The Chick-fil-A Squabble is Not a First Amendment Issue

THIS is why our schools need to teach this stuff.

Here we go again, folks. Every once in a while, a public figure states an opinion about a political issue. Then some people object. Then other people object to the first bunch. Then millions of Americans whip themselves into a colossal panic, whining about their “First Amendment Rights”. And they’re wrong.

Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy said in July that he opposes same sex marriage and supports organizations that share his views. Boston and Chicago Mayors Thomas Menino and Rahm Emmanuel said that they don’t want his stores in their cities.

Then a bunch of people with nothing better to do bought chicken sandwiches that they didn’t really want, and others who did want sandwiches stopped buying them. And each group thought that the others were violating their “rights”. Sorry, folks. It doesn’t work that way.

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Pennsylkvania Voter ID Law is a Republican Disgrace

And State Republicans Know It.

In the 1960s, thousands of activists swarmed throughout the southern states to register poor and minority voters, butting heads with state and local authorities in the process. Many of those courageous people were beaten and jailed for their efforts; some of them were murdered, because they believed in America’s most fundamental principle. Voting is not a privilege. It is a right.

Today, the Republican National Committee is conspiring to deprive you of your right to vote. Republican legislators in 41 states have introduced bills to restrict voting rights since the beginning of 2011. Sixteen of those state laws control 214 electoral votes and have the power to affect this year’s presidential election. Pennsylvania is the most recent battleground.

In every case, these laws obstruct voting rights for the poor, elderly, disabled, minorities, and college students. And all of those groups tend to vote Democratic. It’s not about voter fraud. It’s not about protecting our elections. It’s not about fairness, or justice, or democracy. It’s about preventing Democrats from voting.

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Health Reform Case Illustrates Supreme Court Process

Learn How the Supreme Court Works

This week, the United States Supreme Court is hearing arguments about whether the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is constitutional. Republicans call it “Obamacare” and claim that it reforms health care. It does no such thing. PPACA does not change the way doctors treat patients. It changes the way we pay for health care.

The Supreme Court is very powerful, but few Americans understand how it works. Our schools don’t teach this stuff because they don’t want you to know it.

Despite what most people believe, the Constitution does not give the Court the power to decide whether a law or an ction is constitutional. The Court decided that for itself.

There’s a lot at stake this week. It’s a shame that the government attorneys are making the wrong argument.



Nationwide Grassroots Project Will Amend U.S. Constitution to End Corporate Power in Elections

Restore American democracy. Corporations are not people.

Who inspires you? Abolitionists? Suffragists? Union organizers? Civil rights workers? Peace activists? Occupiers? They all have one thing in common. They were ordinary people faced with extraordinary injustice. Then they stood up, walked out of their comfort zones, and into history. They made the world better for all of us. Now we can all join them. 

Thanks to our right-wing activist Supreme Court, corporations and billionaires now legally and proudly own our politicians. Our elected representatives no longer have to pretend that they give two hoots about us. Americans’ confidence in our public institutions is at an all-time low. But there is a way to turn things around. There are people already working on it. And we need your help.




An Overview of American Political Parties

Most of the American political debate centers on the two major parties – Democrats and Republicans. Today, most Americans are fed up with politicians and would like to eliminate political parties altogether, but it would never work. Aristotle noted that humans are political animals and will always form associations based on common beliefs and experiences. Or more succinctly, we spend our time with people who see life the same way that we do. Contrary to common belief, the US Constitution does not require a two-party system, or any parties at all. They’re not even mentioned.

A political party is an organization with a distinct view of the purpose of government and seeks to hold power in that government through the electoral process. In his farewell address to the nation before his retirement, George Washington warned us not to let the parties become too powerful. He said they too easily sink to pettiness and favoritism, and would distract from the important business of governing. Hmmmmm.



It’s Easy to Find Government Information

Like it or not, government is a big presence in the United States. The considerable number of bureaus, departments, and offices has always made it difficult for citizens to find their way around. And then the Internet arrived.

Today, the United States government has just about the largest internet presence on earth. And it’s all at your fingertips. is your access to a mind-boggling supply of information. It links all of the individual government sites into a single place. It can connect you with every bit of public information in every government office and agency at every level – federal, state, local, and even American Indian tribal governments. That’s right. All of it. Of course, no one wants all of that information, but every piece is important to someone. Now there’s a way to find it.

Since the site is so massive, it includes a search function, a Help page, a Frequently Asked Questions page, a site index, and online tutorials. You can even email questions to the managers. However, I’ve found that the best way to use it is to spend just a few minutes poking around and getting used to it.

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Mitt Romney on Food Stamps?

And Other Random Thoughts

Mitt Romney has said that he’s not concerned about “the very poor”, because they have the safety net. The TANF (cash welfare) benefit for a three-person household in Massachusetts is $618 per month. The average SNAP (food stamps) benefit is $264 for that family each month.
I sent an email to Mitt Romney’s campaign, daring him to prove to us all just how easy “the poor people” have it by living on a welfare and food stamp budget for a month. I don’t expect him to have the guts to do it, but it sure will be fun watching him squirm out of it.

Send him a message. Spread this around. Let’s see how much pressure we can bring.

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