Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Ohio's Problems Caused by GOP Tax Cuts in 2005

 ***  Just before Gov. Bob Taft left office after serving two terms as Ohio's Governor, he pushed for drastic tax cuts. The incoming Democratic Governor, Ted Strickland, was left with an impending disaster.

Now people are examining how Ohio got in this mess.  Strickland doesn't deserve the blame.  Bob Taft should be held accountable for the economic woes he created.  Taft set up Strickland and the state for failure.

Columbia Tribune

In his new budget proposal, Ohio Republican Gov. John Kasich calls for extending a generous 21 percent cut in state income taxes. The measure originally was part of a sweeping 2005 tax overhaul that abolished the state corporate income tax and phased out a business property tax.

The tax cuts were supposed to stimulate Ohio’s economy and create jobs. But that didn’t happen once the economy tanked. Instead, the changes ended up costing Ohio more than $2 billion a year in lost tax revenue, money that would have gone a long way toward closing the state’s $8 billion budget gap for fiscal year 2012.....

....Compounding Ohio’s budget woes are 128 state tax exemptions, credits and deductions that drain more than $7 billion a year in would-be revenue. These loopholes make Ohio miss out on one of every four dollars it would otherwise collect in taxes, said Schiller of Policy Matters Ohio....

OMG!  "...128 state tax exemptions, credits and deductions..."

 Not only did the Republicans let their business friends pay less taxes, the GOP lawmakers  and Taft created a lasting economic disaster. In 2005, Policy Matters Ohio warned Republicans that the Taft Tax Plan was bad because:

...It creates new fiscal problems instead of solving them....

...It takes revenue out of the state.....

....There is no evidence it will grow jobs....

....It is unnecessary....

....It favors the wealthy.........

Isn't it too bad that Taft didn't listen to Policy Matters in 2005?  They knew exactly what would happen.  Unfortunately, now Kasich wants to completely destroy what is left.


>>>   Republican Rep. Eric Cantor must have missed those days in school when they learned how a bill becomes a law.  As many have already pointed out, Cantor needs to sit down and watch the School House Rock lesson, "How a bill becomes a law."


...House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R., Va.) said that if the Senate didn’t act, HR1 – the bill number for the House-passed legislation – would become the law of the land.

Of course, it wouldn’t, because the Senate already had a vote on the original measure and it failed to garner the support of a single Democrat....

 The next group of school children who travel to Washington, D.C. should stop and explain how a bill becomes a law to Republican Rep. Eric Cantor.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Ohio Republicans Keep Money Flowing to Charters

>  Isn't amazing that the escaped Bronx Zoos Cobra has his own Twitter account?  Here is my favorite tweet:
                  Leaving Wall Street. These guys make my skin 
                  crawl. #snakeonthetown 


Trust me.  We understand.

 - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

>  The YouTube video about Ohio Gov. John Kasich is still getting a lot of play.  Most people love it for summing up Kasich's character.

>  Instead of creating jobs, Ohio's Republicans under the leadership of former Vice President of Lehman Brothers, Gov. John Kasich, have gone on record with legislation that targets Ohio's public workers, including teachers, firefighters, police officers, nurses, and state employees.  The GOP legislation also has raided public education funds in order to provide more money for failing charter schools.  Do you think I can get my tax money back that goes to charter schools?  

The problems arising out of Ohio's charter schools are increasing.  A website called has a list of charter schools that have had major problems with uncertified teachers, mismanagement of funds, etc., etc. The link for CharterSchoolScandals in Ohio details the growing list of failing charter schools.  Despite the fact that the schools are failing to educate their students, charter school owners are getting wealthier.

Here is a partial list of charter schools in Ohio that have had scandals:

Ashe Culture Center (11 schools)

For the first time, the state is moving to pull the plug on a charter school sponsor for not properly overseeing the spending of taxpayer money......
The financial records of six Cleveland-area charter schools are in such bad shape that the Ohio auditor's office says they cannot be properly checked.....

Columbus Academy of Literacy and Mathematics

A Columbus charter school that has been open only a few months will close its doors for good today. It simply can't afford to stay open any longer....

Paul Laurence Dunbar Academy / Northpointe Academy

The Leona Group, a Phoenix-based for-profit charter school management company, has evaded Ohio law by opening a new school to replace a school closed by the state at the end of the 2009-10 school year for poor academic performance......

Weems School

Such was life at the Tremont charter, which was christened in 2005 and ran aground four years later. Behind the wheel was Ruby Weems, the Hummer-driving superintendent with a spotty background in education. Together with her identical twin sister Rory, Weems ran an operation that even her most favorable critics call sloppy. Those who were bilked by the school and left to clean up the mess are less charitable....
....Not surprisingly, the books were bad from day one. According to a state audit, the Weems school provided few or no financial records to substantiate its expenditures in its first year. The audit lists multiple occasions where Weems cut checks up to $30,000, but failed to properly document where the money went. State auditors threw up their hands, refusing to even provide an official opinion on the books…

    For additional background information on the failures and scandals connected with Ohio's charter schools, check out ----  


Monday, March 28, 2011

Well Said!

As posted at Plunderbund and YouTube, a song by Denis Leary:

Warning:  Wear earphones or turn down the sound before playing this.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

When will Kasich tell the truth about school funding?

The administration of Ohio Republican Gov. John Kasich is being criticized for not telling the truth about their education budget.  School boards, school superintendents, teachers, and parents are very confused about the budget numbers coming out of the Kasich administration on school funding.  One minute Kasich said that all districts would get more money, then evidence has been produced that shows that the budget sheet put out by Kasich is inaccurate because it is built on the stimulus money that will not be a factor this time. 

An article by John Michael Spinelli in the Examiner, explains that Innovation Ohio (IO) has found that Kasich's education numbers just don't add up:

...The district numbers released Thursday by Kasich's administration showed that overall state funding for schools would increase each of the next two years. But the positive spin on those numbers was they did not include the loss of $454 million in federal stimulus money that schools used this year for basic operations. When this is factored in, the 1.9 percent funding increase Kasich numbers show in 2012 turn into a 5.2 percent cut. In his gymnastics to close a $7.7 billion budget shortfall, is cutting basic operational funding next for more than 590 of Ohio's 612 school districts. This is bad but expected news, but school district will be faced with the loss of $730 million from cuts in tax revenue once promised them but now withheld from them. It's estimated that schools lose $3.1 billion in this, Gov. Kasich's first two-year budget.....

....Innovation Ohio has learned that the runs did exist but apparently were deliberately withheld from the news media, presumably because they flatly contradict the Administration’s March 23 claim that over 400 of Ohio’s 613 school districts would receive funding increases in FY 2012 and 2013. In fact, the Administration’s internal documents show that 610 districts would receive cuts in FY 2012 and 599 would receive cuts in FY 2013, compared to FY 2011.

“It’s always been clear that the Kasich Administration has had a problem with transparency. Now they even seem to have trouble with telling the truth," IO spokesman Dale Butland asserted. "First, they told reporters that the district-by-district breakdowns either did not exist or were not available. Then they tried to fool the public by releasing incomplete spread sheets which suggested most school districts would get funding increases."

Friday, March 25, 2011

Class Sizes 50-to-1, per Kasich Education Czar

We finally have it.  The real Kasich education plan has been exposed by Plunderbund

...Then yesterday, the Dispatch reported that Kasich’s education czar, Robert Sommers, testified to the House Finance Committee:
Sommers suggested that in a "blended learning environment" class sizes could go to a 50-to-1 ratio. "We have schools, both in the urban centers and in other settings, that have found how to get high-performance results, treat staff very well and do it for less than what we currently do."

Isn't that a terrific idea?  Fifty children in a classroom?  How much learning do you think would go on in a classroom of fifty students with one teacher?  Would you want to have you child in a classroom of that size?  Would you like to be the teacher responsible for a class of 50?  If Kasich has his way with consolidating school district and the passage of SB 5, when those test scores decline, you'll get fired. 

For further info on how Kasich & Co. want to ruin Ohio's schools, check out Plunderbund.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Don't Look Now....

Ohioans should prepare for some right wing politicos coming into our state to march in favor of Kasich and SB 5.  Isn't this just what we need......outsiders from a well-funded Koch Brothers group telling Ohio voters and state government what to do?  Which groups will be funding the attacks on Ohio workers? FreedomWorks!

FreedomWorks is currently here in Ohio, and, according to Plunderbund

...FreedomWorks fully admits the true goal of the campaign is to bust the unions and take away their political power:
“Our campaign this year will serve to not only put constructive reforms in place that curb abuses of public employee union power and protect taxpayers, it will drain the Unions’ political coffers headed into a critical election year.

The Other Paper has an interesting take on the politics of John Kasich, including this: 

....humility does not suit Americans and Reagan reminded us of that. The Kasichs, the Karl Roves, the Newt Gingriches, all cocky little bastards who'd heard enough hippie crap. They came of age during the Reagan Revolution.....


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Do Republicans Hate the Children of Union Workers Too?

Not only are the Republicans in the Ohio General Assembly going after union workers, now the Republicans in Washington, DC, are  going after union workers with a plan that would harm their families.


...Now, a group of House Republicans is launching a new stealth attack against union workers. GOP Reps. Jim Jordan (OH), Tim Scott (SC), Scott Garrett (NJ), Dan Burton (IN), and Louie Gohmert (TX) have introduced H.R. 1135, which states that it is designed to “provide information on total spending on means-tested welfare programs, to provide additional work requirements, and to provide an overall spending limit on means-tested welfare programs.” 

Much of the bill is based upon verifying that those who receive food stamps benefits are meeting the federal requirements for doing so. However, one section buried deep within the bill adds a startling new requirement. The bill, if passed, would actually cut off all food stamp benefits to any family where one adult member is engaging in a strike against an employer....

....Yet removing entire families from eligibility while a single adult family member is striking would have a chilling effect on workers who are considering going on strike for better wages, benefits, or working conditions — something that is especially alarming in light of the fact that unions are one of the fundamental building blocks of the middle class that allow people to earn wages that keep them off food stamps.....

The ThinkProgress article refers to H.R. 1135 which is also posted at Govtrack.

***  Worst headline from the DaytonDailyNews:

Poll: Voters frown on Kasich, his budget plan and collective bargaining curbs

"...frown on Kasich..."?????????

With all these polls showing that Kasich's approval rating is in the toilet, I believe that the people of Ohio are doing more than frowning.

Cutbacks at Ohio Prisons

Hopefully, you've had a second cup of coffee and you're ready to face the next controversy coming out of the Kasich administration:

Watchtowers built to give prison guards an eagle-eye view could soon be vacant under a plan proposed by Gov. John Kasich....

Plunderbund has a full analysis of this latest attempt by the Kasich administration to endanger the public.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Kasich Bringing In More Outsiders

* Gov. John Kasich, Republican, visited Ohio State today. 

...Kasich said individuals from Wyoming, California, Virginia, and New York may soon join his administration to assist in economic development.

Kasich recently reassigned Mark Kvamme - a California-native and venture capitalist - from a cabinet-level post of director of development to a newly created position overseeing job creation when concerns after concerns were raised over Kvamme's residency.

The governor declined to disclose who the new potential hires are or what they would do in his administration....

How much are these "...individuals from Wyoming, California, Virginia, and New York..."  going to be paid?  Was there no one in Ohio that could fill these jobs?

*  What a surprise!  Voters in that state up north aren't happy with their Republican governor.  Ohio and that state up north have something in common. See the politicalwire for details.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Kasich: " interests of students at heart....."????????

A Yahoo contributing writer seems to think that "....there is nothing in Kasich's budget for educators to rally against...."  Seriously?

"Is Hatred of Ohio Senate Bill 5 Clouding Teacher Judgment?" was written by someone who doesn't know much about teachers:

...Instead of grabbing a "Hey, Hey, Ho, Ho, Kasich has got to go" sign, educators should take the time to read the Jobs Budget proposals. For the most part, teachers are intelligent and caring individuals. A reasonable review of Ohio's new education plan will reveal that Kasich has the best interest of the students at heart....

I'd guess that most Ohio teachers have read the budget and SB 5 several times. Teachers have discussed them with colleagues, highlighted, re-read, and more than likely, evaluated both more than the writer will ever know.  Because teachers have read the budget and SB 5, the conclusions they've drawn are the following:

1.)  John Kasich really doesn't care about education, public school children, especially those at risk. 

2.) John Kasich would rather take money from public school children so that he can reward his campaign contributors and supporters who just happen to own charter schools.

3.) Kasich's goal is to reduce the taxes that his millionaire friends pay.  If that means that children who are struggling with reading have to lose a program like Reading First, it doesn't matter to him. 

4.)  As noted in the Dispatch and at Plunderbund, Kasich's policy director said, "Even if there weren't an $8 billion deficit, we'd probably be proposing many of the same things."
The budget has nothing to do with the state deficit.  The Kasich budget is about power, payback, and politics.

You might want to check out the article written by Tara Dodrill at Yahoo.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Dumb Idea

Here is the stupidest thing I've heard today----


As radiation particles from the nuclear hazard in Japan send residents fleeing and make their way across the Pacific Ocean, one U.S. senator introduced a plan to get rid of the agency that regulates nuclear safety.

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) unveiled his five-year budget plan Friday, a radical and ambitious proposal that would -- among other things -- eliminate the U.S. Department of Energy, onetwo federal agencies charged with overseeing America's nuclear capabilities.... of the

.....Paul's proposal to balance the budget by 2016 would also kill the Departments of Education, Commerce, and Housing and Urban Development. It would cut military spending by 6 percent while leaving Social Security, Medicare and war funding in tact....

I wonder how many people think that Rand Paul is a freakin' genius. Where do these Republicans come up with these incredibly ignorant ideas?  In the middle of a nuclear disaster, Rand Paul suggests doing away with oversight of nuclear energy.  

The Department of Energy, Education, Commerce, Housing and Urban Development have always been the targets of the Republicans.  They'd rather risk safety than stand in the way of free market nuclear development.  The Republicans want the federal government out of our lives, but they insist on sticking their noses in between a woman and her gynecologist.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

More Reactions to the Kasich Budget....

** UPDATE:  State Sen. Nina Turner appeared on the Ed Show on MSNBC-TV.  She said that Gov. John Kasich's goal was to "create a low wage work force" in Ohio.  Turner also mentioned that the Kasich budget was just a continuation of the work of SB 5.

>>>>  Ed Schultz mentioned that the Republicans in the U.S. House had an emergency meeting today to try to defund NPR because of the tape taken by that right winger.  Of course, none of them are talking about the fact that the "video" was heavily edited to convey a message that would get the righties to pee their pants over NPR.

Save NPR.  Save the intelligent presentation of news. Contact your Representative and Senators and tell them: 
Keep your hands off NPR.

The contact list for members of the U.S. House of Representatives can be found here:

Here is the contact list for U.S. Senators:

If you'd like to send a special message to John Boehner, you can contact him through any of these numbers or contact pages:
Phone: (202) 225-0600    Fax: (202) 225-5117  
Phone: (513) 779-5400      Fax:  (513) 779-5315
Phone:  (937) 339-1524      Fax:  (937) 339-1878 
Phone:  (202) 225-6205     Fax:   (202) 225-0704
Web page contact: 


> A day later, and people are still reacting to the budget proposed by Ohio Republican Gov. John Kasich.  While the governor protects the rich and gives more money to charter schools and their wealthy owners (who just happen to be huge Republican contributors), public school children will suffer.  The elderly, sick children, the poor, public school students, and children without parents, are all victims of the Kasich budget.

School districts are reacting to major cuts in state funding. 

Governor John Kasich's budget plan would slash funding by 11.5 percent. It means that most school districts will have to make even deeper cuts, when some of them are already operating on a tight budget.....


....The cuts in the proposal include eliminating funding for the Kinship Permanency Incentive program, which provides up to $2,250 over three years for caregivers who are awarded court custody of children...

....The governor's budget also would cut funding for adoption services by about $16 million over two years and reduce the state share of subsidy payments for families that adopt children with special needs.

Because state and federal rules prohibit changes in subsidy amounts to those families without their consent, the move could put a greater strain on county agencies that might have to find local money to make up the difference, said Cindi Orley, a social services supervisor in northwest Ohio's Hardin County....

I guess Kasich's cuts to disabled children, poor youngsters, and their caregivers shows to what extent he'll go to in order to provide tax cuts for the wealthy.  Why is the only "shared sacrifice" pertain to the poor, elderly, school kids, and middle class people?


...The Governor's budget is slated to slash Medicaid funding to Ohio's nursing homes and hospitals drastically. In an interview with the Columbus Dispatch, Ohio Health Care Association Executive Director Pete VanRunkle has stated that the cuts to nursing homes may cost upward of 6000 jobs in the industry, whose labor costs account for up to 70 percent of revenue.

Kasich's plan is to cut Medicaid funding to nursing homes, while increasing funding for home health care for seniors who wish to remain at home. While this sounds ideal at the forefront, it does not answer the questions of who will care for those who do need care in a facility?  An increase in home health services will still fall short for those who need 24 hour supervision, nor does it answer who will care for Grandma when the hired help does not show up.

As for the hospitals, Kasich plans to cut Medicaid funding to all hospitals, including Ohio's five children's hospitals.  This will effectively cut $478 million in payments to hospitals over the next two years, a loss of over $30 million to the children's hospital services alone. Perhaps Kasich is taking a cue from W. C. Fields, who once stated, "Children should neither be seen or heard from - ever again. "

  ....where are the jobs in the Jobs Budget? Oh yeah, in the funeral home industry.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Kasich's Budget + Charter Schools

Gov. John Kasich of Ohio has released his budget and people in local governments are not happy. Of course, the 7,000 teachers that may lose their jobs aren't going to be happy either.


Local governments would see a cut of 25 percent per year and state colleges and universities would be limited to 3.5 percent tuition increases under Gov. John Kasich's new two-year budget.

That move would cost counties, municipalities and townships $167.1 million the first year including an estimated $5 million for Columbus and $388.2 million starting in the second year, when the full 50 percent reduction would take effect.

For example, Circleville, which received $687,000 from the state's local government allocation last year, budgeted for $638,000 this year, or about 13 percent of its overall total. The real number under the state budget would total $515,000, with a drop to $343,000 the following year.....

In order to maintain services, local governments will need to raise taxes.  Property taxes will increase because there will be less coming in from the state.  However, if local governments want to not raise taxes, then they will cut police, fire, road maintenance, and increase class sizes.

According to the Dispatch article, Kasich will increase the number of charter schools.  Right now the Brennan family of White Hat Management charter schools, big time contributor to every Republican in the state, are probably celebrating.  All that state money to those charter schools will certainly make some people even wealthier, while kids continue to be taught and supervised by unqualified principals, and teachers with no experience making just over the minimum wage. 

That is not all the news for education in Ohio.  The State Superintendent of Schools also got the boot.


Empowered by a new presence on the state school board, backers of Gov. John Kasich today forced out Ohio's state superintendent of education.

A tearful Deborah Delisle resigned this morning....

....At its monthly meeting in Columbus, the panel voted 10-9 for Debe Terhar, a Cincinnati Tea Party conservative and two-month member of the board.

Board member Anne Jacobs told colleagues prior to the vote she was called by the governor's office and asked to support Terhar.....

A series of questions and answers from Smart Voter indicates that Terhar is a major proponent of charter schools.  Looks like Kasich and his special new superintendent are stacking the deck against public schools and the teachers.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Where are your dollars going?

With all the attacks on working families, the Middle Class, and public employees, you've got to wonder what you can do to stop funding the far right's agenda.  Some people have come up with some ideas to boycott products and services.

Here is a website called that lists products produced by the Koch brothers:

Koch Products & Companies Include:
- Angel Soft
- Angel Soft Ultra
- Brawny paper towels
- Dixie cups (& napkins & plates)
- Insulair cups
- Perfect Touch cups, paper products
- Quilted Northern
- Sparkle paper towels
- Stainmaster
- Vanity Fair napkins & paper towels
- Mardis Gras napkins
- Zee Napkins
- Georgia Pacific products

Home/Office papers:
- Advantage
- Image Plus
- Spectrum

- Stainmaster
- Lycra
- Teflon

Building supplies:
- Georgia Pacific

- Holiday Companies
- Gander Mountain 

The site suggests you bring a copy of the list for when you shop.

You might also want to check out another website called Liberals Unite.

***  I met another person today that said that Gov. John Kasich, the Ohio Republicans, and their supporters are interested in creating "Super Elitism." They want to destroy the Middle Class, wipe out workers' rights, and have just an upper/ruling class, and the working poor.

The Ohio Republicans are going after teachers, firefighters, police officers, nurses, and state employees because they want to (1) remove any political power they might have, (2) destroy the Democratic Party, (3) empower right wingers and their mega billionaire supporters, etc., etc.

What will Ohioans get with SB 5 implemented?

* class sizes of 30-40 students.  I've taught six classes/day with 30 students/per class in the inner city.  It was not a picnic.  Those who are opposing teachers rights to collective bargaining are people who wouldn't last an hour in a similar class situation.  Are you willing to have someone outside of the field of education decide what a typical class size should be?  This is an attempt to remove community control of schools.  When test scores fall because your son or daughter's algebra class has 35 students, who will be blamed?

* Under SB 5, Ohioans should expect more injuries for police officers and firefighters.  Right now, under collective bargaining, they can bargain for safety equipment, work conditions, and staffing numbers.  Do state legislators know anything about the appropriate number of police or fire fighters to have on duty?  Should a member of the Ohio legislature make decisions on what type of fire equipment fire fighters should wear based on cost and not safety?

In an effort to lower taxes for the rich, Kasich and the GOP are going after the Middle Class workers who contribute to your community.  The people of Ohio will lose, while Kasich and his cronies consolidate power and get richer.

Friday, March 11, 2011

An interesting idea

I was over visiting the good people over at DailyKos when I noticed this post about how union members in Wisconsin pulled their savings and accounts out of a particular bank. Here is what  Stranded Wind wrote about in the diary on Daily Kos:

M & I Bank of Wisconsin has committed an unpardonable offense. This bank took bailout funds and thanks to the magic of Citizens United our own tax dollars flowed through their executives hands into the coffers of Scott Walker's gubernatorial campaign. We haven't dug deeply yet, but I think when we do we're going to find that we no longer have Russ Feingold's voice in the Senate because of this as well....

Incredible!  Are there banks with similar "M.O.'s" like that in Ohio?????

Thursday, March 10, 2011

This is what we're up against-----

The Republican war against public employees continues, especially teachers.  This is the Governor of Ohio, John Kasich:


I believe that there is another similar video worth watching on YouTube:

Does Gov. Kasich want public school teachers to be paid just above the poverty level like they do at the private school he favors?


 *** Here is an interesting quote.  Can you identify who said it?

"We must close union offices, confiscate their money and put their leaders in prison. We must reduce workers salaries and take away their right to strike." 


Adolf Hitler, May 2, 1933

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Power Grab Up North

Things are really going badly in that state up north, Michigan. 


Hundreds of people angered by bills that would give broad new powers to emergency financial managers crowded into Michigan's Capitol rotunda on Tuesday, chanting loud enough to be heard in the Senate where the proposals were being considered....

.....The demonstrators are concerned that the legislation could allow emergency financial managers who are appointed by the state to run struggling cities and schools to terminate union contracts held by school teachers and local government workers and also strip local elected officials of most powers.....

....The rallies are expected to continue. Senior citizens are planning to gather at the Capitol next Tuesday to protest Snyder's plan to tax pensions as a way to raise $900 million and help pay for a deep cut in business taxes.

In declaring a fiscal emergency, an emergency financial manager would take over the tasks of elected officials in a city, county, or school district.    As an article in the Detroit Free Press notes:

....Gov. Rick Snyder and other backers of the bills say they're needed to deal with what could be a glut of insolvent cities and school districts hard hit by falling tax revenues and even Snyder's own plans to cut their state aid....

Is Snyder setting up the cities and schools districts to fail just after he cuts their aid?

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Would dog owners support Romney?

As a dog owner, I would never support Romney for any political office.  I love my two dogs and abhor animal cruelty.  The article from Time explains why Romney should not ever receive one vote from dog owners, and animal lovers.

TIME (June 27, 2007):

The reporter intended the anecdote that opened part four of the Boston Globe's profile of Mitt Romney to illustrate, as the story said, "emotion-free crisis management": Father deals with minor — but gross — incident during a 1983 family vacation, and saves the day. But the details of the event are more than unseemly — they may, in fact, be illegal.

The incident: dog excrement found on the roof and windows of the Romney station wagon. How it got there: Romney strapped a dog carrier — with the family dog Seamus, an Irish Setter, in it — to the roof of the family station wagon for a twelve hour drive from Boston to Ontario, which the family apparently completed, despite Seamus's rather visceral protest....

....Ingrid Newkirk, president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, was less circumspect. PETA does not have a position on Romney's candidacy per se, but Newkirk called the incident "a lesson in cruelty that was ... wrong for [his children] to witness...Thinking of the wind, the weather, the speed, the vulnerability, the isolation on the roof, it is commonsense that any dog who's under extreme stress might show that stress by losing control of his bowels: that alone should have been sufficient indication that the dog was, basically, being tortured." Romney, of course, has expressed support for the use of "enhanced interrogation" techniques when it comes to terrorists; his campaign refused to comment about the treatment of his dog...

I've traveled with my dogs many, many times, and I have never put them on the roof of my car.  If you love your pets, and truly care for them, you would never put them in a place that is uncomfortable, cruel, or unhealthy.

Romney would never get my vote.  

By the way, Huckabee also has a dog problem (see YouTube video).

Monday, March 07, 2011

Saying "Thank You" and Asking for More

Rachel Maddow mentioned this Think Progress video of Republican Sen. Scott Brown thanking David Koch for his money and asking for more:


Friday, March 04, 2011

If You Can Read This, Thank A Teacher

A new article in Forbes provides Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker some bad news:

...A Rasmussen poll out today reveals that almost 60% of likely Wisconsin voters now disapprove of their aggressive governor’s performance, with 48% strongly disapproving....

...It turns out that the state’s public school teachers are very popular with their fellow Badgers. With 77% of those polled holding a high opinion of their educators, it is not particularly surprising that only 32% among households with children in the public school system approve of the governor’s performance. Sixty-seven percent (67%) disapprove, including 54% who strongly disapprove....

....These numbers should be of great concern not only to Governor Walker but to governors everywhere who were planning to follow down the path of war with state employee unions. You can’t take on the state worker unions without taking on the teachers – and the teachers are more popular than Gov. Walker and his cohorts appear to realize....

Even though the article should be a message to Ohio Gov. John Kasich, he is probably too arrogant to get it.

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Ohio Republicans Slip In Anti-Gay Union Language in SB 5

There have been some right wing people who've spent a lot of time going after public employees.  However, they really have no clue what kinds of things teachers, firefighters, police,  nurses, and public employees do in their daily lives.  The effort to attack these public employees and remove their workers' rights has been very disheartening for those who work in fields that assist the public.

A fire in Philadelphia illustrates the dangers faced by public employees who work as firefighters.

Philadelphia fire department personnel making a rescue at the fire yesterday at the Norman Blumberg apartments at 24th and Jefferson St. in North Philadelphia.  (Alejandro A. Alvarez / Staff Photographer)
Philadelphia fire department personnel making a rescue at the fire yesterday at the Norman Blumberg apartments at 24th and Jefferson St. in North Philadelphia. (Alejandro A. Alvarez / Staff Photographer) 
The fire in a high-rise in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, resulted in 10 injured firefighters, and 6 injured civilians. (see

*****  Did you know that the Republicans slipped in a little something extra in SB 5?


As I noted yesterday, the Ohio Senate passed SB 5, a bill that would strictly limit collective bargaining for all public employees, give local officials the final word in arbitration and ban strikes under penalty of law, by a single vote, despite having a 23-10 partisan advantage in the chamber. Six Republicans voted no, and two of them had to be yanked off committees in order to smooth the bill’s passage. Those who voted yes, along with Gov. John Kasich, claimed that the state of the economy demanded that they get more control over the collective bargaining system.
The economic benefits of SB 5 can be proven by the fact that it includes this language (h/t Barbara Morrill):
Sec. 3101.01 of S.B. 5: … A marriage may only be entered into by one man and one woman. Any marriage between persons of the same sex is against the strong public policy of this state. Any marriage between persons of the same sex shall have no legal force or effect in this state and, if attempted to be entered into in this state, is void ab initio and shall not be recognized by this state. The recognition or extension by the state of the specific statutory benefits of a legal marriage to non-marital relationships between persons of the same sex or different sexes is against the strong public policy of this state. Any public act, record or judicial proceeding of this state, as defined in section 9.82 of the Revised Code, that extends the specific statutory benefits of legal marriage to non-marital relationships between persons of the same sex or different sexes is void.
The Ohio Legislature has already passed a gay marriage ban, AND a referendum put a gay marriage ban in the Constitution in the Bush-Kerry year of 2004. I guess Ohio Republicans would tell you this redundancy was needed because the State Supreme Court limited the impact on parenting and custody relationships. So that necessitated this language. In an anti-union bill. I guess Ohio Republicans are really anti-union!...

 *****  SB 5, unfortunately, did pass in the Ohio Senate yesterday.

Which State Senators voted for SB 5?
 Ohio Senate:


Yeas - 17


Nays - 16

Brown Cafaro Grendell Hughes
Kearney Manning Oelslager Patton
Sawyer Schiavoni Seitz Skindell
Smith Tavares Turner Wilson

 I've linked the names of the state senators who voted for SB 5 just in case you wanted to let them know how you feel about their support for the anti-middle class bill.

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Is Kasich getting pointers from Scott Walker?

Parents, educators, and students should worry if Ohio Gov. John Kasich is following an outline of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's plans.  Here are some items that Walker plans to cut in education:

JS Online:

• Cut $834 million in state K-12 education spending over the next two years....

• Require that charter school teachers need only a bachelor's degree to teach, rather than a teacher's license.

• Remove mandates that school districts employ reading specialists and only licensed nurses with bachelor's degrees; prepare indoor environmental quality plans; and require training on drug administration to be approved by the state Department of Public Instruction....

Kasich will be following a similar agenda.  Stand up against the Republicans and their attacks on teachers, firefighters, police officers, nurses, corrections officers, and all public employees.


Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Angry Buckeyes?

*   Did you hear about the Angry Buckeyes?  

If you live in Ohio and you're upset about the Kasich/Republican agenda, you must visit the Angry Buckeyes website to receive updates on how to oppose the attacks on Ohio's middle class workers. 


>>>  What????  A Fox News reporter lied about being punched!!!  According to Raw Story, the Fox News reporter just made up the events:

....Mike Tobin, reporting from amid the massive demonstration on Friday, claimed that one of the protesters "punched" him in the arm. In another broadcast, he claimed a man threatened to break his neck

In both cases, supporting evidence for these claims was not broadcast -- yet still, Tobin's reports have been widely cited across conservative blogs that seem eager to depict union workers as hateful and violent. 

What's worse, Tobin's allegation that he was assaulted might have slipped past without rebuttal were it not for a camera-equipped bystander, who captured the scene....

Gee.  Why would Fox News reporters make up lies about good union people?