Archive for massachusetts

Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) holds big lead over Scott Brown (R-Bqhatevwr)

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Hey, did you hear the one where Scott Brown of Massachusetts is now pretending to be from New Hampshire so he and his truck can run for the U.S. Senate? He blew it big time when he lost badly in Massachusetts back in 2012. Just ask Senator Elizabeth Warren.

Ooo! Ooo! And remember how Scott Brown was really, really proud to be from Massachusetts? Me too! Ari Melber, take it away:

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Now Scott Brown is running against Senator Jeanne Shaheen, and he has fewer than eight months to overcome her double digit lead, as well as convince New Hampshire voters-- to quote former witch, Christine O'Donnell-- "I'm you."

So far this appears to be their resounding response: Bqhatevwr.

Via American Research Group:

If the 2014 election for US Senate were being held today between Scott Brown, the Republican, and Jeanne Shaheen, the Democrat, for whom would you vote - Brown or Shaheen? (names rotated):

chart Jean Shaheen v Scott Brown 2014

Among registered voters who are undecided about how President Obama is doing his job (they account for only 9% of those registered), Shaheen has a huge lead, 73% to Brown's 7% (20% are undecided).

The breakdown goes a little something like this: Brown appeals more to GOP voters and men (Wait, aren't the two synonymous?), but Shaheen is preferred by independents and women.

More here.

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You Won't Believe What This Cop Did -- And His Chief Defends Him

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I mean you can't make sh*t like this up. And of course, it happened in my native Massachusetts, so there's no doubt in my mind it's true. We produce police corruption like it was baked beans.

The details are simple. A cop is on his phone, illegally working a security detail. He's swearing and using the "F-bomb" incessantly. A nearby neighbor sitting on his porch across the street was offended by the language so he approached the cop and asked him to please watch his language. The cop did what you'd expect. He swore at the guy, called him names and told him to scram.

The citizen returned to his own house, sat on his porch and heard more foul language. He took out his iPhone and recorded the cop. The cop saw this, then came over and arrested the citizen sitting on his own porch for wiretapping.

If that wasn't enough, the phone was confiscated by the police and held by them as evidence. Two days later, the recording on the phone is discovered erased-- while in police custody. They cops are now blaming the arrested man who didn't even have access to his phone. This evidence, by the way would have supported the accused man's case.

This is Beantown Madness, and not the kind that comes with a Red Sox World Championship.

Watch for yourself.

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2016's True Dream Presidential Ticket For The Dems - No Hillary

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Sanders Warren

There is a potential Democratic ticket that's being floated around that has Hillary Clinton nervous. Not because she doesn't think that she can win the general election if she gets the nomination, she fears the primary battle. A really hard fought primary battle.

If you flip back to 2006, Hillary was, as she is now, considered to be a shoo-in for the nomination. It was a done deal. Her inaugural dinner menu was already being planned.  And we all know how that turned out for her. The bruising primary battles with Barack Obama showed she had backbone and strength. She was a good candidate. Obama was better, plain and simple.

Now we're approaching 8 years from her prior "inevitability." And whispers in the wind are that there's someone who might run who could conceivably capture the Democratic nomination. And coupled with his name is a running mate. Someone who's most compatible and would give the Democrats a dream ticket without the Clinton baggage.

The "potential candidate" is not a Democrat. He is an Independent. And his name is Senator Bernie Sanders (I - Vermont).

Take a moment to digest this. TIME MAGAZINE has:

Sanders, who is the longest-serving Independent in congressional history, would have to officially register as a Democrat before he could run in the 2016 Democratic presidential primary. But he says he hasn't yet made up his mind for sure if he’ll run, and he has time yet. One thing he is sure of: He’d make a better President than Hillary Clinton.

You  may ask who or why? Anyone in the political circles, Republican or Democrat, knows that Bernie is a man who speaks his mind and is filled with common sense more that a a need to fall in line with political dogma from either party. He's got America on his mind -- something the two major parties seem to clash over time after time -- and with disastrous results. Bernie just calls it as he sees it. And he sees it with compassion and practicality.

Sanders caucuses with the Democrats so his pick wouldn't be a far-fetched bit of chicanery. His reason for running he puts this way:

Clinton, he says, “is a very, very intelligent person, no question about it. But, I don’t know what her political future is, whether she’s going to run. I don’t know what she’s going to say. But, if you talk about the need for a political revolution in America, it’s fair to say that Secretary Clinton probably will not be one of the more active people.”

Senator Sanders knows what he's talking about. Clinton is a really well-rounded pick, but she's very willing to make compromise at the expense of Democratic policy. She's worldly, bright, articulate and an insider's insider. Is that what we want though? No one is more beholden to big money than the Clintons -- on either party's radar.

Here's the kicker to the Sander's potential for running. It paves the way for Senator Elizabeth Warren to run as Veep. If Hillary runs, the Dems won't put up an all-female ticket. Sad but true. And nobody, and I mean nobody comes close to standing up for consumers and against Wall Street's onerous practices than EW. In second place would be Bernie S. Together America wins.

Time will tell, but there's more and more chatter. Despite it being an all-New England ticket, it's most formidable. It's early and with Hillary playing games as she did in 2006 hemming and hawing about her running, she may be tricking herself once again. This time there's a potential juggernaut ready to take her on. If she announces she's running and Bernie still steps to the plate, look for one of the most amazing presidential primaries in the last hundred years.

Unlike the Republicans who have nobody running who can win the general election, the Democrats could have two major players, each qualified and each good for America. And if Democrats go with the fresher face of Bernie Sanders, he's less controversial, he's brilliant and he's got Elizabeth Warren at his side to groom for the Presidency after Bernie's 8 years.

Don't say I didn't warn ya!

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Once Again Sen. Warren Proposes Help To Consumers And Students

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Well, when it comes to consumer protections and forward thinking plans on how to make life better for all of us, there's now really only one voice. It's not Obama. It's not Boehner. It's not even a man. It's a woman who's becoming more a more of a hero every day to Democrats and Independents, and a seemingly unstoppable force against Republicans. She's Elizabeth Warren. Not even Hillary Clinton scares the GOP as much as she does.

She's been fighting Wall Street for us, trying to keep down runaway profits that don't, as the Republicans like to say, "trickle down" to working-class people. The GOP call them "job creators," but in reality they are money grabbers and thieves. Simon Legrees.

Yesterday EW, as the Senator is being called these days, announced a proposed bill to help the underwater fiscal lives of recent graduates of colleges and universities. And she's also allowing millionaires to take advantage of their preferential financial status and give a little back to those starting out, those who will someday lead these big financial institution and raise up civilization as a whole.

Her plan is quite simple -- a surtax -- yes a tax -- on earnings over $1Million. It's a modification to the Buffet rule. If you never heard of the Buffet rule, it that's because Republicans vetoed it. Think Progress:

The Buffet rule is named after billionaire Warren Buffet and would establish a minimum tax on income in excess of $1 million. The measure, which never got out of Congress, raises approximately $50 billion in revenue and ensures that millionaires do not pay lower tax rates than middle-class families.

Right now the government gives tax breaks to the highest earners but puts the burden on the lower wage earners. Millionaires and billionaires, pay lower taxes, if they even pay any, than middle class workers.

Warren's proposed bill will put those surtaxed revenues toward student loans which make trillions for the US treasure coffers. The onerous and usurious student loan rates in effect up until last year's reduction (which EW was a moving force in getting passed) are still in force. Unless they can be refinanced to current rates (not allowed under current rules), the older loans are going into default and students are crumbling under their weight. All Warren wants is to help people pay back the money they borrowed at today's lower rates, giving graduates more of a fighting chance to make it. It's win-win for America and our future. If you can refinance a house or a car, why not a student loan?

If you want to hear the future voice of America, Senator Warren of Massachusetts is the voice we need to listen to.

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Will FBI's Win Streak Stop At 150-0 Or Does Their Cheating Continue?

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FBI Badge

"Nobody is supposed to be above the law in this country," says Rachel Maddow. "Even the FBI." That sounds pretty solid in my book. Yet a few months ago the New York Times reported about 150 FBI shooting incidents which the Bureau internally reviewed and found that all 150 incidents were wholly justified. None were found to be accidental, negligent or criminal. None. 150 cases heard and all 150 determined to be "good" shootings.

That's amazing. A perfect record. In professional football if you go 16-0 you go down in the record books. In the modern NFL football era, it's only happened twice, and they only have 16 regular season games. In baseball it's never happened. Not in the NBA either. Or Hockey. Add basketball to the list of an elusive perfect seasons. When you play more than a handful of games, perfection is just not something that happens. Not even once.

So how is it the FBI has a perfect 150-0 record? Watch Rachel Maddow discuss this below. And what's even more interesting than the perfect record itself is the secrecy and conspiracy necessary to make this happen. Arresting innocent people so their visas expire allowing the government to expel witnesses to FBI shootings from our shores to keep them quiet. Taking innocent people and unarmed people and blowing them away or deporting them to Russia where they disappear, just so they can't testify against the FBI. If you think this is another installment of Robert Ludlum's Jason Bourne adventures, it's not -- so far. But Hollywood can't be very far behind with a film treatment of this expose. They may start with the Boston Magazine story which comes out in a few days: The Murders Before The Marathon.

If you can't wait to read it or rather watch it revealed by none other than Massachusetts resident, Rachel Maddow, here you go.

WARNING: But be prepared for some graphic, disturbing images... and some moral outrage.

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Fingerprint Recognition For Guns Saves Lives

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gun safety personalization system overview

For a while, about ten years ago, there was a rash of car break-ins where the only thing stolen was the car radio. It was a very easy item for the crooks to fence. The huge numbers of incidents of these thefts rose so high that the car manufacturers and the car radio makers got together to address this problem. And you know what? They did and so successfully that the number of radio thefts dropped precipitously.

Now almost all cars are equipped with radios that have an anti-theft mechanism. If you steal a radio, you need a special code to activate it. Even if your power goes out in your car -- the battery dies -- you need the code to activate it. So a stolen radio won't work and hence you won't be buying too many "hot" music making devices.

Necessity is the mother of all invention, or so the saying goes. And Senator Ed Markey (D-Massachusetts) has a new proposal to cut down on accidental and even intentional gun violence.  He plans on introducing new federal gun legislation that would require all firearms manufactured in the U.S. to be equipped with “personalization technology,” so that if a weapon lands in the wrong hands, it can’t be fired.

For the uninitiated, that means all guns must come with fingerprint recognition -- similar to ID codes for radios -- so that they can not be fired except by the licensed, registered owner. It doesn't stop gun sales. It only stops unauthorized use of these weapons.

If the same outcome is true for firearms as for car radios why not do it? Illegally sold firearms won't do a buyer any good if they can't be fired. Hence, less unreported or fenced gun sales.

Markey gave an interview to Boston Magazine:

The Handgun Trigger Safety Act will help ensure that only authorized users can operate handguns. This is the type of gun safety legislation that everyone—regardless of political party or affiliation—should be able to support,” he said.

Now this technology is already available. It's just plain common sense. It's not taking any rights away from legal gun registrants, those with a license -- it actually could prevent them from having their weapons stolen. Safety-safety, win-win.

The technology could include fingerprint recognition, or safety systems like the Armatix iP1, referenced in Markey’s proposal, which relies on a radio-controlled watch that is responsible for gun access and use.

If passed, the law would also require anyone selling a handgun to retrofit their weapon with personalization technology three years after the date of enactment of the bill. 

The technology already exists:

A company called Safe Gun Technology, or SGTi, has been working on a product that could do just that. Relying on biometric technology, people would be unable to fire a weapon unless they were the owner.

If someone is against such a personalization then I suggest they have something to hide. There's not a sane reason that this can't be done. And cost isn't the issue. People always seem to find the money to buy a gun. If this technology is added to that cost, they'll find a way to come up with that extra few bucks just like they do with security locked radios in their cars. It's just part of the cost. If you really need a gun, you'll find the money. Just like when gasoline spikes to nearly $5/gal. We grumble and grouse, maybe cut back on our driving habits, but we don't give up our cars. Well gun owners can do the same. And they'll get over it just like we gas users do.

We make automobile smog testing and attaining a certificate mandatory every two years here in California. It's a cost burden (around $75 including certificate) and inconvenience, but it's for public safety and clean air. How about asking gun owners to be responsible for public safety with their own weapons by not letting unauthorized people pick up their gun and shoot it? Think of all those young kids who discover their parents' weapons and end up shooting a sibling or neighbor kid while they're playing with it? If equipped with fingerprint recognition, those accidents won't become fatalities. They just won't happen at all.

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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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