Friday, October 25, 2013

A Tale of Two Cities: Calgary and Honolulu

Rafael Edward Cruz, that’s the real name and spelling of Senator “Ted” Cruz. The correct spelling of his first name is Rafael, not Raphael as many have said.

Ted Cruz’s father is Rafael Bienvenido Cruz, Cuban born, and an opportunist that has claimed he helped Fidel Castro when he was only 14 years old and fled the island in 1957 when he realized Castro was a Communist that “was seizing private property and suppressing dissent.” There is one flaw with this story and which is that Castro didn’t claim he was a Communist until after the U.S. Embargo in 1962; Castro was not in power to seize any private or public property at that time Castro was not capable of suppressing anyone, much less any rebels when he was a rebel himself. Fidel Castro triumph was on January 1, 1959; two years after Mr. Cruz had fled Cuba.

According to his own words, when Cruz fled Cuba he went to Austin, Texas where according to his biography he attended the University of Texas without knowing any English and with only $100 that he had sewn into his underwear. How could he attend the University without knowing English is beyond me but more so with only $100, which regardless of the time when this happened, it was still not enough to cover rent and food much less to cover the expenses of studying at a University.  Mr. Cruz claims he worked as a dishwasher earning .50 cents an hour, still not enough to pay for that education.  Mr. Cruz graduated four years later and received a degree in mathematics and chemical engineering.  Also, his story about having only $100 sewn into his underwear is a story that is not original and which I guess he stole the anecdote from the biography of Isidor Straus (February 6, 1845 - April 15, 1912), whose mother sewed $1,200 in gold into his undershirt when he was traveling from Charleston to Liverpool in 1863. Using that story served Mr. Cruz Sr. by making his beginnings more humbled and his accomplishments greater.

Mr. Cruz moved to Alberta, Canada with his wife where they worked as geophysical consultants for the oil industry.   While in Canada Mr. Cruz became a Canadian citizen.  In 1970, Mr. Cruz and his second wife had their first and only child Rafael Edward  Cruz, who was born in Alberta Canada.  In 1974 the family returned to Houston, Texas.

Rafael Bienvenido Cruz today is, thanks to his son, very involved in politics and a loud voice as to how this country should be run. Today Mr. Cruz Sr. is, out of all things a pastor, I guess he figured that “career” was more lucrative than a geophysical consultant, more money with less work. He and his son claim to love this country, however, Rafael B. Cruz didn’t become a citizen of the United States until 2005. It took him 31 long years to love this country enough to renounce his Canadian citizenship and his Canadian son thought about renouncing his Canadian citizenship when he entertained the idea of becoming President of the United States… not until then was he interested in “fixing” that little problem. And we have to believe these individuals truly love this country!

For six long years I’ve heard birthers scream at the top of their lungs that President Obama was born in Kenya, that they need to see the birth certificate (no matter how many times it has been presented, they think it’s a fake) and that because President Obama was born in Kenya he can’t be President.

These same people want Sen. Ted Cruz to be the next President of the United States. They have no problem accepting that he was born in a foreign country, Canada, from a foreign father and an American mother. The fact that his mother is American makes him, automatically, a natural American and therefore, according to the Constitution, eligible to become President of this great nation. I am fine with that… but I need some clarification, some explanation to my questions. Why is Ted Cruz eligible to be the President and not President Obama? Let’s take a look at both men, shall we?

Given the above scenario… Why are the people who vehemently support Ted Cruz do not accept our President? Their paths are very similar: both their mothers were (or are) Americans; both their fathers were (or are) immigrants. One has shown that he was born in the United States, we even have the name of the Hospital where he was born, the other one was born in a foreign country and after a lengthy research I was not able to find out which hospital in Calgary was he born in.

You would ask yourself why one is accepted without hesitation and for the last 6 years the other one is not. The answer is quite simple: Ted Cruz’s skin is white; our President’s skin is black.

The Republicans and members of the Tea Party refuse to accept the reason of their rejection is racism because their own racism would be on display, but heir devotion to Ted Cruz speaks volumes that what matters to them is the color of the skin and nothing else.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Everything Is A Macrabre Plan By The GOP

Roger Ailes_a_lThe following are copies of Roger E. Ailes' plan created back in 1970 during Richard Nixon’s administration and which represents the blueprint for the extreme attack by the GOP on America using Fox News and radio shows such as Rush Limbaugh’s to brainwash the Americans that watch or listen to their version of the “truth;” those that as described by Mr. Ailes are “lazy” and believe whatever they watch on TV. 

If you wish to read the complete archive, click here.  If you prefer to read these particular pages, go to page 54.
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Monday, October 14, 2013

And They Blame The President, As Usual

The GOP is campaigning to blame President Obama for the Federal shutdown.  They are outraged because Federal parks and monuments - along with other crucial services - have been closed.  Apparently, they might work for the government, but either they have no idea what the Federal government controls or they are trying, as usual, to blame others for their own actions.

In case you doubt who's fault is it, here are a few links that hopefully will clarify it for you.

Pat Toomy (R-PA) on "Morning Joe," January 2, 2013

Mike Lee (R-UT) on Fox News,  July 23, 2013  

Rand Paul (R-Ky) on Fox News, July 26, 2013  

House of Representatives letter to Boehner and Cantor, dated August 21, 2013
HOR_Ltr_Pg2 HOR_Ltr_Pg3 HOR_Ltr_Pg4 And finally, a link to none other than Rush Limbaugh, interviewing Ted Cruz about the shutdown on August 28, 2013.  Click here to read it. So really... how is this Federal shutdown Obama's fault again?

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Fixing the System

FIXCONGRESS.jpgI have been talking with a friend who is of the opinion that there should be a one -Party system because the Constitution says "We the people" and  having more than one party is placing a label for the purpose of separating people by groups and that is what is wrong with the nation.

I disagree profusely. Having different Parties is what has made this country great, it allows people with similar political point of views and vision to work together for the good of the country.  People elect for office a person with a similar vision as theirs.  This doesn't mean that each political Party should be in "war" with each other; as adults and "professionals" they should be able to jointly brainstorm issues, work for a common goal and  be flexible enough to satisfy the majority of the people and always, always work together for the betterment of the nation, as a whole. 

However, I told my friend that any given Party is just a name to identify a group of people with similar ideals and that is definitively not where the problem resides. The problem we are facing it is not that we have multiple Parties; it is that since the 80s changes have been made to the rules of how the "game" it's played. The Equal-Time rule is no longer in existence and Congress allowed the Fairness Doctrine to expire and ever since then the most important concern for those running for office, from a simple City Official to the President of the United States, is to get funds for their next campaign since now they must pay for the airtime to run their TV and newspaper ads.  That's what they do from day one: Fundraising, not governing. 

We, the people, are no longer their main concern... their priority is to find the money to fund their next campaign. 

Then, about 3 years ago Citizens United - a Republican dream for at least 3 decades – became a reality, and now large corporations can "help" elect candidates that will benefit them and not the people. This must be overturned, a corporation will never be a person unless one day it can donate one of its vital organs, if it can be sentenced to death or give birth to a child.  I doubt they will ever be able to do any of these things, therefore they are not and will never be people. 

Money corrupts, this is known by everyone for centuries and money has to be taken out of the equation. An amount dedicated for elections, an equal amount of money for each and every candidate regardless of Party should be assigned. These monies should be provided by the Treasury and be part of the Federal budget. This will eliminate the sugar daddies and would free the elected official from "campaigning" and concentrate on what they were elected to do, govern. 

Lobbying should be banned, period. 

Furthermore, passing something in Congress doesn’t require a majority of the votes anymore. It used to be that 50% +1 was a majority, even mathematically it still is.  However, for Congress today 60% is what they consider a majority.  This needs to change and fast. 

Filibustering should change too. It is absurd that one candidate such as "Ted" Cruz can stand there and talk for hours about anything, even reading Green Eggs and Ham to filibuster a vote in Congress. I do believe in filibuster, but if you are - as a single individual – obstructing a vote, then you should do it by talking about the subject that you passionately object to and nothing more. I can talk for hours on end about a subject I am passionate about and this shouldn't be that difficult. A person shouldn't obstruct without providing a solid and clear reason for his or her objection. 

Serving the people (what these official are supposed to be doing) shouldn't be a career; it must NOT be a career. The President is allowed to serve two terms, Congressmen should not hold their jobs forever, and neither should any of the Supreme Justices. Perhaps Congressmen should be allowed to serve 3 terms and Justices 4, but that's it... after that, new blood is needed since an apple in a barrel of rotten apples will eventually rotten too. 

Any member(s) of Congress that maliciously obstruct legislation because they are answering to a political agenda should immediately be removed from office, regardless of party affiliation. A member of Congress can disagree and even obstruct, but if that obstruction is obviously malicious, and that Congressman is obstructing more than three times, the Congressman should immediately be removed from their position and new elections for that post should take place or the Governor of those States should appoint a temporary replacement. 

The rules for Federal Shutdowns should also change. If Congress decides to exercise their right to shutdown government, then they should not receive compensation and that time should be deducted from their years of service. 

Amendment 14, Section 4 of the Constitution clearly says that all public debt must be paid, without exception. Therefore, the President should be granted power to pay the public debt WITHOUT the approval of Congress... there is no need for Congress to approve payment of the expenses they previously approved. 

Members of Congress should not have more than 20 working days of vacation. For Thanksgiving they should have 2 days off, and the same goes for Christmas - that's what an American worker gets. They are not a "special class," they are our SERVANTS. 

And finally, not a single member of Congress should get 80% of their salaries for life after 5 years of service... Not a single citizen gets that not even after 20 years of service, and these public servants shouldn't either, after all, it's OUR money. 

If these changes could be done what's currently broken in the system would be fixed.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

America Defunded

A Federal shutdown is nothing new even when most of us are acting as if it is the end of the world. For the last 37 years there has been a total of 18 Federal shutdowns, including the one we are experiencing now.

Every one of the previous shutdowns were due to differences of opinions about spending, about funding bills that were to be passed… none of them were about bills that were already law. President Carter experienced 5 shutdowns mostly because the Senate and the House couldn’t agree if Medicaid should pay for abortions or not. There were 8 Federal shutdowns during President Reagan’s presidency; most of them were because the Senate and the House couldn’t agree regarding increasing or decreasing the defense budget and funding the Nicaraguan Contras. This is the first time in history that there’s a Federal shutdown because the House wants to defund a law, not a bill but a constitutional law. This is the first time that Republicans in office have said repeatedly, since 2010, of their desire for a Federal shutdown and this is what makes it not only different but dangerous.

These same Republicans have been threatening about allowing the United States economy to crash to get their wish. They have tried to obstruct raising the debt ceiling before, they even accomplished our credit rating to drop for the first time. Raising the debt ceiling is less than two weeks away and we all know they will use it once more as an extortion tool to defund the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare. These new Republicans, aka the Tea Party, are constantly manipulating the more seasoned Republicans in Congress who have become their puppets to fulfill their wishes. These new breed of Republicans do not care about the country, they couldn’t care less about our good standing or credit rating and have no understanding of what governing is all about. They claim they want a smaller government and I would think they wished there was no government at all if it wasn’t because they are part of the government they say they hate so much, if it wasn’t because they keep thinking of more government intrusion to regulate and control women, minorities and the poor. They want to create more government but not for corporations or the wealthy – they protect those. That is the part of government they want to shrink, the one that regulate businesses, the one that prevent these corporations from abusing us even more than they already do.

If they use extortion again, we will once more default on our obligations and lose our credit rating. This will negatively affect not only the United States but also the world, which is already suffering from the austerity imposed by their government. The Tea Party can’t grasp that raising the debt ceiling in order to pay our debt is a must, non-negotiable and their constitutional obligation and definitively it’s not a choice.

You watch them laughing and practically celebrating every time they pull one of these “pranks.” They feel so proud of obstructing and destroying this country while screaming at the top of their lungs how much they love America and that they want to return America to its glory days.

What many people don’t realize is that the “glory days” they’re talking about has absolutely nothing to do with the economical prosperity of its citizens. They couldn’t care less if people are sinking more and more into poverty, which is not their concern and some of them have openly said it is not their problem. The “glorious” days they want to return to are the days where blacks were segregated, where women had no voice and where white men, especially the wealthy, ruled.

That’s their vision and their goal.

It is up to us, the American citizen to stop it and to prick their delusional bubble and clean house in 2014. No matter how difficult they have made it in Red States we should vote in masses. We have a little over a year to plan and organize. We must make sure that every single voter votes, if they don’t have transportation, we must rent buses and get them there. If they don’t have all the documents needed, we should help them get those papers. If it is the last thing we do, we must unite and save our country and ourselves from these traitors that wrap themselves on the flag while holding the bible instead of the Constitution.