Friday, August 13, 2010

Please Let Elizabeth Warren Protect Us Mr. President

"To restore some basic sanity to the financial system, we need two central changes: 

fix broken consumer-credit markets 
end guarantees for the big players 
that threaten our entire economic system. 

If we get those two key parts right, we can still dial the rest of the regulation up and down as needed. But if we don't get those two right, I think the game is over. I hate to sound alarmist, but that's how I feel about this. 
- Elizabeth Warren

I felt Privileged to meet Elizabeth Warren
at the 2010 Netroots Nation Convention

Meet Elizabeth Warren!
The idea for the consumer watchdog agency
originated from a paper  
Elizabeth Warren wrote in 2007 

Elizabeth is the Gottlieb Professor of Law,
at Harvard Law School.

She Chairs the Congressional Oversight Panel which held hearing on the Trouble Assets Relief Program (TARP).  The Panel releases monthly oversight reports that evaluate the government bailout and related programs.

Elizabeth Warren was under consideration as Supreme Court nominee for position that is now freshly held by Elana Kagan.

The Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection, the new watchdog agency, which she may be tapped to lead, is a cornerstone of the administration's plan to rewrite current financial regulations. It will have autonomy to write and enforce its own rules and a dedicated source of funding. 

Think about it! This idea originated with Elizabeth Warren.  She is highly qualified; so that can't ever be an obstacle. So if the idea is that great to become the cornerstone of Obama's Wall St. reform, the long awaited relief for consumers who have lost their homes, their pensions, their jobs; then why wouldn't the author and creator of this idea be picked to lead it?

The Congressional Oversight Panel she currently Chairs issue monthly reports that have covered foreclosure mitigation, consumer and small business lending, commercial real estate, AIG, bank stress tests, the impact of TARP on the financial markets, government guarantees, the automotive industry, and many other topics. The Panel has also released special reports on financial regulatory reform and farm loans. For each report, Warren releases a video on the Congressional Oversight Panel's website explaining key findings. All reports and videos are available at

Had Elizabeth Warren not already been serving as Chair of the Congressional Oversight Panel, she would still be the most qualified candidate for the new consumer agency.  Had she not been the author of the idea in a paper released on it in 2007, she would easily still be the most qualified candidate to chair the new agency.  

In essence you have a person who is already a lawyer; a law professor, at Harvard; who specialized in studying and doing research on bankruptcy laws; who has proven to have special insights into the perspective of consumers, aka Americans; who had the original vision about this agency; wrote the mission statement for the agency; who was also appointed to be the Chair of the Congressional Oversight Panel which has become the precursor to the new agency; all of this one very dedicated and humble public servant.

If you look up the term 'No Brainer' it now says; "See also the appointment of Elizabeth Warren to head the new Consumer Protection Bureau

It is in direct proportion to her unique qualification that Progressives have totally embraced and fallen in love with Elizabeth Warren. To everyone who has lost their home in foreclosure, lost their job, have had or are having to go through bankruptcy, who have lost their retirement, or in any other way have fallen prey to the abuse of Wall Street or the greed of big business; to everyone of them, Elizabeth Warren offers hope.  To everyone of them, everyone of us, we all look at her as the symbol of potential justice in our own individual lives.

It is in direct reverse proportion to this unique qualification that the Party of No, the Grand Obstructionist Party, the party of the rich, the party of Wall Street; do NOT want to see the other 99% of Americans get any protection from the corporate masters, from corporate governance, from their greed and abuse.  

Obama has been experiencing a serious erosion of his base! Progressives are impatient for change in their favor and disappointed to see bank bailouts, corporate welfare, Wall Street insiders Summer and Geithner running the economy and the belief that big business was "too big to fail" but working Americans? Not so important they can't fail!

Press Secretary Robert Gibbs' recent comments about the "Professional Left" has only inflamed the passion and divided progressives even more.  Obama can ill-afford to alienate the left anymore.  Give us Elizabeth Warren on this one or face a wrath like you haven't ever seen Mr. President!  For progressives like me, I can only say that appointing Elizabeth will do much to heal the divide.  Failure to appoint Elizabeth will cause many progressives to jump ship and be your worst critics.

Although some senators have questioned whether her nomination could succeed in the Senate, Obama spokesman Robert Gibbs recently said that he thought Warren was a "terrific" candidate and that she was "very confirmable" in the Senate.

Don't blow this one Mr. President!  To quote Vice President Biden: "This is a BIG fucking deal"!

Pick Elizabeth! Pick Elizabeth! Pick Elizabeth!

Elizabeth Warren at Netroots Nation 

 Elizabeth was a keynote speaker at the 2010 Netroots Nation Convention in Las Vegas.   She captivated the progressives and proved herself to be a dynamic speaker!

Elizabeth Warren was also on a panel on the 'Forgotten Foreclosure Crisis' with U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley who himself was a well educated, highly intelligent participant on the panel who proved to be well versed on the the entire Wall Street scams that led to the foreclosure crisis. 

I attended both her dynamic speech on the convention floor and the panel on the forgotten foreclosure crisis. I thought she was just outstanding.  Yes she is totally qualified in every sense of looking just at her resume.  But I was struck at her sincere compassion.  She was highly approachable.  I waited my turn to be able to share just a few words with her.  I told her a thumbnail of what I wanted to discuss with her in the future.  And I told her that I would be using the picture with her to help remind her of those words when that comment arrives.

For me Mr. President, its personal!  
Seriously, pick Elizabeth!

Here is Elizabeth's Speech from Netroots Nation

Links to more on Elizabeth Warren

Elizabeth Warren, likely to head new consumer agency, provokes strong feelings

By Brady Dennis Washington Post Staff Writer,  August 13, 2010

This is an article I just ran across in the Washington Post that gives some perspective on her bio background, her qualifications, and why GOP in Congress are resistant to her leading the new agency. Read on Washington Post link [HERE] 

Elizabeth Warren Uncovered What the Govt. Did to 'Rescue' AIG, and It Ain't Pretty
On AlterNet [HERE]

Thursday, August 12, 2010

The 'Professional Left' Just Doing Our Job Mr. President!

"What I'm asking you is; 
  to keep making your voices heard. 
To keep holding me accountable" 
-- President Obama, July 2010

Well Mr. President; that's exactly what I'm doing.  
that's exactly what WE collective Progressives are doing. 
And that's exactly those your Press Secretary Gibbs now refers to as the "Professional Left"  are doing. 

"Change we can believe in."
I believed!  
I worked hard to help Obama get elected! 

I made sure we got hundreds of signs, buttons, bumper stickers out into the community. I still have an Obama bumper sticker on my truck.  I got a really great campaign headquarters for our local community.  We used it to do phone banking; hold events, and especially the big celebration on election night.  We rented a big screen tv and installed cable just for the big moment when we finally laid to rest eight years of Bush Conservatism and ushered in a new dawn, new hope; finally, a new era of Progressive change!

I remember the speeches. Great speeches. Speeches so great I recorded many of them.  Will I. Am made a song out of one of them.

What I heard in those speeches was how we were going to end the wars, reform Wall St., repeal DADT, bring foreclosure relief, extend unemployment benefits, create jobs, retool America for green energy, protect our oceans from BP, lots of good progressive stuff like that.

We were going to have real health care reform not the milk toast watered down version the GOP deteriorated it into.  I was naive enough to think that we were going to get universal health care, single payer.  We didn't even get the public option.  

So YOUR Press Secretary Gibbs is flippant about us not ever being satisfied even if Dennis Kucinich was president or if we had the Canadian Health Care System.

Excuse me?

At this point, I'm rather certain that Dennis would have found a way to end the wars and get us all universal health care.  I really doubt he would have brought in Wall St. insiders like Larry Summers or Tim Geithner.  And I'm rather certain that Van Jones and Shirley Sherrod wouldn't have been fired at the will of Fox Noise.  By the way Mr. President,  I'm getting less fond of Rahm Emanuel and Robert Gibbs by the day.

And by now Mr. President, I would have expected DADT to have been repealed.  Congress did that and now its under review?  For how long? Unacceptable Mr. President.

If we had Canadian style universal health care, I'd have some of my health issues looked at and I'd be satisfied knowing that Americans would start living 3 to 5 years longer like Canadians now do.

You broke all of your promises about dealing with the foreclosure crisis.  As a result, millions of families lost their homes.  What I don't remember in any of your speeches Mr. President was your devotion to Big banks, big corporations, big oil.  I must have missed all of those 'Too Big to Fail' speeches where you must have promised that corporations must be given priority over their victims of predatory lending and illegal loan servicing practices.

Yes Mr. President, your base is restless. We're impatient.  Soldiers are dying. People are still unemployed, homeless, losing all hope.  BP just killed an ocean and they got to call all of the shots.  No one is in prison for that just like nobody is in prison for the Wall St. crimes.

We acknowledge all of the great things you have done but frankly, its not nearly good enough and 'Yes we can do more'.  By now you should have done more.  We want you to stop pandering to the right.  We really want you to stop pandering to big business.  We want you, to get strong, defiant, and force through the "Change" you talked about in all of those great speeches that earned you the most votes of any president in history.

So do us 'Lefty Professionals' (whatever that means and whoever that includes) a big favor;  Tell Gibss to STFU about us and turn his frustration where it belongs; the GOP and the 'RWNJ Professionals'.  They are the enemy; not us.

We in your base are NOT satisfied.  We 'Professional Left' (if I can be so bold as to include myself), WE Mr. President are damn well going to, as you put it: "Keep making our voices heard" and WE Mr. President are going to "Hold you accountable".  

And unless you have changed your mind on that one Mr. President, then you need to tell Mr. Gibbs about your directive.  Fire Mr. Gibbs for turning on us in a defiant act of betrayal.  Because this progressive army of Professional and Amateurs on the left do not intend to be patient much longer.  Grow a pair, and give us the change we elected you for or your base won't be there for you next time you need us.  Its that simple Mr. President.

There is a big temptation here to go into many other areas or elaborate on those I've already cited but when I have a couple of videos from a couple of big shots that always do a better job at speaking for me than I ever do; I think I should just shut up and them do what they do best.

First, here is what Press Secretary Gibbs said along with the response from Florida Congressman Alan Grayson:

Here is what else Rep Grayson had to say on the subject:  

"Times are tough. Maybe you noticed.
In certain parts of the world, 100 years ago, when times were tough -- a drought, a famine -- they ate each other. Literally.
That's who they were.
We're different. When times are tough, we don't think about ourselves alone. We think about those who need help. The sick. Senior citizens. The disabled. Children. When times are tough, they're the ones who need help the most.
That's why I was so proud yesterday to vote for money for schools and for health care for the poor.
That's why I was so proud yesterday to vote for money for schools and for health care for the poor.
Why? Because if we voted it down, schools would close. And hospitals would close.
But we won't let that happen. When times are tough, we rise to the occasion. We shelter the homeless, we feed the hungry, and we heal the sick. We teach the children. We help those in need.
We're Americans. It's who we are. And I'm proud of it."
Follow Rep. Alan Grayson on Twitter:

Here is Keith Olbermann's Special Comment on it:

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Related Links on this Subject

Cowards vs. Hypocrites: 
Why Democratic Politicians Despise the “Professional Left”
By Randy Shaw

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Al Doesn't Live In His Van Anymore!

Al Doesn't Live In His Van Anymore; 
Al Doesn't Live Anymore!

      Al's Story showed up as part of another post here on Real World Politics called: 'The Bush Economy, Unemployment, and Suicide' [HERE]. In that post I was addressing the crossroads of three pieces of info;

1.This Chart on the Bush Deficit

[ I uploaded this chart for easy sharing on twitter [HERE] and sent it out on various versions of tweets. Lots of people RTd it and within two weeks it was viewed almost 5,000 times. ]

2, A video on the UnEmployed called: 'America's 99ers The Forgotten' [HERE] 3.And the first of the two letters on the 'Al Doesn't Live in his Van' story!

      I got the chart at the 2010 Netroots Nation from a presentation by AFL-CIO President Richard L.Trumka. The Chart originated from 'The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities' who were also at the Netroots Nation Convention. They are doing a great job on crunching the numbers on the economy demonstrating cause and effect of Bush Economics vs Obama response. You really should go visit their site and get yourself edjumacated [HERE]

      If you start studying the real effects of the deficit and how infinitesimal the percentage of that massive deficit is on behalf of doing anything for real Americans who are suffering in a real way. Millions of Americans are losing their jobs, losing their homes to foreclosure, losing their unemployment insurance, losing their health insurance and health care; and way to often they are losing their self respect, their dignity, and their hope!

      The story of Al not living in his van is the tragic story of what is happening all across our country. There is every conceivable version of Al's story out there with millions of Americans, with their own unique tales of hardship, suffering and despair.

      And while millions of Americans are hurting, the Grand Obstructionist Party is yelling about the deficits and why we can't afford to help them. Getting past the issue than none of these corporate pawns in Congress ever said a single peep when they were supporting Bush economic; passing them in country with not a word of objection from any of them.

      But now when its time to put the country back to work rebuilding the country, universal health care, extending unemployment, taking care of the 911 first responders, investing in green energy, mass transit, foreclosure crisis, homeless, veterans benefits, and any other relief for suffering Americans; suddenly we just can't afford to help. The majority of Americans are struggling through hardships right now but ask the rich to pay their fair share? Treason!

     I guess that's why Al's story effected me so much. Al doesn't live in his van anymore because Al's dead. Al's story didn't have to end like this. Al's story could have ended with Al working at a plant making windmill generators, or solar panels; Al could have been building hybrid cars, or mass transit: Al could be enrolled at a college or trade school learning skills for the future technical trades. There is lots of ways Al's story could have been different. It could have been, but it didn't! Al's dead!

      Here now is Al's story: 

'Al Doesn't Live in his Van Anymore' – Part One

[Believed to be written by BrucePaue from The Unemployed Friends Forum [HERE]

      Well whoever it is I hope they read this. I can't think properly right now. Around 2pm on Tues afternoon I received a visit from a member of our local fire company. They came to my house and told me to sit down. I knew I was about to receive bad news.

      With tears running down his eyes he informed me Alex has shot himself in the head in the woods someone found him laying along the side of his van. Alex attempted suicide by shooting himself in the head.

      Alex is in intensive care at the local hospital but to be honest it isn't looking good at all. His sister called me and she told me he has severe swelling of the brain. Doctors have drilled several holes in his skull to contain the swelling. He is currently on life support and his wife and son are going to be by his side tomorrow. T

      The reason I am posting this here is because I know Alex has posted here he showed me this forum because I too am unemployed. He called you guys his support group. Alex is a 99er so please please if you feel stressed or feel the urge to commit suicide talk to someone.

      Alex was not only my neighbor but he is my best friend. Alex has helped so many in this community and everyone in our small community knows Alex and his family. Alex worked at one job all his life and got laid off few years ago when his company went out of business.

      I feel so bad about this I should have known something was up. Monday night Alex walked over to my place and wanted to give me his laptop computer because he knew I sold my computer to feed my baby boy. Alex looked really wore out at the time mentally and was losing weight like crazy because he was walking to apply for jobs.

      Alex wouldnt accept a ride or accept a meal without putting up a fight. He used to say I am no charity case. Ok I am sorry for blabbering on just needed to talk to some people. However I am greatly upset about this but we need to keep up the fight for 99ers all over. Lets fight for Alex by calling emailing or faxing. I will be doing so for now on.

'Al Doesn't Live in his Van Anymore' – Part TWO

[I don't know if it was Bruce Paue or someone else who wrote this Part Two but on Thursday 5th August 2010, @ExtendUENow sent out this letter on a 'long tweet':]
      It is with Great Sadness that I have to let you know that unemployed 99er Al passed away from a self inflicted gunshot wound. This beautifully written piece was Posted by 1 of our members Msannonymous222 at the Unemployed-Friends Forum.
This is the story of Al, one of those statistics you all talk about, one of the constituents you read letters from on the Senate floor, on the House floor:

      "He did everything right: worked hard all his life, paid taxes, took care of his family, participated in his community. Then boom, one day he was laid off at age 58, and for more than two years after that could only find odd jobs here and there. Jobs he applied for had many people showing up to try to get the same 'one' job. 

      When he reached 99 weeks and lost his unemployment benefits, he lost his home, he put his disabled wife and son into a homeless shelter, he lived in his van, he suffered when the police confiscated his license plate due to nonpayment of the registration. 
      No longer able to drive the van to seek work, he walked miles and miles, and prospective employers told him that he would not be hired because he was too old. Managers at both McDonald's and Wendy's told him that the was too old to work for them. 
      The welfare office said he couldn't have food stamps without a mailing address. The homeless shelters that accept men told him they were full. He managed to hang onto his laptop and used it to email Congress and the White House to help the 99ers, but no one listened. 
      Then one day last week, he gave his laptop away to a fellow jobless man who had just sold his own computer to buy milk for his baby, walked a few miles back to where his van was parked, and shot himself in the head."—a poster on the Unemployed Friends forum

      Today we learned he is no longer with us. He was declared brain dead yesterday. His family courageously and most lovingly removed him from life support, and he died.

      Sen. Casey, your constituent is gone. Sen. Specter, your statistic is gone. And his representative? Someone from your district has passed.

      While all of you were aiming your slings and arrows at each other—you know, your good friends on the other side of the aisle—day after day, week after week, month after month, no one was noticing that many millions of Als were trying to live through one more day of heartbreak, terror, disgust, anger and a million other emotions—while attempting to find something to eat, someplace to sleep, and, yes, by golly, being chipper on that job hunt.

      Today I'm not addressing this to Democrats. Today, I'm not addressing this to Republicans. Today I'm not addressing this to an Independent. I'm not addressing it to your political beliefs, your deficit spending or not. I'm addressing this to each and every human being in Congress, and I'm putting you on notice that a man died—a 99er died—because no one moved fast enough to help him.

      Do you know how many 99ers are near bottom right now—who don't know if they can stand one more day, or even one more hour, trying to hold on until financial aid comes to them? They are white collar, blue collar, degreed and not, many years of experience, just out of school, with families, alone, with lives they've had to just give up, lives that don't exist anymore in any way resembling "the old days" when they were proud to be employed.

      We are grateful that a bill for the 99ers has been introduced. But I cannot physically fathom that you people are leaving and leaving millions of needy people behind. By your return from your recess, there will be more Als who just. give. up.

      Do you know what it's like to be penniless? I do. I've been.

      Do you know what it's like to watch your loved one die from a brain injury? I do. I've watched.

      His family members and close friend Bruce have been in agony since July 27 because you didn't do something to help this man in time.

      Do the honorable thing tomorrow. Don't recess. Stay. Fulfill your moral obligation. And if you didn't know you had a moral obligation as a member of Congress, then maybe you ought to consider another career, perhaps as an accountant, something which makes you accountable for money, but unaccountable for lives worth saving and lives worth living.

      Today we should all be mourning. This was a life lost. Al wasn't your constituent. He wasn't your statistic. He was a living, breathing, desperate human being. How many more lives will be lost before other living, breathing, desperate human beings are helped?"

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The Bush Economy, Unemployment and Suicide

     For a host of reasons, I have made it my policy for now not to go public with my own personal situation.  At least not yet. I deal with my own personal pain and suffering mostly by focusing on making a change and fighting for the countless numbers of others whose plight is far worst than my own.

     Last night I was in a DM chat with a twitter friend of mine when it suddenly got quite personal for both of us. It turned out that this twitter friend and I share many of the same challenges in life much of which is caused by the severe devastation of the Bush Economic Policies. Our chat went on for quite some time until late into the night. Finally, I told him I was feeling exhausted and need some sleep. I did my best to encourage him and told him to be strong and keep fighting for the change we ALL desperately need.

     This morning I woke up and checked in on the twitter front. In my 'Mentions' column was two tweets directed at me from two different people. One contained a letter the other a video. Both were in essence companion pieces relating to the quiet desperation of the unemployed.  I did numerous versions of 'ReTweeting' them both, before combining them together in one tweet. I sent that tweet out in various forms; some to the general twitter community and some directed at particular friends asking them to consider posting them on their blogs and websites.

     Before I show you the video and letter, I want to first have you take a look at this graph I got from Netroots Nation 2010 in Las Vegas. It was one of several graphics that AFL-CIO President Richard L.Trumka used during his address to the convention. 

AFL-CIO President Richard L.Trumka

Here is the chart he showed us at NN10

     When he showed the chart my mouth dropped open. It may well be the most powerful single graphic I've ever seen. And having majored in political science and being a life-time political junkie, I've seen a grip load of charts. So why was I so impacted by this one?  Simple answer. There, in one single easy to read chart, is the entire truth of why we are in the record deficit we are. Low and behold it has nothing to do with the "Tax and Spend" Democrats or the bleeding heart liberals or Social Security, or HCR, or the cost of rebuilding our infrastructure. In reality it has nothing to do with that 'black president' that teabaggers want so desperately to blame while they remained so deafening silent under Bush.  

     Ever since we elected 'that black guy' President, the GOP in Congress have been the Grand Obstructionist Party in Congress telling the American working families that we can't afford to give them health care because of the deficit; we can't rebuild our aging highways and bridges because of the deficit; we can't afford public education because of the deficit; we can't afford to deal with the foreclosure crisis or the resulting homeless because of the deficit; we can't afford to feed starving poor children because of the deficit. But most germane to this post; we can't afford a job stimulus or extend unemployment benefits because of the DEFICIT.

     In essence, if you listen to every GOP member of Congress, or the main stream media (MSM), or the dumbass teabaggers, they will ALL tell you that there is not a single thing that government can do for the American families, for the working middle class, or for the poor because of the deficit.  They want to convince you that the richest most developed country in the world can not afford to care for the least fortunate amongst us.

     And all of those arguments are based upon the deficit.  And worse they want to put the blame on the federal deficit on Obama, the Democrats and their out of control spending on social programs aimed at helping Americans who are suffering from the devastating effects of eight years under the Bush/Cheney economic policies.

     So when I saw that chart, I had this total epiphany of how absolutely wrong they are. Sure, like every other progressive out there we had always been asking questions like; "why is there always money for wars but not for (insert social program here)?" Or: "why should the federal government bail out the banks that caused the foreclosure crisis and not the resulting homeless?" But in the back of our minds we are thinking that the initial stimulus bills and other social programs Obama and the Democrats in Congress had passed were responsible for a much larger portion of our federal deficit than the real facts would support.

     So after I got back from the Netroots Nation Convention in Las Vegas I did a quick internet search to locate that chart. I found it first on someone's blog; Here it is on the original website for 'The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities in an article called: 

Critics Still Wrong on What’s Driving Deficits in Coming Years

     I quickly downloaded it to my computer and then posted it on my account HERE, so I could share it on twitter.  I started putting out a series of tweets (@larrydhalstead). It appears all of my twitter friends had the same impact as I did from looking at the chart and immediately started retweeting my tweets.  Within 24 hours I had hundreds of retweets and over 3,000 views of the chart. Anyone on twitter knows that those numbers are just phenomenal.

     Americans across this great country are hurting bad. They are suffering as the direct result of the economic policies of the Bush/Cheney regime. 'Trickle-down economics' in the end was nothing more than the rich pissing all over the middle class. The closing of factories and businesses have hurt working families by the millions. The trillion dollars spent on wars for oil is an obscene amount of money, every penny of which could of, and should of been spent on rebuilding our infrastructure, creating jobs, developing green energy, providing health care, better education, investing in science and technology, and the list goes on and on.

So back to those two tweets.  First here is the video which came to me by Cindy P. who goes by @CharlieAndMe on twitter: 

     The letter was sent to me by someone who appropriately uses the name 'Ineeda Job' aka @ExtendUENow and sent the letter as a link in the following tweet:

#TwitterMarch Another #99er Suicide Attempt. Al's not living in his Van anymore.He's on Life Support in the ICU.

It is with GREAT sadness that I tell you that one of of our Members of the Unemployed-Friends Forum has attempted suicide.

Al was a 99er, living in his car, and left his family with the American Red Cross. Please pray for Al and his family.

Re: Searching For Someone On The Forums
by BrucePAUE Today at 2:35 am

      Well whoever it is I hope they read this. I can't think properly right now. Around 2pm on Tues afternoon I received a visit from a member of our local fire company. They came to my house and told me to sit down. I knew I was about to receive bad news. 
     With tears running down his eyes he informed me Alex has shot himself in the head in the woods someone found him laying along the side of his van. Alex attempted suicide by shooting himself in the head. Alex is in intensive care at the local hospital but to be honest it isn't looking good at all. His sister called me and she told me he has severe swelling of the brain. Doctors have drilled several holes in his skull to contain the swelling. He is currently on life support and his wife and son are going to be by his side tommorrow. They couldnt make it today for some reason. 
     Reason I am posting this here is because I know Alex has posted here he showed me this forum because I too am unemployed. He called you guys his support group. Alex is a 99er so please please if you feel stressed or feel the urge to commit suicide talk to someone. 
     Alex was not only my neighbor but he is my best friend. Alex has helped so many in this community and everyone in our small community knows Alex and his family. Alex worked at one job all his life and got laid off few years ago when his company went out of business. 
     I feel so bad about this I should have known something was up. Mon night Alex walked over to my place and wanted to give me his laptop computer because he knew I sold my computer to feed my baby boy. Alex looked really wore out at the time mentally and was losing weight like crazy because he was walking to apply for jobs. 
     Alex wouldnt accept a ride or accept a meal without putting up a fight. He used to say I am no charity case. Ok I am sorry for blabbering on just needed to talk to some people. However I am greatly upset about this but we need to keep up the fight for 99ers all over. Lets fight for Alex by calling emailing or faxing. I will be doing so for now on.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Sponsors, Doners; YOUR Assistance NOW Needed!

 I'm Looking for Sponsors to go to
The 2010 CA Democrat Party Convention
Can YOU make a Donation Today?

I really want and need to attend the 2010 CA Democratic Convention in Los Angeles this coming weekend, April 16, 17, and 18. Cost involved with attending this convention are easily in excess of $500. That's with no frills, cheap hotel, none of the big ticket events and so far I have yet to be able to come up with the needed funding.  So I thought I would give this appeal for funding and see what if this produces results.

 Larry D. Halstead and Jerry Brown
CA Attorney General, Former and Future Governor

I am actually a Delegate from the 34th CA Dem Committee (for which I am also the Chair) to the CA Democrat Party and would therefore be a fully authorized Convention Delegate allowing me full access to all events.  But even more importantly is the ability I have to document in the event with pictures and video. In the past I have been able to capture some fantastic footage of our State and National leaders.

Larry D. Halstead and Gavin Newsom
Mayor of San Francisco and Candidate for CA Lt. Governor

All of the Progressive Activist I know are generally driven to do what it is we do by an enormous passion to create change.  We may have various explanation on how that passion for change came about in our lives but the passion is the fuel that drives us.

Larry D. Halstead and Assembly Speaker Karen Bass

Rarely does the resulting Activism ever translate to real income.  Quite the opposite, our efforts for real change are paid for with great sacrifice in our personal lives. If in doubt, just ask our families whose sacrifice, encouragement, and support make it all possible.

Larry D. Halstead and Rep. Maxine Waters

For over three years now I have been working on becoming more involved with what is now called: 'New Media'. I now have at least 50 videos up on at least six YouTube Channels. I have hundreds if not thousands of hours of raw footage for videos I'm still working on or will be when I'm able.

Larry D. Halstead and Willie Brown
Former Assembly Speaker, Former S.F. Mayor

 On this past Easter Day of 2010, I posted a video from footage I had shot last November. "Exposed: Teabaggers Gone Wild" went viral, with over 11,000 views in three days. It was posted on YouTube first before being embedded over on The Political Carnival, then the popular website Crooks and Liars. Eventually I posted it here on Real World Politics along with some background information on the people that appear in the video.

Here is that video:
            "Exposed: Teabaggers Gone Wild!"

"Exposed: Teabaggers Gone Wild!"

Larry D. Halstead and Bill Lockyer
Former CA Attorney General

 Larry D. Halstead and Steve Westley

Larry D. Halstead and Art Torres
Former State Senator
Former Chair of the CA Democrat Party

 Larry D. Halstead and Pat Meagher
Candidate for CA Congressional District 41

 Larry D. Halstead and Rep. Joe Baca
CA 43rd Congressional District

 Larry D. Halstead and Helen L. Doherty
Chair of the CA Native American Caucus 

For the website on the CA Native American Caucus - CLICK HERE

Monday, April 5, 2010

Teabaggers Gone Wild - Barstow Edition

Jim Willis, Leader of the Patriot Forum

Teabaggers Gone Wild - Barstow Edition

Background Information on the making of the video: 

Teabaggers Gone Wild 
- Barstow Edition
 [Scroll down for video]

        This is the first of several videos that are being released as a result of a Teabagger Rally that occurred at Dana Park, a public facility owned by the City of Barstow, California. This video is a compilation of the sound bites from two featured speakers which were part of a Teabagger tour of hate and division that began in South Carolina. 

        Starting on the credits rolling at the beginning of the video, the voice you hear is that of Dan Blackford.  Dan  has a background in law enforcement that includes Secret Service under Bill Clinton, a scary thought on its own, given the rhetoric in this video.  But Dan also has a love and passion for guns that also dominates his own private business training people for concealed weapons in Texas. 

        The first of two Teabigot speakers is Kevin Jackson. Prior to  the rally getting underway, I ran into Kevin out in the parking lot as I was arriving. I asked him a leading question which triggered a litany of talking points right out of his book: The Big Black Lie (about the Democrat Party) which it turns out also serves as his speaking notes for his stump speech.  It amounts to a collection of one-line zingers meant to promote hate and even violence against everything liberal.

Kevin will be the subject of subsequent videos that will further expose what a truly vulgar, despicable human being he is and how he proudly uses a false claims and accusations of pedophile, child molester against anyone who dares to use the word Teabagger.  He brags about it on

"FYI, I call ALL Libs pedophiles, as payback for Tea Baggers. Only diff is most of them ARE pedophiles or at least sympathizers!"
Kevin also brags about it on the radio HERE

He recently used that strategy on me when I called him out on his profiting in bigotry and hate.  I told him that a black Glen Beck did not sound any better than a white one.  I told him that he sells out the black Americans just to make money from white folk who just can't get enough of hearing him hate liberals from a black man.  

Never mind the empty umbrella of "Christianity" bearing false witness and what not; vicious Libel and Slander are against the law.  The kind of Pedophile accusations that Kevin openly brags about on the radio here, are the evil that can destroy reputations that take a life time to build or tear families apart.

I almost never talk about my family because I want to protect them from the ugly vicious hate that comes from the mouths of douchebags like Kevin.  But when he started in on me with an all our assault on twitter along with his 4500 followers, he threatened my family. 

My children consist of five adopted special needs children who were born addicted to drugs.  They are a small sample of the millions of children who are the REAL victims of Reagan's war on drugs.  The vast majority of these children are unwanted for adoption and are therefore doomed to spend their lives in foster care where they ofter suffer abuse and are most likely to repeat the sins of their biological parents.

What Kevin did to me was over the top. It's anti-Christian, Un-American, and Evil. More importantly, its illegal and violates the user terms of twitter.  Kevin is WRONG!  He has crossed a line when he put my kids at risk.  NOTHING is more important to me than my children; they are the center of my universe.  And yes, Kevin is now under investigation for anticipated legal actions! Count on it!

Kevin claims America as "Christian Nation" while promoting violence against the left.  In the video Kevin introduces Dan Blackford citing the fact that Dan has "lots of guns around" which Kevin likes in case Kevin decides to "whack a liberal then he's happy that Dan has lots of guns around to protect him."  He also states that the only reason to "reach across the table is to 'Choke a Liberal' which is the theme of his liberal bashing. But hey, we're a "Christian Nation".

Kevin's hate of liberals promotes violence. The best of examples of this comes half way through the video when during the course of my filming I turn my camera on local Teabagger and former Chair of the local Republican Club. 

For nearly six years I have witnesses Robert Vassuer do the bidding of the local corrupt cronies who have run Barstow for time immortal.  Vassuer is a wannabe who never accomplished anything on his own and is trying desperately to win local crony  approval by being their pet attack dog.  

[See Desert Dispatch Letters to the Editor 8/18/07
"Assault on Local Democracy" by Larry D. Halstead]

Before this rally he kept his pit bull ankle biting restricted to letters to the editors and Public Comments at the City Council Meetings.  But Vassuer is all pumped up on Kevin hate speech and decides to impress his friends by threatening to kick my ass for using my camera to take his picture in a public park. So much for Christianity or the 1st Amendment!

Nancy Dittman

        Mixed into the voices of Hate for Liberals as the enemy of the TeaBigot crowd is the voice of a local shrill for the Right Wing Nut Jobs who has quickly become know as 'Crazy Lady' from the comments on other sites that his video was posted prior my posting here. 

Her Name is Nancy Dittman and she recently tried to infiltrate the local Mojave Desert Democratic Committee for which I am the four year past President. 

She lied and pretended to be an Independent despite the fact that she has a previous reputation for routinely writing letters to the editor of the local right-wing, libertarian rag known as the Desert Dispatch.  

I guess she figured Democrats are missing the same google feature absent on any Teabag computer.  I quick search revealed that  she was a registered Republican posting her "under cover" reports on the Patriot Forums website. [see Patriot Forum post HERE]

On one of her post she made a statement of something she would like to ask Watson Hammond, a strong Progressive and member of the Club.  So Watson decided to show up and see exactly what she would like to ask.  All of the Crazy Lady clips were as Watson was trying to quiz her on the effect of Global Warming and the human contribution to the problem.  He gives her a multiple choice question to which she hesitates before answering: "No".

Responses to this video
        There are numerous comments being posted on this video as we speak in several locations. Please feel to embed this video on your blog or website.  Its all about getting the word out! If you do use it then please let me know so I can list it here and link back to your site to help drive more traffic to you as a token of thanks for using it however you might.

With the increase in lunacy with the extremist right wing crazies of the Teabagger Cult, I've been feeling bad about not bringing this footage forward.  So I finally got busy editing and posted it on YouTube on early Easter morning. 

Within the first day it was scooped up by my twitter friend @GottaLaff who runs The Political Carnival. She embedded it on her site and immediatly got comments flowing.  Lots of good stuff already I highly suggest you go check it out HERE

Day 2 it was picked up and embedded over at The Crooks and Liars site.  The moment they did the post of the video they comments started racing in and by days end the comment count was close to a hundred.  Lots of great comments there as well; read them HERE

My friend from twitter (who needs to remind me of his twitter name so I can mention it here, whoops) sent me the link to some photos he took of a Teabagger rally in San Juan Capistrano

Bryce's Photo Gallery - ShareSlideshow
9/12 - Teabag Event in San Juan Capistrano

Keep checking back!
More to come below as it becomes available.  

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

An Obligation to Stay White and Die!

On a post on regarding:

LL Cool J, Fox, Palin & StopBeck

there is a recent post by @Shoq which makes the following assertion:

"All bloggers who posture as reporters and truth tellers, to any degree whatever, need to remember they have an obligation to not just report what's visible, but ask questions about what might not be so visible."

More offensive to me was that he called out The Political Carnival a blog by 'Laffy' or @GottaLaff as one of the "bloggers who posture as reporters and truth tellers" that he was giving the focus of his public attack.  

I disagreed and I was offended he chose to single out any progressive for his public tongue lashing but especially someone whose work I have recently come to know and respect.  Sorry, but that's wrong in substance and its wrong to pick on a fellow progressive.  So I weighed in. 

Here is my response to @Shoq:

WRONG! Completely WRONG! I can't disagree with you more! Do you really think that?

It scares me to ponder that you would even for a moment believe that statement yourself. "OBLIGATION"? 

I report what I want on blogs, at city council meetings, rallies, and at any opportunity I get. I don't call myself a "reporter" Does that make me a reporter nonetheless? 

In 1978, I started Golden Quill Publishers. At the time I was deeply involved in the health movement on issues of freedom of choice of medical care; natural noninvasive vs cut radiate and burn. 

I created my own press pass that has gotten me into events that every other activist were barred. Does that give me obligations? Hell no! 

I blog. Sometimes a lot; other times I go months without a single post. Last I counted I have at least a dozen blogs on as many subjects. Often when I write a post it will be so long and wordy it takes me hours on a single post. 

Last night I saw several videos: Olberman, Maddow, Maher, etc. I did 3 or 4 post with 1 video on each but without a single word on any save a title like: Teabaggers gone wild - Olbermann edition.

So according to your logic here I am in violation of some "obligations"? Really? I have several times done tweets saying that if rich liberals who didn't have time but wanted to do something for the 'cause' they should fund any one of a number of people on twitter whose work is nothing short of twitterific. 

I've been an activist all my life on all kinds of issues working with all kinds of people. Everyone has a role to play. That role is to contribute WHATEVER they can and more importantly, whatever they are willing.

Most ALL the activist I've ever met are flat broke. I'm one of them. We put in twice the time we ever did on a paid job. I often work til after 3am working obsessively to do everything I can to make a difference in between all my other actual, real 'obligations'. Most of the blog/activist I meet here and elsewhere are much the same. 

They have NO 'obligations to anyone for their hard work and service. The world owes them. The world they help save has an "obligation" to them not the other way around.

I never heard the name Angelo Carusone until I just read it here. I have routinely been trying to 'push' the stop Beck or Turn Off Fox messages. I RT any message I see that I like on the subject. Awhile back, I did one that wove several user names together in one tweet such as: Please @StopBeck by @TurnOffFox and watch @Maddow and #Olbermann. [It was something like that; you get the idea.] 

@StopBeck responded with a thanks and comment on the clever factor. I am doing more and ore individual #ff and I do them any day any time I see them on my radar.

I have a hard time believing that Angelo Carusone is hung up on getting the all the credit and glory for Beck's ultimate demise. I would be shocked to learn he thinks he deserves all of the credit. We all do what we can for the good of the over-all progressive effort. If that is true then Angelo should find something else to do with his time.

For two years in a row I got the Congressman George Brown Activist of the Year Award for the 34th AD. It came with very impressive plaques, certificates from members in Congress, State Assembly, Senate. etc. Quite impressive indeed. Especially since I cut my teeth under the late great Rep George Brown. 

The thing is that I got THAT recognition for some of the activism that I consider to be amongst the least of my work. I am the most proud of activism I got zero recognition for, save an arrest record. Stuff like shutting down the Riverside PD, getting arrested with Martin Luther Kind III, Rev Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, Dick Gregory, Kim Fields and others.

The point is that for those of us who turn off FOX, the football game, American Idol, etc; stand up, speak out and do whatever it is we do to make the world a better place. we have only satisfaction of a job well done as our reward; being able to sleep at night knowing you did SOMETHING. 

For our self less efforts we owe nobody nothing. NO 'obligations' to anybody. Woodward and Bernstein we're not. When the Washington Post, The New York Times, MSNBC, or any number of actual news agencies get smart and hire us then we have an obligation. And with that obligation comes a staff of top researchers who can track down all people who need and deserve credit and run the titles at the end of the show.

Even if you still feel that we do have an obligation you should lead by example and let people follow if they want. Leave them alone if they don't. Its just your opinion and your wrong. 

Furthermore, these 'obligations' would put an anchor around the neck of any activist. So before I can weigh in on an issue I have to spend hour doing research and give all of the praise, kudos, recognition that someones ego may crave? Bull shit!

The fact that you want to call out another progressive to abide by Shoq rules is wrong. Its divisive and counter productive. It also runs counter to the very core principals of the First Amendment and the progressive movement. 

If you run your "obligation" standards to there logical end then I would have to post a large banner with credits on it for every bumper sticker I put on my car. Me and what staff are supposed to do all this background research and investigations to give all proper credit where do. Frankly I don't give a rat's ass whether LL Cool J is on Palin's show or not. Let LL Cool J fight that battle. 

We got a mountain of work to do in this country. In the past decades whenever I am out fighting for social justice and I turn around to see who's got by back I have yet to see LL Cool J.

Last Friday I caught a tweet by @GottaLaff with a link to a post with yet another video on her blog. I've come to notice that she is often the one that breaks a story to ME before I see it anywhere else. I started tweeting a series of sarcastic tweets that I am so damn tired of all these smart progressive women who every time I show up on the scene to get the goods they are already leaving with the story if its not already on their blogs. 

I love progressive women because they are always sharp and on top of things; even though they often make me look bad cause I'm often NOT.

Laffty and The Political Carnival has her role. I have never met her and a couple of month ago I had never heard of her. I had often gotten emails with links to some of her blog post. To that I am obligated as a progressive to push that message; NOT to spend my time doing investigative research into how she got what she got. I feel the same about anyone who says a message like STOP Beck.

You should retract that statement of our "Obligations" and you should apologize to Laffy. Then you should apologize to progressives for giving them anything other than praise and encouragement in the hope they will do more! 

There is a saying in the black community when someone tells them they have to do this or that: "All I got to do is stay black and die!"

For this old, white, burnt out activist;my ONLY "obligations" are to my family! Oh, and stay white and die!


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