Remember: 9/11 Was A Major Failure Of Leadership

While the media will be remembering today as the day when 3,000 Americans die, I can bet that few if any media outlets will remind us that the attacks themselves were the result of a massive failure of the leaders of the time to take intelligence of an imminent attack seriously.

As we engage in a national day of mourning with the outpouring of sentiment for those who died that day and an outpouring of gratitude for first responders, what we will be missing will be an outpouring of rage for those who held the reigns of power at the time and blew off their number one responsibility – to keep Americans safe.

The lack of national outrage at this failure made it seem as if being a national failure is acceptable, even laudable. After the failure of not acting on warnings came the failure of trapping and then allowing the mastermind of the attack to be set free. Then those failures were compounded as we went to war with two countries that had little to do with the attacks – Afghanistan and Iraq.

While our leaders spent vast amounts of the country’s treasury on missions not really connected to the 9/11 attacks, the country that did have some connection to the attacks – Saudi Arabia was notably left alone.

Thus we were led into seemingly never ending wars that 20 years later we are just extricating ourselves from.

This failure of leadership with its massive costs both social and financial seems have become the expectation of leadership from the Republican side of the aisle. Eighteen years later we see yet another failure to react to intelligence on the spreading corona virus. This is followed by a massively weak response based on political gain. 

The failure of this response along with the purposeful disinformation campaign and the propagandistic campaign against science, the vaccines and life saving behaviors has been viewed as acceptable by a large portion of the American public and the media. This has led to at least 650,000 deaths and probably in reality well over a million.

Yet just like 9/11 failures, the Covid failures have produced little outrage. It is truly surprising that there is so little outrage at the party whose irresponsibility has allowed the virus a chance to come roaring back. Just like there should have been outrage against the W. Bush administration in 2001, there should have been and should be now huge outrage against anything Trump after his administration did nothing to stop the pandemic and actually accelerated it with their policies.

Republican governors especially including Iowa’s own Covid Kim Reynolds have used their leadership positions to foster policies that have allowed the virus to spread and mutate. Taking away one of the main protections from our children – OUR CHILDREN! – a universal masking policy illustrates Republican leadership’s to foster failed policy. Our children are being used as pawns in their political game.

We didn’t learn after 9/11 to hold our leaders responsible for their failures. Will we learn this time to hold leaders accountable for their failures? Bush’s failures cost us huge amounts of time, money and lives. Trump’s failures coupled with those of various state governors continue to cost us a huge amount of treasure and lives while breaking down societal norms and institutions such as our health care systems.

So while we engage in our national day of mourning, I will once again be reminded of the massive failures of Republican leadership in this century. I will also be wondering how many more failures of Republican leadership Americans are going to subject themselves to in the future. Recent history tells us Republican leadership will almost certainly fail in a crisis.

Remember that while the previous mentioned failures have been one time incidents, we have the potentially the biggest disaster of all that has been building for over 2 centuries. That is of course climate change. If we as Americans choose once again to look to Republican leadership and their policy of failure we will most likely doom humanity.  

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How To Get Involved In The Fight For LGBTQ Equality


Important message from One Iowa:

September is gearing up to be a busy month with great ways to get involved in our fight for LGBTQ equality. Explore the ways you can support our work and show up for LGBTQ Iowans below.

LGBTQ Reproductive Justice Panel with the Iowa Abortion Access Fund

What happens in other states affects all of us – which is why we need to protect access to safe abortion for Iowans. Join us for a joint LGBTQ Reproductive Justice Panel with the Iowa Abortion Access Fund on Friday, September 17th at noon! You’ll learn about the reproductive issues facing the LGBTQ community and how participants can show up for reproductive justice during the next legislative session.

Register for the virtual reproductive justice panel here

LGBTQ Older Adults Friendly Caller Program

Many LGBTQ older adults lived during a time of harsher discrimination and felt a need to hide their true selves.  In some cases, they may have been rejected by their biological families. Often, they lost friends, including some through the AIDS epidemic. Today many are without someone to talk with, share memories, or discuss resources.  Those living in care facilities often feel most alone, and some feel the need to return to the closet. Having conversations with others who have experienced similar challenges is therapeutic.

The One Iowa Friendly Caller Program connects LGBTQ older Iowans with members of the LGBTQ community through weekly phone calls. Regular calls through the Friendly Caller Program may alleviate stress and improve health among LGBTQ older adult participants by providing increased connections and support.

We’re looking for volunteers and participants for our pilot program launching in October. Find more information here

Tell Iowa’s Senators to vote for the Equality Act

The Equality Act is a necessary piece of legislation that would update our federal civil rights laws to include LGBTQ people. Among the protections included are those for employment, housing, credit, jury service, federally funded programs, and public places and spaces. Passing this bill would provide explicit, consistent protections in those areas for all LGBTQ people in the US.

One Iowa Action created an easy form for you to write Iowa’s Senators Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst to urge them to pass the Equality Act.

As always, don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions.

Best,

One Iowa Team

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Ras Smith Calls Out Reynolds For Politicizing Covid


Iowa needs a governor who will try to solve problems not politicize them. Rep. Ras Smith has announced his candidacy for governor of Iowa.  He is standing up for kids against Reynolds’ law that leaves them defenseless against Covid in school. Check out his website where you can make a donation or join the campaign. https://www.rasforiowa.com/ Follow Ras on Twitter and 
Facebook.

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Last month, Governor Kim Reynolds stripped power away from Iowa’s schools when she banned mask requirements statewide. This decision takes local control away from our communities who know what’s best for their schools and students.

Now, the U.S. Department of Education Office of Civil Rights is investigating the state of Iowa for banning masks in schools, because it puts children with disabilities and underlying medical conditions at greater risk of COVID-19.

Not only did Governor Reynolds ban masks, she also returned $95 million in federal funds meant for COVID-19 mitigation in Iowa schools. According to research by North Carolina State University, without any COVID mitigation, 75-95% of vulnerable K-12 students may get infected in the first 90 days they’re back in school. We have seen schools across Iowa that have been unable to start on time due to too many teachers contracting COVID or having to quarantine.

As the father of two young girls who are back in school, the husband of a public school teacher, and the ranking member of the Education Committee in the Iowa House of Representatives, I’m deeply concerned and troubled by Gov. Reynolds’ power-grab and refusal to help ensure that our students can stay in school safely during this pandemic.

Simply put, Gov. Reynolds is putting politics before our children. It’s not right, and Iowans deserve better. If you agree, help me take on Gov. Reynolds at the ballot box next year and give our state a leader who will put our students, families, and communities first.

Thank you for standing with me on this crucial issue impacting so many Iowans,

Ras

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There Will Be Marching!

Click on the image to go to Women’s March October 2nd 2021

Maybe you have heard that Women’s March Iowa opted to not hold a march. Stated reasons are Covid and too expensive to organize.  You can check out the conversation about their decision on their Facebook page  https://www.facebook.com/WMIowaOfficial

However, there is a  new public group that you can join that IS organizing a march.  Women’s March Iowa Oct 2, 2021 Mobilize and Defend Abortion has a Facebook page and an events page.

Here is the events page link where you can sign up:

https://www.facebook.com/events/959617821283305/

Here is the regular Facebook page for the public group Women’s March Iowa Oct 2, 2021 Mobilize and Defend Abortion

https://www.facebook.com/groups/207217944723885/

“We are marching for our access to abortion. Before SCOTUS reconvenes on 10/04 we are showing up in every single state to send our message: attacks on our reproductive freedom won’t be tolerated.

MARCH ON 10/02/21 AT 1:OO PM. IOWA STATE CAPITAL”

Please spread the word there will be marching in Iowa for women’s rights and freedom.

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Iowa Educators Talk Covid On Iowa Press

David Yepsen and O. Kay Henderson seem to think it is their job to make sure the silly nonsensical Republican talking points get air time.  Glad Yepsen is retiring. O. Kay Henderson is taking his place. Hoping things improve but it seems like the status quo will prevail.

O.Kay to educator: “Aren’t you a bit of a lightening rod?”  Really? That’s a question?

“As we continue to see the spread of the covid variant we are going to come into situations whch are very similar to last year. There was a point last year where 80% of our school districts were requiring masks. Now that’s not possible. And so because there is that law put into place we expect the number of people being identified with the variant to continue to grow.” – Mike Beranek, President, Iowa State Education Association.

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Labor Day Message From IA-02 Candidate For Congress Christina Bohannan

Labor Day message from Christina Bohannan, Democrat running for congress in IA-02.

Today I wanted to share with you a little bit about my dad. As a construction worker, he worked outside in the hot sun every day to support our family. Despite his hard work, we still had to scrape to get by.

When he got sick and was no longer able to work, his health insurance was cancelled and my family had to choose between paying for his medication and paying for everything else.

His story is like many Iowans’ — people who are working hard and still living paycheck to paycheck. Being part of a union would have given my dad the chance to work for a better wage, access to better healthcare, and more time with his family.

I am running for Congress to fight for people like my dad — people who work hard and deserve a fair shot at getting ahead without worrying about being one bad break away from not making ends meet. Delivering better wages, better job training, and better economic opportunity is central to this campaign.

Today I hope you will join me in celebrating the hard-fought workers’ rights won by the labor movement.

Tomorrow we get to work.

Christina Bohannan
Candidate for Congress

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Labor Day Celebrates The American Worker

Happy Labor Day from Blog for Iowa!

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Labor Day: Let’s Talk About Inequality

I am a true believer in celebrating laborers in our society and inn the world economy. We have noting unless someone mines it, fabricates it, processes it or distributes it.  Yet in the economic system of capitalism as practiced in the US the people doing the work are generally among the lowest paid workers in our system. 

Why do we have this inequality and how long will it last. The inequality it has fostered is still near all time peaks. Such statistics usually portend a major upheaval. Yet somehow so far since the Bush 2 Republican we have managed to dodge the bullet of another major upheaval. Much of that was probably due to the Federal Reserve pumping money into the economy. 

Strangely in the past year a small amount of the inequality that has become a trade mark of the economy since Ronald Reagan has been made up as the US work force has been shrunk by an unexpected high number of deaths among those in the work force AND a decision by others in the work force to stay out of the work force for various reasons (eg – caring for their children).

I searched for a couple of good videos that could really explain the inequality in our system. Thus I searched for a couple of my favorite gurus on labor and economy – Paul Krugman and Robert Reich. Both are in interviews by Bill Moyers from Moyers old PBS series Moyers & Company. 

Both conversations took place around the time that Thomas Picketty’s book “Capitalism In The 21st Century” came out to loud acclaim.

First is a 20 minute conversation with Paul Krugman that took place in 2014. It is amazing how accurate Krugman is about what is happening and what will happen:

Stay tuned for Moyers comments in the final 4 minutes.

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Sunday Funday: Labor Day Edition

Thom Hartmann tells the story of how Ronald Reagan cut the heart out of unions. (7 minutes)

Sadly, the celebration of Labor and the acknowledgement of gains for the Labor force in the US have been greatly diminished over the years with ascendent Republican Party rule since 1981 (Reagan). That year Reagan struck a huge blow against Labor with his firing of the air traffic controllers nationwide. This after they supported him in the 1980 election and he in turn promised to work to resolve issues with them.   

The firing of the air traffic controllers began the long slide downward for unions both public and private. With the disempowerment of unions has come the loss of good paying jobs and a huge inequality in our economic system. Sadly many working folks have cut their own throats by voting for Ronald Reagan and later Donald Trump somehow believing these charlatans were sympathetic to their cause. Talk about voting against your own best interests.

We will work in Labor themed questions today:

A) According to “Officer Down Memorial Page” the top cause of death for police officer in 2020 and 2021 has been what?

B) The Supreme Court Wednesday let stand a Texas anti-abortion law even though it was not in session. They used a rarely used procedure called what?

C) Labor Day is celebrated on the first Monday of September in the US. What day is a celebration of Labor in most of the other countries of the world?

D) What president signed the law making Labor Day a notional holiday? 

E) In the 1980 election the Professional Air Traffic Controllers Org. (PATCO) endorsed which candidate, Carter or Reagan?

F) Iowa Public Health Director Kelly Garcia said Iowa is better positioned to deal with delta, due to relatively high vaccination rates. What is Iowa’s “high” vaccination rate? 

G) Hiring slowed sharply in August to 235,000. What was the main factor that caused hiring to slow?

H) In what seems to be a “just how low can they go?” move, what defendant in a lawsuit over the deaths at the Sandy Hook massacre have subpoenaed the academic, attendance and disciplinary records for five slain students? (I believe these students were kindergartners)

I) In response to the crazy anti-abortion law in Texas and the strange SCOTUS middle of the night with no reason approval of that law, who promised a vote on The Women’s Health Protection Act as soon as congress is back in session?

J) A last question on the Texas anti-abortion law. Who will enforce this law in Texas?

K) What was the first state to make Labor Day a holiday in 1887?

L) Theodore McCarrick pled not guilty to charges of sexual assault of a minor in a court in Boston. McCarrick had what position until a couple of years ago when these accusations came to light?

M) What major gun lobbying group cancelled it annual fund raising meeting for the second year in a row due to Covid-19?

N) What Republican legislative leader is threatening telecom companies with retaliation if the companies comply with a subpoena for records from the January 6th committee?

O) Who was named vice chair of the January 6th Investigative committee?

P) We have had Labor unions in this country for a long time. The Labor unions of 1830 had what two major demands?

Q) Last Monday the Department of Education opened civil rights investigation against 5 states on what issue?

R) Ann Couter praised President Biden and called what president a “wuss” on the withdrawal from Afghanistan?

S) The huge Caldor fire in California threatens what major California/Nevada resort area?

T) As of what date was the US withdrawn from Afghanistan?

I would worry about a system that made a 70 year-old drug addict in a diaper and a cheap suit with nothing on his resume but bankruptcy, sexual assault, mob ties and money laundering into the biggest cash cow the MSM has ever seen. They will be looking hard for the next beast. – Noel Casler

thanks to Soph0571 on democraticundeground.com

 

Answers:

A) Covid-19

B) shadow-docket – very scary and totally anti-democracy

C) May 1st 

D) Grover Cleveland in 1894

E) Reagan. In turn Reagan said he would back PATCO’s demands for better equipment, hours etc.

F) 51.7% with 2 doses – not very high IMHO

G) The explosion of corona virus, especially in the non-vaccinated.

H) Remington Arms

I) Nancy Pelosi

J) citizen vigilantes

K) Oregon

L) Catholic Cardinal (Washington DC)

M) NRA

N) House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy. McCarthy’s communications for January 6th period are among those those that have been ordered to be preserved

O) Liz Cheney 

P) a 10 hour day and public education

Q) discrimination against the civil rights of the disabled by making masks non-mandatory

R) Trump

S) Lake Tahoe 

T) August 31 (Last Tuesday)

Under the cover of darkness, by choosing to do nothing, the Supreme Court allowed an unconstitutional abortion ban in Texas to go into effect last night. 

Their decision doesn’t change the fact that reproductive rights are human rights. 

We’ll fight for them. – Hillary Clinton

Thanks to Soph0571 on democraticunderground.com

Posted in Covid-19, Humor | 2 Comments

Mixing Religion And Government

Abortion laws on Texas that were given a nod of approval by SCOTUS in a shadow-docket decision may engulf the US quickly:

 

thanks to EarlG at democraticunderground.com

Quotes from Barry Goldwater on mixing religion and politics:  

Mark my word, if and when these preachers get control of the [Republican] party, and they’re sure trying to do so, it’s going to be a terrible damn problem. Frankly, these people frighten me. Politics and governing demand compromise. But these Christians believe they are acting in the name of God, so they can’t and won’t compromise. I know, I’ve tried to deal with them.

  • Said in November 1994, as quoted in John Dean, Conservatives Without Conscience (2006).

Those who seek absolute power, even though they seek it to do what they regard as good, are simply demanding the right to enforce their own version of heaven on earth. And let me remind you, they are the very ones who always create the most hellish tyrannies. Absolute power does corrupt, and those who seek it must be suspect and must be opposed.

   *   Acceptance Speech as the Republican Presidential candidate, San Francisco (July 1964)

From day 1 religious have tried to take over many of the various branches and functions of government. Might I say more specifically in this country, Christian religion and its many sects, have tried to take over the government. As Barry Goldwater so cogently observed these religious want to take over government to impose their version of heaven on earth. And their version of heaven will be a hellish tyranny.

The reason I quoted Goldwater is simply to show that people from the right also understand that mixing religion and government is a truly bad idea. It was so fundamental of a fear to the founding fathers that banning religious tests for public office was written into the body of the constitution. Also in the first amendment to constitution “freedom of religion” is enshrined.

This comes up this weekend because as of midnight Wednesday a new Texas law spawned from the extreme religious right banning abortion took effect. The idea that such a law exists is worrying even though it is not the lone abortion law in this country. The troubling aspect of this law is that the US Supreme Court decide in what is being called a “shadow-docket” decision that totally ignored stare decisive or standing decisions on this issue.

And of course for those who do not live in Texas the worry is that their states will act as quickly as possible to push through similar laws. Thus abortion may be quickly extinguished in much of the US as Republicans do all they can to satisfy the extreme religious within their ranks. Those are the same extremists that Barry Goldwater warned against.

Also remember that these laws will most likely be enforced against the poor. Those with wealth and privilege will still be able to go where abortions are legal – in the US or abroad – to have an abortion. 

The other thing to remember is that the stated reason behind the Republicans push to outlaw abortion is their concern with life. What a bunch of good old Iowa pig shit. First thing they would do is to fully fund women’s health clinics with a focus on birth control. The best way to stop abortions is to stop unwanted pregnancies.

If they cared about life Republicans would do all they could to give every child the best chance to succeed from day one. That would mean making sure parents or a single parent would have the income to feed the child well and raise it in good surroundings. Republicans would also make sure schools were well funded and again make sure the child had good food and living quarters. 

And in a bow to our pandemic times, Republicans would make sure that all children are either vaccinated or attend a school with good ventilation and a mask mandate so their supposed precious lives would survive a pandemic that may attack all. This is a far cry from what Republicans like Abbott, De Santis, Ducey and of course our own Covid Kim Reynolds have done or will do.

Which brings me to my point. A question I have had bothering me forever. Why are Republicans so crazy about stopping abortions when they refuse to do anything to stop unwanted pregnancies, refuse to give children any and to a decent life and of course refuse to follow their own laws when they want an abortion?

The best I can figure is that first most of those who will be caught in their little traps will be poor and female. Actions of Republicans over the years have shown that if there is a group that Republicans hate it is poor women. If these women “sin” – that is have unprotected sex – then they must be punished. And what is that punishment to be, you ask? 

That punishment is a kind of scarlet letter punishment. First they must be made to bear the child that is the product of their “sin.” The pregnancy and then the child will be a very obvious symbol that they “sinned.” And the mother will continue to be punished by denying any aid to help the child grow and succeed. Unfortunately Republicans are not just punishing the mother. They are also punishing all family members.

But they must pay for their “sin.”  Through such policies Republicans guarantee that society as a whole will pay also.

Posted in Republican mythology, Republican Policy | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment