Browsing articles in "Politics"

The Common Denominator of Right Wing Policy: Lost Lives

Apr 15, 2012   //   Politics  //  Comments Off on The Common Denominator of Right Wing Policy: Lost Lives

Politicians on the political right continue to pursue multiple areas of policy despite the well-documented, often substantial, and unnecessary loss of American lives associated with those policies.

“Guns in Restaurants/Bars”: Establishment Owner Liabilities and Rights Infringement

Mar 25, 2012   //   Politics  //  Comments Off on “Guns in Restaurants/Bars”: Establishment Owner Liabilities and Rights Infringement

A number of states have enacted legislation that allows concealed carry weapon (CCW) permit holders to bring handguns into establishments that serve alcoholic beverages. Similar legislation is pending in North Carolina (House Bill 111). During legislative debate much emphasis is placed on the ‘right’ of ‘law-abiding citizens’ to carry guns for protection. But, could this legislation conflict with existing state and federal law and thus potentially infringe on establishment owner’s rights and/or subject them to liability? Recently completed legal research in the state of North Carolina concluded that it might.

Gunfire Deaths in Children vs Pro-Life: A Political Double Standard

Jan 31, 2012   //   Politics  //  Comments Off on Gunfire Deaths in Children vs Pro-Life: A Political Double Standard

When it comes to the issue of protecting ‘children’, conservative politicians treat the gun lobby and the Pro-Life movement as legislative opposites.

Sacrificing Our Children in the Name of the Second Amendment

Jan 10, 2012   //   Politics  //  1 Comment

The US experiences a grossly disproportionate rate of firearm-related deaths in minors as compared to peer countries, and firearm deaths amongst the young account for more than 25% of the decreased life expectancy gap in America. The firearms industry, that is experiencing a long-term decline in American gun ownership, provides substantial financial support to the NRA and has had ties to that organization’s Board of Directors. The NRA has become a powerful lobbying force at both federal and state levels with a record of opposing legislation that would negatively affect firearms sales and advocating for legislation that expands firearm sales. That our elected representatives continue to enact firearm market expansion policies, without implementing tougher regulatory restraints on gun sales to curb firearm deaths in minors, represents the worst of special interest-driven politics and is nothing short of a dereliction of duty in governance.

Our Unrepresentative Representation

Dec 18, 2011   //   Politics  //  1 Comment

The Occupy Wall Street movement has reason to protest. Special interest-driven deregulation policy was at the heart of the recent economic collapse. It has been the “99%” that has paid the price for this policy failure with lost employment, devalued housing prices, retirement accounts being cut in half, and increased levels of poverty while the wealthiest in America continued to do well. A valid question is why our elected representatives are not working together to put a stop to failed policy that has been so damaging to the majority of Americans. This article will examine the disproportionate number of the wealthy who hold elected office in Washington and the conflict of interest they face in setting policy versus their own financial interests as well as the special interests that finance their campaigns. And it will explore an incentive that politicians have to stay in office where they can act on non-public information to their own financial benefit. It examines the issue of whether our Congress has become ‘Our Unrepresentative Representation’.

Deregulation, Special Interests, and Gay Marriage with NC House Majority Leader

Oct 31, 2011   //   Politics  //  Comments Off on Deregulation, Special Interests, and Gay Marriage with NC House Majority Leader

Last week I attended a function where Representative Paul (Skip) Stam (R), the NC House Majority Leader was the guest speaker. I just happened to sit at the same table with him and we exchanged a few comments. In listening to his presentation there were several issues, not just at the state level but also relevant nationally, that were too much to get into there. So I issued the following to his office. In looking at two of the issues, 1) deregulation to the benefit of business at the expense of the public, and 2) special interest contributions to legislators during the healthcare reform debate, I wondered why there would be any question about the emotion being expressed at the Occupy Wall Street movements around this country.

Discrimination and Job Creation Just Don’t Mix

Oct 6, 2011   //   Politics  //  1 Comment

In defending their tax policies that largely benefit the wealthiest, Republican leadership claims that it is protecting our ‘job creators’. However, Republican legislators certainly paid no heed to dozens of job creating CEOs who expressed their opposition to discriminatory legislation that could only negatively affect economic growth and job creation. Although Tea Party elected officials may say that their focus is on smaller government, recent research has shown that the rank and file of that movement are more concerned about social conservatism, especially a desire to see religion play a prominent role in government.

A Request for NC Senator Hagan to Address Moral Issue of Wealth/Income Inequality vs Poverty

Aug 29, 2011   //   Politics  //  Comments Off on A Request for NC Senator Hagan to Address Moral Issue of Wealth/Income Inequality vs Poverty

NC Senator Kay Hagan has positively acted to support many progressive policies. I have issued a written request that she address with her colleagues the serious moral issue that a higher value has been assigned to tax benefits for the wealthiest than the lives of the less fortunate in our country during economically troubled times – the victims of The Great Recession.

Wealth and Income Inequality: America’s Moral Crisis

Aug 21, 2011   //   Politics  //  3 Comments

Less than one tenth of one percent of our population is holding a sum of wealth approaching three times the size of the US economy that is anticipated to more than double within the next decade, the earnings on which does not contribute to Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. And the wealthiest in America quintupled their income during the heart of the Great Recession. To propose cuts to food stamps and unemployment benefits for the victims of the Great Recession during a time of increasing poverty and poverty-related deaths, without shared sacrifice at the top, represents nothing less than a moral crisis for our country.

You’re Fired!

Aug 4, 2011   //   Politics  //  Comments Off on You’re Fired!

In listening to conservative economic ideologues who continue to support their policies as a way to stimulate job creation and economic growth, I decided to place them before the board of a corporation to defend the performance of their policies.

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The Cruelty of NCs House Bill 2

North Carolina’s House Bill 2 is fundamentally flawed. Quite the opposite of legislators bogus claims that public facility non-discrimination laws create safety concerns from sexual predators, the law actually increases the risk of abuse, both verbal and physical, to the already vulnerable transgender population. Further, in the state of NC that houses the Research Triangle Park and multiple world class medical institutions, legislators have pandered to religious factions and organizations that have stigmatized, ostracized and even demonized transgenders, some of whom suffer from a recognized medical diagnosis. The situation for transgendered youth is particularly grave, a population that already suffers a high rate of both abuse and suicide attempts. The law is cruel and untenable from both business and civil/human rights perspectives, and should be repealed.

NC’s Anti-LGBT Law and the Legislature: Little Business Sense

In this published Letter to the Editor (Raleigh N&O), powerful members of the North Carolina legislature have demonstrated little understanding of the importance of customer retention in building the business base of the state.

North Carolina’s LGBT Discrimination Law HB2: Its Folly and Motivation

By using sex on a birth certificate to define sexual identity, NC’s legislature and governor have shown much ignorance about the complexities of biologic diversity. But it is the pandering to LGBT hate groups by ranking members of the GOP at both the national and state level that reveals the underlying discrimination that motivated the law.

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The Year the GOPs Con Game was Exposed

The GOP’s decision to reinstate tax cut policy in 2001 exposed their hand. It was not about deficit reduction, growing the economy, or job creation. It was about ideology and, no doubt, special interests. It was a backdoor approach where government revenue was cut in an attempt to curtail spending on popular programs they otherwise could not take head-on. This while obstructing the work of Congress, spinning a web of deceit about the benefits of their policy, and weakening our country’s financial standing. It’s time to play hardball during ‘fiscal cliff’ negotiations and force them to be specific about what spending cuts they are talking about to offset the tax benefits they wish to preserve for the wealthiest. They wouldn’t have the nerve.