmen to attend his inauguration, in January. That invitation should also be tendered to the members of the Women Army Corp, the Black WACs of World War II.

There is always a distaff side to history. The 6888th Central Postal Directory Women Army Corp Battalion, was the only unit of Black women to serve in the European theater during the great war. As were all units, it was a segregated unit, created specifically to handle a monumental problem overseas. You see, the mail, the packages, the letters and boxes of food, sent to the troops, piled up in a warehouse in Birmingham, England for the first few years of the war. The mail was not making it to the soldiers on the front lines. The workers, both soldiers and civilians assigned to process the mail, were overwhelmed by the volume of their assigned task.

The 6888th CPD, was quickly formed. The unit was comprised of women from all over the country, who had signed up to serve. My own great Aunt, Sargent Bessie L. Robinson, was one of them. If she hadn’t been a member, then I don’t think even I would have known of their existence, or their contributions to history. I had the privilege of delivering the keynote speech at their first reunion, after the war, in June, 1979, in Cincinnati, Ohio. By this time, they were old, but still full of life, sparkling as they recalled the memories of their great adventures.

The women trained at Ft. Olgethorpe, in Georgia. Among other things, they had to complete five mile hikes in full battle gear, which included, pistols belts, gas masks, canteens, packs and helmets. They made these hikes under, what the army calls, active war conditions, meaning, somebody was shooting at them, or blowing up stuff, while they did it. After training, the battalion boarded a special train to New York, and Camp Shanks.

From there, they took a ship to Europe, and on February 12th, 1945, they landed in Scotland and boarded a train for Birmingham, England. Battalion Command was entrusted to Major Charity Adams, who died in 2002.

The unit’s job was to clean up the backlog of mail. They accomplished it in record time, working two eight hours shifts, per day. They processed 65,000 pieces of mail per shift, in order to get the job done. The 6888th CPD also served in Rouen, France as Allied troops liberated that country. They also pulled duty in Paris, France before returning home to the USA. Three members of the unit died while stationed in France.

While overseas, they learned about the death of FDR They shook hands with America’s only Negro general at the time, Brigadier General, Benjamin O. Davis. He greeted them when they arrived in England. When they returned to America, the 6888th was disbanded. The women dispersed. Some stayed in the service. Some retired and went home. The war was over, the country was still segregated, and there was very little said or written about their tour of duty.

The women who are still alive, are well into their 80's, now. The unit totaled 824 women and 31 officers. My aunt, Sgt. Bessie, passed away several years ago. The small part of history that I have presented here was passed down orally. A couple of books have been written, however, the official web sites, detailing the exploits of women in war, glance over, or fail to make any mention what so ever, of the 6888th Central Postal Directory Battalion. Take nothing away from the Tuskegee Airmen. They deserve their acolades. I'm just saying that someone should remember their sisters, too.


Newt's Big Adventure or Or There and Back Again by Newton LMG Brandyash

When it comes to politics, Americans just love their clown princes. Gives us something to talk about around the  water cooler in between the latest actor suicide by television,  bimbo outbreaks and crisis in the middle east. How else do you describe the seriousness being given to the announcement by Newton Leroy McPherson Gingrich, otherwise known as Newt.

Newt, the legend in his own mind, is again mounting a fake run to the White House. He's not really serious, he just likes the drama of the chase. He likes the chaos, the standing in the middle of the hurricane and being the center of attention when he walks into a room. He loves it when reporters ask nonsensical, non essential questions, hanging on his every word.  He can win, but he doesn't know what to do after he does. Winning Congress means you're on the team. But winning means you have to share the spotlight with about 500 other local drama queens sent to lead America. As we all know, there is no "I" in team. Newt  made it to Speaker of the House which is a lead spot on Capitol Hill, but he is not the HNIC. He is part of the leadership. He's not even the BIG speaker. The BIG speaker is always the guy in the Senate. Newt was the little speaker in the House.

  And everyone knows the really, really big  24/7 drama queens always end up in the oval office. 

Nope, last time Newt made it to Congress he had way too much time on his hands. And the  abundance of all those pretty blond conservative lobby ladies and congressional wives in training, masquerading as office help, didn't help matters either.

Let me refresh your memory about the callow fellow named after a salamander. He's been in and out of politics for a long time. Back in 1994 Newt led the GOP and helped usher in the now historic Contract on America, that resulted in among other things, a governmental shutdown and the passage of the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995. This nearly unanimously supported measure was designed to erase some of the perks of being an elected representative.

In between redesigning the moral fiber and values of America while  surreptitiously running around on his cancer-stricken wife-wife number two, he managed to violate Congressional ethics rules and regulations no less than 84 times.  83 of those charges were eventually dropped, but the one that stuck was knowingly lying to a Congressional Committee.  Newt was forced to tuck his tail between his legs and resign in disgrace, all the while calling for the impeachment of Bill Clinton for getting a blow job from Monica Lewinsky one night in his office.

Since Newt was cheating on his second wife at the time, guess it would be safe to say he knew all about bj's in the office, maybe in the back seat of his limo, too, since the GOP was on an austerity kick back in the day and it simply wouldn't do to see the moral compass of the GOP checking into a nearby motel or two.

Bet bj's in the office were meant to be one of the perks eliminated by the Congressional Accountability Act.

Since then, Newt has written books, come out as a dinosaur enthusiast, commented on television and feinted runs for the White House. The fake runs means he can once again raise stupid piles of money and get lots and lots of publicity, for basically no reason at all.

But this time, he says he  is serious and he signaled it by unveiling a website. Not an exploratory committee or an outright announcement that goes something like "My fellow Americans, today I am running for President of the United States." No Newton Leroy McPherson Gingrich put up a website at http://www.newt.org. You heard me, he unveiled a website...bought the domain for his name.

So what's he running for-CEO of Microsoft?

In the words of  Sharron Angry er, Angle, c'mon Newt....man up!.... grow some!...lock and load!....Go ahead throw your hat in the ring prove that any....ENN-NEE.. master of the universe can defeat the chocolate covered usurper now sleeping in America's master bedroom.

I dare ya!


In My Bed? Damn! Supreme Court Agrees!

Supreme Court throws out lawsuit against Westboro Church. In an 8-1 vote with Justice Alito dissenting.You can read the decision here.

(Originally posted in 2006)

 Since I discovered my gayness at the tender age of 5, waking up in bed with a man would be surprising. If that man happens to be the Reverend Fred Phelps, then it becomes grounds for suicide...maybe a bath, then suicide or maybe a shower, a cleansing walk through fire then suicide.

For those of you who don't know the allegedly righteous reverend, Phelps is the guy who leads the Westboro Church of Topeka, Kansas and conducts protests at the funerals of soldiers who have died during the Iraq military action. Phelps believes that the good men and women who died for this country are being punished because they fought to defend a homeland that condones homosexuality.

Phelps thinks everyone who doesn't believe as he does is going to hell and that includes most of us Americans. So he and his family, since that's what makes up his congregation, travels the country protesting at funerals. He's been doing it for a lot of years at gay funerals, but nobody took notice until he crossed the line with the American military. If you want to read exactly what it is that Phelps is saying go to http://www.godhatesamerica.com/ , where you will find that he not only attacks America, but Coretta Scott King, Reggie White, and The Pope in language so vile that I won't repeat it here.

Earlier this week Congress passed a bill banning Phelps protests at cemeteries. The "Respect for America's Fallen Heroes Act" has been sent to White House and Dubya has already indicated that he will sign it into law. The measure, like much of what Congress does, seems good until you fully examine it. The law only pertains to 122 national cemeteries. It doesn't say a thing about all of the other cemeteries in this country. Nor does it keep him from protesting at funerals. He just has to stay 300 feet away.

Phelps has free reign almost everywhere else as long as he stays off federal turf. And there is another thing that bothers me. As reprehensible as I find this man to be, I am troubled that Congress has seen fit to try to stifle him. Despite his ranting and viciously biased ravings, he is an American, protected by the constitution, specifically the First Amendment. He has a god-given right to say whatever the hell he wants.

This is America.

It is what these young military people fight and die for. Yes, his acts are a slap in the face and blatant disrespect of our military, but illegal, or unconstitutional, I don't think so. What is Congress going to do, pass a law to stifle every other group who voices discontent or disrespect? What about using the hate crimes law? Phelps violates those every time he opens his mouth. Fine him. Turn the IRS loose on him. Take away his privileged status as a Church. But let him keep talking. That's his right. And mine. And yours.