The City of St. Paul actively support the principles of the international “Transition Town” movement, ( reduction of use of fossil fuels, favoring use of local products and services, support of robust community, supporting and endorsing efforts coming from neighborhoods to these ends).
This very idea deserves a separate article. Basically the idea is to grow food locally, reuse more, and generally build a local sustainable community that can live with no oil. It is bundle of good ideas.
I’ve been grousing about the lack of sharp local, political satire and comment on Minnesota television and radio.I’ve looked for it on YouTube, surfed our Comcast channels and radio dial — nothing.(Yes, I do have a radio with knobs; a Christmas gift from my teenage kids.)
I’ve not found one single wag with a grinning, perceptive sense of the politically absurd or mundane on our local airwaves and their Internet repeaters. The ones pretending to be – like the teleprompter readers on Almanac or, say, the awkward talent on AM950 Radio’s Laughing Matters are, to be polite about it, duds. They lack juice and are delusional in their self-confirming shows.Michele Bachmann’s recent TV campaign ad pegged to her U.S. House bill to undo Obama Care sparked more laughs per second than a month’s worth of Almanac.
None-the-less, these local monologists, essayists, iconoclasts and chumps posture as if they are players in league with Bill Maher, Whoopi, Janeane Garofalo or perhaps sewer surfer Tom Bernard.
Andy Rooney, Molly Ivins and George Carlin were never guilty of an “I’m clever and perceptive” attitude. With brilliance, you don’t need attitude.Jon Stewart is a special case.His shtick of melodramatic asides, raised eyebrows, long takes at the camera and fist-pounding the fake news anchor desk is funny.The show is CPR for democracy.With maybe more than 15 Emmy winning writers and more producers making it up for him, Stewart is very funny.But our local broadcast pretenders to that comic aerie are bottom feeding; they seem to be worried about offending the Crocus Hill Chapter of the League of Women Voters.
Even Republicans and Libertarians agree that a flat rate income tax would be fair. Because we want out-of-state contributions (3.4%) and other goals, there will be a diversity of taxes. So Minnesota has added up all the local and state taxes and calculated the equivalent income tax for different income ranges. This study has been done for years. When Republicans were in power, the equivalent income tax went down for the richest and up for the poorest. Now the Democrats are bringing the the rate closer to a fair income tax rate. Click here for a larger image.
From the Governors Office:
The budget passed by the Governor and the majorities in the legislature creates a new 4 tier income tax bracket at 9.85% that will be paid only by the wealthiest 2% of Minnesotans. This new tax bracket will apply only to taxable income over $250,000 for married joint filers and taxable income over $150,000 for single filers.
$1.1 billion in New Revenue. This new tax bracket will help solve our budget deficit and invest in property tax relief for all Minnesotans,a better education system, and crucial economic development, measures to strengthen Minnesota’s middle class.
98% of Minnesotans Will See No Income Tax Increase.
When a violent attack happens we get stereotyped false statements from the right wing. Even from right wing leaders who are considered rational, like Senator Susan Collins, we get statements like this:
“Whenever we have an attack like this it’s difficult not to think that it’s somehow involved in Islamic extremism,” said Maine Sen. Susan Collins, until recently a top member of the Homeland Security committee and still a prime mover on security bills. “I don’t have evidence to back that up. That’s just based on previous attacks.”
Actually when one looks the real evidence, right wing extremism provides the most terrorism threats. Of course that excludes the consideration of corporate greed terrorism that killed at least 14 people in the West Fertilizer Explosion in Texas this week alone.
In the graphic above, it is difficult to see the identical circles because of the surrounding perspective. We can fix our perspective with real information. The In the rest of article, I lay out graphs of where our real terrorism threats exist. …READ MORE
Timid Video Theater responded to a long-lasting mantel of snow back in 1983 with a piece of whimsy for a KTCA-TV magazine show. Given the weather we’ve been we’re going through, I figure an encore might prompt some cheer. Our Facebook “friends” have posted hundreds of photos (with the their Smart phone cams) of white flocked trees, snow plows, stuck cars, confused robins - its getting as cute (as bad) as KARE 11 weather persons on the 6 O’Oclock. Well possums, enough already. This video includes ace comedy writer Peter Toland (before his Emmys) and the wonderful James Deming and John Barnier, Brainerd Bait Shop fashion statements, Met Stadium tail gating and the innovative boys back at 3M. I continue to produce Timid Video stuff (“Junk Yard Democrats” etc.).
What do I mean by “Democrats need to better with white voters”? And what do I mean by “part 4″? The latter is easy to answer. It turned into a multi-post subject, where the entirety of part 1 was devoted just to answering the question of why. That’s why I’m going to give just the brief version of why Democrats need to win more white votes, despite all the attention given to generational differences among voters and the Republican attempts at reaching out to young people, non-whites, generally what the recent elections revealed as Democratic-leaning demographic groups (DLDGs). The gist is this:
President Obama won the popular vote by a narrow enough margin, that Republicans can overcome it if they have any success reaching out to DLDGs. Yes, I’m aware of how they’ve been tripping over their own tongues, but let’s give ourselves a margin of error by assuming they do better enough at outreach to give themselves a chance at the electoral college.
Republicans won a healthy majority of the US House with a large minority of the overall vote, and a similar dynamic holds true in many state legislatures. We have to win more white voters if we hope to win majorities of seats.
I’m aware the demographic trends have been in our favor, but I don’t see why we should concede elections while we wait for elections to be handed to us. I also don’t like just assuming current trends continue. I prefer giving ourselves a margin of error, just in case GOP outreach works, or demographic trends change.
So that’s the brief version of why Democrats have to win more white voters. There are a lot of variables involved, like age, religion, income, a bunch more, and identifying those was done in part 2 (please check there before asking why I didn’t consider something, because probably I did). I devoted part 3 to one variable, population density, which has a remarkable correlation to the presidential vote. It got its own post partly because it’s rather complicated, but also because this seems like the single most important variable. At a minimum, it seems population density will suggest some overlooked targets for future elections and possible future strategies.
So in this final part, we get down to the application of all this analysis. How do we win more white votes? If it was resolvable in a single blog post I suppose it would be more obvious and already done, so I can’t pretend to have the whole solution. I do have ideas though, after the jump, but first one point to make about the feasibility of winning a bigger share of the white vote. Could we increase Obama’s 39% a few points to, say, 43%? Obama’s share in 2008 was, oh look, 43%. That would seem definitive proof we can do this. So let’s do this:
Sport hunting and trapping of Minnesota grey wolves prompted
Minnetonka’s Dr. Maureen Hackett to form Howling for Wolves, a citizen-driven campaign to get the DNR, Governor Dayton and/or the Legislature to replace such activities with humane and environmentally smart management protocols. When the Grey (Timber) Wolf was removed from the endangered species list by the Federal Government, the State, as we all know, provided a hunting season of it. Dr. Hackett and Nancy Nelson are not at all happy about this. They discuss the issues surrounding this important predator on the current edition of Democratic Visions. But you can see the segment now with this link - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nJQAQjXtQu0
More effective gun controls are addressed on the current edition of Democratic Visions.
Sami Rahamim discusses with AM950 Radio’s Nancy Nelson his response to the September killing of his father Reuvin Rahamim and two of his father’s employees and a United Parcel Service driver in his Bryn Mawr, Minneaplis sign company. Sami, Rahamin attended the State of the Union speech on the invitation of Congressman Keith Ellison. He and other survivors of families who had been victimized by gun violence heard President Obama call out to Congress that they “ … deserve a vote!” As a citizen-lobbyist, the 18-year old Mr. Rahamim has spoken on behalf of reforming gun laws in Saint Paul and Washington D.C.
In a strong commentary about reluctant Minnesota DFL legislators, Eden Prairie’s Doug Lind reminds our state lawmakers that they need to show backbone and pass effective laws that will reduce the careless and evil use of weapons.
Democratic Visions is produced by unpaid volunteers through DFL Senate District 48 at the Bloomington Community Access Television studio on Old Shakopee Road.
Minneapolis MTN Channel 16 – Sundays at 8:30 p.m.
Dem Vis is also streamed live on Sundays at 8:30 p.m at this MTN Ch 16 link: http://www.mtn.org/Video/tvguide/live.html
Comcast Channel 15 Sundays at 9 p.m. and Wednesdays at 5:30 p.m. in Eden Prairie, Minnetonka, Edina, Richfield and Hopkins.
Bloomington Cable Access Television (BCAT) Channel 16 on Tuesdays at 2:00 p.m. & 10:00 p.m., Fridays at 9:30 p.m. , Saturdays at 7:30 a.m., 2:30 p.m.
DEMOCRATIC VISIONS CHANNEL – YOUTUBE
Browse more than more than 125 segments including discussions, commentary and humor on a wide range of political issues -
Brace yourselves for the GET OFF MY LAWN rebranding
As everyone knows, the Republican Party (aka the Party Of No, aka The Tea Party, aka Party of Legitimate Rape, aka The Birthers, aka the Climate Change Deniers, aka the Ignorance Caucus) has image problems.
Rep. John Kline will land in the national spotlight this month as he leads a congressional hearing on school violence in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting that left 26 people dead in Connecticut.
It’s the first hint of the pivotal role Kline, chairman of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, will play in the Republican Party’s effort to redefine itself after the electoral losses of 2012.
Since the start of President Obama’s second term, influential Republicans have been crafting an education- and jobs-centered agenda they hope will help win over a broader base of Americans.
Besides school safety, Kline also will lead the GOP push on issues party leaders hope will make them more relevant to minority and middle-class voters: private-school vouchers for children from lower-income families, college affordability and workforce training tailored to in-demand jobs.
Kline knows as much about education as I know about astrophysics. But the former Marine knows what his donors want him to say. Yes, that’s the for-profit colleges and the banks that rip off far too many people seeking higher education.
As for image, Kline’s staff calls the cops any time a Democrat shows up his offices. In other words, he’s the prototypical Get Off My Lawn Republican.
The staffers he hires are notoriously rude. Campaign Manager Mike Osskopp went to a DFL event and yelled racist insults at DFLers as they arrived.
First Republicans in Congress helped the Bush Administration destroy the economy. Then they held the economy hostage over the debt ceiling demanding austerity measures all the while protecting the 1% and corporate tax dodgers. Their shenanigans lowered the US’s credit rating.
The only solution President Obama could negotiate with them was a short term solution that if Congress couldn’t permanently deal with the debt ceiling, we’d have massive across-the-board cuts called sequestration.
Now with sequestration looming, what have Republicans in the US House done? They’re going on vacation.
“With millions of jobs and our nation’s economy in the balance, and only four legislative days left until the March first sequester triggering drastic, across the board spending cuts that will negatively affect every senior citizen, every child, and every middle class family in my district and across America, the Republican leadership adjourned the Congress this morning for nine days,” says Rep. Rick Nolan (DFL-MN).
Nolan and Democrats in Congress voted against adjourning.
“Politics aside, the people of Minnesota’s 8th District expect and demand that their Congress stay at work to achieve a bipartisan, balanced solution to our budget and debt situation,” Nolan continued. “A solution that includes responsible spending cuts, increased revenues, and economic growth to generate the middle class jobs we so desperately need.”
“We simply cannot continue to govern this great nation by crisis management,” Nolan concluded. “I will continue to do all within my power to get this Congress working again for middle class Americans who expect no less.”
The State House has passed a bill that would raise the state minimum wage to $9.50/hour and index it to inflation so $9.50 in today's dollars is worth an equivalent amount in next year's. The State Senate is dragging its feet, insisting on legislator pay raises *first*. Tell them to get off the sidelines, stop dragging their feet, and help raise up the working poor!