Posted by Warren Peterson on July 30, 2013
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, better known as ObamaCare, does not cover 100% of citizens, is too expensive and too bureaucratic. It passed without a single Republican vote and remains unpopular in the polls. Nancy Pelosi famously said, “We have to pass the bill so you can find out what’s in it.” Each passing day, more and more people are learning what’s in it and they don’t like it.
Republicans in Congress have a golden opportunity to kill ObamaCare or at least slow its implementation. A group of GOP senators plan to do just that by using the coming debt limit and budget battles to de-fund the law. They are willing to shut down the government if necessary to do it. There are at least two concerns with their effort.
First, Republican experience with the last government shut down during the Clinton administration was less than positive. Second, even if they could get a de-fund bill through Congress, Obama would veto it and Democrats would launch a hate campaign like no other: Republicans want to take affordable health care away from children, seniors and the poor. They only want to protect the high salaries of insurance company CEOs. We’ve seen it before along with weak responses from GOP leadership.
This does not mean Republicans should shy away from hardball but they do need to be smart about it. When ObamaCare first became law, Republicans cried “Repeal and replace.” We’ve heard a great deal about repeal, it was a major theme of the Romney campaign. The replace part never made the spot light. This time it should.
Instead of directly using the debt ceiling/budget legislation as the horse to ride, propose a sense of congress resolution that sets forth a contract with America on health care. It should call for a two-year suspension of implementation of ObamaCare to provide time to develop truly bi-partisan, transparent health care legislation. During the two-year hiatus, keep in place the popular extension of children on parent’s health policies and preexisting condition provisions. The contract should contain specific principles, set goals and recognize the need for reform. An example of the need for reform, we have the world’s finest medical services but they are delivered unevenly and at high cost. Another is our legal system that drives costs up. Republicans need to champion reform.
Properly promoted, a health care sense of Congress resolution could be attractive to Democrats who could see it as a way to take credit for forcing the subject into the national debate but accepting the fact that ObamaCare is a “train wreck” and needs serious change, a start over. For Republicans, it would provide an opportunity to unify a divided caucus. If a contract with America on health care passed with a large bipartisan vote, implementing it would lessen a veto threat, show the public that Congress can accomplish something worthwhile and give Republicans a positive issue to run on in the 2014 mid-term elections. If Republicans stick solely with repeal, they run a high risk of losing. A loss of the House in 2014 would open the door to a Canadian style single payer system, the Democrat’s answer to the “train wreck.”
Posted in National Politics | 2 Comments »
Posted by Warren Peterson on July 20, 2013
Only races with three or more candidates will appear on the Primary ballot. If only two candidates have filed, they will appear on the General Election ballot. All offices are officially non-partisan but most of the candidates come from the far left of political center, some could be worse than others.
Proposition No. 1 – Parks Levy – Vote Parks Yes it renews a prior levy but any way you look at it, it will increase taxes but opposing parks is akin to opposing apple pie and motherhood. At least parks are a core job of the government. VOTE YES.
Executive – Dow Constantine has done a good job in his first term. VOTE FOR Constantine
Council District #1 – Incumbent Rod Dembowski Dembowski for Council is a leftist Democrat appointed to the council when Bob Ferguson was elected Attorney General. His only viable opponent is another leftist, a second generation Korean, Naomi Wilson Wilson for Council Left either way but Dembowski has the edge. VOTE FOR Dembowski
Council District #9 – Reagan Dunn Dunn for Council lost the race for Attorney General despite being the better-qualified candidate. He paid the price for running under the Republican banner. VOTE FOR Dunn
Port of Seattle:
Commissioner Position No. 1 – Incumbent Stephanie Bowman, Bowman for Commissioner was appointed to the port commission when Rob Holland resigned. She is opposed by Michael Wolfe Wolfe for Commissioner and Libertarian Andrew Pilloud. Bowman has heavy endorsements from labor unions and Democrats. Wolfe garnered heavy support from Democrats. Flip a coin, peas out of the same pod. VOTE FOR Bowman or Wolfe
City of Seattle:
Mayor – Take a good look at Charlie Staadecker; Staadecker for Mayor especially look at his Sx Pillars describing what he will do as Mayor. He is not a current or former member of the City Council, a state senator or mayor but he has sterling credentials for the job and would be a breath of fresh air sorely needed in Seattle politics. VOTE FOR Staadecker
City Council Position #1 – Incumbent Richard Conlin Conlin for Council Far better qualified than any of his two opponents. VOTE FOR Conlin
City Council Position #8 – Incumbent Mike O’Brien O’Brien for Council is joined at the hip with Mayor McGinn so if you don’t like the mayor consider Albert Shen Shen for Council Even if you do like the mayor, consider Albert Shen. VOTE FOR Shen
Posted in State & Local | 3 Comments »
Posted by Warren Peterson on June 12, 2013
Last January, the Seattle City Council asked for a proposal to provide public funds to help candidates pay the cost of mounting a campaign for public office. Next Monday the council will “take its first look” at the proposal. In 2008 then King Council Member Bob Ferguson (newly elected Washington Attorney General) with the support of fellow council member Dow Constantine (now King County Executive) and former council member Lois North, made a similar effort for King County. The added cost and the economy combined to delay consideration indefinitely.
Like a Phoenix of bad ideas, the specter of public financing of candidates refuses to die. With government crying for more and more money for education, roads, transit, healthcare etc., who in their right mind believes voters want to be forced to contribute to political campaigns so more marginal candidates can be encouraged to seek public office.
Instead of tossing taxpayer dollars into candidate welfare, for substantially less cost insure a voter’s pamphlet is mailed to each voting household. Even less expensive, provide a web site where each of the candidates for a particular office can provide answers to the same set of questions. Allow updates so it is current. The Seattle Times could provide a written version. On the web site, require candidates to publish the names and occupation of all contributors over $500. In the case of PACs, require the names and occupations of the top contributors to the PAC. Any or all of these suggestions would do more to inform the voters and address the concerns about money in campaigns than the proposed public campaign funding. Yes, raising property taxes “about $6 for the owner of a $400,000 home” to pay for the proposed program doesn’t seem like much until you add it to all the other “doesn’t seem like much” taxes.
Once we have solved all the other problems and budget shortfalls of the city, the council can look at public funding of political campaigns. But for now, shove this idea in a pigeon hole where it will never see the light of day.
Posted in State & Local | 2 Comments »
Posted by Warren Peterson on June 7, 2013
Today, June 6, 2013 is the 69th anniversary of D Day, the launch of the allied invasion of Nazi held Europe at Normandy. In remembrance of that day here are three speeches, one by the Supreme Commander of the assault, General Dwight D. Eisenhower, one by the Commander and Chief, President Franklin D. Roosevelt and one by former President Ronald Reagan, on the 40th anniversary.
General Dwight D. Eisenhower’s message to the troops on the launch of the allied invasion of Nazi help Europe, June 6, 1944
President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s radio address to the nation revealing the landings on the beaches of Normandy, June 6, 1944.
President Ronald Reagan’s speech at Point-du-Hoc on the 40th Anniversary of D Day, June 6, 1984.
It happened a lifetime ago yet we must remember, always remember.
Posted in Military | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warren Peterson on May 27, 2013
The Boy Scouts compromise, homosexual boys, okay, gay adult scout leaders, no. More states approve same-sex marriage. So are you an ignorant bigot if you hold a different view especially if your view is based on religious belief? There are limits on constitutional freedom of speech and exercise of religion but they are narrowly defined – falsely yelling fire in a crowded theater, denying a child life a saving blood transfusion, for example. If you are ambivalent, confused or mind made up on the issue, read:“Speaking of Homosexuality”. I don’t expect to change anyone’s opinion but I do think the article is well within the bounds of free speech and makes cogent arguments for long-standing traditional belief.
Posted in Religion | 1 Comment »
Posted by Warren Peterson on April 24, 2013
Thank you Wes for this one.
Ammunition Is Getting Scarce
This morning I lucked out and was able to buy several cases of ammo. On the way home I stopped at the gas station where a drop-dead gorgeous blonde was filling up her car at the next pump.
She looked at the ammo in the back of my SUV and said in a very sexy voice, “I’m a big believer in barter, big boy”. “Would you be interested in trading sex for ammo?”
I thought a few seconds and asked, “what kinda ammo ya got?”
Posted in Humor | 1 Comment »
Posted by Warren Peterson on April 22, 2013
The “race to be first” reporting on the Boston bombings by the media was appalling. One example, CNN, in a breathless exclusive, reported an early arrest only to walk the story back later in the day but not before other media from Fox to the Associated Press also ran the story. The 24/7 media has been criticized for their performance but Scott Stantis of the Chicago Tribune said it best with what has to be the editorial page cartoon of the year.
But even worse was the rampant speculation and politicization surrounding the event. It was said, the perpetrators were most likely right wing Tea Party types angry with the government so they set off bombs on Patriots Day in Boston. The gun rights folks were also to blame. One commentator on Salon, an on line news site, even tweeted “Let’s hope the Boston Marathon bomber is a white guy.” He was concerned that if it were a person of color or a Muslim, it would set back the liberal agenda. Just look at a dozen plus examples from media opinion leaders including the aforementioned Salon tweeter : 12 ridiculous cases of media bias after boston bombing
Social media, (tweets, Facebook, blogs) also burned up the web with inflammatory rumors, opinions and misinformation that did nothing to inform the public, falsely maligned innocent people and may have hindered the investigation.
It may be difficult to cover a story like the Boston bombings 24/7 without slipping into speculation or skipping Journalism 101 source verification but that is no excuse for the performance failures, both hard news reporting and opinion commentators. For the consumers of social media, a large dose of skepticism is in order. As the song from Porgy & Bess says, slightly rephrased, “The things that you’re fed on the web ain’t necessarily so.”
Posted in Other | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warren Peterson on April 8, 2013
A magnitude off the charts political earthquake shook Olympia before the start of the 2013 session of the state legislature. Two Democrat state senators, Rodney Tom (D-48th District) and Tim Sheldon (D-35th District) announced they were joining the 23 Republican senators to form a “majority coalition caucus” of 25 giving them control of the State Senate with Tom the new Senate Majority Leader. Needless to say, Democrats were not happy.
The Seattle/King County media has covered Senator Tom extensively but less is known about Senator Sheldon. That gap has been considerably closed with Nina Shapiro’s excellent article, “What Kind of Democrat…” in the April 3-9, 2013 Seattle Weekly (cover page “Sleeping with the Elephants”). Shapiro profiles both senators but tells readers a great deal about Senator Sheldon. No country bumpkin, Ivy League educated with a UW MBA, he charts his own course. In many respects, he is the quintessential legislator for those fed up with partisan wrangling. To read the article, click HERE
Rodney Tom – Turncoat or Practical Politician
Senator Tom Switches Back
Posted in State & Local | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warren Peterson on April 7, 2013
At a California fundraiser, President Obama called the Golden State’s Attorney General Kamala Harris brilliant, dedicated and tough. But then his inner Bill Clinton added, she’s also “the best looking attorney general in the country.” Back home in D.C., he called Ms. Harris and apologized for stating the obvious. In politically correct land, one does not publicly complement a woman on her looks even if every man there (well almost every man, it is California after all) thinks she’s hot. This prohibition mainly applies to women in politics and business but not so much in the media and entertainment arenas. Yet one study claims that Republican women in politics tend to be more attractive than their Democrat compatriots. And as to the media, Austin Cunningham’s song, “The Girls on Fox News,” pretty much says it all.
It is an issue for discussion – how can a woman be respected for her brainpower regardless of her physical appearance? Obama at least kicked off days of talk radio and pundit ink keeping those folks employed but in light of the problems piling up on his desk, less time at fundraisers and more contemplation on the meaning of leadership seems in order.
Posted in National Politics | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Warren Peterson on March 31, 2013
I get emails from time to time from a hard-core leftist friend of mine who never misses a chance to castigating Republicans. His rants are usually so far over the top that I don’t bother to respond but now and then I do.
I See Your Good Olde Boys are Still at it
Republicans don’t have a monopoly on stupid comments. See
Alabama Legislator’s Email
But then the Alabama legislator is black and a Democrat so he gets a pass even though he refused to apologize. I could cite numerous examples of vitriol from the Left assaulting Republicans, Conservatives, Christians and anyone daring to challenge them. Maybe if both sides would stop this tit-for-tat, “gothcha,” knee jerk reaction to every real or perceived insult, we could make some progress. Aside from you, I doubt I know anyone who has never used the N word for Blacks, F or Q word for homosexuals, B word for women, W… B… for illegals swimming across the Rio Grande or any of a host of now banned words to describe someone of a particular race, ethnicity, sex, nationality, religion etc. that offended someone. Words considered acceptable in years past are no longer so. Fine, accept apologizes, consider that inappropriate words may slip from the mouths of people who used them in the past when the culture was different and then move on. Stop looking for reasons to hate and demonize. Start looking for love and common ground. Keep debate civil.
Posted in National Politics | Leave a Comment »