I like to challenge the localized thinking of individuals to make global change

Posts tagged ‘politics’

People Just Be Saying Stuff…..

So here we are embarking on another election year and the time when people just be saying stuff.  I don’t need to regurgitate all of the ridiculous claims that have been spewed all over the media for the past several months….I’m sure we’ve all had our fill of that!  What I’m referring to here are the comments regarding President Obama.  I’ve heard numerous times that President Obama has been the worst President in the history of the United States.  President Obama has been a divider not a unifier.  President Obama has caused our economy to be in the worst shape that it has ever been in.  President Obama has cost people jobs and increased the cost of healthcare.  Oh and my very favorite…President Obama ain’t black enough, hasn’t done enough for the black community, and he’s a sellout…WHOA!!

Well, I don’t know what measuring tool was used for determining President Obama as being the “worst President in the history of the United States” but it couldn’t have been Watergate, Sex Scandals, falsified documentation for starting wars, or a failed economy that sent the housing market spiraling and thousands of job losses, if so, I must have been living in a different United States for the past 8 years.  I don’t remember seeing any of the above situations happening during President Obama’s tenure.  Also, I don’t remember a President who has not only had to endure the harshest of criticisms from the other political party, but the backlash from some in the black community has baffled my mind.  Now, I’m not saying that just because he’s black he should be automatically embraced by the community.  But I am saying that just because he is black, he shouldn’t be expected to do more for the black community than any other President has been expected to do.  The President of the United States is elected to represent ALL people and not be partial to a certain group, however, unless this person is a robot without preconceived biases, there are always going to be preference of some groups over the other.  What I don’t understand is why President Obama has been held to a higher standard in the black community than any of his predecessors just because he is black.  Is there some black code that he violated by not being a “brutha?”  I mean, damn, he danced to “Hotline Bling with Usher,” sang “Let’s Stay Together at a political rally,” sang “Amazing Grace at a funeral,” and “dropped the mic at the last White House Correspondence Dinner” yet he is still not black enough.  Hell, I’ve seen less blackness in my neighborhood!  It’s really disheartening that we (black folks) couldn’t even come together to at least celebrate the historical nature of President Obama’s election (TWICE) rather than find ways to cut him down even though the white folks (CONGRESS) were already doing a damn good job of that!  I get it…opinions are like assholes….everybody has one and you are surely entitled to do what you will with yours, but there is a fine line between opinions and criticisms and I find that people are much quicker to offer the latter when they themselves wouldn’t dare step foot in the shoes of the person they are criticizing.

Just a final word…the attached video from 2008 is a reminder of what was and how we need to WAKE-UP and take control of our rights as a people and a nation regardless of color.  Of course, that’s just my opinion.

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America is NOT a SPORT!!

I’ve learned that when we get hung up on titles and credentials the best people aren’t always hired for the job.  Just because someone has a Masters or PhD doesn’t mean they are competent and just because someone is Democrat or Republican doesn’t mean they are going to act with the best interest of the people in mind.  Maybe when we stop acting like these two parties are our favorite football team and we stick with them no matter what, we will begin to elect people who are truly about the will of the people and not cockblocking (yes, I said it!) progress just because the person with the idea is on the other team!! Let’s stop showing our ignorance just for the sake of the Party!!

It is well past time to stop being fans of Republicans and Democrats (and the Tea Party) and start holding ELECTED (meaning hired to do a job) Officials accountable for the reckless nature in which they make decisions and run this country!!

Allowing a country to shutdown, go bankrupt, and become economically deficient while holding your breath and throwing a temper tantrum until your team gets their way is juvenile, irresponsible, reckless, stupid, asinine, idiotic, senseless, trivial….oh I could go on and on but I think you get the picture.

If Congress needs more things to play with then I will be happy to start a toy drive, however, American lives and livelihoods are not a high stakes poker game where everyone has on their poker face and waiting to see who is bluffing.  Put down the cards and cigars and get back to work or you’re all FIRED!!

LWG

Why I’m voting for President Obama in 2012

During this very tumultuous presidential campaign and even during President Obama’s first four years, I have questioned why I would vote for President Obama in 2012 as opposed to any other candidate.  I have wondered if in fact our country would be better off with another four years of President Obama.  I’ve listened to the voices of the opposed and wondered if there is just something I’m not seeing.  What is it about Mitt Romney that people are so fired up about?  Could he really be promising something that President Obama can’t deliver?  Are my loyalties blinded by the injustice that I feel this President has endured? The blatant disrespect and the declaration that “He will be a one-term President?”  Maybe I wouldn’t give Mitt Romney or any other candidate a fair chance because I wanted to shut those up who are so verbal about this “horrible” President that we have had to endure for the last four years.  I thought deep, long, and hard about my motivation for my decision to vote for President Obama in 2012 and this is what I have finally come up with:

Members of Congress are quick to talk about how “we” are suffering from the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression.  I’ve heard many talk about “our” economy and how President Obama’s Bail Out Plan has put “us” in deeper debt by trillions of dollars.  Than I decided to check the salaries of Members of Congress and realized that “they” are really not part of the “we” who are experiencing hardship.  I realized that “they” are simply using the American people as a single-mother would her child to maintain control over the father.  I realized that “we” are simply pawns in a tug-of-war game between two power houses who only want to WIN at all costs.  Let’s look at what I discovered from the following website (http://usgovinfo.about.com/od/uscongress/a/in-recession-congress-pay-increased.htm):

“The recession that began in December 2007 took a bite out of American workers’ paychecks over the next couple of years – perhaps a small price for those fortunate enough to hold onto their jobs during the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.”

The recession began in 2007 – One year before Barack Obama was elected

Okay so there are those who argue that he took a bad situation and made it worse…hmmmmm.  Let’s look further:

While workers in private industry suffered financial setbacks, Congress pay grew at taxpayer expense during the depth of the recession, an analysis of federal economic data showed.

Members of the House and Senate saw their salaries go up by more than 5 percent, or $8,800, from the time the recession began through 2009, according to the federal government.

So are “we” really struggling?  It seems to me that some people are doing quite well, Thank you!

Oh and let’s not forget the argument against “Obamacare” which provides health care to many who would not otherwise afford it, college students who would get kicked off of their parent’s insurance at age 21, those with pre-existing conditions, and of course contraceptives for women.  Well, why would Congress want the American people to share in this benefit when:

The Congress pay figures do not include the generous perks and health benefits provided to lawmakers.

Let’s compare the ship Congress is sailing on to the dingy the American people are trying to keep afloat:

The per capita personal income in the Unites States shrunk by more than half a percentage point, or $254 a year, from 2007 through 2009, according to the U.S. Dept. of Commerce’s Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Members of the House and Senate, meantime, earned $174,000 in 2009, up from $165,200 two years earlier.

The per capita personal income in the United States was $39,138, down from $39,392 two years earlier, according to data released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis in March of 2010.

Members of Congress made about 4.5 times the national per capita personal income in 2009, the most recent data available. 

Wow, so what is the problem?  Why is Congress so upset with the President?  They seem to be doing quite well since 2007.  Oh that’s right…they want to focus on making President Obama a “one-term” President not decrease their salaries, make healthcare affordable and equal, not help our economy grow so American workers can experience a growth in personal income…but to make President Obama a “one-term” President.

I realized what all this really meant: The people who we hired our making 4 times more money than their bosses and we are not getting what we paid for!  And history shows that this has been the case much longer than President Obama has been in office.  Here let me show you some data:

Here’s a look at per capita personal income and Congress pay from 1990 through 2009.

  • 2009: Per capita, $39,138 – Congress pay, $174,000
  • 2008: Per capita, $40,166 – Congress pay, $169,300
  • 2007: Per capita, $39,392 – Congress pay, $165,200
  • 2006: Per capita, $37,698 – Congress pay, $165,200
  • 2005: Per capita, $35,424 – Congress pay, $162,100
  • 2004: Per capita, $33,881 – Congress pay, $158,100
  • 2003: Per capita, $32,271 – Congress pay, $154,700
  • 2002: Per capita, $31,462 – Congress pay, $150,000
  • 2001: Per capita, $31,145 – Congress pay, $145,100
  • 2000: Per capita, $30,318 – Congress pay, $141,300
  • 1999: Per capita, $28,333 – Congress pay, $136,700
  • 1998: Per capita, $27,258 – Congress pay, $136,700
  • 1997: Per capita, $25,654 – Congress pay, $133,600
  • 1996: Per capita, $24,442 – Congress pay, $133,600
  • 1995: Per capita, $23,262 – Congress pay, $133,600
  • 1994: Per capita, $22,297 – Congress pay, $133,600
  • 1993: Per capita, $21,385 – Congress pay, $133,600
  • 1992: Per capita, $20,799 – Congress pay, $129,500
  • 1991: Per capita, $19,818 – Congress pay, $125,100
  • 1990: Per capita, $19,354 – Congress pay, $96,600 (House) and $98,400 (Senate)

This Country may not be in the best shape it could be in, but can we really blame the current President for all of it?  I know it sounds like I’m trying to blame Congress for the shape we are in but that is far from the truth.  All of this data was just to give you a glimpse of what Congress makes compared to the American worker.  The real reason I am voting for President Obama is quite simple:

In 2004, George W. Bush ran for reelection. Though the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were not going well, and his efforts in Social Security reform had met with great resistance, Bush’s political core remained supportive, and he was able to win reelection over Democratic challenger Senator John Kerry in the November election. During his second term, Bush pushed for immigration reform, which received criticism from many conservatives, and eased environmental regulations, which received criticism from many liberals. The Bush administration’s poor response to Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans further pushed down his favorability rating.  In 2008, the final year of his presidency, the country faced enormous challenges. The United States was fighting two foreign wars, and the budget surplus left by the Clinton administration had transformed into a multi-trillion-dollar debt—the effects of military spending, tax cuts, and slow economic growth. In the early fall of 2008, the country was hit with a severe credit crisis that sent the stock market into free fall and led to massive layoffs. The Bush administration scrambled and encouraged Congress to enact a controversial $700 billion Emergency Economic Stabilization Act to bail out the housing and banking industries.”

Wars, controversial tax cuts, Social Security reform, slow economic growth, severe credit crisis, massive layoffs, and (the cherry on top) a $700 billion Emergency Economic Stabilization Act to “bail out” the housing and banking industries. Any of this sound familiar to you?  They say that President Obama has taken a bad situation and made it worse and he has not “earned” their vote for a 2nd term.  Well, neither did the other guy, but he won anyway.

United? We’re not!

I am and have been for quite some time growing weary of this overgrown playground game of Red Rover.  Red Rover, Red Rover, send the next politician over!  The fact that we are called the “United” States of America is a joke in itself.  Our government is probably the most divisive entity in the world.  It is an “Us” or “Them” concept that uses the average American citizen as pawns.  If we find ourselves on the wrong team then we lose.  I’m sure there was a good reason at one time for creating political parties, but I don’t see the benefit in them except to further divide people over beliefs, opinions, socio-economic status, race, and class.  What has sickened me the most is the amount of money that is being spent on campaigning to be the president and lawmakers while criticizing the state of the economy at the same time.  I am inundated with emails and telephone calls to give, give, give even after explaining my financial status and the fact that I work a part-time job just so one campaign can keep up financially with the other.  Then I hear about $25,000 dollar a head dinners to raise funds for another campaign.  And what do the American people get out of all of this spending? Countless television ads touting the positives of one candidate over the other, extreme negativity, misleading sound bites that only give a portion of a story, and false “I’ll take care of you” promises that never come into fruition because everybody in the house can’t play nice together.  Here’s a great idea, let’s have a “get the American people out of debt” fundraiser and use that money to pay down America’s credit card, allow people to go to college without having to choose between a degree and the basic necessities of life, having healthcare that everybody can afford, offering grants for people to start a small business or to help small businesses grow so they can hire people.  I think if a person really cared about the state of the economy, they would want that money to go to something that would be long-lasting and helpful and not something that is temporary like an election that is so vindictive and teaches our children how to use hateful tactics against another person to get what you want.

I’m a believer in showing me what I mean to you rather than telling me.  I don’t want someone who purchases the White House or any other public office telling me that they have the best interest of my family as their priority when all they can do is tear down the other guy or party to make themselves look like the lesser of two evils.  I will vote in November and for any other election because I truly feel like it is my duty as an American citizen to take part in the process, but in all honesty I have never walked away from a voting booth feeling like there was going to be a real change in how our government works because the roles are reversed.  Instead of the government doing the will of the people, the people are screaming to the top of their lungs telling the government what we want only to have them shake a finger in our faces and tell us “no, that’s not good for you” because they know better.

The audacity of government officials telling citizens that they don’t deserve healthcare because it came from the other guy or it’s going to cost too much while enjoying the benefits of income, healthcare, transportation, vacations, and other amenities at the expense of the American people.  It seems like we have hired an employee and given them this great benefits package and then having them tell us how they’re going to do the job we hired them to do and they don’t think we should get the same benefits that they have.  Voting is supposed to be the process of hiring employees that we think are going to do the job we need them to do that will garner the most benefits for the majority and firing those who have proven to not operate according to the job description.  What has happened is one group of people trying to get more of their people in positions of power that will benefit them and screw the rest.  Excuse me, but I feel some kind of way about this.

Ideally, I don’t think politicians should need to have extravagant fundraisers to try to convince people that they are the candidate who will do the best job.  In the end all it tells me is that your friends are richer than the other person’s friends and they can afford to spend more money than the average person.  Also, raising money doesn’t mean you are going to be a great president or government official, it doesn’t even mean that they think that you would make a great leader,  it just means that you have people who dislike the other person enough to spend any amount of money to replace them.

The really sad commentary is it really doesn’t matter who gets into office as the leader of the free world, until we limit terms on all the other people who are in office we will always have stalemates and governmental tug of wars at the cost of the American people.  I don’t understand why congressmen and senators can serve in a position unlimited as long as they are voted in and the president is limited on their time when that is the position where we need the most consistency.  As long as we have decision makers who are hell-bent on having their own way regardless of whether it is beneficial to the citizens they serve or not, progress will continue to be on a hamster wheel just going around and around without moving forward.  There will never be resolution to some of our most pertinent issues if we are voting for something one term and against it the next.  I am increasingly pessimistic about the state of our country and am just preparing for the worse.  The only comfort I have in all of this is that God is ultimately in control of it all and He will determine the destiny of this country.  God Bless America?  God Help America!

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