The Jefferson Tree - A platform for debate and discussion of current events and politics...

Social Protest Lit: Ebenezer Elliot, “The People’s Anthem”

A poem from Ebenezer Elliot entitled The People’s Anthem from Book IV called “Out of The Depths.” This chapter is focused on man’s pursuit of remedy for social injustice: When wilt thou save the people? O God of mercy! when? Not kings and lords, but nations! Flowers of the heart, O God, are they! Let them not pass, like weeds, away! Their heritage a sunless day! God save the people! Shall bring crime for ever, Strength aiding still the strong? Is it thy will, O Father? That man shall toil for wrong? “No!” ...

Stephen Moore’s Ridiculous Anti-Clean Energy Rant

Hard right-winger Stephen Moore took a break from pushing debunked trickle-down economic policies to take a pathetic shot at clean energy.  Let the stupid begin. …radical Greens, one of the most influential political forces in America today… Seriously?  He goes on to mention the famed Sierra Club as one of these forces.  And where did they rank in 2013 on lobbying: 755.  In fact, if we look at the top 50 interest groups giving to members of Congress this year, no sign ...

Anti-Israel Policies/Actions Is Not Anti-Semitsim

There have been growing protests in Europe against the mass murder of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip by the State of Israel. These actions are in response to the IDF killing 500 Muslims there with the vast majority of them being civilians. But what is troubling about these movements is, according to this article in the NYT, an anti-Semitic tinge has taken place at these protests. The story reads that in France: Several recent pro-Palestinian demonstrations in Paris have boiled over ...

Warren For President?

Today at the the annual Netroots Nation conference in Detroit, the nation’s largest gathering of liberal activists and organizers, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D) reportedly drew an applause that Hillary could only dream of. According to NYT and Politico reports, Warren was a rock-star while Hillary Clinton, the likely Democratic candidate for President, was absent. Warren’s populist talking points and her history of taking Wall Street to task (remember that Warren was an early advocate for the creation of a new Consumer Financial ...

Social Protest Literatue at Sparking The Left

Here at STL we are starting a new feature. In between our political-insight posts, I will start publishing excerpts or entire pieces of great literature that speak to crucial social and political issues which span the centuries. Though almost all in the Western tradition, the subject matters are transcendental. Now first to name my source, I am taking pieces from Upton Sinclair’s selected and edited collection “The Cry for Justice: An Anthology of the Great Social Protest Literature of All Time.” ...

Pulitzer-Winning Journalist Detained for Being Undocumented

I was first brought aware of Jose Antonio Vargas’ story last week in a piece he penned in Politico. He explained that he was in the Rio Grande Valley, in the city of McAllen, just north of the Mexican border. He was there to see first hand the tens of thousands of undocumented children, most of them from Central America, and observe how they were being treated. The trip was also used for a news conference appearance and vigil organized by United We Dream, ...

GOP Refuses Funding for Border Children Projects

A humanitarian crisis unseen before at our borders is becoming more and more urgent everyday at Rio Grande Valley, TX, and other Southwest locations. And yet the GOP is arguing over numbers. Yesterday President Obama requested an amount of $3.7 billion from Congress to help aid the 57,000 unaccompanied minors who illegally crossed the border from the Mexico side since October. They are mostly from violence-ridden Central American countries, like El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras (Honduras has the world’s highest murder ...

Problems galore for the new government headed by Mr. Narendra Modi in New Delhi – Imperative for the first time PM and his council of ministers in governance amidst multiple challenges

The phenomenal victory for Mr. Narendra Modi and his party (the BJP) in May 2014 general elections has not only drawn the adulation of people world over but also silenced all its die hard critics at home and abroad. It was so stupendous and stunning that even the American government and its top leaders across party lines acknowledged Mr. Modi as the emerging democratic leader of the world, setting aside their past antagonism as an error of judgment, not based ...

Why Are We So Full Of Hate?

What has happened to human kind?  No matter where you look we find ourselves surrounded by a world filled with hate. What puzzles me is how it's combined with political correctness.  Take this country where so many words are now frowned upon and even forbidden because they are hurtful to certain people.  Redskins, squaw, savage plus a whole lot applying to blacks, orientals and hispanics not to mention middle easterners.  Has it dawned on anyone banning the names has done nothing ...

Has Putin Over Reached Once Too Often?

My, oh my.  We've watched this man make mince meat of Obama over the past several years.  Each time you could see the smirk broaden and the swagger get more pronounced. He and his allies - Iran, China, Syria and North Korea were truly enjoying themselves. But as happens with a lot of bullies, they get over confident and suddenly everything around them collapses. I'm wondering if this is the case with the downing of the Malaysian passenger jet. With the death ...

If Only It WERE The Heat!

What a day.  A passenger plane has been shot down over Ukraine uncomfortably close to the Russian border. Hamas reneged on the humanitarian cease fire so Israel launched their ground offensive. Children still pour across the border while Congress dithers. It's now being reported parents are giving them birth control in case they are raped during the journey. Along that line former member of Congress, Todd Aiken, who once talked about legitimate rape and the idea that women's bodies protected them from becoming ...

Hannity's Histrionics

For a person who doesn't have much faith in the intellect of pundits, I wonder why I watch them so often.  I wonder even more why the cable outlets and networks that employ them don't take more care in who they hire. Many of them get on crusades that bear no resemblance to reality.  Sean Hannity is one of the most prominent. The night before last  he was on his Bowe Bergdahl kick demanding to know why he was returned to ...

Do Actions Speak Louder Than Words?

If the President could run away from the border mess any faster I'm sure he would. It's being said it's because being seen in the setting of kids crammed into confined spaces with their scabies and lice would reflect badly on him.  It could even be his Katrina.  Well, maybe.  But who's fault is that? It goes to show his handlers aren't as smart as they think they are.  For one, drinking beer and shooting pool in Colorado, a state where ...

The Kids Always Went Home

Watching the immigration mess going full bore brought to mind a lot of things that have involved children from other nations.  The first thing that comes to mind is the Disney song It's a Small World After All that speaks to all we have in common. Hopes, dreams, all the warm fuzzy stuff. We've had exchange student programs where a student from another country lives with a local family to learn not only academics but what life in American and Americans ...

The Militia Is Coming, The Militia Is Coming!

That's all we need! News has it a call has gone out for militia, both unarmed and armed, to gather along the border to help private land owners protect their property in something called Operation Save Our Borders.  Terrific! Remember how well it went when militia turned out to help to  help Cliven Bundy in his fight over Federal grazing rights in Nevada?  It came within a hair's breadth of turning violent. I really feel for the border towns who are the ...

Will Cheney Help Or Hurt The Republicans In The Mid-Terms?

Will the re-emergence of Dick Cheney help or hurt the Republicans in the mid-terms?  There is so much going on about which voters are rightfully incensed my guess he will have little impact. I think it depends, however, on what happens in the middle east over the next couple of months. Those who believe it wouldn't be in the mess it is if it weren't for the Bush/Cheney policies and rush to war will be reminded of just that - the ...

The privilege of giving or withholding moneys is an important barrier against the undue exertion of prerogative which if left altogether without control may be exercised to our great oppression; and all history shows how efficacious its intercession for redress of grievances and reestablishment of rights, and how improvident would be the surrender of so powerful a mediator. Thomas Jefferson
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Mari - Dogwalk Musings

Debt Versus Deficit

Politics.  That’s what we’ve been witnessing.  The politics of re-election, not what’s good for the country regardless  of what either the Republicans or Democrats would have you believe. In all it’s self serving ugliness.

Blame is owned by both.  The Democrats for not having passed a budget for two years.  To use their term, continuing resolutions are no more than ‘kicking the can down the road.’

The Republicans, on the other hand, are trying to tie two different problems together.  Let’s look at debt first. We all carry debt.  Credit cards, car payments, mortgages, etc.  Anything you owe on is debt.  The same holds true for government.  It isn’t just social security and medicare and military salaries.  It’s everything from Boeing to the companies who make bullets for the troops.  The debt ceiling is how much we can afford to charge.

Deficit then is obviously when we spend more money than we’ve budgeted.  Of course actually having a budget helps.  But how many of us do and what happens when the bank sends you an insufficient funds notice?  Pay up.  What if you can’t?  Default?  Bankruptcy?

So as I see the issues, Congress ought to raise the debt limit the absolute minimum amount needed to run the government for a year.  Then write a budget cutting what is feasible from the morass of programs out there and/or the programs themselves.  But in an orderly manner.

They keep talking about a Constitutional amendment to balance the budget.  That isn’t likely to happen.  They should, however, make passing an annual budget mandatory.  Before spending dime one!

Both sides have muddied the water so much it’s hard to sort it all out.  There have been cries for there to be adults in the room.  Don’t be fooled by exasperated sighs and head shaking.  They are all acting like spoiled children.  My way or the highway.  The President has not put forward concrete ideas.  The Republicans, lead by the tea party caucus, are being bull headed over the tax part of the issues.  Closing loopholes should not be considered tax hikes. It’s an exploitation of poorly written laws and should be eliminated.  Laws, by the way, written by Congress.

Congress can point fingers at the President all they want, but it shouldn’t be forgotten they are the ones who voted to spend beyond our limits in the first place.  Both parties.  Over years.

What goes around comes around.  Now they’ve been hoisted on their own petard – of greed.

Is there anyone out there who will really put country first?  Oh, yes.  The young men and women who are still being killed in Iraq and Afghanistan.  They understand the concept.  They have no lobbyists nor unions to bloat their salaries or benefits.  They just love their country – enough to  be willing to sacrifice their lives for it.

Politicians – take note.

Mari - Dogwalk Musings

Author: Mari - Dogwalk Musings

I have insatiable curiosity and an innate desire to find out whatever happened to common sense and the spirit of human kindness. For nine years I walked the same route with my dog, day in and day out. This blog began as a compilation of things I thought about while walking with him. I'm sometimes right, sometimes not - but I'm always open to intelligent and civil discussion.

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