Japanese Politician and his Emotional Plea

This is hilarious, a Japanese politician being accused of misusing public funds and this is his press conference trying to explain what happened. Some of the misuse of funds were used for over 100 trips to a spa!

I wish we could see some our Senators and Congressmen in the US give this type of press conference. Imagine Charles Schumer, Ted Cruz, Lindsey Graham, Harry Reid, John Boehner, and Steve King looking so pitiful.

Oh wait…

 

As always….

If there is something to be said, “It’s On Broadway” to step up and say it!!

President Barack Obama to speak at 9pm (Eastern) about Debt Ceiling

Previously the president has given updates concerning the debt ceiling negotiations during the day, for the president to reserve a 9pm time slot for this announcement would leave one to believe this is a somewhat major announcement.

At this point we have 2 paths to select from….

  1. Harry Reid has presented a proposal of $2.7 Billion dollars in cuts that do not include any increase in revenue.  Important to remember that Speaker Boehner and the GOP have said all along that raising the debt ceiling will have to include cuts equaling or greater than the amount being requested to raise the debt ceiling about $2 Trillion dollars.
  2. Speaker Boehner and the GOP is looking for a short-term deal where the debt ceiling will be raised to get thru this year and then another debt ceiling vote will take place in 2012.
President Obama has been adamant that he is looking for a long-term solution (similar to Harry Reid’s plan); the president is looking to provide stability so to give confidence that this debate will not happen again.  The hope is this will return the focus back to job creation and keeping the economy moving in a positive direction.
At this point it looks like the Democrats will be unable to broker any deal containing revenue generation; this is a disappointment But the GOP may have shot themselves in the foot.  In the ‘Grand Bargain’ deal Obama offered a tax hike that was less than if he simply let the Bush Tax Cuts expire at the end of 2012.  If the GOP continue to refuse to accept revenue generation in this debt ceiling deal, Obama will go hard on letting the Bush Tax Cuts expire and Republicans will basically be responsible for large tax hike they could have avoided.
 All in all it will be interesting to hear what the president will be announcing at 9pm; some how we have to get pass this debt ceiling issue before default 8/2/2011.  Hopefully we can avoid serious damage being done to credit rating as a nation; any downgrade of the United States credit rating will have an effect on ALL of us!!!
As always….

If there is something to be said, “It’s On Broadway” to step up and say it!!

Middle Class Tax Cuts Pass in the House, but…

During the Lame Duck session of Congress Nancy Pelosi was able to pass Middle/Working Class tax cuts through the House of Representatives.  Officially 168 Republicans voted against permanently extending the tax cuts for the middle/working class; basically voting for a tax increase for the middle class!

This permanent Middle/Working class tax cut will be voted down in the Senate; the problem is that Democrats do not have the 60 votes necessary to protect this tax cut from a filibuster.  Harry Reid will bring this version of the tax cut and other versions up for tests votes to se which version of the legislation will garner the most votes. 

Here are some versions that will be brought up for test votes

  1. The House passed permanent middle/working class tax cuts for those who make less than or equal to $250,000
  2. Senator Schumer (D-NY) has proposed a middle/working  class tax cuts where the cap would be raised to $1 million dollars.  Meaning if you make less than or equal to $1 million you will receive a permanent tax cut.
  3. Senator McConnell (R-KY) make tax cuts for upper wealthy and middle/working class permanent
  4. Permanently pass middle/working class tax cuts and temporarily pass tax cuts for upper wealthy fo the next 2-3 years.

Senator Reid could bring this up for vote starting Friday; more than likely #4 will be the version that will receive the most votes.  In my opinion Sen. Schumer’s proposal is the most fair offer as it will not only give th middle/working class the tax cuts they so desperately need but it will also cover more people making up to $1 million dollars.  While at the same time still being fiscally responsible.

Unfortunately, Republicans will continue their obstruction ways… and they will continue this until they have enough votes to pass what they want.  Republicans will support permanently pass middle/working class tax cuts and temporarily pass tax cuts for upper wealthy fo the next 2-3 years.  In 2 years Republicans will then have another election to gain the necessary votes to permanently extend those temporary tax cuts.

With out of control debt there is only 1 solution to ensure another $700 Billion is not added to our already $13 trillion-dollar debt.  I think the president should take a stand and show everyone who’s the boss; let all the tax cuts expire, it would be a risky move on his part but it would be a position where he could stand and show he has the proverbial balls to make tough decisions that would start bringing down our debt.

I highly doubt he will do that…

Meanwhile here is video of Nancy Pelosi on the floor of the House talking about Middle Class Tax cuts:

 As always….

If there is something to be said, “It’s On Broadway” to step up and say it!!!

Talking Points Tuesdays – Ground Zero Mosque

Ground Zero Mosque

 

The controversy surrounding the Ground Zero Mosque is clear example of how this country is going backwards; when did we as a nation stop progressing?  John Adams in a letter once wrote…  

“There must be a positive Passion for the public good, the public Interest, Honour, Power, and Glory, established in the Minds of the People, or there can be no Republican Government, nor any real Liberty. And this public Passion must be Superior to all private Passions. Men must be ready, they must pride themselves, and be happy to sacrifice their private Pleasures, Passions, and Interests, nay their private Friendships and dearest connections, when they Stand in Competition with the Rights of society.”  

These are powerful words from 1776 that  puts the Ground Zero Mosque mess into perspective, “public Passion must be Superior to all private Passions…”.  Meaning that we need to put our personal feeling aside for the greater good of society.  Some will argue that the greater good for society would be to respect the victims of 9/11 and their families; in no way are disrespecting the memories of loved ones lost.  Islam was not what took the lives of over 3,000 people on September 9th 2001; the act was committed by radical fundamentalist.   

If there was evidence that the builders of the Muslim Cultural Center were affiliated with radical hate groups then I would fully oppose the building of the Mosque.  There is no room or protection of hate groups when it comes to the greater good or society.  If Newt Gingrich or Sarah Palin could show me that this Mosque would be a breeding ground of hate then I would fully support their stance on this issue; but all you hear from the and others like Harry Reid is nothing but political talk.  Both Democrats and Republicans are too worried about November elections and gaining support than the equal protection of religious freedom under the Constitution.  

This issue has been politicized to the point that Republicans have already announced that they will make this an issue during the November elections; in response Democrats like Harry Reid who are in tight races have distanced themselves from what is right in order to save their jobs!  It’s good to see politicians like Charlie Crist, Mike Bloomberg and yes the President of the United States (Obama) take a stand for what is right.   

Some times doing the RIGHT thing means supporting a unpopluar position, over the next couple of days we will see who has the BALLS to do what is right!  I hate to think that political pressure may stop this cultural center aka mosque from being built.  I hope not, I would have a hard time supporting any politician that would fold under the pressure.  That includes President Obama!!!  

As always….
If there is something to be said, “It’s On Broadway” to step up and say it!!!
    

Talking Points Tuesdays – Democrats need to get the RIGHT message out…

It’s time for the Democrats outside of the President to step to the forefront and start conveying the message needed to hold off a Republican takeover. Democrats are caught in a catch-22 right now as there best speaking voice happens to be an unpopular speaking voice; President Obama. Currently Democrats are trying to figure out the best way to use the President on the campaign trail; while the President received a raucous welcome at the University of Texas there was no sign of Democrat Bill White who is running for Governor of Texas. If Democrats want to hold onto control of the House (not likely) and Senate the likes of Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, Charles Schumer, and Barney Frank have to start putting their stamp on the message. Republicans like John Boehner and Mitch McConnell are always in front of the cameras; I know this because their foolish comments are always great material for political satire for shows like The Daily Show, Countdown (Keith Olbermann) and The Rachel Maddow Show.

If the Democrats want to generate excitement they have start making their presence felt daily; I feel like the only consistent message I get from Democrats is from the White House, Robert Gibbs specifically. The message should be real simple for Democrats to voters; REPUBLICANS HAVE NO PLAN!!!!!

Well I shouldn’t say they have no plan; they have actually come together and agreed to say NO to anything Democrats want to do.  Even if that means making the less fortunate suffer; for example Republicans decided they could not support extending unemployment rates BUT they could support extending Bush Tax Cuts that only affect the top 2% in America.  And how do Republicans plan on paying for those Bush Tax cuts??? Well at first they said they shouldn’t have to be paid for as the tax cuts will generate growth.  That explanation was quickly dismissed by many economist including Conservative economist, so Republicans decided to ok lets float the idea of raising the retirement age…

WTF, so Republicans want hard-working middle/working class Americans to break their backs until they are 70 so that they could retire and earn social security.  The current early retirement age is now 62 for those wondering. 

Does this make any sense to anyone???

Does it make sense for working/middle class Americans to work longer so that the likes of Bill gates can get a tax cut??

This is what Democrats need to talk about, President Obama wants to continue giving 95% of Americans a tax break while Republicans would rather turn their back on the working/middle class!!

Other Talking Points Democrats need to focus on….

  • Republicans talk about supporting small business but they are blocking legislation that would help small business.  The Small Business Jobs Act would create a $30 billion fund for community banks to lend to small businesses. It would also increase limits on existing Small Business Administration (SBA) loans and give small businesses additional federal tax breaks.
  • Republicans tried to block the passage of $26.1 Billion State-Aid Package that would save the jobs of 161,000 teachers and 158,000 public works employees (cops, fire fighters etc..).  Republicans referred to teachers, cops and fire fighters as special interest groups.  The bill also helps states going broke to fund Medicaid.
  • Republicans wanted to protect BP; the company that caused the oil spill in the Gulf.  While Democrats wanted to raise the cap for damages from $75 million to an amount that would actually cover the cost.  $75 million is not nearly enough, but Republicans wanted to protect the Big Oil Companies.
  •  Republicans who run on the platform of repealing the 14th Amendment are insane, HA!!!!  Constitutional Amendments are very very difficult to pass; a perfect example of this is the Equal Rights Amendment aka ERA.  It was first proposed in 1923 to affirm that women and men have equal rights under the law; it is now 2010 and this is still not an amendment.  Any Republican pushing the idea of changing the constitution is a nutbag.

In my opinion if Democrats talk about these basic Talking Points no sane individual could possible support the current Republican agenda.  In all honesty it’s not like Democrats have it all figured out but at least I can see some kind of a plan.  Now if we can get Republicans (except Paul Ryan) away from just saying no and actually presenting some ideas then maybe we can start making real progress.

As always….
If there is something to be said, “It’s On Broadway” to step up and say it!!!

   

Takeover Thursdays – “Sallie Mae Six”

I want to take this opportunity to say that the United States Senate is FULL OF SHIT!!!!!

If I recall during the State of The Union Democrats applauded when President Obama announced reforms in education loans and how no one should go broke paying back school loans. I know these assholes cheered, so if you all cheered why can’t you idiots pass the damn Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act (SAFRA), without politics getting in the way?

Unlike Health Care Reform Republicans are not the ones standing in the way, it’s the Democrats! When I say Democrats I mean the morons in the Senate being led by Harry Reid. How is it the Dems in the House of Representatives can pass a SAFRA that is strong legislation worthy of the President’s signature, but the punk ass Dems in the Senate can’t even get out of their own way.

Before I get too far ahead of myself let me quickly explain SAFRA:

The Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act aka SAFRA expands current student loan programs; Pell Grant and Perkins Loan. Pell Grants do not require repayment and are awarded based on financial need. Perkins Loans are fixed interest rate loans of 5% for the duration of the ten-year repayment period. strengthening these programs will decrease the amount of money potential college students would have to borrow from private lenders. This would help graduates as they will not have to worry about their entire paychecks going to paying back student loans. This would also provide more incentive for kids to go to college. When I left for college I left a lot of intelligent friends behind who were not as fortunate as I was. For them going to college was nothing but a distant dream.

How could any Dem in the Senate not support this legislation? I mean Dems are supposed to be for the people, and help out those who are less fortunate. Well it’s easy, Dems in the Senate are too busy worrying about lining there pockets with money from the Private Lender lobbyist. So who are the punk ass Dems that are selling us out?

Senators Thomas R. Carper of Delaware, Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas, Ben Nelson of Nebraska, Bill Nelson of Florida, Mark Warner of Virginia and Jim Webb of Virginia.

I like to call these kats “The Sallie Mae Six”, I am sure they have no idea how difficult it is to send a kid to college. They are living comfy on $100K + salaries. They seem to care less about the middle/low-class families that put them in office and care MORE about private lenders like Sallie Mae (hence the name) with big lobbyists dollars.

I would love to TAKEOVER the Senate; Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid needs to give his team a kick in the ass. Reid can’t seem to push any legislation thru the Senate. Currently the House of Representatives (led by Nancy Pelosi) have 290 bills awaiting vote in the Senate. Right now Nancy Pelosi is a Ride or Die chick that President Obama can count on while Harry Reid is more like “Red” from “Friday”! If I was Senate Majority Leader, I would first try to quietly convince these kats to vote with the rest of the Dems on this legislation. If that didn’t work I would call a press conference and call them out; I would let everyone know about their new nickname the “Sallie Mae Six”. I know these kats wouldn’t be happy with me, but you know what F**K IT!! If you going to be about BS, then I am going to call you on your BS. I guarantee those 6 Democrats constituents would not be to happy with them supporting Sallie Mae. Seriously everyone knows Sallie Mae, when you graduate the last thing you want to see is a letter from that chick Sallie Mae.

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Basically Senator Reid needs to grow a set and make it happen, Reid needs to be honest with himself. He will more than likely not be re-elected to the Senate; in that case go for broke and just be gangsta with it! Throw caution in the wind and make something happen, go out like a man. Do this for the people, let’s make higher learning a possibility for the less fortunate. This country is losing the race on innovation and there is no reason that should ever happen.

For this country to be great again we have to start with education, and here is a clear-cut way to make education more affordable. When will we put aside the politics and get back to making this country work again?

UPDATE 4/23/2010:
Democrats were able to pass this Student Loans Reform by bundling it with the Health Care Reform legislation. Unfortunately the bill passed is not as strong as the original version:

From the New York Times:

Although private banks will no longer be allowed to make student loans with federal money, many will continue to earn income by servicing those loans.

The Congressional Budget Office said the direct-lending approach would save taxpayers about $61 billion over 10 years. Roughly $40 billion of the savings will be redirected to higher education. Education programs will get an additional $10 billion from the health care package.

The bill includes some landmark changes, like automatic increases, tied to inflation, in the maximum Pell grant award. But for individual students, the increase in the maximum Pell grant — to $5,900 in 2019-20 from $5,550 for the 2010-11 school year — is minuscule, compared with the steep, inexorable rise in tuition for public and private colleges alike.

Even though it is not as strong at least the bill will help ease the crunch of repaying these loans back:

The legislation will make it easier to pay back student loans, by reducing the share of income that a graduate must devote to loan payments and by accelerating loan forgiveness — but not right away. Those who take out new loans after July 1, 2014, will have to devote 10 percent of their income to payments, down from the current 15 percent, and those who keep up their payments will have their loans forgiven after 20 years, reduced from the current 25.

As always….
If there is something to be said, “Its On Broadway” to step up and say it!!!