Saturday, September 29, 2012

Things to Know - 30 September

1.  This is a news article.  To that, I am adding my own opinion.  The problem of public sector services in this country have come under fire, usually by ALEC aficionados and related right wingers.  There is a problem where the cost to supply services are burdening the city or county budgets as a result of long-standing work agreements and benefits that over-burden an already beaten down community as a result of recessions and other problems not of their own making.  This provides a challenge to find a way of keeping the necessary services in place, while reigning in costs in a way that does not alienate the confidence and integrity the community has with the employees of those services.   The automatic response from one sector is to Privatize, which is the worst possible method and is an open invitation to create hidden corruption and a worse situation.  Finding a way to do all this well is as important as finding new sources of energy and water for the future:

2.  Here's a piece on Romney's sad situation from Charles Blow.  You can look around in any media publication and find any number of works that speak to the misadventures of the GeeOpee, and the unsuitability of His Mittness as a candidate, or his unqualified ability not to be a qualified communicator, but you can only put so much on to this page.  So, you pick around and stick one in now and then just for the pure fun of it:

3.  No opinion here.  It is a nice piece on the Southerness of finding out where the "South" begins in the state of Virginia.   Apparently Route 15 is an enclave of hard-core conservatives who have a very simple understanding of their politics.   This is more of a work of Americana than it is of current political theory, so try and enjoy it:

4.  This Op-Ed piece from the LA Times speaks to the current efforts in many states to install voter ID laws, and other moves to suppress voting.  It brings back the history of where similar actions took place in the past, and how each time that they were turned away, a feeling of permanently stifling voter suppression was over and done with.   But, voter suppression is back again.   This country is relatively young, but is old and experienced enough that the simple right of voting has been ingrained in our DNA of governance - but it has not.  At what point does this recidivist urge to deny or suppress voting stop?  How do we guarantee that the basic right to vote shall never be contested in the future?   Is that too much to ask of our supposed status as the "greatest nation"?:

5.  Just to let you know, Thom Hartmann is still around with a glimpse at other issues in a nice condensed format:

6.  Speculation on what is in store for the loser of the presidential campaign is more interesting than speculation on who is winning and who will win.   Most of this column is about those who have run before and lost.  This would make good Mitt night reading:

7.  Thomas Friedman (remember him?), well, he's still around.   On occasion, he does write something interesting, and this is not one of them.   I only include it because I am desperate to find something from the NY Times to put in, and also set up the debate that the two will have on foreign policy, so that you can see if they follow Tommy's line:

8.  The name Cesar Chavez is synonymous with the United Farm Workers Union and parity for the thousands of farm workers in California and this nation.   Many streets in the Southwest are named for him.  What is not very well known, is that he strayed from organizing workers later in his life and was distracted with an almost cult-like agenda:

"Few things are more satisfying than seeing your own children have teenagers of their own." 
       -- Doug Larson
"Is fuel efficiency really what we need most desperately? I say that what we really need is a car that can be shot when it breaks down." 
       -- Russell Baker
"When someone tells you something defies description, you can be pretty sure he's going to have a go at it anyway." 
       -- Clyde B. Aster
"It is only possible to live happily ever after on a day-to-day basis." 
       -- Margaret Bonnano

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