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Member since: Fri Apr 4, 2014, 04:21 PM
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Just one piece of brilliance and clarity!

Much more at: https://twitter.com/HillaryClinton

An email response from President Obama on trade *Obama Group*

The White House, Washington

Dear {yallerdawg}:

Thank you for writing. My Administration is pursuing a trade agenda that will place our workers, farmers, manufacturers, and businesses at the center of the 21st-century global economy—one that promotes both our interests and our values. Trade done right is a critical part of my strategy to support well-paying jobs, spur growth, and strengthen the middle class.

With 95 percent of the world’s customers living outside our borders, our ability to access new markets is vital to our economic well-being. The export of American-made products supports millions of jobs here at home that pay up to 18 percent more on average than non-export-related jobs. Our businesses are dependent on selling their goods in a global economy—and 98 percent of the more than 300,000 companies that export are small or medium-sized businesses. However, even though more American businesses are exporting more than ever before, there is still an opportunity for new businesses to export and for existing businesses to reach new markets. Right now, we have a chance to level the playing field for American companies and support the middle class through high-standard trade agreements. To take advantage of that opportunity, we’re moving forward with the most progressive trade agenda in American history, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

In the Asia-Pacific region, we are working toward a TPP agreement that will knock down barriers that block American-made goods and services while promoting high standards in the fastest-growing region in the world, including the strongest enforceable labor and environmental provisions of any trade agreement in history. To protect our workers, we are pursuing an agreement that will require countries to set a minimum wage, protect the freedom to form unions and collectively bargain, and work to end child and forced labor. To preserve the environment, we are working to ensure that it will require countries to take tangible steps to curb wildlife trafficking, crack down on illegal logging, and prevent overfishing. That’s why conservation organizations like the World Wildlife Fund and The Nature Conservancy agree that the enforceable provisions in the proposed TPP represent a critical step forward for environmental protection.

Prior trade agreements, like the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), have not lived up to their promise. Because it includes Canada and Mexico, the TPP agreement we are working on will renegotiate NAFTA and address past problems by including enforceable labor and environmental standards at the core of the agreement. This means that if our trading partners—including Canada and Mexico—are not playing by the rules, we can hold them accountable. The proposed agreement will also include new rules that make sure our businesses and property owners are protected from having property taken by foreign governments, while making sure foreign corporations can’t undermine or get around our own laws and regulations. Because we know that unfair currency practices by some governments hurt our workers, businesses, and farmers, we are working with Congress on new tools and standards that will make it easier for us to protect American workers and firms from unfair competition.

TPP also represents a strategic opportunity to pave the way for American leadership in the Asia-Pacific through joint economic goals and prosperity. We cannot stay on the sidelines while China and other countries, who may not have the same values that we do, write the rules of the road and drive down standards. We have to seize this opportunity to help American workers and businesses compete on a level playing field in the world’s largest markets in the decades to come.

To help us secure the benefits of TPP, Congress passed Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), which I signed into law on June 29, 2015. This TPA is the most progressive we have ever had, ensuring that all future trade agreements, such as TPP, have enforceable protections for labor and the environment. We now have the leverage to bring home the best possible trade agreements for the American people.

The new TPA also mandates unprecedented transparency by requiring that any trade agreement be published online for 60 days before I sign it. Additionally, it ensures that Congress will have months to review, debate, and hold hearings on the details of the agreement before they vote on it. And while we have not yet finalized the TPP, the current agreement is available for all Members of Congress to read and review, and we have conducted over 1,700 regular briefings with them on the status of the negotiations and have provided similar briefings for labor groups, environmental groups, and other interested parties.

With a highly educated workforce, an entrepreneurial culture, strong rule of law, and abundant sources of affordable, clean energy, the United States has what’s required to be the world’s manufacturing hub. My Administration is working every day to help businesses locate, grow, and hire here so that our businesses ship goods all over the world stamped with Made in the U.S.A. The good news is that this is already beginning to happen—over the last few years, our manufacturers have been steadily creating hundreds of thousands of jobs in the United States for the first time since the 1990s. Good trade deals like TPP will help continue that trend and ensure jobs are not outsourced, but rather are created here at home. We will continue to push forward on these efforts because we know that when the playing field is level, American workers and businesses don’t just compete, they win.

Again, I appreciate your message. I am confident we can support job growth at home and boost exports while promoting our values and raising standards around the globe.


Barack Obama

Hillary Clinton works the charm angle with congressional Democrats

Source: Paul Kane, Washington Post, msn.com

Hillary Rodham Clinton has left no doubt about the type of campaign she expects to run with fellow Democrats in 2016.

“I want to be onstage with you, and I want you onstage with me,” the Democratic presidential front-runner told senators during a recent visit to the Capitol.

The former secretary of state conveyed that she intends to run a highly coordinated campaign with congressional Democrats, particularly in seven states with key Senate races that are also battlegrounds in the presidential campaign.

It's good to be a Democrat!

The immediate goal is to run campaigns in key states — such as Ohio, Pennsylvania, Florida and Wisconsin — where Clinton and Democratic candidates can draft off of one another in a manner that could deliver her the presidency along with a Democratic majority in the Senate.

What's in a name?

Is this even possible!?

Poll: Likely Republican voters say they support modest tax hikes over cuts to vital state services

The Republican legislature is in called special session to pass 2016 state budgets by October 1. The present shortfall will require 5-10% budget cuts to every function of Alabama government, an already barebones entity.

Some unexpected 'highlights' of poll:

Some 68 percent said they are opposed to cutting state dollars to Medicaid with 29 percent in support of such cuts. Medicaid is a federal and state health care program for mostly poor families and individuals who without it would have no health care. In Alabama over one million people are enrolled in the program, just over 20 percent of the state's total population that depends on it for care.

20% of state population on Medicaid! And the state has not adopted the Affordable Care Act Medicaid expansion!

Just over 92 percent said they oppose closing 20 state parts due to budget cuts with 11 percent favoring the closings. Those are the same numbers who oppose and support a reduction in the number of state troopers on roads due to possible budget cuts.

Yes! The state anticipated permanently closing 17 state parks! Too much for even Republicans?

One particularly interesting set of numbers found 62 percent of likely GOP voters saying they would rather Republican lawmakers vote to raise taxes on cigarettes, soft drinks and close the loophole that allows some Alabamians to deduct their federal income tax from their state taxes rather than cut funding to Medicaid, preventive health care programs or cut funding to the Alabama Department of Environmental Management or ADEM. Just 21 percent said they would rather see the cuts.

Yes! Yes, that's right! Keep state environmental agency!

In summing up its findings, the Public Opinion Strategies writes:

"Given a series of difficult choices, Republican primary voters in Alabama opt for revenue increases over spending cuts to important programs. While voters – particularly Republican – prefer spending cuts to tax increases in concept, they often balk at the specific cuts that will have to be made. So it is in this situation as well."

Is this the proverbial light at the end of a cold, dark tunnel?

Or just another ineffective push before Alabama enters another level of Republican hell?

Is Tom Brady the NFL 'Hillary'?

Oh no, this war is not over by a long shot!

Tom Brady rips the NFL's Deflategate decision on his Facebook page

Despite submitting to hours of testimony over the past 6 months, it is disappointing that the Commissioner upheld my suspension based upon a standard that it was “probable” that I was “generally aware” of misconduct. The fact is that neither I, nor any equipment person, did anything of which we have been accused. He dismissed my hours of testimony and it is disappointing that he found it unreliable.

I also disagree with yesterdays narrative surrounding my cellphone. I replaced my broken Samsung phone with a new iPhone 6 AFTER my attorneys made it clear to the NFL that my actual phone device would not be subjected to investigation under ANY circumstances. As a member of a union, I was under no obligation to set a new precedent going forward, nor was I made aware at any time during Mr. Wells investigation, that failing to subject my cell phone to investigation would result in ANY discipline.

Most importantly, I have never written, texted, emailed to anybody at anytime, anything related to football air pressure before this issue was raised at the AFC Championship game in January. To suggest that I destroyed a phone to avoid giving the NFL information it requested is completely wrong.

Anything resembling constant Hillary memes here? Oh yes, indeed!

Take that, haters!

"Heroes Reborn" Trailer

Looks like fun for old fans!

The Alabama Democratic Party (or Are We Screwed)?

A few years ago, Alabama Democrats had a falling out. The white members were afraid the black caucus was too powerful and keeping Alabama Democratic candidates unelectable in our state - putting up the 'wrong kind' of candidates. The white membership kind of split off, organized a little, fell apart. Came back.

And now, here we are:

by Kyle Whitmire, al.com opinion writer

You should go to an Alabama Democratic Executive Committee meeting, even if you are a Republican.

No matter what anyone says, racism is not a thing of the past, and there's no better reminder -- of its existence and of its corruptive, disruptive and self-defeating influence -- than attending an SDEC meeting.

Last week Alabama Democrats gathered in Montgomery to fight the same battle they've been fighting for the last several years. Nationally, Democrats have done a good job of cobbling together many smaller constituencies into majorities, and with them winning the White House. Had no Republicans mastered gerrymandering congressional districts throughout the country, they'd probably have both houses of Congress, too.

But in Alabama, it's a different story.

More at http://www.al.com/opinion/index.ssf/2015/07/want_to_see_racism_at_work_mee.html#incart_river

For Boehner, McConnell, Cotton, Netanyahu and Republicans Everywhere!

Hillary Clinton and the American Worker

Hillary Clinton Transcript: Building the ‘Growth and Fairness Economy’

Fair pay and fair scheduling, paid family leave and earned sick days, childcare are essential to our competitiveness and our growth. And we can do this in a way that doesn’t impose unfair burdens on businesses, especially small businesses. As president, I’ll fight to put families first, just like I have my entire career.

Now beyond strong growth, we also need fair growth and that will be the second key driver of raising incomes. The evidence is in. Inequality is a drag on our entire economy. So this is the problem we need to tackle. Now, you may have heard Governor Bush say Americans just need to work longer hours. Well, he must not have met very many American workers.

Let him tell that to the nurse who stands on her feet all day, or the teacher who is in that classroom or the trucker who drives all night. Let him tell that to the fast worker marching in the streets for better pay. They do not need a lecture. They need a raise.

CLINTON: Alongside tax reform, it’s time to stand up to efforts across our country to undermine worker bargaining power, which has been proven again and again to drive up wages. Republican governors like Scott Walker have made their names stomping on workers’ rights, and practically all the Republican candidates hope to do the same as president. I will fight back against these mean-spirited, misguided attacks. Evidence – (APPLAUSE) – evidence shows that the decline of unions may be responsible for a third of the increase of inequality among men, so if we want to get serious about raising incomes, we have to get serious about supporting union workers.


Once Bitten Twice Shy

Great great song, Great White, but Ian Hunter and Mick Ronson? Fuhgeddaboudit!

Turn it up!

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