Friday, December 31, 2010

Parks Open for Drilling????

Looks like the for sale/lease signs will be going up at one or more of the seventy state parks in Ohio.  Governor-elect John Kasich appears willing to use state property to drill for oil and gas.


Ohio Gov.-elect John Kasich (KAY'-sik) says the natural gas formation known as the Marcellus Shale could give a needed economic boost to the state.

The gas riches of the vast Marcellus Shale — which underlies Pennsylvania, New York, West Virginia and part of Ohio — have attracted a rush of drillers to the region in the last two years....

.....Kasich says Oklahoma City-based Chesapeake Energy Corp., a leading U.S. producer of natural gas, has big plans in Ohio. A message was left with Chesapeake seeking comment....

Did Kasich make these plans himself before he took office?  Were these projects set up by the Strickland administration?  What kind of influence is Kasich using to get the job for Chesapeake Energy? Does it have anything to do with the $2,500 campaign contribution made by Scott Rotruck, of Chesapeake Energy in West Virginia on 9/27/10 to the Kasich Taylor for Ohio Committee?   For documentation, see Ohio Secretary of State website.  I'm just asking.

If you are interested in the damage to the air, water, and environment done by the shale drilling, check out Bob's Blog for details, including this picture:

Drill Baby, Drill!
Gas drilling rig near Hickory spewing rock dust everywhere..
a layer of dust covered the entire farm, inside and out!


This is what we have to look forward to during the Kasich administration.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Climate Change

To those idiots who are still trying to dispute "climate change":

Here is a great explanation of "climate change" from the State of Washington website-

Climate includes patterns of temperature, precipitation, humidity, wind and seasons. "Climate change" affects more than just a change in the weather, it refers to seasonal changes over a long period of time. These climate patterns play a fundamental role in shaping natural ecosystems, and the human economies and cultures that depend on them....

Just because it snowed doesn't mean that climate change is not occurring. People on the right who are supported by right wing, pro-polluters, are trying their best to discount the dramatic changes we are seeing.  Those on the right want you to be stupid so that you'll believe anything and everything they say.

Here is a report from the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Company):

A researcher with New Brunswick's Environment Department says severe storms that hit the province this month may be examples of climate change.

Robert Hughes said Wednesday that the provincial Climate Change Secretariat is working to identify erosion rates and make projections of future rises in the sea level.

That's to prepare for weather events and to plan development accordingly...

Why do Republicans refuse to acknowledge that climate change is real?  Have they become drunk on the money from right wing groups like Koch Brothers, Americans for Prosperity, and other anti-science/pro-pollution groups?  Just asking.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Looking for Answers

* A letter to the editor of the Dayton Daily News suggests Ohioans impeach John Kasich so that Ohioans can get back money for jobs and development that he refuses. 

Are those Kasich inauguration tickets still available?  They were supposed to go fast, since only 2,000 people could attend.

* Plunderbund has a caption contest. 

* NYMagazine has a list of triggers for John Boehner's tears:

...LOEM = Level of Eye Moistness
Trigger: The Children
Cries during a 2004 visit to a Washington, D.C., Catholic school he helps raise money for; cries during a speech to Dayton businessmen about education in their city that same year; cries during 2001 congressional debate of the No Child Left Behind bill, which he co-sponsored.

Trigger: The American Dream
Sobs on Election Night when Republicans take control of the House of Representatives. “I’ve spent my whole life chasing the American Dream,” he says tearfully.

Read the entire article.  Even though Boehner says he has a soft spot for children, his lack of support for children's health initiatives has not always demonstrated it.  Personally, I think some other thing is the cause of these emotional highs and lows.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Ohio Prepares for Kasich

* John Kasich and his good old white boy network are positioning themselves to take over the state government.  We've already seen hints of what is to come.  Kasich will refuse federal funding for rail, and we've already lost 16,000 jobs and an untold number of businesses.  Don't worry.  Kasich thinks he knows everything.  What will Ohio miss?

A news story at NPR about rail service shows that rail has more pluses than minuses:

It's hard to find a city in America that isn't planning, proposing, studying or actually building a light rail system. Cities as diverse as Dallas, Seattle and Washington, D.C., all see light rail as part of their future — a way to reshape their development.

There are 35 light rail systems operating in the U.S. today. At least 13 metro areas are currently building others. Many more are being planned.....

......"Light rail stops create nodes and create opportunities for denser development," says Frampton. "So you don't end up using up roads and using up sewers, and building new police stations and water lines and so on."

Kasich doesn't want redevelopment in Ohio.  He just wants to do things his way by slashing education, medicaid, libraries, and anything most Ohioans think is important.  While Kasich slashes and eliminates parts of Ohio government, he'll move to privatize areas of government and sell off everything else.

* People have noticed that "death panels" do exist in Arizona with Republican Governor Jan Brewer in power. 

.....In a recent round of budget cuts, the Republican-controlled Legislature cut all funding for organ transplants, leaving at least 98 low-income patients to die because now they cannot receive life-saving treatments. Republican Gov. Jan Brewer has refused to reinstate $10 million in funds that could help save these individuals....

What does Sarah Palin think of Brewer's death panels?

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Things I Know

* I know that:

* John Boehner cries too, too much for a grown man.  What could possibly cause these emotional problems?

* President Obama and Democrats delivered on DADT.  Thank goodness!!!

* We should thank God every single day that John McCain is not President. McCain continues to show he is a cranky, bitter, out of touch, old man, who cares about no one but himself.
(See more at the DailyBeast.)

* Our first responders deserve our respect.  It is outrageous that the 9/11 first responders were denied additional health coverage by some mean, disgusting, Republicans.  Thank goodness a final push for passage was successful.

* As the newly elected Governor of Ohio, John Kasich will do all he can to completely destroy public education, the state, and the lives of every teacher, firefighter, and police officer in the state.  While he is at it, he'll sell off state buildings, state parks, state prisons, and state assets he'll deem unnecessary and wasteful.  Could Kent State University be sold to Chase Bank?  Will prisons be sold to private companies and endanger the lives of our citizens?

At this point, before even being sworn into office, Kasich has no plans other than repealing the state income tax.  Kasich doesn't care about the damage he'll cause to people's lives by removing 75% of the state's funding. He just doesn't care.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

What is the hold up?

Why are Sen. Coburn and so many Republicans against the health bill for the first responders of 9/11? 
NPR has the story:

There's word now that "Oklahoma Republican Sen. Tom Coburn will not allow a proposal that would cover health-care costs for ground zero workers to go through the Senate before Christmas" (via The Wall Street Journal's Washington Wire blog).

Politico says ilt's been told by Coburn that "he wouldn't allow the bill to move quickly, saying he has problems with parts of the bill and the process Democrats are employing."

Shame on Coburn!  Time and time again, Coburn has done everything he could to slow down the progress of this legislation to help those who helped out on 9/11 and the days and months that followed.

Let Coburn know that his opposition and purposeful blocking of this legislation is disgusting.

Washington D.C.:
172 Russell Senate Office Bldg.
Washington, DC 20510
Main: 202-224-5754
Fax: 202-224-6008

1800 South Baltimore
Suite 800
Tulsa, OK 74119
Main: 918-581-7651
Fax: 918-581-7195

Oklahoma City:
100 North Broadway
Suite 1820
Oklahoma City, OK 73102
Main: 405-231-4941
Fax: 405-231-5051

Monday, December 20, 2010

Thank goodness!

I'm so happy that the U.S. Senate voted to repeal Don't Ask, Don't Tell.  All those member of the military who were forced to resign should return to service, if they desire.  Those translators who were fired by the Bush administration need to be rehired immediately!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Ohio GOP Battles Each Other

Huffington Post has some polling for Ohio for 2012:

Public Policy Polling (D)
12/10-12/10; 510 likely voters, 4.3% margin of error
Mode: Automated phone
PPP release

2012 Senate
43% Brown (D), 43% DeWine (R)
43% Brown (D), 38% Husted (R)
43% Brown (D), 35% Jordan (R)
40% Brown (D), 38% Taylor (R)...

Favorable / Unfavorable
John Kasich: 36 / 40
Rob Portman: 35 / 62
Mike DeWine: 30 / 43
Jon Husted: 17 / 21
Jim Jordan: 11 / 16
Mary Taylor: 19 / 16

Ohio voters are probably wondering if Husted, Taylor, and even Mike DeWine will jump into the fray of running for U.S. Senate against Senator Sherrod Brown.  Husted seems to hate being in any political job for any length of time.  His ambition is obvious.  Taylor hasn't even been sworn in as Lt. Governor and rumors are flying over the state that she would love to move up the power ladder.  Old Mike DeWine, former lapdog of President George W. Bush, will probably get bored staying in Ohio and hunger to get back into the U.S. Senate. 

*** Tim Grendell is wincing under criticism from Ohio Republicans.
Sen. Tim Grendell and his state party's top leader traded caustic jabs this week after the Republican State Central and Executive Committee condemned Grendell's decision to remain in the Ohio Senate rather than take the House seat to which he was elected....

....Democrats pounced on a portion of Grendell's letter related to his committee hearings this year looking into a canceled drug sting at the Governor's Residence.

"I worked hard to facilitate John Kasich's election," Grendell wrote. 
"My diligent pursuit of the Ohio Senate's investigation of the Strickland administration's politically motivated mishandling of the drug drop at the Governor's mansion had a detrimental impact on Gov. Strickland's re-election effort. I do not recall receiving any affirmative recognition from you or the Central Committee for my hard work."

Grendell's political witch hunt wasted time, money, and smeared Gov. Ted Strickland and his staff.  Consequently, Ohioans should regard anything that comes out of Grendell's mouth with great suspicion.  Grendell can aptly be called a pompous, self-serving, a**hole.

By the way, the good people at Plunderbund had published the Grendell story on December 14th.  What took so long for the Dispatch to get to the story?

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Not Over Yet

For those rightwingers who think that the recent court ruling against the health care law spells doom, it is not over yet.

Volokh Conspiracy:

I’ve had a chance to read Judge Hudson’s opinion, and it seems to me it has a fairly obvious and quite significant error. Judge Hudson assumes that the power granted to Congress by the Necessary and Proper Clause — “To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers” — does not expand Congress’s power beyond the Commerce Clause itself. The key line is on page 18:
If a person’s decision not to purchase health insurance at a particular point in time does not constitute the type of economic activity subject to regulation under the Commerce Clause, then logically an attempt to enforce such provision under the Necessary and Proper Clause is equally offensive to the Constitution.
Judge Hudson does not cite any authority for this conclusion: He seems to believe it is required by logic. But it is incorrect. The point of the Necessary and Proper clause is that it grants Congress the power to use means outside the enumerated list of of Article I powers to achieve the ends listed in Article I. If you say, as a matter of “logic” or otherwise, that the Necessary and Proper Clause only permits Congress to regulate using means that are themselves covered by the Commerce Clause, then the Necessary and Proper Clause is rendered a nullity. But that’s not how the Supreme Court has interpreted the Clause, from Chief Justice Marshall onwards. Indeed, as far as I know, not even the most vociferous critics of the mandate have suggested that the Necessary and Proper Clause can be read this way.....

And ----


....University School of Law professor Kevin Outterson questioned Hudson's ruling that Congress had overstepped its constitutional powers.

"That's clearly wrong, and everyone recognizes it," he said. "I think there's a strong [chance] the Fourth Circuit will recognize that error and send it right back."

We'll see what happens.  Those who are against the health care law should not start celebrating yet.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Lots of News

* Oh, my.  Looks like a Tea Party sweetheart has been getting some big money.
Campaign contributions to Senator Scott Brown from the financial industry spiked sharply during a critical three-week period last summer as the fate of the Wall Street regulatory overhaul hung in the balance and Brown used the leverage of his swing vote to win key concessions sought by firms.

From mid-June until the Fourth of July, according to a Globe analysis of his campaign finance reports, the Massachusetts senator took in $140,000 from banks and investment firms and their executives, including companies based in the state, such as MassMutual and State Street Corp. That is 400 percent more than the $28,000 received on average by all Republican senators during the same three weeks.

As the money poured in, Brown and his Senate staff were working both publicly and behind the scenes to scuttle $19 billion in fees on the financial industry that would have paid for part of the regulatory overhaul, and to weaken a provision intended to curb certain types of investment activities by banks and insurance companies....

Looks like those bank contributions helped bankers get what they wanted - courtesy of Sen. Scott Brown. 

* The judge who ruled against health care has some very interesting ties. 
Federal judge Henry E. Hudson's ownership of a stake worth between $15,000 and $50,000 in a GOP political consulting firm that worked against health care reform -- the very law against which he ruled today -- raises some ethics questions for some of the nation's top judicial ethics experts. It isn't that Hudson's decision would have necessarily been influenced by his ownership in the company, given his established track record as a judicial conservative. But his ownership stake does create, at the very least, a perception problem for Hudson that could affect the case.

"Is Judge Hudson's status as a shareholder coincidence or causation? Probably the former, but the optics aren't good," James J. Sample, an associate professor at Hofstra Law School, told TPM. "Federal judges are required by statute to disqualify themselves from hearing a case whenever their impartiality might reasonably be questioned. It's a hyper-protective rule and for good reason. At the very least, his continued financial interest in Campaign Solutions undermines the perceived legitimacy of his decision."

The rules are pretty straightforward: if a judge is invested in a company that is a litigant in a case, he or she can't be involved. But in cases where a company owned by a judge has an interest in the outcome of a case but is not a direct litigant, the lines get much more murky....

Isn't that interesting?
- - - - - - -
* This just in-----
Richard C. Holbrooke, the high-octane diplomat who spearheaded the end of the Bosnian war and most recently served as the Obama administration's point man in the volatile Afghan-Pakistani war zone, has died, officials said.

The 69-year-old diplomat died Monday at George Washington University Hospital in Washington. He was admitted last Friday after feeling ill. Doctors performed surgery Saturday to repair a tear in his aorta.

One of the world's most recognizable diplomats, Holbrooke's career spanned from the Vietnam War-era to the war against the Taliban and al Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan, coinciding with presidencies of the past five decades, from John F. Kennedy to Barack Obama.....

Holbrooke will be missed.

>>>>  Lt. Gov.-elect Mary Taylor might become the Director of Ohio's Department of Commerce, according to the Plain Dealer.  Seems as Kasich has been thinking about the appointment.  If she becomes the Director of Commerce, and even if she just remains the Lieutenant Governor, will she spend more time in Columbus instead her "satellite" office near her home?

Joseph at Plunderbund has a possible conflict of interest if Mary Taylor leads Commerce:

...who would have thought John Kasich would have the balls to appoint Mary Taylor to head the agency responsible for approving plans, verifying compliance and issuing licenses for the construction industry – knowing full-well that her husband is the CEO of a large Ohio-based construction company.

Even worse, Mary Taylor faced two scandals back in 2006 when she was still a State Rep., both based on her association with her husband’s company Welty Building Co.....

Visit Plunderbund for the details of the scandals.

Just a few things.....

*  Carroll County Ohio wants more funding for agricultural education, even though they've had voters reject tax levies to support the programs, according to  Instead of looking for citizens to raise their taxes, it might be time to see if a local business, volunteers, a charity, or a wealthy individual is willing to sponsor the 4-H programs and OSU extension services.  Since the program serves a small group, those who want it should find a way to provide it.

*  Central Ohio was visited by a snowstorm yesterday.  We have a few inches on the ground and some wind.  My dogs were very confused by the arrival of the snow but now enjoy playing in it.


Senator Sherrod Brown is seeking funding through U-S Department of Agriculture for restoration of the Seneca County courthouse. The request had previously been approved, but the funds for the Courthouse, and about twenty other Ohio projects were reallocated....

U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown has worked diligently to help citizens in Ohio.

*  Last night, CBS's 60 Minutes had a story on Republican leader, John Boehner.  Of course, my husband and I changed the channel to avoid vomiting.

The Washington Post has a few things about Boehner this morning.

***  What is the fascination with Sarah Palin's hunting show on TLC?  I've only seen a minute of it before I realized she was shooting at a poor animal, and rapidly changed the channel. Yuk!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Watching Sen. Bernie Sanders

I've been watching Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont (on C-SPAN2) as he continues his filibuster against the extension of the Bush tax cuts.  Go, Bernie!!!!

Sen. Sanders has been talking about people who are struggling in our nation while others are suggesting that tax cuts are needed for millionaires and billionaires.  I agree with Sen. Sanders.  Millionaires and billionaires don't need more tax cuts. 

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Elizabeth Edwards was a brave woman who fought against cancer and showed us all how to remain strong no matter what life throws at you. She was a model of grace and strength. I offer my sympathy to her family and friends.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Waiting and Watching

Some people are worrying about what happens with the Republicans controlling the House of Representatives.  According to the Toledo Blade, Rep. Marcy Kaptur, a Democrat, has provided earmarks to help the 180th Fighter Wing get some renovations.  Colonel Mark Bartman said the following about Kaptur in the Toledo Blade:

...He said of Miss Kaptur, "She has been very pro-180th, very pro-Air National Guard, and very pro-the military."

It seems that others, like Bob Latta and Jim Jordan, have not been as supportive.  ( Perhaps Bob Latta should spend more time drafting legislation than playing on his Twitter accounts.)  Bob Latta has only had some of his resolutions passed in this Congress. None of his actual bills have passed.  Here are some of Latta's resolutions (Library of Congress):

8. H.RES.734 : A resolution expressing support for the goals and ideals of "Constitution Day".
Sponsor: Rep Latta, Robert E. [OH-5] (introduced 9/10/2009)      Cosponsors (61)
Committees: House Oversight and Government Reform
Latest Major Action: 9/29/2009 Passed/agreed to in House. Status: On motion to suspend the rules and agree to the resolution, as amended Agreed to by voice vote.

 9. H.RES.940 : Recognizing and honoring the National Guard on the occasion of its 373rd anniversary.
Sponsor: Rep Latta, Robert E. [OH-5] (introduced 12/1/2009)      Cosponsors (85)
Committees: House Armed Services
Latest Major Action: 12/8/2009 Passed/agreed to in House. Status: On motion to suspend the rules and agree to the resolution Agreed to by the Yeas and Nays: (2/3 required): 401 - 0 (Roll no. 934).

These are nice, but it certainly won't create a job.  Latta seems to waste a lot of time doing nothing. 

Friday, December 03, 2010

What a week!

* I have had a week from hell. First, my elderly mother fell and required surgery. Then, I was in a car accident. I'm fine, but my car will need major reconstruction. I'm thinking of blaming it all on the Republicans.

* The Republicans who are against helping the unemployed really have their priorities screwed up.  What do they expect people to do that have no money coming in?

Here is something posted at the Economic Policy Institute that compares tax cuts for the rich vs. unemployment compensation:

.....Increasing the take-home pay of low- and moderate-income families will lead to more spending and a boost in demand for goods and services and, thus, more jobs. By contrast, tax cuts for the wealthy are more likely to be saved, providing a relatively ineffective response.

Economist Mark Zandi of Moody's Analytics estimates that every dollar spent making the Bush income tax cuts permanent generates only 32 cents of economic activity. Comparatively, every dollar spent on unemployment assistance generates $1.61 worth of economic activity, a dollar of spending on infrastructure yields $1.57 and a dollar in assistance to states to prevent layoffs of teachers or first responders yields $1.41. Tax cuts for the wealthy are simply not a good way to stimulate the economy.

A much more economically sound approach to supporting the economy would be to let the tax cuts expire for those at the top of the income scale and to use the revenue to fund more cost-effective job creation policies....

It might be a good idea to send a copy of the article to every single member of Congress.  Then again, some of them don't even read legislation.

*  Doesn't it just make you absolutely sick that Republicans are concerned about keeping tax rates low for millionaires and billionaires? 

Rachel Maddow just explained that the deficit expanded by 186% under Reaganomics (aka "Trickle Down Economics" aka "Voodoo Economics"). 

* The headline in today's Dispatch shows how incredibly out of touch Sen. John McCain is: 
"McCain:  Keep gays out"

Someone should wake up McCain and explain to him that gays have served and are serving right now in our military. 

Thursday, December 02, 2010

McCain - Old, Crabby, Wrong

How is it that Republican Sen. John McCain seems to be wrong about nearly everything?  McCain has found yet another reason to stop the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" (DADT).  McCain has a habit of voicing an objection at ever hearing when DADT has been discussed.  Here is another example of McCain's latest from the SunHerald:

....In tense exchanges with Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, McCain and other Republicans dismissed a Pentagon study on gays as biased and said objections by combat troops were being ignored.........

...Gates shot back that asking troops if they want to serve alongside gays would amount to issuing a referendum on a policy decision that should be made by Congress or the courts. The goal of the study, he said, was to find out it if it could be done without hurting the military's ability to fight.

"Are you going to ask them if they want 15-month tours? You going to ask them if they want to be part of the surge in Iraq? That's not the way our civilian-led military has ever worked in our entire history," Gates said....

McCain's bias is really sickening.  Gays have served and continue to serve in the military. McCain is wrong to block the repeal of DADT.  

>  Andrew Sullivan has his view in The Atlantic on McCain - The Shamelessness of John McCain.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

The More We Fund Oil......

Rep. Bob Latta (OH-5th) continues to post to his Twitter accounts and other social network sites.  Does this guy have time to talk to the thousands of unemployed in his district?  Where are the jobs, Mr. Latta? 

Latta is part of the "Stone Age 5" because of his views on climate change:
The Stone Agers:

The more we fund oil and dirty energy, the more we fund terrorist organizations and groups that would do us harm. For more info, see EnvironmentOhio.