Sunday, June 19, 2016

OUR SECOND MOST IMPORTANT ELECTION THIS YEAR

Happens this week, and not in Kentucky, or even the US.  England will vote on whether to remain in the EU—the European Union of some 20 countries---or leave.

It’s still our 2nd most important election because of the impact it will have on the US, depending on how the vote goes. There have been background stories in our papers, but little on national TV, though you should start seeing coverage this week. (It appears the murder of young Jo Cox, an “MP”---member of Parliament—was related to the vote. Hers is an even sadder case than our own Gabby Giffords.)

For the best TV coverage of this issue, watch the 11pm BBC news on KET. By midnight Thursday, or early Friday, we should know the outcome.

And, btw, England is our Mother Country---many of our own democratic traditions originated there.  Several years ago, Scotland voted on whether to leave the UK or not; now there’s this important referendum. Why can’t the US do the same?  I know of no laws preventing it.

For a starter, how about adding one more decision to our November ballot…Yes or No:

Congress should return to the bans on assault weapons and high capacity magazines it imposed years ago…and then let lapse.

That could write a new chapter for the nation that claims to be the world’s greatest democracy.

I'm just sayin'...

Sunday, June 5, 2016

HOW BEST TO REMEMBER THE CHAMP???

In Louisville a proposal has been made to solve 2 problems…remove the statue of the Confederate soldier and replace it with one of Ali.

Wrong.

Better we put up a plaque at that downtown diner that refused him service when he came home from winning an Olympic gold medal...because he was black, and Louisville/Kentucky was segregated.

We need reminders of our past history, and what courageous blacks did to stir our consciences and get us to correct past wrongs. Ali is a fine example of that---maybe even The Greatest.

We need to remember him when he exercised the right of every American to protest unjust laws and policies...as when he took his stand against the Vietnam war—saying his religion forbade taking lives in war, that “no Viet Cong had ever called him nigger," and he didn’t want to go kill brown people in behalf of their white colonial oppressors. (And the more you know about French policy of its former colony the more you know he was right.)

He stood against war—always dangerous in our society (remember more recently the Dixie Chicks?) It took 3 years for the Supreme Court to decide Ali was right.  Meanwhile professional boxing (always a sleazy sport) blackballed him from fighting in his best years.

How do we look at the 'Nam war today? Or Iraq and those great WMDs?

That’s how to remember Ali…as the Conscience of our Nation (and our World.)  I think he’d like that...and as he also said "maybe how pretty I was.”

I'm just sayin'...

Monday, May 23, 2016

SOME THOTS ABOUT NOVEMBER



1—if my Democratic friends think they will have a cakewalk this fall, and HRC or Bernie, will waltz into 1600 Pa. Avenue, think again. Trump has been a masterful campaigner, bringing out many, many people to his rallies (as The Bern has) and that bodes well for the fall.  And even with prominent defections from his cause, party histories are, they kiss and make up before the vote.

2—But this is a  unique presidential year. Never have the polls shown so many people rejecting the 2 major party candidates as unworthy or with such high negatives; never.

3---That said, forget most of such polling. It is MUCH too early for polls to mean anything. (Remember in Iowa 13 polls in advance of its famous  caucus were all wrong!) Wait till mid-October.

4—Speaking of October, this may well be the year of the “October Surprise.” What would ISIS (or other terrorist groups) give to influence our elections by causing some major, tragic event this fall close to voting time. How would that influence the outcome?

5---A “dead heat” poll is not 43-46% with the margin of error (MOE) at 3%. That’s a close race, but not the dead head major media reported over the weekend. 46-46 is a dead heat.

6---But, for the first time we are seeing polls (see item #3 above) showing Trump ahead of HRC (but not Sanders) and this should give Dems some concern. (see item #1 above)

7—In short, keep your powder dry, don’t make any election bets  just yet, and…Stay Tuned.

I'm just sayin'...

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

THOTS AFTER THE KENTUCKY PRIMARY

1---Something is wrong when, in an election for President, “in the world’s greatest democracy” the turnout is 21%. America MUST solve how to get more people to vote...and until a better idea comes along, I favor fining people who don’t vote...or taking away their driver’s license. (That oughta get ‘em.)

2—Yes “the system IS rigged” by those who have money against the rest of us. The Citizens United decision must be reversed, and if it takes a constitutional amendment to do so, let’s get started.

3---Let’s also get started on the most UNdemocratic part of our Constitution—the electoral college. Either you favor “one person, one vote” or you don’t. As long as the “college” exists, that is impossible. It needs to be eliminated.

4---And we need to start now to get Kentucky added to a growing list of states who reapportion themselves by some method other than letting the legislature do it.  Talk about conflict of interest! There are good ways, using people who are expert in  geography and population…and fairness. The next census isn’t that far away.

5—Did you notice the major media in Kentucky had no “polls” in their stories recently about our presidential primary? This follows the abject failure of the polls in recent state elections..as for governor and senator.  (Other states haven’t gotten the message...there were 13 polls in advance of the Iowa caucus; all wrong.)  But, stand by…someone will claim their polling approach is more accurate and this fall or next time, Kentucky media stories will be full of them.

6---Did you also notice how local media, especially broadcasters, did NOT bother to cover such minor elections as for Congress or Senate? They used to ride those campaign buses, show the candidates meeting the people in Gravel Switch and Salyersville—but apparently no more.

And we wonder why the turnout is so low???

I'm just sayin'...

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

SOME CLOUDS (of smoke) OVER MARIJUANA

Full disclosure:

1—I have never smoked.

2—I support medical marijuana use.

3---I support Kentucky’s plans to cultivate industrial hemp (NOT the same as marijuana) as we used to do.

NOW THEN:

I would seriously restrict tobacco smoking as much as possible, including the statewide ban that failed in the last legislature, mainly because it is the most preventable cause of serious sicknesses.

I believe, and wait for scientific proof, that smoking marijuana has some similar health problems as tobacco.

BUT, that proof is lacking today.

Three states that have legalized marijuana have had traffic accidents among marijuana smokers DOUBLE in recent months.

A AAA researcher says there is today no consensus of what might be the equivalent for smoking marijuana of the .08 blood alcohol level for drinkers.

I think it’s out there…and the research goes on.

I'm just sayin'...

Monday, May 2, 2016

WHY “X” DOESN’T ALWAYS MARK “Z” SPOT



I watch a lot of TV, mainly PBS, and see a lot of ads. (Yes, even PBS/KET have succumbed to running ads these days!  Drat.)

I don’t know which is worse..the medicine ads or the lawyer ads. I guess perhaps the lawyer ads about medicine.

If I never hear corticosteroid again it will be too soon..or “messy-feel-lee-oh-ma(ha!), if I could spell it.

And why there  so many drugs with made up names starting with X, but pronounced as  Z. Something wrong with Z?  Are Zeus and Zorro out of favor?

(There’ll always be an ad man, and a lawyer…but must we hear those voices telling us."Don't take X if you are allergic to it!”  I mean, give me a break.)

Those lawyer ads are going down hill. The Hammer used to have whimsical, funny ads…no more. The best of what’s left are the Morgan Family ads..even if they "Ulti-muttly” go to the dogs.

But the ads that defy all logic are on the Fox 10pm news..A commercial says.."This portion of the 10pm news is brought to you by Sam’s tattoo and vampire shop.”  Two minutes later comes another ad…”This portion of the 10pm news is brought to you by Dewey, Cheatam, and Howe.”  Which means what Sam has brought you is a couple of commercials, NOT the news.  Why Sam, why?

And so it goes…"ad” nauseum,."

I'm just sayin'

Sunday, April 24, 2016

TRUMP IS RIGHT…..AH, CORRECT, BUT

He didn’t do his homework.

Yes, in many ways, our electoral process for president is rigged. But the rules, procedures and calendar are known months, even years, ahead, and Mr. Trump doesn’t seem to know that.

Yes, many of these favor the party faithful...those who work between elections, doing the grunt work, going to precinct meetings, and state conventions, ringing doorbells and working their way up to responsible party positions.

Is that so bad???

In Kentucky, and in one way, yes. The recent state GOP convention in Lexington elected a lot of people to the national gathering. Many of these were familiar names, and long time party workers. Gov Bevin, Senators McConnell and Paul, etc. etc. etc.

They will cast the vote for all Kentucky Republicans in Cleveland for President…but almost all of these people won’t tell their fellow Republicans who they favor for  America’s top job.

That just doesn’t seem right or fair.  (Not that the Democrats are much different.)

That’s what the recent primary…ah, caucus…was about..and the GOP voted for Trump ahead of the others...so on the first ballot it would seem fair…and the will of those who bothered to vote...that their choice be so reflected. (Most state and party rules allow delegates to be “free” after the first ballot…which Mr. Trump may not be aware of, either.)

So this “rigging" has been known and practiced for years. Doesn’t make it right (ah, correct) and I think the parties ought to offer their members slates committed to various candidates.

That would be fairer and more democratic (ah, republican.)

I'm just sayin'...