Archive for governor

Ex-GOP Candidate For Gov Starts 'Shooting Indiscriminately,' Shoots Neighbor, Kills Horse

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California GOP Gun

Image: Fresno Sheriff's Department

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I'm in a New York State of Mind

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gov. mario cuomo

NY Governor Mario Cuomo, a very young Nicole Sandler,
and WMCA Program Director Jeanne Straus - circa 1984

 

I was born in New York City, and lived in Queens until my family moved to Florida on the day I finished 6th grade. After graduating from the University of South Florida, I moved back to New York, working in radio there for five years (until a relationship brought me to Los Angeles- a story for another day).

I love New York, and will always consider it, in some sense, home.

I also adored Governor Mario Cuomo. The picture above was taken in 1984 or 1985, when I produced a monthly statewide "Ask the Governor" radio show. (Another aside: always sitting next to me in the control room while I screened the phone calls was Cuomo aide Tim Russert!)

Gov. Cuomo was not only a really great governor for the state of New York, he was a genuinely nice, caring person. He always remembered my name and would even comment on a haircut or something else that made me realize he actually paid attention to me (unlike his opponent in his first gubernatorial primary, then-Mayor Ed Koch who, although I had met him numerous times, always introduced himself as if it was our first time meeting).

My life could be very different now had I accepted Gov. Cuomo's job offer back then. Unfortunately, he wanted me to work in his Albany press office. I may love New York, but it was New York City, not Albany where I wanted to remain, so I turned it down!

That said, to quote Howie Klein,

Don't ever mix Andrew Cuomo up with his dad.

Howie explained why in a post titled, "Andrew Cuomo -- The Richard M. Nixon of the Democratic Party?".

Over the past week or so, we've learned that the younger Cuomo is embroiled in an ethics scandal, nothing new for New York politics, but something he had promised to stamp out. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss...

Thankfully, there's a light at the end of the tunnel and her name is Zephyr Teachout,

Zephyr Teachout, a constitutional law professor and former national Director of the anti-corruption group the Sunlight Foundation, running as the progressive alternative to Cuomo.

I first spoke with Zephyr back in my Air America days, and was thrilled to see her name emerge in June as a potential Working Families Party challenger to Gov. Cuomo. We spoke back then, after politics got in the way, and she was still deciding whether or not to challenge Cuomo in a Democratic Party primary. Thankfully, she decided to do just that, and she chose a great running mate too!

Her selection for Lt. Governor, Tim Wu, is is a law professor at Columbia University and is most well-known for being the father of Net Neutrality. He's also the son of two immigrants.... Zephyr framed the differences between Hochul and Wu very succinctly: "In the Hochul-Wu contest, Hochul represents conservative and fear-based politics, and Wu represents progressive and democracy-based politics."

The primary is just a month away, so visit TeachoutWu.com and help if you can!

Today happens to be the 69th anniversary of the US dropping a nuclear bomb on Hiroshima. You'd think the world would learn from our mistakes...  It's worth remembering what we did on that day.

Sadly, as I discussed with Susie Madrak in the first hour of the show today, it won't take something as drastic as another atomic bomb to devastate life on the planet. We're killing ourselves a little bit more each day, as she tells us in this article about recent revelations of methane leaking from the Arctic.

Tomorrow, if we're still standing, I'll be back with a busy show- Congressman Alan Grayson, economist Stephanie Kelton, cultural HERstorian Amy Simon and the No-More-Bullshit man himself, Stephen Goldstein. Talk to you then, Radio or Not!

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"We Can Kill You Now Or We Can Kill You Later," Rick Perry

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Remember those old Fram auto filter TV ads -- "you can pay me now or you can pay me later?" Well, there's a bit of that philosophy in Gov. Rick Perry's latest goofball thinking.

Today Texas Republican Governor Rick "Oops" Perry is about to make another "Oops." He's going to commit an estimated $12 million a month to send the National Guard to his state's southern border. The question is why? What are they supposed to do? Will they take positions on the borderlines and mow down with their high powered rifles every man, woman and child who approaches the Texas border from Mexico?

The truth is that these immigrants are not sneaking over the border. They're crossing the border and immediately turning themselves in. They're actually seeking out border patrols and surrendering. They're announcing "Here I am. Please take me. Please!"

The unaccompanied kids are the big Republican talking point as they're protected more than the adults who cross into the US without proper documentation. This is thanks to a bill the Republican President, G.W. Bush signed into law in 2008. To be balanced and fair, most Democrats voted for this bill as well.

So should Texas, a state that's refused the Medicare expansion for its own poor yet legal residents, order body bags for the refugee children the National Guard is going to shoot? Of course not, because the Guard is not going to shoot anyone. What they are going to do is become a political charade. They will be armed baby sitters, child wranglers and guardians for the safety and welfare of the poor kids trying to escape death and torture in their own countries. They aren't coming here for holiday. They're flocking to America for safety and for their lives.

Rick Perry gunImage: addictinginfo.org

Point a gun at a kid who's made the harrowing, dangerous thousand-plus mile journey to America, threatening them that they'll be shot if they cross our border or be shot and killed after a thousand mile journey returning back home and there's no choice. They'll take the executioner's bullet right here and right now. That sure will make an interesting political election poster for Gov. Perry -- piles of dead kids on his border. Maybe he'll even stand in a big game hunter's pose with one leg up, resting it on a pile of dead children. Don't put anything past Tricky Rick.

The Texas boob governor has no plan other than trying to drum up publicity with this stunt. And for what? He's got zero chance at the GOP presidential nomination. And he's not running for re-election.

The answer, to the surprise of few, is ignorance. The governor's ignorance. He simply lacks a comprehensive and humanitarian plan. And instead of helping out the people of his state by accepting Medicare help for constituents, he's robbing them of tight money the Texans really need for more important matters.

Texas leads the nation in uninsured citizens. Medicare would take millions of uninsured and cover them, allowing hospitals to receive much needed funds to stay open. That $12 million per month could greatly raise the living conditions in the state. Perry is robbing his state's coffers of tight cash they need for so many other pressing issues -- for the unemployed, the uninsured, infrastructure, public safety, education, etc.

So Texas is about to burn $12 million a month while Gov. Nero Perry fiddles. Perry has a dream. It's just a dream. It's to move from soon-to-be ex-governor of Texas to larger pastures -- the White House. Well there's about as much chance of that happening as Michelle Bachmann winning a Nobel Prize in science. But while he wastes his state's money on a political fantasy, the good people of the Lone Star State starve and can't afford medical care which could save lives. Instead, in Rick's fantasy world, he's ordering the armed National Guard to his borders to keep kids out.

What's next for this moron? Bear traps, sarin gas and land mines?

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Bridge-it Loves Christie

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Pulaski Skyway Bridge Pulaski Skyway Bridge

What is it with boys and their toys? They just won't leave them alone sometimes. They have a fascination that they can't give up -- until they break them.

And NJ Governor Chris Christie may just have crossed that bridge too far.

Now comes another bridge scandal. No, really. Another bridge scandal. You just gotta love this guy, Christie. He doubles down when he thinks he can get away with something. He's determined to leave no bridge unturned.

Here's the latest from the Daily Beast:

The New York Times reported Tuesday that the Manhattan district attorney and the Securities and Exchange Commission are investigating Christie's office for lobbying the Port Authority to divert $1.8 billion away from a canceled rail-tunnel project and towards repairing the Pulaski Skyway bridge. Pulaski is a state bridge, outside of the Port Authority's purview. The Christie administration recast the bridge as an access road to the Lincoln Tunnel (they're not connected) in order to justify using Port Authority funds. The move is under scrutiny for potentially defrauding bond holders. Under the Martin Act, prosecutors could bring felony charges without proving intent to defraud. The SEC could also take civil action.

What's it all mean? Fraud.

Christie, who boasted he could balance the state's budget in his reelection stump speeches, couldn't. So he diverted funds from a public source, the billion dollar rail-tunnel project. Christie cancelled the project which was already underway then took the unspent funds and used them for repairs that were not authorized. He did it by claiming the bridge was an access road.

A bridge became an access road? Okay, that's stretching it, but we'll move on.

He then claimed this "access road" connected to the Lincoln Tunnel. It does NOT  lead or connect in any way, shape or form to the Lincoln Tunnel. That's like saying the Bridge over the River Kwai connected Burma with London.

So, just when you thought it was safe to return to New Jersey, think again. You may be following road signs from Trenton to New York City and end up in Pennsylvania thanks to Gov. Christie and his new road connection designations.

But if you want to speak to him, you better do it quickly. He may be moving his office to the New Jersey State Department of Corrections.

Looks like he's gonna have a bit more 'splainin' to do, Lucy.

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Could A Pro Pot, Lesbian, Women's Rights, Progressive Lead Maryland?

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Maryland

Heather Mizeur is everything in the headline of this post. And she's currently running for Governor of Maryland, to replace a popular liberal Democrat, Governor Martin O'Malley who's retiring after two terms to seek a run at the President of the United States office.

Right now there are three Democrats in the Maryland Governor's race. Along with the 41-year old Mizeur is Attorney General, Doug Gansler, and so far, the Democratic party's anointed successor to the throne, Lieutenant Governor Anthony Brown. There’s no question, though, that Mizeur is running on the most left-wing platform of the bunch.

Here's a taste of what Mizeur, a two-term member of the Maryland House of Delegates, is expounding, according to The Daily Beast:

...criminal justice reform, drug policy reform, tax cuts on poor and middle class, tax hikes on wealth, school construction policy, minimum wage increases, anti-fracking, campaign finance reform, health care, family planning, plugging corporate tax loopholes, universal pre-kindergarten, and marriage equality, to name a few.

Well, to win with those stances, you'd have to come from a state that thinks the same way as she does. And guess what, Maryland is just such a state:

...in recent legislative sessions, the Maryland General Assembly has passed and he has signed into law bills legalizing same-sex marriage, instituting a state-level “Dream Act” offering in-state tuition to certain undocumented immigrants, putting in place strong “common-sense gun safety measures,” and repealing the death penalty. Both the same-sex marriage and Dream Act measures were upheld by surprisingly strong margins in statewide referenda on the 2012 general election ballot.

I'm not saying that Heather Mizeur is going to win, place or show in the primaries. But she sure is a refreshing candidate and if progressives are going to make a move, she's the kind of candidate who might just make that happen. Let's keep an eye on her. Certainly she stands out. Hopefully she can get elected and run Maryland. That's a social experiment I'd love to see.

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When's An Apology Not An Apology? When It Comes From Ted Nugent

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Ted Nugent

HUFFPO:

Rocker Ted Nugent has reportedly apologized for calling President Barack Obama a "subhuman mongrel," according to the Ben Ferguson Show and CNN.

During an interview on the Ben Ferguson Show Friday, Nugent apologized for the comments, which he made in January 2014.

In case you missed Nugent's assessment of the President, here it is, verbatim, via The Wire:

I have obviously failed to galvanize and prod, if not shame enough Americans to be ever vigilant not to let a Chicago communist-raised, communist-educated, communist-nurtured subhuman mongrel like the acorn community organizer gangster Barack Hussein Obama to weasel his way into the top office of authority in the United States of America.

Here's the Facebook announcement about the apology today. From this you'd think Nugent woke up this morning with a whole new attitude. Think again as you read on:

BREAKING NEWS: TED NUGENT JUST SAID HE IS SORRY TO PRESIDENT OBAMA ON THE SHOW!
In fact, Nugent did not apologize to to the President, but did apologize for using the term, "subhuman mongrel." What the Right wingnut did apologize was for anyone linking that comment to Texas attorney general Greg Abbott -- who is campaigning for governor. Nugent called Abbott his "blood brother."

He just didn't want Abbott to take any blame -- but Nugent still evidently stick by his vile name calling. Again from HUFFPO:

"I do apologize -- not necessarily to the President -- but on behalf of much better men than myself," Nugent said, calling the comments "street fighter terminology."

Just who are those better men he refers to:  Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas.). And quite surprisingly, both criticized the rocker for his outrageous statement, but then quickly added their support for the Attorney General and his campaign for Governor. What do you think they told their candidate? Why "Rock on," of course.

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"Why Save Lives? That Costs Money," Maine Gov. LePage

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HuffPo:

Maine Gov. Paul LePage (R) appears set to oppose a bill increasing access to a lifesaving anti-overdose medication because of concerns rejected by public health experts that it could encourage more drug abuse, according to the bill's chief sponsor.

Fatal heroin overdoses in Maine quadrupled from 2011 to 2012. Naloxone is a drug that can reverse overdoses from heroin and other opioids like morphine. State Rep. Sara Gideon (D) is sponsoring legislation that would place the drug [naloxone], which is sold under the trade name Narcan, in the hands of police, firefighters, at-risk users and their families.

With statistics like those above, why wouldn't any caring public servant not want to provide all possible life-saving options to all first responders? Do they send firemen to fires without water? Do they send cops out on the street without guns? So why this stand by the governor, and why now?

Part of the problem is this man is insane. He's no stranger to controversy. For a quick refresher course on his antics, he's the man who  had some words for Democratic State Senator Troy Jackson, whom he battled over the state's budget.

"Senator Jackson claims to be for the people but he's the first one to give it to the people without providing Vaseline," LePage told Portland station WMTW.

So now who's shoving something where it doesn't belong without lube? Here's LePage's twisted logic: he believes increasing the availability of Narcan will lead the drug user or drug abuser to have this feeling of invincibility. Therefore, why save their lives? Why should we keep alive someone who's a drug user?

Heroine overdosers

Ask Janis Joplin, Philip Seymour Hoffman, River Phoenix, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Cory Haim, Lenny Bruce, Billie Holiday, Heath Ledger, Jimi Hendrix, Chris Farley, Curt Cobain, Whitney Houston, or tragically so many more. Maybe the cost of carrying the drug on first responders is a concern. But think of the value these drug overdosers' lives would have had for all of us if they had lived. You can't put a price on a life, but this GOP ultra-conservative believes he can. And he's not alone. Maybe they need to look at this:

In 2010, police and firefighters in Quincy, Mass., started carrying Naloxone as part of their standard equipment -- a scenario similar to that envisioned in Gideon's bill. Since then, Naloxone has been credited with reversing 188 overdoses in Quincy alone, and the head of the Boston suburb's police narcotics unit has become a Naloxone evangelist.

People of Maine, you deserve better. Whatever your reasons for putting your life into this wachadoo's hands, he has certainly not earned your trust. Make sure your state representative knows that the cost of saving lives is nothing compared to what a living person can contribute to you and the rest of society.

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