McCamy Taylor's Journal
Member since: Tue Nov 9, 2004, 06:05 PM
Number of posts: 14,471
Number of posts: 14,471
Here is my fiction website: http://home.earthlink.net/~mccamytaylor/ My political cartoon site: http://www.grandtheftelectionohio.com/
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You should not need a study to prove it, but one was done anyway. In 1991, the Indiana University Department of Family Medicine discovered a statistically significant association between living in a rural county that lacked adequate obstetric coverage and infant mortality. Now, association does not prove causality, but if this is your first baby, and he is coming out breech and gets stuck and there is no one to do a stat c-section, your baby may not survive long. Or, if you go into early labor, and there is no one who knows how to administer the appropriate drugs to stop that labor, you may deliver a baby that is extremely small---with no Neonatal ICU staff around to save its poor little life.
If you read my last journal, you know that Georgia Republican legislators are gleefully forcing “crack addicted” rural hospitals out of business on the grounds that it’s healthier for our country’s economy if we have fewer crack addicted hospitals among us. Unfortunately, it is not healthier for our country’s health. Rural women, in particular, suffer when they are denied access to health care that urban women take for granted.
General health conditions and behavior that U.S. rural women experience at higher rates than their urban counterparts include, self-reported fair or poor health status, unintentional injury and motor vehicle-related deaths, cerebrovascular disease deaths, suicide, cigarette smoking, obesity, difficulty with basic actions or limitation of complex activities (4, 5), and incidence of cervical cancer (6). Other comparisons show that death rates from ischemic heart disease in rural women exceed that for all U.S. women. In some regions of the country, women in nonmetropolitan areas have higher rates of heavy alcohol consumption (4). Proportionately fewer rural women receive recommended preventive screening services for breast and cervical cancer. Rural African American, Hispanic, Asian, and white women are less likely to have cervical cancer screening. African American, Hispanic, and white women are less likely than their urban counterparts to have mammograms (7). Comparisons of female patients in whom invasive breast cancer was diagnosed in Georgia from 2000 to 2009 indicate that women living in small rural and isolated areas were 30% more likely to have surgery and 17% less likely to receive radiotherapy as first-course treatment than their urban counterparts. Also, within these rural areas, African American patients were 57% less likely to have surgery than white patients.
Rural women do not have the “Choices” that urban women have (from the link above):
Local availability of abortion services also is a concern. Eighty-seven percent of U.S. counties, in which 35% of reproductive-aged women lived, had no abortion provider in 2008. Obstetrician–gynecologists with rural mailing addresses were significantly less likely to perform abortions (6.5%) than their urban counterparts (17.0 %) (32). Rural women seeking abortions in 2008 traveled substantially greater distances than nonrural women. Thirty-one percent traveled more than 100 miles and an additional 42.9% traveled between 50 miles and 100 miles, compared with 3.8% and 7%, respectively, for nonrural women (33).
Among the 14 states ranked the highest on percentage of women aged 13–44 years in need of publicly funded contraceptive services and supplies, nine have rural populations exceeding 33% of the state population (20, 34). Only 46% of the agencies providing publicly funded family planning services reported that their clinic sites are located in mostly rural locations, the majority of which are health departments and Federally Qualified Health Centers (35). In Colorado, where almost three-quarters of the counties are considered rural, substantial numbers of reproductive-aged women live in counties where there is no identified pharmacy or health clinic that either prescribes or fills prescriptions for contraceptives (36). Despite concern about access to emergency contraception, data on current over-the-counter availability of emergency contraception in U.S. rural pharmacies are lacking.
And here, I have to wonder, is this all part of some huge Tea Party conspiracy? Deprive rural women of doctors, hospitals, so that they have no access to birth control or abortion? Force them to deliver their babies at home, without anesthesia, so that they can suffer the “wages of sin”? And what about the children who are born early, who die or who suffer the lifelong effects of prematurity? Is this the Religious Right’s way of ensuring that the “sins” of the mother will be passed on to the offspring? Remember, these are the sickos who objected to the HPV vaccine on the ground that cervical cancer is God’s way of punishing women for having sex, and if the state prevents God from punishing women for having sex, then the state is attacking religion.
Just how bad are things for women in rural America? While life expectancy for most people in the industrialized world keeps rising, women living in rural counties in the south and west of the United States have seen an increase in preventable death.
A new study offers more compelling evidence that life expectancy for some U.S. women is actually falling, a disturbing trend that experts can't explain.
The latest research found that women age 75 and younger are dying at higher rates than previous years in nearly half of the nation's counties — many of them rural and in the South and West. Curiously, for men, life expectancy has held steady or improved in nearly all counties.
The study is the latest to spot this pattern, especially among disadvantaged white women. Some leading theories blame higher smoking rates, obesity and less education, but several experts said they simply don't know why.
In Texas last fall, one rural community discovered exactly what can happen when the only hospital in town closes:
On this much, everyone agrees: 18-month-old Edith Gonzalez, who charmed folks in this East Texas town by shaking her pink tambourine in the church choir and pretending to mother her baby sister, shouldn’t have died.
A grape was stuck in her throat. Her family rushed her to nearby Shelby Regional Medical Center. But the hospital was locked and empty.
“I feel in the depth of my soul had a simple ER unit been in the Center area, the child would have survived,” said Charles Bush, a bystander who held her head and prayed as the family waited in vain for help.
The toddler’s Aug. 12 death has starkly exposed the vulnerabilities of a rural community suddenly left without its longtime safety net.
The hospital in question was kept afloat through fraud and mismanagement. It’s pretty difficult to make a profit from a rural hospital, when you are required by law to provide free care to folks that the law does not care to provide health insurance. When the owner was finally turned in, the hospital shut down, leaving the town---and Edith’s parents---with no place to turn in an emergency.
This is what the “best health care in the world” has accomplished---a system in which rural women and their children are treated as disposable. And the self-styled family values Republicans seemed determined to keep the rural women and children of their own states living---and dying---for lack of health care. This truly is America held hostage.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Sat May 10, 2014, 06:47 PM (5 replies)
I write a lot about health care for the urban poor, because that is what I know. But there is something much worse than being sick and poor and living in a major metropolitan area in the United States. That is being sick and living in the country.
In the past year alone, more rural hospitals closed than in the prior 15 years combined. This is a staggering fact, which is under reported by national media.
You can’t blame the press for ignoring the plight of rural America. The press lives in the Big City. To them, the country is what you travel through to get from one urban area to another. It probably never occurs to them that people live there and work there and go to school. And get sick there.
In the city, there are lots of rich people and lots of insured people who can keep doctors and hospitals in business. In the city, there is a big tax base that can pay for health care for the poor. But, in the country, where there are not so many rich folks and not so many insured folks and not nearly as big a tax base, it may be hard to keep a doctor and a hospital in business. Oh, the local folks can keep the hospital busy. But they may not be able to pay their bills. And if no one else---meaning the state or federal government---is willing to step in, then the doctors and the hospital will leave, and the small town will find itself with no health care at all.
This problem is most acute in the 24 states which have rejected the Medicaid expansion.
Vidant Health, which announced last year that it was closing its hospital in Belhaven, is coming under renewed fire from town officials and the NC NAACP for its decision as the deadline for its closing draws nearer.
The hospital is the only emergency care provider in the rural area and provides services to 25,000 residents of Beaufort and Hyde Counties. The nearest hospital is in Washington, more than 30 miles away.
Vidant, which is affiliated with East Carolina University, has said the state’s refusal to expand Medicaid put it in financial dire straits.
According to the latest census data, 28 percent of Belhaven lives in poverty. The hospital is the only one in the area required by federal law to provide care to all, regardless of insurance status or ability to pay. Vidant has proposed to build an urgent care center in Belhaven that will not be under the same care provision obligations.
Note that Emergency Rooms must treat anyone who shows up at the door regardless of ability to pay. A minor emergency center can turn you away for lack of money. If your town loses its ER and you are broke and uninsured, you could end up dying of a treatable disease, like an infected tooth. And even if you have insurance and/or money, if the closest ER is an hour away, that may be too far if your life is in danger.
Rural hospitals in Red states did not just miss out on extra Medicaid funding. They are being hit with a federal funding cut. Since all 50 states were slated to receive Medicaid money, the federal government predicted that it would not have to subsidize rural hospitals as heavily as it has done in the past.
A rural hospital located in Brownsville, Tennessee is ending its inpatient and emergency services this summer because it can’t afford to keep operating them. Instead, the facility will become an urgent care clinic dealing with minor illnesses. W. Larry Cash, the chief financial officer for the community health group that operates the hospital, told the Tennessean that his state’s refusal to expand Medicaid was a “contributing factor” in the move.
Providers that serve a high number of poor and uninsured Americans, technically called “Disproportionate Share Hospitals,” often operate on a loss because their patients can’t always pay for their care. To compensate, the federal government offers reimbursements for those hospitals — but the Affordable Care Act changes the way the payments are structured. Because the health law intended every state to expand Medicaid, and therefore reduce the number of uninsured people who can’t pay their bills, the reimbursements for DSH hospitals have been reduced.
But if hospitals are located in states that continue to refuse Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion, that puts them in a difficult spot. They’re losing out on some of the federal government’s funding without making up the difference with an influx of insured patients.
Ouch. Some things just aren't fair.
The people who wrote the Affordable Care Act could not have planned for the Supreme Court, which said, in effect, states have a right to deny their poorest citizens health care. And they could not have anticipated the Congressional gridlock that has prevented anyone from amending the ACA. However, people like Texas Governor Rick Perry surely knew that the people they were going to hurt the worst when they said “No” to all that free money were the same salt of the earth rural voters whom they hold up so proudly as their base.
For the fourth time in two years, a rural hospital in Georgia is shuttering its doors over a dearth of patients who can pay for their medical services, the Albany Herald reports. An increasing number of hospitals that serve large numbers of poor and uninsured Americans are being forced to close in states that are refusing the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion.
The Lower Oconee Community Hospital, a so-called “critical access” hospital in southeastern Georgia with 25 beds, will close down and possibly re-open as an urgent care center that provides services that aren’t quite serious enough to necessitate an emergency room visit. Patients in the Wheeler County region who need more extensive medical care after the hospital closes will need to travel upwards of thirty miles in order to receive it.
Last fall, Bloomberg reported that at least five public hospitals in Georgia, North Carolina, and Virginia — including three in Georgia alone — were cutting staff and services in the wake of their refusal to expand Medicaid. These hospitals are so-called “Disproportionate Share Hospitals” — providers that serve a disproportionate number of poor and uninsured Americans, and as such don’t always receive payments for the care they give patients.
About one in four people in Wheeler County, where the latest hospital is shutting down, is uninsured. About one in ten residents are unemployed and over 40 percent of children live in poverty.
To put the numbers in terms that may be easier to understand:
A young woman in Georgia was immersed in flames after a four-wheeler accident. At one point, there had been a hospital only nine miles from the accident. Due to GA Governor Nathan Deal refusing Medicaid expansion, however, that hospital had been closed down only weeks earlier.
So what happened to this poor young lady, suffering from second- and third-degree burns? It took a full two hours before she was flown to a hospital in Florida.
Why did this young woman have to suffer? Because of people like Jason C. Spencer of Georgia:
“By the way, many hospitals are addicted to the current reimbursement structure in Medicine (the main problem with the healthcare). They are like addicts on crack. They don’t want to give up the money or move to a different solution. They benefit off the current system."
Benefit? That's an interesting way to describe the massive closure of rural hospitals and the genocide being waged against rural citizens of the 24 states which refused the Medicaid expansion. Someone may be benefiting from that decision, but I don't think it is the hospitals or the people they used to serve.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Sat May 10, 2014, 02:49 AM (1 replies)
As I wrote a while ago, the Red State public hospital where I work realized that a bunch of our low income patients were being suckered into signing up for useless “bronze” insurance plans. Plans that would cost them pennies a month—making them affordable---but which piled the entire $5000 out of pocket expense up as a deductible and which had very limited provider lists and benefits (such as prescription services etc.) The companies offering these extra cheap insurance plans would receive several thousand dollars from the feds per person for writing polices that would probably never be used. These plans were designed to appeal to 20 something guys who never saw a doctor and only wanted the insurance in case they got run over by a truck and so they could avoid paying the fine. This kind of insurance was absolutely no use for the average public clinic patient—age 50, with diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, coronary artery disease, asthma, a bad back, depression---you know, the typical working guy that got laid off from his job in 2008 and who now works in fast food . The guy who would be dead if his city did not spend tax dollars paying for a county clinic and hospital to take care of the medical needs of people like him. This guy needed the silver plan. But even making a low wage, his monthly premium for a silver plan would have been a whopping
$100-200---and he did not have the money. Some months, he could not even come up with the $5 for the copayment for his heart medication. So, he signed up for the only one he could afford---the useless one.
When I reported on the plight of people like these---my own patients---I was called a liar. By now, I assume that enough people have talked to enough other people to know that these folks really do exist---because, hey, private insurance companies have absolutely no qualms about collecting several thousand federal dollars per person selling poor saps an insurance plan that they will not be able to afford to use. Hell, that is how they make money. And it isn’t as if anyone in the federal government can do anything to stop them. Congress is tied up in gridlock. No matter what loopholes are uncovered in the ACA, no one will be fixing them anytime soon. So, all you folks who take any criticism of any aspect of the ACA as criticism of the POTUS, please calm down. This is not about Obama. This is about sick folks who are not keeping their appointments for checkups because they think they are going to get stuck with a bill.
Attendance at the family clinic where I work if down. Down, because so many of our patients think that they can’t be seen “for free” now that they have that $5000 deductible. Those that come in anyway look scared. They ask how much it is going to cost. Boy, are they relieved when they find out that it isn’t going to cost them anything. The county isn’t going to abandon them just because some private insurer is ripping them---and Uncle Sam---off.
Q: Can I have an exchange health plan and still be on JPS Connection?
A: Yes, if you meet the income levels, Tarrant County residency requirement, and other requirements. For patients eligible for subsidized insurance on the Marketplace, JPS offers Connection Secondary to Insurance, which may help cover out-of-pocket expenses.
As of October 2013, the federal Affordable Care Act provides health insurance for many people who could not afford it before. But the Affordable Care Act, often called Obamacare, does not cover everyone and many of the new insurance plans have high deductibles and coinsurance costs. If you are eligible to sign up for insurance under the Affordable Care Act (www.HealthCare.gov and www.CuidadoDeSalud.gov,) you should do so. If you are eligible to sign up for insurance, you must do so in order to be eligible for JPS Connection. Once you're signed up, JPS Connection can help with your out-of-pocket expenses, if you qualify and if your care is provided at a JPS facility.
Good news for the folks who thought that their tarnished bronze plans meant no more health care. Possibly not such good news for the private plans which sold the policies hoping that the $5000 deductible would be an insurmountable barrier to health care for most enrollees.
Now, those who wish to complain that this will bankrupt the private insurance industry which carefully prices premiums and deductibles in order to ensure the most profit for the least amount of expenditure---i.e. the least amount of actual health care---go right ahead. I am sure that the private health care industry appreciates your efforts on their behalf. However, before you start complaining about all the “rich” charity hospitals getting fat off the ACA, you might want to read this:
Indigent care facilities in states that opt-out of the Medicaid expansion are at a particular disadvantage relative to other hospital systems. Apart from the Medicaid expansion and the exchanges, the ACA also reduces payments to hospitals that serve needy populations. (Lawmakers reduced these payments on the assumption that all states would expand Medicaid.) Hospitals in non-expansion states that serve needy populations will, therefore, be asked to cope with further reductions in payments.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Fri May 9, 2014, 11:35 PM (0 replies)
Dear Ted Cruz,
As a Buddhist I would never take a life. However, you are an advocate of ritualized murder---also known as the death penalty in the United States. Most civilized countries in the world have outlawed this barbaric practice. It does not deter crime. It does not bring a sense of closure to those who have lost loved ones. All it does is perpetuate the myth that some people are expendable---and if we rid the world of them, the world will be a better place. And, in a country like the United States, where people are taught to be rugged individualists who value their own opinion over that of the government, it is much too easy for people to take the law into their own hands and "execute" the guy who just cut them off in traffic.
As an advocate of ritualized, deliberate murder, you are responsible for scores of deaths everyday. And therefore, my religion---my own personal interpretation of my own religion as I see it at this moment as I am writing this piece using my Constitutionally protected freedoms of speech and religion---my religion tells me that were I to have anything to do with you, I would become an accessory to murder. That means I can not donate money to your campaign. That means I can not sell you a sandwich. That means if I am staffing the Emergency Room where you are brought one night when you have a heart attack, I will have to decline---politely--to do "business" with you, because it would violate my religious beliefs, the way that Obama is attempting to violate the religious beliefs of those poor little nuns by forcing them to offer rape victims the emergency contraception they need to prevent being forcibly impregnated by their rapists.
So sorry I won't be able to help you. And sorry about the firefighter who won't be able to pull you from your burning house, because he is a Quaker and he couldn't answer to his God if aided a murderer. But you said yourself that religious freedom trumps all else. We promise we will never do anything to harm you. And we promise that if you ever come into harms way we will pray to God and Buddha to save you---or at least save your soul before you die and are damned to the Hell of Murderers.
A physician who is just kidding, she will do everything in her power to pull you back from the brink of death if you ever die in her Emergency Room, although, were she to follow your logic, there is absolutely no reason that she should not put you outside on the curb and say "There is a Catholic hospital down the road. Your type isn't welcome here." Be very careful when you start calling health care "business". One day the "business" could be the "business" you or your loved ones need in order to survive.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Wed May 7, 2014, 07:28 PM (4 replies)
Shameful. The House is going to hold a hearing on poverty but they will not let the poor testify. How can you claim to speak for the poor if you will not let the poor speak?
Ask some of the self-styled supporters of the Affordable Care Act who now take any mention of the plight of the uninsured as an act of treason. To hear them talk, there is no longer a health care crisis in this country. No more unemployment either. The administration has taken care of all that. As this fall’s midterm elections near, the sick and poor are told to keep their mouths shut for their own good. If they talk about their misery, this will only help the GOP---and they would not want to do that. Oh, no.
My friend is sorry to be an inconvenience. But he has worked himself half to death. Literally. He used to be a full time school teacher. Now, his heart is so weak that he is on disability and Medicare. But since no one can live on $800 a month, he substitute teaches for just over minimum wage. Twenty hours a week on his feet. His swollen feet. His heart has about one third the pumping power of yours and mine. When he gets home and props up his legs, the swelling goes down. Mostly. But not all the way. Little by little, the fluid accumulates in his legs. And then in his liver. And then in his lungs. And, when he can no longer breathe, it’s back to the hospital to get the fluid out. So he can go home and start the cycle all over again. And he’s one of the lucky ones. He has insurance. He has a job, of sorts. He is not on the street. He is not starving. Good thing, too, because even the Republicans who call food stamp recipients wild animals might shed a tear or too at the thought of the teacher who taught their children being homeless. But being poor and breathless and constantly living under the shadow of death at 60---hey, for a lot of us, that is as much of the American Dream as we are ever going to get----
No moral here. I just wanted you to meet my friend. His story is inconvenient for some folks at the moment, but it is his story and his life. He's a nice man, gentle and patient, even when he is doubled over from lack of oxygen. A good teacher. He does not expect miracles. He is just glad to know that someone cares.
Hmm. Maybe the Senate should hold some hearings on poverty, too. Maybe the Senate could invite my friend and others like him to speak. I am sure that there are plenty of people in America who would like to hear their stories.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Sun May 4, 2014, 08:19 PM (10 replies)
of Clayton Locke in Oklahoma, along with Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin (R)
Here is Mike Christian bragging to Fox News before the execution that
he is trying to impeach state Supreme Court justices who delayed the execution of two death-row inmates, saying their decision shows “incompetence” and “personal bias” while violating their oath of office.
The high court has now lifted the delay so inmates Clayton Lockett and Charles Warner are scheduled to die Tuesday by lethal injection.
However, Republican state Rep. Mike Christian, who drafted legislation to impeach the five justices who last week granted the stay, still thinks their decision “constitutes a willful neglect of duty and incompetence.”
Rep. Christian claimed that the Court overstepped its bounds because this was not a civil case. However, the defense attorney claimed that it was, because the state would not reveal the drug cocktail that it planned to use to execute his client, and therefore, his client had no way to know if his execution would be lawful, i.e. not cruel and not unusual.
Turns out that poor, dead from a heart attack not from a legal lethal injection Clayton Lockett may have had good reason to file a suit.
Condemned murderer Clayton Lockett, who had been declared unconscious after the first drug of a three-drug cocktail was administered, began shaking uncontrollably, gasping, moaning and attempting to raise his body from the gurney to which he was strapped.
The botched execution was halted after 20 minutes, and Lockett died 23 minutes after that — a full 43 minutes after the process began — apparently of a heart attack.
Lockett and inmate Charles Warner sued the state because officials refused to reveal details about the execution drugs, including from which manufacturer they were obtained. The law allowing the secrecy about the drugs was declared unconstitutional by a trial judge, and the Oklahoma Supreme Court stayed the executions last week.
What followed was a game of political football, with two men’s lives sadly being the trophy. Gov. Mary Fallin declared that she wasn’t bound by the decision of the Supreme Court, which normally hears civil cases, and a state legislator began the process to impeach the five justices who voted for the stay.
Read more here: http://www.star-telegram.com/2014/05/01/5785427/botched-execution-should-cause.html#storylink=cpy
The state is claiming that the IV failed. However, how can we trust a state government that has kept such a process shrouded in secrecy? For all we know, they chose to use drugs that were inappropriate when administered intravenously or which had never been tested or were not licensed for use in humans. Rep. Mike Christian chose to pander to his base and abuse the power of his office in order to deny a condemned man his rights under the law. Rep. Mike Christian made this decision knowing that the drug combo was shrouded in secrecy, knowing that something might well go wrong with the execution----and therefore, he deserves to wear a crown of shame for the part he played in this sorry story. So, this one is for you, Mike Christian. May this be your last 15 minutes of fame.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Fri May 2, 2014, 08:14 AM (4 replies)
As in the way the Republicans get involved in internal Democratic politics in order to shoot down candidates whom they think they can not defeat in the general. This was a strategy that Pat Buchanan outlines in 1972 for Tricky Dick Nixon:
"Hillary the Unrepentant Hawk" is an actual phrase used as part of this strategy in 2008. Maybe it made some sense back then. However, in the intervening 6 years, she has been Obama's SOS. Meaning that Hillary's foreign policy is Obama's foreign policy. So, if she is an unrepentant hawk, then so is Obama. Therefore, rehashing the whole "Hillary supported the invasion of Iraq and Obama didn't" issue makes no sense. Someone in corporate management may have told this guy "We've got to turn dems against Hillary. The polls show she beats any of the Tea Baggers we can run against her." Or maybe Steve Chapman comes by his hatred of Hillary honestly and one of his bosses is as happy as a clam to let him bash the candidate that has the Tea Baggers quivering in their boots.
BTW, I have collected a bunch of mainstream media propaganda from 2008 and put it together in a e-book I call "Food Fight at a Monster Truck Rally". It is available for less than a buck at Amazon for your kindle, but I can send anyone who wants a copy free a word document, just send me an email at McCamyTaylor@earthlink.net. It is all there. The Press v. Hillary. The Press v. Obama. The Press v. The Democratic Primary. Forewarned is forearmed. The so called Race Memo almost certainly was written by Pat Buchanan---or someone who had studied Pat Buchanan---and was supposed to be leaked to the press after the Democratic convention in order to tarnish Obama's image as a values candidate,a uniter not a divider. Smart thinking on the part of a lot of dems including the Huffington Post and Hillary and Obama kept that dirty trick from becoming the Thomas Eagleton (1972) affair of 2008. The GOP won't be deterred. They will try again.
Oh, and I am declaring "Hillary the Unrepentant Hawk" the first official GOP Big Lie of the 2016 Democratic Primary. Part of the Karl Rove "attack them on their strengths" strategy. Everyone loved her as SOS? Make her out to have been the worst mass serial killer since Pol Pot. From the folks that told you that John Kerry was single handedly responsible for the illegal incursion into Cambodia and Laos.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Sun Apr 27, 2014, 04:54 PM (1 replies)
Ok, so I started a Julian Castro in 2016 thread over in GD, and someone said I should concentrate on Wendy Davis, so I went to Wendy Davis's site and gave $50. Here is her site.
And here are lots of free smilies for her, too:
And I still think Julian Castro would be a good choice for the Democratic Presidential ticket in 2016 and it is never too early to start thinking about these things.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Sun Apr 27, 2014, 03:39 PM (22 replies)
I love Elizabeth Warren. But she says she isn't running. No one is running. Even Julian Castro said (last year) that he does not plan to run. At this point, our choices on the general election ballot in 2016 are slated to be:
Maybe Jeb (Republican)
Now, an admission. I am a Texan. I would love to see a fellow Texan who is not in the pocket of the oil industries/banks/health insurance industry represent our state in the White House. Texas politicians (who are not the idiot sons of former presents who were elected because voters thought they were electing the father) are a tough breed---like former governor Ann Richards. They know how to fight. That is especially true of Democratic Texans. And doubly true of urban Democratic Texans, like the San Antonio mayor, who has to juggle the needs of his constituents in a state that would rather see the poor and uninsured die in the streets than accept billions of dollars in federal health care aid---the Medicaid expansion.
Here is Castro introducing himself in his own words during the last Democratic National Convention:
Here is some recent news about Castro:
“ Castro is the poster child of leadership in the country for the hispanic community,” Garcia said. “San Antonio has been where we are now-we can learn from them and also grow with them.”
Our nation is a nation built by immigrants. In this era, Hispanic or Latino immigrants are important to the economic prosperity of the country. The Republicans want to force them into a kind of perpetual bonded indentured servant status with the US born children of undocumented immigrants denied citizenship and therefore denied education, forced to spend their lives working for less than minimum wage in places like the Koch Brothers Dixie Cup factories without benefits, without Social Security, without OSHA protections---the slaves of the 21st century, subject to expulsion from the country if they ever dare complain about their substandard living and working conditions. Since the workers in question will have been born in the U.S. many of them will have no friends south of the border. Many of them will not even speak Spanish. Rather than face deportation, they will do whatever is asked of them----and that is slavery in my book.
The Republican Party has seen the writing on the wall---or rather, the math. They suddenly understand that their policies have alienated the fastest growing demographic in the country. They will try to sucker Latino voters by offering them candidates with Hispanic sounding names---and Koch Brother values.
I humbly suggest that Democrats offer more than lip service and surnames. We need to make immigration reform a priority. As long as there are undocumented workers who can be exploited, employers can exploit everyone. Give Hispanic workers protections, and they will join and support unions. They will strengthen the middle class again---the way that generation after generation of immigrants have strengthened the middle class with their hopes, dreams and hard work which made them give up their homes and take a chance on coming to a new country and starting a new life.
And while we are offering Latinos a seat at the table, why not put all that resourcefulness and ingenuity and hard work to use at the head of the table, too? Who understands the needs of immigrants workers better than one who has lived it? That is why I am throwing my support behind the undeclared candidacy of Julian Castro.
Here is Castro going toe to toe with Texas State Sen. Dan Patric (R)
"We have to level with Texans about this issue. Nobody disagrees with you Senator when you talk about the need to clamp down on coyotes, on people who are crossing here illegally, to enhance border security," Castro said. "You and I can agree that we need to enhance border security. However, tonight we're going to talk, as well, about the fact that you've been part of the problem. It surprises me that you're saying you're not tough because out there on Twitter, in front of the Alamo, in your campaign, you've been huffing and puffing like the Big Bad Wolf and now you are dancing around, tip-toeing, like little Red Riding Hood on this issue."
Julian Castro has been in the forefront of the fight in Texas to get the Medicaid expansion to our state:
Conservative Republican governors in Michigan and Ohio looked at similar numbers in their states and decided that expanding Medicaid was a no-brainer. I just wish our governor saw it the same way. Because with a stroke of his pen, he could save more than one million of his fellow Texans from financial ruin if they get sick and save taxpayer dollars in the process. And there's nothing foolish about that.
So mayors like me are going to keep working as hard as we can to make sure that Texans can get covered. In the meantime, states that have so far refused to expand Medicaid ought to reconsider and do the right thing. Let's stop denying millions of people health insurance just because of politics. Let's follow the lead of states that have already insured tens of thousands of their citizens. And here in Texas, let's do it better than anybody else.
Julian Castro is for gay marriage:
Ending the official bigotry that Texas sanctions is both the right thing to do, and it is also good for business," Castro said.
Castro, who is working hard to make San Antonio into a 'creative hub' by luring high tech businesses, says the young professionals who make up those industries, whether gay or straight, feel strongly that banning gay marriage is a civil rights violation.
Officials say they are beginning to see some stirrings of animosity toward Texas for maintaining laws which outlaw gay marriage among the 'creative class' that Castro seeks to lure to San Antonio.
They say having the image of being Alabama in 1962 when it comes to gay rights is not good for the growth of the city's economy, especially among young professionals.
Read more: http://www.woai.com/articles/woai-local-news-119078/exclusive-mayor-castro-says-texas-should-11434934/#ixzz307CNDpiv
Castro is a pro-choice Catholic:
There's no question that there's a teaching of the Catholic Church that's in contradiction with a pro-choice position, and there are folks who've made a lot of an issue of that. But if you look at opinion polls of Catholics, it's very clear that there's also a significant number of Catholics who are pro-choice. And so I feel like almost anything - whether it's a religion or something else, an ideology that folks subscribe to - you're not going to agree with it 100 percent. And you see that with regard to Catholics and reproductive rights. So I realize as a Catholic that I don’t have the same view as the bishops, as the pope, but I’m still Catholic.
I love Hillary. If she runs, I can support a Clinton/Castro ticket. But until then, I am officially going to back Julian Castro as my favorite of the undeclared Democratic candidates for president in 2016.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Sun Apr 27, 2014, 03:20 PM (3 replies)
I found the sexism in this one almost as appalling as the racism that everyone is talking about. Why is a white chick "delicate"? Why is a Latina "delicate"? Why do some men get such a kick out of this fantasy that women are frail flowers that they have to protect from danger---especially dangerous Black men? As an American mutt female, part Irish, part Italian, part Cherokee, part African, I have never felt threatened by an African-American man. Ever. But I've been creeped out plenty of times by crazy old guys like Sterling who seem bound and determined to nail my feet onto some pedestal like one of those French geese getting fattened up to make fois gras.
NOW needs to join in on this one. Sterling basically said that white and Latina women are "delicate" and that Black women are---what? Strong? I can do strong.
Posted by McCamy Taylor | Sun Apr 27, 2014, 04:46 AM (10 replies)