Sunday, March 19, 2017

Kellyanne Conway's Feet

Kellyanne Conway daily personally brings down the level of propriety and dignity of the White House. 
In any other professional scenario in a room full of professional leaders, if ANY person or man sat like that on the couch, it would be considered rude, impolite, and improper. And without any sexism whatsoever, it's NEVER appropriate for a a female over the age of 5 to sit like that in a dress in public! Period!! For a woman of her age and office to be sitting like that in LITERALLY THE HIGHEST OFFICE IN THE LAND is absolutely shameful!!
Show some respect, woman!

http://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/kellyanne-conway-s-feet-oval-office-couch-kick-debate-n726596


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Thursday, March 9, 2017

Utah and the Zion Curtain

Another excellent example of Republican legislators who have forgotten what it means to be Republicans, and in this case, they think they are the Morality Police. (A job they certainly weren't elected to do.)
 In short, the Utah Legislature has expanded the "Zion Curtain," to now include a "Zion Moat." (A name they apparently find offensive, but it's beautifully appropriate and descriptive.)
Previously (to help the state get the winter olympics) they had "opened up" liquor laws to allow restaurants to serve alcohol. If a restaurant wanted to serve alcohol (and most do), they had to put a wall or barrier between the bar area and the eating area, primarily so children couldn't see drinks being made or consumed. (I'm not joking.) This wall came to be known as the Zion Curtain.
Now they have expanded it by saying you don't have to have a Zion Curtain if instead you just create a 10 ft buffer area from the bar where minors are not allowed at tables (unless accompanied by an adult), or build a half-wall or railing, at least 42 inches high, that creates a delineation between the dining and liquor-dispensing areas. The new buffer zone has come to be known as the Zion Moat.
"What this bill does is establish parameters under which restaurants can operate and keep children away from alcohol," Sen. Jerry Stevenson, the Senate sponsor, said. "It keeps kids away from the bars and the mixing area and works to prevent overconsumption by patrons."
Exactly how this helps to prevent "overconsumption" (which, by the way, isn't a word) isn't exactly clear.
And really, how does not seeing drinks being made keep a child from drinking it? (Especially if their parents can still order and drink alcohol at their table?) (Note: I am not in anyway suggesting that parents shouldn't be allowed to drink.)
But then because the Utah legislature just can't help but be hypocrites in every possible way, they added this to the bill-
Restaurants serving alcohol are now allowed to be closer to community locations (churches and schools where minors are found)— dropping from the current 600 feet distance to 300 feet.
And again, just further proof that Republicans in this state don't know how to be Republicans, this new bill would boost the state markup on liquor from 86% to 88%. The markup on heavy beer sold in liquor stores would go up from 64.5% to 66.5%. Utah consumers already pay the highest markup on wine — and the sixth highest on spirits — among the country's 17 liquor-control states and one county.
Republicans who raise taxes, and create even more government control and interference in personal choices- that's Utah for you.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

The Republican Leadership Have Lost Their Minds

Have the Republican leadership completely forgotten how to be Republicans? 
This is an absolutely terrible bill. Instead of coming up with a bill that helps provide access to healthcare, and makes insurance and/or insurance more affordable, it raises the cost of coverage for those who let coverage lapse (which is more often than not the individuals who couldn't afford it so they had to stop paying), and puts in more government involvement. 
Pres. Trump never made any promises about his future plan except "it would be the best plan ever."
This is what happens when you vote for a man who never laid out any actual plans, just empty promises. And a man who values his own ego and checkbook more than party values or the citizens of his country.

http://cnnmon.ie/2lybWgc

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Keep Trump Accountable

Things he's actually said and done this week-
"The real scandal here is that classified information is illegally given out by "intelligence" like candy. Very un-American!"
Counterpoint- the real scandal is that the President of the United States of America appears to have been co-opted by America's greatest adversary.
Countries and entities the POTUS has condemned-
MSNBC, CNN, Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, NY Times, Washington Post, FBI, NSA, Former President Obama
He has not condemned: Russia.
From official POTUS twitter: "This Russian connection non-sense is merely an attempt to cover-up the many mistakes made in Hillary Clinton's losing campaign."
Counterpoint: Exposing Trump's campaigns' ties to Russia is of national security interest to us all. It's not fair campaign dirty plays.
From official POTUS Twitter: "Information is being illegally given to the failing @nytimes & @washingtonpost by the intelligence community (NSA and FBI?).Just like Russia"
Counterpoint: Maybe intelligence is being given to the parties that will listen, since the POTUS himself doesn't have time for briefings.
In short- I'm terrified.


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Sunday, November 20, 2016

Focusing My Energies

For everyone questioning or wondering why everyone else can't just accept that the election is over and we have a president-elect I share the following-
Many of us cannot sit back and accept the outcome. We saw this election as a choice between two evils. And now, one of those evils has won. We have a target and a direction to point our battle now. Before there were too many options to fight. But now we have our candidate. We have our target. We know which agenda we must stand up against. We know which candidate to focus our energies on.
The battle is not over. The battle has just begun.




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Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Bannon

The man who coined the term "libtard" and publishes racist, white nationalist articles is now an adviser to our next POTUS.
The national nightmare continues.
And the comparisons of Trump to Hitler become more real.


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Thanks for rational, kind, and logical conversation.

Tonight I shared a link to a news article out of the U.K. about Melania Trump. Personally, I found it to be an interesting article about her background and what we could expect from her. Primarily, it talked about her modeling background. And it talked a lot about how Donald Trump talks about how beautiful she is to him. 
I shared the link from my phone, wrote a quick post (in its entirety "here's your family values."), and moved on. I didn't notice that the picture that generated with the link was a very risque photo from the story. Now, in my defense, the story had a lot of pictures, so I had no way of knowing that this completely nude photo would generate.
It was and is completely out of character for me to share something of that nature. But rather than someone actually privately contact me and say, "Hey, Erin, are you sure you meant to post that? It's a bit lewd." Or even publicly comment that they were sure I'd never post nude photos, instead, people started to harass me over it.
As of this moment I haven't deleted the post yet, and there are over 20 comments and climbing - everyone arguing and insulting each other and me.
I would have pulled the post down immediately had the insults not started so quickly. I don't normally tolerate such behavior. And I really and truly feel bad that I posted such a risque picture.
But something else stood out to me. First, that more than one friend that came to my defense pointed out that normally I am rational online. And I am grateful for that because I really do try to be rational when explaining politics.
The second thing that stood out was that it was very obvious that not one person read the article. They just jumped in with the arguments without actually knowing the facts.
And now I am watching friends from every side of my life argue with each other. And I hate that.
But I don't want to stop talking politics. Just because the election is over, doesn't mean the issues have gone away. This election cycle exposed some deep wounds in this country. To stop talking about them now is to put a band-aid over an infected, gaping wound. Wounds don't heal like that. They fester and get worse.
We need to keep talking. We need to work things out. 




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Monday, November 14, 2016

Civic Trust = Higher Welfare?


Food for thought-
In countries where there is a high level of social or civic trust, (meaning that they trust the government to take care of them, they don't expect fraud, and they trust strangers more often), people look alike. For instance, Asian countries, and Northern European countries.
Think about that for a second. When people think or believe that the welfare dollars being spent on people who look like them, or presumably are more like them in most ways, they don't mind being taxed.



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Monday, October 10, 2016

The Case for Voting Third-Party, and Why It’s Not Throwing Your Vote Away


It seems to be a popular idea right now that a vote for a third party, like Evan McMullin or Gary Johnson, is either throwing your vote away, or a vote for Hillary. I’d like to present the case for why a vote for a third party isn’t throwing your vote away, and in fact, is actually a wise choice.
This election is about more than who will be the next POTUS. I think we can all agree that no one wants either candidate to win. There are some who optimistically point out that a third party candidate just might mean blocking Clinton or Trump from reaching the needed 270 electoral votes, sending the race to the House and Senate to decide for us. (I have nothing against this happening. In fact, I like it and not-so-secretly hope it happens, just for the historic nature of the event. I honestly don’t know who the House would pick in that event, so I’m cautiously optimistic.)
The reason I encourage everyone to “vote their conscience” is because the president is only one person, one job. If you vote for Trump, you send the message to the House and Senate that you support his platform. If you do support him, that’s great. Maybe you’ll win. But if you vote for Trump, and you don’t actually support his platform, you still have sent a message to the rest of the lawmakers that you support that platform. Is that a message you really want to send?
Or would you prefer to send a message to those other parties that actually represents your beliefs? Your one vote may not be all that significant in the big picture. But in that smaller picture, the one that breaks down demographics and geography, and shows what people in your district or demographic believe, you have the chance to send a loud message.
Over the weekend, as Trump was flailing about in the wake of his own misogyny, Paul Ryan held a phone call with other party members. He allegedly released them from any obligation to support Trump. He told them to “do what’s best for you and your district.” I read that loud and clear as the right time for me to stand up and make sure that my representative and senator know what matters to me.
I can’t control the outcome of the presidency. But I can make sure that the legislative branch and the media know just how many people are not represented by the mainstream candidates. Because that is the first true step to reform- when people stand up and make their voices heard.
Several third party candidates have been disruptors and effective change agents. Whether or not you agree with his politics, Ralph Nader has very successfully managed to get his platform noticed while running as a third party. Gary Johnson has effectively raised awareness of the Libertarian platform (which is about more than legalizing pot). Theodore Roosevelt was another very notable and effective third party candidate.
Your vote matters because it sends a message about the direction you want this country to go in. I for one do not want anyone to ever get the idea I support Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton. I want to send the message that I believe in immigration reform that allows for a kinder, gentler approach on the path to citizenship. I want to make it clear that I welcome refugees with welcome arms. (And that I believe every statistic Donald Trump, Fox News, and Breitbart has ever offered about refugees to be 100% fiction.) I believe in a strong military, and even stronger cybersecurity. (And let’s not forget that when asked about cybersecurity, Donald Trump’s answer was about how his 10 yr old son uses lots of apps.) I am okay with higher taxes, because higher taxes mean more money for education, welfare, and the military. (I am taxed at a much higher rate than anyone else reading this because I am a single, with a decent income, and no dependents, and no mortgage.) I support Hillary Clinton in her efforts to reform higher education tuition. I absolutely do not want to build a wall between the US and Mexico. I believe strongly in providing foreign aid. (Something I am sure will disappear under Trump.) And I am modern and smart enough to know that abortion is an important topic, but also one already decided by the Supreme Court. In other words, I don’t care what current candidates’ views are on the subject.
Because we will not be happy with either candidate winning the White House, it is more important than ever to send the message to the world what it is you believe in. Make sure your local representatives know what you think, and will represent your views in Congress.
Are you loyal to a party name? Loyal to the candidate that fronts that name? Or are you loyal to your personal beliefs? Which message do you want to send to the world?

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Vote Your Conscience!

This election season has brought out more emotions, vitriol, and accusations than any other election cycle in modern U.S. memory. 
As I watch the country bicker and slander each other, something stands out at me- how grateful I am to live in a country where we have the freedom to speak our minds and to vote. And that despite the general unhappiness among the people in this election cycle, we do not fear a coup in our government. We have rarely ever been so split as a country, and yet we know that regardless of the outcomes of election day, that we will not be in a civil war the next day. That is a blessing and gift many other countries cannot claim.
My loyalties are to my country and my personal beliefs. I am not loyal or subject to a particular ruler, candidate, or political party. We are all always free to vote in a private setting where we can choose to vote our conscience. We are not pressured or forced to vote for an unfair ruler in a sham and insult to democracy. No one except for you will know who you voted for. And we will never be punished for our vote. This right and ability to always vote our conscience is one of the greatest gifts we have as Americans.
Our Founding Fathers made the choice to set up our country as a republic, and not a straight democracy. We get to cast our personal vote, but then our votes are represented in the Electoral College. In recent months, the Electoral College has received more attention than usual. People have argued that it is an antiquated and redundant system. But today as I think more about the freedom to vote your conscience in private, the more I respect the Electoral College.
Consider this for one moment. If the electoral representatives had reason to suspect that certain demographics had been forced to vote for a tyrant or dishonest figure, and not get to vote their conscience, the Electoral College could choose to override the dishonest votes, and instead vote with the true will of the people. The Electoral College is a simple concept that in good years may seem pointless or redundant. But in the event of a bad year, this seemingly inconsequential procedure could truly be the thing that protects our ability to vote our conscience.
I have considered leaving my personal endorsement and announcement of who I will vote for here. But the more I think about it, the more I realize that by choosing to do so, I will lessen my point above. Your vote is your personal choice. You can vote for who you believe in, no matter who that person is. You are not restricted by party names or labels. We all have the ability to vote without fear of punishment or repercussion. So my personal endorsement does not matter, but my vote does. Just like yours.
Go out and vote. Vote your conscience, because you can!