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Le Taz Hot

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Gender: Female
Hometown: CA
Member since: 2001
Number of posts: 17,895

Journal Archives

Can't see the last posts in one of my threads.

Weird. Can't seem to scroll past about 2/3 of the way down. Not sure if the problem is on my side our yours.



Democrats' Move to the Right Profoundly Affects our Young People and Our Future.

As a Boomer I lived through one of the most liberal times this country has seen. The policies of the New Deal were still in place and Johnson's Great Society, which included Medicare, was enacted. Civil Rights legislation was passed. Women won the right to have power of their reproductive organs as well as gaining their social and financial independence. In California, if you wanted to go to a public college, your tuition was free, books were affordable and part-time jobs were aplenty. The G.I. bill afforded MILLIONS of people to go to school, start businesses, and buy houses. Strong labor unions ensured families needed only one breadwinner to have a comfortable life. Pensions were a given in virtually all businesses as was health insurance, life insurance and, in some cases, dental and optical. These were ALL liberal policies and they benefited everyone. We benefited as a nation.

But it all changed with the Reagan presidency. Reagan was the perfect front man for the capitalist vultures. He gave the bloodsuckers cover with all that down-homey, ah shucks routine. He told the witless that gummit was the cause of all their problems. (Scapegoats are important when there is a power takeover.) They began one of the most successful campaigns to this day and that was to re-define the word "liberal" as a pejorative. Meanwhile, the Democratic Party, who didn't exactly love Carter and criticized him just as vociferously as did the Republicans, ran to the nearest corner, pulled their binky over their heads and looked frantically for their "passies." They accepted the narrative and we've lived with he consequences ever since.

But I think about the people who were born after the Reagan Era. The above experiences are foreign to them. They think shrinking jobs, wages, rights, safety nets, education, home ownership, etc., is the norm. They've nothing with which to compare. Further, there seemed to be nothing that would really get them up and work for changes as we watched more and more of our liberal world disintegrate. For a long time I didn't see many young people at rallies or political gatherings. But, in 2008, here comes Barack Obama. The young people seemed to relate to him. The fact that he was bi-racial was a plus and the prospect of electing the first African-American president was exciting and I think made them feel like they were part of history. And they were.

Then Obama takes office and takes a sharp right turn. Five-and-a-half years out young peoples' positions are more precarious than ever. Not only can't they find jobs with a living wage, education has fast become the impossible dream as has home ownership. Obama promised them and us a great many things and delivered on almost none of it. The disillusionment was apparent in the 2012 election as far fewer young people and other disenfranchised people who worked for Obama in 2008 were present.

So Obama's failures are two-fold: 1) He sided with the corporations at a pivotal point in our history. We could have begun to reverse so much had the desire by this administration been there. But he had to dance with them who brung him so virtually everything coming out of this White House has been corporate friendly. 2) Just as important -- he disillusioned millions of our young people. This was a population that was apathetic to begin with and here we have an opportunity to engage them and they WERE engaged for awhile until virtually none of the promises were fulfilled. This generation is a instant-grat generation and they see no grats for them. How in the HELL will we ever get them back and engaged again after this?

Kidnapping victime to Ariel Castro: "Your hell is just beginning."

HEARTBREAKING statement ready by one of this monster's vicitms: (Sorry, I couldn't get this to embed.)


We Need to Reclaim the Primary Process

I think most people will agree that too often, we are forced to hold our noses and vote for someone almost wholly unrepresentative of our own values and ideals. This process repeats itself election cycle after election cycle and I'd like to try to open up a discussion to address the issue as to as it relates to the Primary process. Specifically, I'd like to focus on two aspects: The current staggered primary system and political party interference in the primary process.

It's not a new idea but I propose we change all states' primaries to the same day. Too much of the country is left out of the selection process. As a Californian, I don't actually get to participate in determining where the candidates are placed on the hierarchy. Iowans get to do that for me. As do the people of New Hampshire and South Carolina and a handful of others. I'm a Californian and, as a Californian, my sole contribution to the primary process is to give money which then gets taken out of California so people I don't know can determine the candidate for me. We're the most populated state in the union and our primaries are in June, a full THREE MONTHS after the candidates have been selected. Wouldn't a more equitable system be that all primaries are held on the same day? A process that leaves out 80% of the population cannot possibly be called democratic.

Another serious problem is the interference of the political parties in the primary process. Ideally, the Party is supposed to remain neutral but that doesn't happen. We all know, for example, who the Democratic frontrunner will be in 2016 -- a full 3 years before the primaries. I don't think any serious person could deny that Hillary Clinton firmly has the Party Machine behind her. That's the reality. And should she, for whatever reason, decide not to run, their Corporate Toady bench is deep. We can't change what the Democratic Party Machine decides to do but, what if we ask each Democratic primary candidate to pledge that they won't pull out of the race until every state has voted (assuming we're still having staggered primaries)? Each candidate would have to rely on their supporters to keep going but isn't that the way it's supposed to work?

Discussion would be most welcome.

I've got an abundance of Yellow Pear Tomatoes.

Anyone have any yellow pear tomato recipes? I've already pickled a few jars but pickled yellow pear tomatoes are not something I will use a lot. Any suggestions will be appreciated and if I can can (as in preserve) the results it would be even better.

Thanks in advance for your suggestions.

"America" by an Australian


A Plea to DUers to use the GRAPHIC WARNING sign

when starting a thread having a disturbing picture. There are DUers here, me included, who cannot look at pictures depicting things like dead people or animals, people or animals suffering, abused children, etc. without having serious consequences. I can't speak for anyone else but those images stay with me FOREVER. It's like a haunting that I can't get out of my mind and it can actually take over for several days. I'm not trying to censor anyone here but PLEASE, if you want to include graphic pictures like dead rhino's, PLEASE put a GRAPHIC WARNING on your Thread Title.

Thank you for your understanding.

Recommending "The Ledge"

with Charles Hunnam (best known for playing Jax Teller in "Sons of Anarchy), Terrance Howard and Liv Tyler. Good thriller as it gives nothing away ahead of time. Really well laid out and keeps you interested throughout the movie.

A Local, Grass-Roots Success Story

For those of us who are feeling overwhelmed by the magnitude of the NSA domestic spying story, not to mention the subsequent feeling of complete helplessness over the slow, methodical removal of our Civil Liberties, I wanted to share a small, local success story.

Recently, our right-wing mayor decided it would be a good idea to sell off our waste management facilities to a private company. Basically, selling off our garbage truck fleet for about 10 cents on the dollar, losing about 200 good, well-paying union jobs as well as our municipal autonomy over waste disposal. This was all in an effort to gain a one-time few million $ to balance our ever-so out-of-balance budget. She and our ditto-headed City Council basically just decided this one day and proceeded negotiations with a waste management firm.

In response, the unions, the Democrats (as well as, yes, some Republicans) and those of us who were against this sell-out mobilized. We had about 2 weeks to get enough signatures to get it on the ballot for a special election. We were able to get it through easily. Then HUNDREDS of people mobilized, literally, going door-to-door, making donations of $1, $5, $10, phone banking, tabling at various venues and events, it was truly an amazing thing in which to watch and/or participate.

When the votes were all counted, we won by 801 votes.

Every time I start getting down about the direction our nation is going in I try to remember things like this. Tangible things, things in which we can actually have a hand in determining an outcome. The thing is, there's examples of this all over the country. Look at what is happening in the Texas and North Carolina State Legislatures and the push-back they're experiencing from just everyday citizens who are mad as hell and not going to take it anymore. THIS is Democracy. THIS is the America I celebrate.

Happy Fourth of July, everyone.

Back from my first trip to Washington.

I worked the ENTIRE time and spent most of my time just north of Seattle. I waved at the Space Needle as I flew in and flew out (sigh).

Here are my observations:

99.99999999999% of Washingtonians (is that right?) were VERY nice and cordial and helpful. You guys are SUCH courteous drivers. You don't regard using a turn signal as a sign of weakness (If you've ever driven in the Bay Area you know what I mean). You know how to drive a freeway, how to get on and off the onramps/offramps and your freeways are so clean! I LOVED the lush woods. And the BEST DAMNED HOTEL COFFEE EVER! Usually you stay at a hotel and the room coffee is barely drinkable. It's what you use to wake up enough to go get real coffee. The hotel room coffee was as good as I have at home and that's saying a lot AND it was available 24/7.

Apparently this last weekend was a large rock fest in Seattle and something called the Naked Bike Rally? Both events sounded great, but, alas, no time for fun.

The only thing you might think about working on? Authentic Mexican food. Maybe I just hit the wrong restaurant but it left a lot to be desired. But that's it! Otherwise I loved the visit.

Next time I go, though, I'm actually gonna get to do something fun!

So, here's to the great state of Washington and all it's terrific people!
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