Gun Control: The More Things Change, the More they Stay the Same

Gun Control = Crime Control

What exactly would it take for the people of the United States to come together and agree that maybe buying guns should be just a little bit harder to do? The tragedy of Sandy Hook seemed almost like a cartoonishly evil hypothetical answer to that kind of question. Maybe, you might have said, if a classroom full of kindergartners was shot to death, that would be enough for people to agree that some limits on gun ownership wouldn’t be totally crazy.… [Read more]

To Hell in a Left Hand Basket

flames of Hell

Last night I was talking with someone who has an active mind that I very much respect. I always enjoy our discussions whether about politics, sports or women. Politically we are polar opposites, but we share passions and, at the end of the day, we share many concerns. This was not an angry or contentious discussion by any means but, toward the end, I realized, perhaps for the first time, that our views of the state of America are as opposed as our solutions.… [Read more]

Dangerous Thinking Towards the LGBT Community

curing homosexuality

Former and possibly future presidential candidate Rick Perry touched off a firestorm of criticism last week when he compared homosexuality to alcoholism. Even though it does seem a little click-baity to suggest Perry meant homosexuality is exactly like a debilitating, family destroying disease, what he actually said after he was asked if he believed homosexuality was a disorder or not isn’t much better than what the headlines suggest.… [Read more]

Pinocchio’s Nose

Pinocchio’s Nose - Liar

This morning I heard 3 commercials for 3 different Republican candidates and they all said a variation of the same thing:  “I will protect your freedoms from the encroachment of growing government.”

Great line. Who wouldn’t want that? It resonates and there is a lot of evidence of that “growing government” by which to give the statement credibility.… [Read more]

Privatization of the U.S. Prison System

Prison

The prison industry is one of the most rapidly growing industries in the United States. The prison privatization boom began in the 1980s, under the governments of presidents Ronald Reagan and George Bush Sr., but reached a peak in 1990 under President William Clinton.

The private prison industry is the business in which inmates are handed over to for-profit prisons under a convict lease system.… [Read more]

Fear of a Replacement

Busy!

When we start our career, we become so focused on performance, that soon all other things in our lives come second. Social pressure forces us to strive for success in the workplace. It appears that as we evolve, one person’s level of status, or their defining character, is correlated with how well they have climbed the corporate ladder.… [Read more]

Eastern Ukraine’s New Reality

Eastern Ukraine, Russia and how things stand today

Will President Vladimir Putin stop at Crimea? While it appeared that the Russian leader was ready to accept a diplomatic solution to the situation in Ukraine, with civil unrest still pervasive in the country coupled with knowledge of Russian history and Putin himself, it appears that the answer to that question is a resounding “no.”

Some Background

After centuries of being ruled and divided by a variety of different entities, it wasn’t until 1991 that Ukraine became an independent country.… [Read more]

E-Gadgets to Keep Your Home Green and Lean

E-Gadgets to Keep Your Home Green and Lean

It’s one of the most exciting and deeply satisfying milestones of anyone’s life: buying that first home. It’s that feeling of coming home to a piece of land, plus some concrete, wood, and nails, and knowing that you’re in your own little piece of heaven. Our generation is probably one of the most environmentally-conscious ever, so before you take out that housing loan, you’ll want to see these gadgets that can help your house stay green.… [Read more]

When’s the Water Safe to Drink? What WV Officials are Saying About Conditions

When's the Water Safe to Drink- What WV Officials are Saying About Conditions

After coal processing company Freedom Industries accidentally spilled chemicals into the Elk River, on January 9th, officials in West Virginia banned residents in several cities from using tap water for anything other than flushing toilets.

Officials lifted their tap water ban ten days after the spill; however, more than a month later, residents still have justifiable concerns.… [Read more]

Benefits of a Public Healthcare System

Healthcare system

Public health and the availability of healthcare services have become increasingly prominent issues in recent years. In the US, the controversial debate regarding the possible establishment of a public healthcare system has sparked many to revaluate their opinions towards public healthcare.

(Image Source)

How public healthcare works

The fundamental principle behind a public healthcare system is that the tax payments which individuals make to the State will be allocated towards the payment of their healthcare.… [Read more]

All By Myself

All by myself

It’s a challenge to feel ‘musical’ when surrounded by so much negativity. The “Say It In Song” space has always been used to connect songs of any era and genre to current political events but, given that songs often evoke powerful emotions, it has been difficult to post songs when political tensions are already running so high (or low, if one is taking the disgust factor into consideration).… [Read more]

Ask Mrs. Vera: Do you find last week’s election results encouraging?

Mrs. Vera with Doll House

Dear Mrs. Vera,

Do you find last week’s election results encouraging?

Yours not convinced truly, Ken…Cloacanellie? Canolismelly? Cootchycootchycoo-new-hell-pee?

Mrs. Vera Newman,San Francisco, California.Photo: Michael Johnstone

Dear Mr. Cucinelli,

Not knowing the spelling of one’s last name can lead to some confusion at the ballot box and that may have been a factor in your defeat you could have anticipated, but it’s too late, now.… [Read more]

Poverty and Student Achievement

poverty and student achievement

“If you think education’s expensive, wait ’til you see how much ignorance costs.”

These were the words of President Barack Obama this past Friday  in Brooklyn, New York, at a local high school where he addressed students and faculty of the Pathways in Technology Early College High School, a joint venture between IBM and the NYC Public School System.… [Read more]

Ask Mrs. Vera: How can I stretch my food stamp allowance to make healthy meals for my family?

Vera with wooly hair worms

Dear Mrs. Vera,

How can I stretch my food stamp allowance to make healthy meals for my family?

Kindest Regards, Emeril J. Lagasse, Fall River, MA

Mrs. Vera Newman,San Francisco, California.Photo: Cameron Wolf

Dear Emeril,

Love your Yukon Gold potato nest recipe, the one filled with tiny creamed onions.  That dish could be scaled up to provide crispy housing for the homeless and starving, and any tiny onion babies they have still clinging to life in those red “right-to-starve” states.… [Read more]

Where Do We Go From Here?

Where do we go from here?

During this past week the debt ceiling was raised and a government shutdown was ended after 16 days of political rhetoric and hand-wringing. The attempt by the radical right wing of the Republican Party to defund the Obama administration’s signature piece of legislation, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), was a complete failure. The Tea Party Caucus of the minority party held the federal government hostage over this one issue — at least initially — and they walked away with nothing and at the end of the day.… [Read more]

Ask Mrs. Vera: Are we still fighting The Civil War?

Vera, with peacock feather

Dear Mrs. Vera,

Are we still fighting The Civil War?

Fond Regards, Charles Rangel (D-NY)

Mrs. Vera Newman,San Francisco, California.Photo: Vinc LeVinc, 2004.

Dear Charo’s Tangles,

So lovely to hear from you again after all this time. My readers may not know this, but before entering politics and getting himself elected into office in New York, Mr.… [Read more]

Collateral Damage

Collateral damage

As a result of their attempt to block the Affordable Care Act, the American people have become collateral damage in the latest Republican assault on the Presidency of Barack Obama. They have shutdown the federal government with smiles and glee in their heart — knowing, but not caring about the ramifications of such actions. Just as Robert E.… [Read more]

Ask Mrs. Vera: So, is it time for the voters of Ohio to recall John Boehner?

Doodle_179_Why_Boehner_is_Orange

Dear Mrs. Vera,

So, is it time for the voters of Ohio to recall GOP Speaker of the House, John Boehner?

Regards, Somehow uncertain independent Ohio voter John Q. Public

Mrs. Vera Newman,San Francisco, California.Photo: Mark Trevorrow

Dear Junk Pukeblitzer,

Thanks for writing in, yet again, as you begin the long process of letting somebody else eventually make up your State’s mind for you.… [Read more]

Into the Wayback Machine to 1000 CE

Social Safety Net

Congressman Joe Barton (R-Texas) stated that harnessing wind power will make the earth hotter because it will make the wind slow down. This is not the first time members of the Grand Ole Party have made absolutely astonishing statements when it come to science. The Party of No is the party of No because they know nothing.… [Read more]

Ask Mrs Vera: Which is worse? The Shutdown or Barilla™?

Vera on scroll

Dear Mrs. Vera,

What’s worse, The Shutdown or Barilla™?

Guido Boehner, Annapolis, MD

Mrs. Vera Newman,San Francisco, California.Photo: Michael Johnstone.

Dear Giovanni NoBarroehner,

This is a very easy question to answer, especially if you are a female lady who ever came from a family, even one of those families that doesn’t count enough to deserve eating a specific brand of dried paste that is for sale in many shops and markets.… [Read more]