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louis c

Profile Information

Gender: Male
Hometown: Boston
Home country: USA
Current location: Boston
Member since: Fri May 14, 2004, 05:52 PM
Number of posts: 8,652

About Me

IBEW----AFL-CIO

Journal Archives

A reverse poll tax

My idea is to make every voter cast a ballot for federal elections every two years, or pay a penalty.

The two systems I use as criteria are the jury system and the Mass. Health Ins. system.

In the jury system, if you don't serve, you can by charged. In the health care system, if you don't buy insurance, you are fined.

Here's my idea. If you pay taxes, as part of your return every 2 years, you must provide proof of voting to avoid a, let's say, $200 fine. If you receive benefits from the government, and don't file a tax return, you must produce that same proof, prior to April 15 of the following year, or also face a fine.

Now, you can vote by absentee ballot if you are disabled, but you have to vote as long as you have no mental or psychological disabilities. It is a duty that you have to perform to be a citizen of the United States.

If you vote, you can leave the ballot blank, if that's your wish. You can write in "Mickey Mouse", if that's your feeling. But you can't just "blow it off". It's a duty, just like "Jury Duty".

I just looked at today's Gallup Poll. I don't know how accurate it is, but one thing struck me as odd.

Mitt Romney had a 5 point lead among "likely voters", yet Barack Obama is a plus 7 points in job approval among all adults, registered to vote or not.

If these numbers are true, then a clear majority of American adults, all of which have to live with the decisions made by the President, prefer that he stay in office, yet another man will take his place and install policies that are the opposite.

I know the reasoning, "it's their own fault". But my response is that we all suffer for that.

Again, my reasoning is, we should be just as diligent in making it mandatory to vote as we do on having citizens serve on a jury.

Link to Gallup;
http://www.gallup.com/home.aspx

I find it more patriotic by what it says inside of the hat, than what it says on the outside

I have been in this habit for over 6 months to pull aside complete strangers who have a very patriotic hat on. You know the types, with the American flag, or USA on the brim, or Never Forget 9/11, Support America, or the American Eagle with Gold Braids (I especially like that one). I know you know the type of hat I'm referring to.

Anyway, I tell them that I greatly admire the patriotism displayed on their hat and I offer them $5 if the hat is made in America. I am totally surprised at almost all the people who will take the hat off and let me look inside, in an effort to "earn" that $5.

19 out of 20 times the hat is made in China (so far, I have only lost $10 in 6 months)

Then I say, as I hand the hat back to the owner and put my $5 bill back in my pocket (or hand the $5 to them, in the 2 occasions that they had "made in USA" on the inside), "I find it more patriotic by what it says inside of the hat, than what it says on the outside".

I know, I know, you're surprised that I haven't been punched out yet. So am I.

How to Watch Election Night

I'm probably speaking to a group that already is aware of what I'm trying to say here.

However, for those friends of yours that don't frequent DU, here's how I break down election night, going from the East Coast to the West Coast, using the time zones as we move across the electoral map.

If Obama holds Pennsylvania and wins either Virginia or Florida (I assume if he wins North Carolina, he'll win the other two), the election will be Obama's. As much as I love New Hampshire, it only comes into play in a very long night scenario.

If Romney wins North Carolina, Florida and Virginia and plucks Pennsylvania from the Democratic column, it's good night America.

If Romney wins Virginia, Florida, North Carolina and Obama carries Pennsylvania, everyone in the East has held serve and we move to the Mid-West.

Assuming Romney holds Missouri and Indiana and Obama holds Michigan, we move to the Obama fire-wall. Obama then needs to win Ohio and Wisconsin to move to the next level. If Obama wins those two states and carries Iowa, he's at 271 (as long as there are no surprises in the West Coast states in which he is ahead by 8 or more points). If Obama Wins Ohio and Wisconsin, but loses Iowa, those 6 electoral votes can be replaced by Nevada's 6. If we carry Ohio and lose Wisconsin, those 10 votes can be replaced with Colorado's 9, giving us 270 as long as Obama still wins either Nevada or Iowa. If Obama loses Wisconsin and carries Ohio, Iowa and Nevada, but loses Colorado, he needs New Hampshire to get to 271.

Those are the scenarios that I see, can you add any others?


Gallup's Own Polling Numbers Indicate an Obama Landslide, Not a Romney Lead

I remember every political pundit I listened to just 2 or 3 months ago, telling me that all we had to do was watch the President's approval numbers. If he was 50% or above, he couldn't be beaten.

Occasionally, as in 2004, the incumbent could be just slightly under 50% and still win (Bush at 49.7%).

Gallup's explanation in Jan. 2012
http://www.gallup.com/poll/152051/Obama-Faces-Challenging-Election-Climate.aspx

Today (10/24), Gallup has Romney with a 3 point lead nationwide with Likely Voters. Even accounting for the fact that Obama's approval numbers are with Registered Voters, his 53% to 42% approval-disapproval spread this late in the game is more suggestive of an Obama electoral vote landslide than a 3 point Romney lead.

I follow these numbers very closely. I remember what all the pundits say. These numbers, from the same pollster on the same day interviewing the same people, make no sense at all, even using the pollster's own reasoning.

Link;
http://www.gallup.com/home.aspx

Gloria Allred's October Surprise is About to Break Against Romney

This is the speculation of all speculation. I read it today in the Boston Herald, without any explanation.

I haven't seen it here at DU just yet, so if it's a dupe, I apologize.

If this is the first post on the subject, here it is.

Link;
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2220526/Republicans-bracing-October-surprise-Gloria-Allred-prepares-Romney-revelation.html?ito=feeds-newsxml

"I resent that remark, Gov. Romney and you've insulted every single parent in America"

I was just watching the debate for a second time, and I didn't catch the opportunity that President Obama had to stick it to Mitt until I saw the replay.

When Mitt Romney explained his position on gun violence and gun control, he stated that single parents were to blame. Single parents are most likely to be in poverty, poverty breeds crime and violence; therefore Single parents are to blame.


My Obama response
"I resent that characterization, Gov. Romney. I am the son of a single Mother and I know how hard she had to work in order to provide for me and my sister. That's why we should try all the harder to provide day care and tax credits for single women, and single father's too. That's why we need a health care system for working families who may be earning less than a living wage. That's why we need to invest in public schools and provide Pell Grants. But you, Governor, to intimate that single parents, like my mother was, are responsible for the gun violence in America...(short pause) well, all I can say is that I find that disgusting."

My Post on Friday About Gas Prices in 2008 and How it was Described in the Debate

President Obama finally said what has been the unspoken truth about gas prices in January 2009. He failed to say, however, that gas prices were over $4 a gal. just prior to the economic collapse (June 2008). That line would have taken just seconds to deliver and would have made an indelible mark.

Here's the more detailed suggestion that I made here on DU this past Friday

Link to Previous Post:
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10021527334

The Truth, the Whole Truth and Nothing but the Truth

Did you ever wonder why that phrase is used when swearing in a witness in a court of law? Why do we say that, instead of just saying, "Do you swear to tell the truth" Period?

Let me give you an example of the truth being misleading, if you don't include the phrase "the whole truth and nothing but the truth".

Gas prices are the example I'll use today.

Republicans love to proclaim that gas prices have more than doubled since Barack Obama took office. That's the truth. Gas was about $1.69 a gallon on January 20, 2009. But it's not the "whole truth and nothing but the truth".

In June of 2008, just 6 months earlier, gas prices were $4.08 a gallon, a price more than 20 cents higher than today's average price for a gallon of gas. http://money.cnn.com/2008/06/30/news/economy/gas/index.htm

You see, in June 2008, no one knew what was about to happen on September 15, 2008. The speculation was that the false economy could continue. The bubble had not yet burst. Lehman Brothers had yet to collapse. Commodity speculators were still gung-ho on the American economy.

The Republican economic principals, in June of 2008, were not yet fully known. The third quarter of 2008 saw a 3% GDP contraction and a half million jobs lost. The last quarter of 2008 saw a 9% GDP contraction, job losses mounted from 500,000 jobs lost a month in September and October of 2008 to 850,000 jobs lost in January, 2009.

As a result of the existing economic disaster and the fear that it would get even worse, it caused a world-wide economic slow down, the likes of which we had not seen since the 1930's. The result was that world-wide oil demand shrank as the fear grew, and the world's economies teetered on the brink of complete collapse. The price of fuel plummeted.

As the economy has improved and the fear has dissipated. As job and GDP growth, tepid as they may be, continues. As economic confidence grows, the price of oil, and hence, the price of a gallon of gas has increased. But even with this recovery and because of production and conservation measures developed by the Obama Administration, the price is still well below the June, 2008 peak price.

If the Republicans plan on using the same failed method method they used in 2008 to reduce the price of a gallon of gas from $4.08 a gallon to $1.69 a gallon, and the American people know not just the "truth", but the "whole truth and nothing but the truth", they may not pine for the days of $1.69 a gallon gasoline and another Republican setting Republican economic policies in the White House.

Does Mitt Romney Ever Give Charity to Non-Mormons or Entities without a Political Agenda?

I have noticed, from his tax returns and anecdotes, that Mitt Romney's charitable contributions or humanitarian outreach always centers around his church. Mormons take care of each other, and that's laudable. However, over 99% of us are not Mormons (I know, another 1% line, but it's unintentional).

Last night in the VP debate, Paul Ryan described another heart warming story of Mitt's help, but once again, the people were "members of his Church". Does he reach out to the inner-city? Does he help neighbors of other faiths, or God forbid, no faith at all? Where does my family fit into this?

He gives to charities with a political agenda, like right to life groups, and, as I said, he gives a portion of his incredible wealth to his Mormon Church, but not much outside it, or at least I have never heard an anecdote that didn't center around his church.

Maybe that's why he doesn't bring it up himself, because it would eventually become obvious the Mitt only has charity in his heart for Mormons, and the rest of us can fend for ourselves, unless we convert.

The Democrats Biggest Mistake

The Democrats biggest mistake happened in the earliest stages of the Obama Administration, as we controlled both branches of Congress.

We should have anticipated the Filibuster in the Senate, and done away with it. It was abused and we got blamed for it. How often do we hear, "You guys had control, and accomplished nothing."

Without the Filibuster, we could have had a larger stimulus, saved government jobs, maybe had a second stimulus, created even more jobs, established the card check (or at least made it easier to join a union), confirmed all of Obama's appointments (including Liz Warren) and established a Health Care Plan with a single payer and/or a government option.

2010 would have been quite different. We would have been fighting for something. We would have been protecting our rights in a union, instead of explaining away the "Cadillac Tax Provision" in the Health Care Bill.

Jobs would have been created and saved and unemployment would have been about 5% now.

I don't mind a fight. But when I (we) win, I like to win. If I'm (we're) going to be held responsible for something, I'd (we should) like to do it my (our) way.

We had an FDR type mandate, and we fumbled it by being too "polite". Politics is a tough game, and some times you have to make tough decisions.

The Republicans would have been screaming about the repeal of the Filibuster. We could have replied, "Isn't a Democracy by Majority Rule and don't we have the majority? We'll be held responsible for getting the American people out of the crisis, so we have to try it our way. We've tried it your way for 8 years, and it hasn't worked. Elections have consequences."

That's my take on the matter.
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