Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Bush's War of Choice Adds To 'Baby Tax'

Thank you President Bush for burdening the next generation of American children with an extra $4,745 added to their already impressive debt from the moment they are born. Iraq was a war of choice which cost America's reputation, our soldier's lives and now future generations will get to pay for your incompetent decisions too. -IFK Editor

Iraq War Fourth Most Expensive in US History

The Christian Science Monitor shows that the war in Iraq is turning into one of the most expensive wars in United States history, including both military and reconstruction costs. Corrected for inflation, this is the fourth most expensive war, behind World War II, Korea, and Vietnam. One projection has the war costing $4,745 per person.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

American Taliban Issues Fatwah on Hugo Chavez

You've got to be kidding me? Why do Pat Robertson and the James Dobson gang have any credibility as God Fearing Men? It's absolutely unbelievable what these guys say and get away that these days. They have no shame and no honor either. It sickens me that good people listen and give money to these false prophets of the right wing noise machine. -IFK Editor

Pat Robertson calls for assassination of Hugo Chavez

Religious broadcaster Pat Robertson suggested on-air that American operatives assassinate Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez to stop his country from becoming "a launching pad for communist infiltration and Muslim extremism."

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Kerry Understands How Dems Will Win in 2006

Say what you will about John Kerry, but he gets it. He understands what the dems need to do to win in 2006 and beyond. He realizes the Democratic Party will always face an uphill battle unless they organize year around and build the party at the state level. I fully agree. Obviously having Dean as the party chair should help in this regard. In the past too much emphasis was placed on fundraising and little to organizing and building the party and promoting its message.

One of my biggest issues in 2004 was how the democratic party was so unorganized at the state level and Kerry's team had to scramble to get fully up to speed with less than 6 months to organize a national campaign. Local organizers weren't plugged in to national and vice versa. Voter lists were pathetically lacking. There was duplication of much work and outsourcing of other important grassroots work to groups like ACT,who couldn't actually promote Kerry (or any candidate) by name because they were restricted by campaign laws. Face facts: the Republicans did a better job of reaching their target audience (and getting out the vote) in certain battle ground states.

Like Kerry I also don't believe dems need to run away from their values and ideas or try to rebrand themselves. While others like Biden and Hillary are trying their best to sound tough, positioning themselves to the right, I think Kerry's common sense approach and priorities for America's future have much more potential in the long run.

Here are two articles from Kerry's recent stop at a Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee luncheon in Seattle where he lays out his commitment to building the state parties and building on the grassroots support from the last election.

Scrappy Kerry blisters Republicans, touts Democratic comeback at state level

Kerry thinks GOP is vulnerable

Friday, August 12, 2005

Creativity in the Corporate Workplace

Recently BusinessWeek Magazine ran a cover story about how creativity in the work place is leading to product innovation and productivity gains all across the global landscape. See Here: Get Creative

While creative responses to problem solving should be encouraged, I took issue with the priorities being set by global corporations. My letter to the editor was printed in this week's issue: AUGUST 22, 2005

Readers Report
I applaud the trend toward better design and creative problem solving being embraced at large companies. But most of it is still focused on the short-term "next big thing" consumable product with little regard for environmental impact. If global corporations are excited by the prospects of marketing to 3 billion more people in fast-growing developing countries, they had better get serious about cradle-to-cradle product design or the entire planet will soon be buried under a pile of its own wasteful "innovation."

James Witkins
Madison, Wis.

Cradle-to-cradle product design is championed by environmentally aware architect William McDonough in his book of the same name. Check it out if you haven't read it. He makes a strong case for profitable, yet environmentally sound product design.

Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things

Kerry Visits Montana, Schweitzer

Looking to the west, Kerry is eager to learn what issues are important to independent voters and can help the democrats win in '06 and '08. Here's a light hearted exchange between him and Gov. Schweitzer:
Kerry says howdy
By CHARLES S. JOHNSON - IR State Bureau - 08/12/05

Kerry peppered Schweitzer, his staff and state Sen. Mike Cooney, D-Helena, who had stopped by the Capitol to pick something up, with questions on state and national issues. He asked Schweitzer how the state would deal with the Bush administration's proposed Medicaid cuts.

"This administration, while they talk the talk, there's no walking the walk,'' Schweitzer said. "They put additional demands on the states with no new money.''

Added Schweitzer: "I think we're probably going to need a new president.''

Kerry, 61, grinned broadly.

"Any suggestions?'' Cooney asked with a smile.

"I'm staying away from that one,'' Kerry said with a laugh.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Kerry, McCain Share Cancer Survivor Stories With Lance Armstrong Foundation

Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts and Senator John McCain of Arizona, two of the nation's most high profile Senators and cancer survivors, joined the Lance Armstrong Foundation (LAF) in the fight against cancer by posting their personal stories about living with cancer at http://www.livestrong.org.

Just as he was beginning his presidential campaign, Senator Kerry, 61, was diagnosed with prostate cancer. After surgery in 2003, he is now cancer-free. "The Lance Armstrong Foundation believes that while you can get cancer out of your body, the lessons never leave your life," said Senator Kerry. "I know how true this is. My brush with prostate cancer reminded me how lucky I was, and that too many people aren't as lucky. I share my story because I know how important it is to pass experience and practical advice on to others battling cancer."

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Republican Energy Bill Punishes Next Generations

At a time when the oils industry is reaping record profits, Americans are dying in Iraq (an oil rich country not coincidentally) and scientist are practically jumping out of windows to get someone to notice that Global Warming is REAL and a serious threat to our way of life, what does the Republican Energy Bill do? Reward fossil fuel companies with billions of dollars in subsidies and tax breaks.

Call me crazy, but this is nothing but generational politics at its worst. The GOP is rewarding its rich contributors today all while risking the health, safety and economic security of American generations to come by putting off their responsibility to solve our energy dependence on foreign fossil fuel.

America should be investing in clean, renewable, homegrown energy technology NOW? Can anyone explain to me why oil, gas and coal should get one cent of my tax dollars?

For more see: The energy debacle
To do stuff like this responsibly, there would have to be a reliable stream of revenue -- and it could have been tapped simply by diverting existing revenues from the royalties energy companies are already paying the government. The flow of funds would have been at least $2 billion annually, enough to carry out the alternative policy.

That, oversimplified, is what one of Congress's most effective leaders on energy and environmental matters proposed. Senator John Kerry was right last year, and his ideas remain to mock the outrage of what has actually transpired.

The irony is that as America's energy situation worsens, Kerry's ideas remain the ones most likely to be followed -- once the country wakes up.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Kerry Critical of Bolton Appointment

Kennedy, Kerry criticize Bolton appointment

(Capitol Hill - AP) — John Bolton's recess appointment to be UN ambassador is drawing predictable criticism from Massachusetts Senators Edward Kennedy and John Kerry, both Democrats.

President Bush swept aside Senate opposition today by installing Bolton in the post with a recess appointment. The move is allowed by the Constitution but it will only last until January 2007.

Kennedy calls the bypass of the Senate "a devious maneuver that evades the constitutional requirement of Senate consent." He says the president abused his power.

Kerry says the appointment "diminishes John Bolton's validity and leverage to secure America's goals at the UN."

Critics say Bolton is not fit to serve in the post. They point to numerous accusations that he abuses subordinates and misused intelligence.