Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Getting Noticed

How long did that take?  John Kasich has already broken the campaign promise of bringing transparency to the state, and he has not even taken office.  Even the people at DailyKos have noticed the hypocrisy of John Kasich:

You have to admire the speed with which John Kasich is backtracking from a significant campaign promise. As reported by Tanya Somanader of Think Progress:
Ohio Governor-elect John Kasich (R) spent much of his campaign selling the “accountability” and “transparency” buzzwords to Ohio constituents this year. Touting a “new way” of doing politics, Kasich promised to “recharge Ohio” with a smaller, more open government that would require accountability within important sectors – like education – that weren’t up to par. This generic rhetoric, however, sounded enough like a revolution to win him the endorsements of several prominent state newspapers, including the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the Columbus Dispatch, and the conservative Cincinnati Enquirer.

But just weeks after defeating Ohio’s incumbent Gov. Ted Strickland (D), Kasich’s incoming administration is turning on those previously-espoused principles and refusing to release the resumes of the job applicants for politically-appointed state government jobs.

I'm sure we'll see more examples of how the Kasich campaign promises are completely opposite of the way Kasich operates.

Even more dangerous, however, is the overwhelming love and approval that the Columbus Dispatch has shown and continues to display about everything that Kasich does.  I've known that the Columbus Dispatch was a Republican supporting, conservative-leaning newspaper.  I guess I had hoped that they might develop some objectivity in examining the incoming Kasich administration.  Unfortunately, for those of us in Columbus, we are stuck with a newspaper that glorifies the Republicans and disparages Democrats. 

Plunderbund has noted that the Dispatch is clearly the best public relations firm for John Kasich:

...What’s really pathetic about the Dispatch is that it has—yet again—applauded Kasich for his embrace of certain reforms while bashing Strickland, but not once recognizing that it wasn’t Kasich who enacted these reforms that made Ohio eligible for Race to the Top, but Strickland.  It never mentions that Strickland as the source of these reforms....

.....Almost as odd as people not questioning how Kasich is talking about massive cuts in education while still promising “more funding in the classrooms.”

Kasich, who seems to relish having a job as the chief executive of the state, should be reminded that he was elected governor, not king or emperor, and that a majority of voters actually voted against him.  I give Ohioans about two months before they get really tired of Kasich's overwhelming self-centered, pro-wealthy, anti-teacher talk.  Those of us who remember Kasich's years in Congress cannot forget the arrogance and lack of empathy that he demonstrated.

Monday, November 29, 2010

What is Next?

*  Some Republicans are already worrying that John Kasich's cocky attitude may backfire.  Ohio GOP members are quietly hoping that Kasich turns it down a notch or two because people will tire of a braggadocious person very quickly.

*  Are some Ohio school districts considering the possibility of shortening the school day to save money? According to ThisWeekCommunityNewspapers, it is just one idea districts are studying to cut the budget:

Marysville Exempted Village School District administrators are studying the length of the school day and assessing whether shortening it is a viable means of reducing costs.

Superintendent Larry Zimmerman told board members at last Monday's board meeting that the length of the school day is one of many measures that are under evaluation as the district continues to work to control costs....

....Zimmerman said the district runs about 1,300 classroom hours in a school year, and the Ohio Department of Education minimum requirement is 900.....

With cuts in education, more districts are trying out the four day school week. The National Conference of State Legislatures lists some of the states that have tried a four day school week:

With strapped state budgets and alluring promises of significant reductions in overhead and transportation costs, the four-day school week has been an increasingly attractive option for legislators seeking to cut education costs. For small, remote school districts, instituting a four-day school week may provide a savings by reducing transportation, heating, and staff costs. Supporters of the shortened week also boast of improved morale and increased attendance (by both students and teachers), open Fridays for sporting events and doctor appointments, and more time to spend with loved ones. Opponents of the four-day school week cite problems with long, exhausting class days and finding day care for children whose parents work outside the home. Additionally, educational experts worry longer weekends could lead to a regression in learned concepts while also making it more difficult to offer elective classes.  However, the jury is still out on many of these issues, as there is a lack of comprehensive studies.

According to data collected by NCSL and the Education Commission of the States:
-Nineteen states currently have school districts (with schools) operating on a four-day week.
-These states include: Arizona, California, Colorado, Georgia, Idaho, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Nevada, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Wisconsin and Wyoming.
-There are more than 120 school districts that host four-day school week programs.
-Usually, these programs are in small, rural districts.
-The policy was first implemented as early as the 1930s, and became more common during the energy crisis of the 1970s.
-Washington is the most recent state to adopt legislation allowing four-day school weeks.....

Will Ohio join the four day school week?

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


*  Those of us who care about the environment and education will be keeping a watchful eye on Rep.-elect Steve Stivers (OH-15th), a former bank lobbyist, who ran on plans to abolish certain departments of the federal government, including the Dept. of the Interior and the Dept. of Education.  Stivers, who received lots of support from the Tea Party groups and far right "patriot" groups, will definitely have his work under a microscope.

*  John Kasich continues to fill vacancies in his upcoming administration with old faces.  So far, all the names Gov.-elect Kasich has listed to fill vital roles within his administration are "reruns" - - - they've served within either the Voinovich or Taft administrations or both.  So much for Kasich's "New Day" theme and platform of bring change to Ohio.  How can you change anything when you bring in the (*Same Old White Guys) same old white guys to the table?

Monday, November 22, 2010

Keep your Eyes Open

* We are already seeing some indications about how the incoming Republican administration will conduct themselves:

Ohio's next agriculture director wants to review at a deal arranged by the outgoing governor and animal rights activists that would bring tougher laws governing farm animals.

The agreement calls for banning certain crates and cages and strangulation as a form of euthanasia for sick or injured animals.

Republican Gov.-elect John Kasich has tapped former poultry farmer and current state lawmaker James Zehringer to be the next agriculture director....

What out of state animal activists?  Does Zehringer think that Ohioans don't care about the welfare of animals?

>  Jobs created during Presidency of Bill Clinton = 22.7 million jobs
>  Jobs created during Presidency of George W. Bush = 1.1 million jobs
 (This is a perfect example of how trickle down economics, tax cuts for the rich, does not work.)

The Canton Repository Opinion is already noting Kasich's lack of transparency:
Gov.-elect John Kasich has been promising to conduct state business differently from his predecessor. But if that means conducting state business in the dark, it’s a promise he needs to break.

Kasich is taking applications for state jobs on a website, FixOhioNow.com. The site received so many applications — 1,500 in less than 24 hours — that an aide said the computers were “blowing up.”

...The résumés belong in the public domain. Not only is Kasich sending the wrong message about his commitment to openness, he’s also not doing himself any favors when it comes to winning support for one of his more controversial ideas....

Kasich promised transparency, but won't deliver it. I have a feeling some news agency will be suing to get real trasnparency.

Going to a Movie?

*  We went to see "Fair Game," the movie about how someone in the Bush administration leaked the identity of an undercover CIA agent, Valerie Plame. The movie provides background information on how the leak destroyed a career, but also created risks for people around the world.  If you are a political junkie, you must see "Fair Game" for some real insight into the workings of the Bush White House. (Sean Penn is outstanding in the role of former Ambassador Joe Wilson.)

* There is even more fallout from the demise of the Ohio rail project. The Examiner indicates some other companies that had hoped to be part of the project are pulling of Ohio.

*Is this part of Kasich "New Day" plan?  
...Bob Blair of Pickerington has been picked to head the business arm of Ohio state government. Blair is a veteran of two Republican administrations in Ohio....
...The 62-year-old Blair worked in the administrations of former Govs. George V. Voinovich and Bob Taft....

I guess Kasich wants to move Ohio forward by using the same people and policies that got us into this mess.

Friday, November 19, 2010

20% Cuts to Education in Ohio??????

John Kasich and his Republican legislators are getting the word out that they may cut as much as 20% to schools, according to Pat Garofalo at the Wonk Room at Think Progress:

...According to the Columbus Dispatch, the Republican legislature that will be working with Kasich is very much of the same mind, with potentially devastating effects on the way for the state’s education system. Incoming state Senate President Tom Niehaus has warned school districts to prepare for huge cuts, as “the GOP majority will keep its promise to not raise taxes,” no matter what:
Sen. Tom Niehaus, a New Richmond Republican expected to be the next Senate president, said last week that there will be a projected shortfall of $6 billion to $8 billion in the next state budget and that he is confident the GOP majority will keep its promise to not raise taxes – meaning that deep cuts will be necessary to balance the budget. Asked if some district officials preparing financial forecasts and deciding whether to put levies on the ballot were correct to assume a 15 to 20 percent cut in state aid, Niehaus said that’s what he would plan for if he were in their shoes.
Ohio has already cut both K-12 and higher education funding in response to the Great Recession. To put the new cut that the GOP has proposed in perspective, a 10 percent cut in school funding would amount to districts losing $1 billion. But the Ohio GOP is standing firm against any raising any new revenue, and Kasich himself believes that broadening the tax base or closing tax loopholes qualifies as an unacceptable tax increase....

I wonder what the conversations will be like with parents and teachers about these drastic cuts.  If state taxes are lowered, will real estate taxes increase? 

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Let the Republican Civil War Begin!

The rumors are flying that Republicans are having a hard time meeting the needs and explanations of their newly elected tea party members of Congress. Some say that one of the many reasons that the GOP leadership postponed their meeting with President Obama had to do with their own lack of an agenda. Mitch McConnell has already had some words with his new members. Boehner has had similar problems. This just proves that Republicans still don't know how to create a working,comprehensive plan that moves America forward.

(Let me make it clear--- watching Republicans fighting is very entertaining.)

Rachel Maddow is the smartest person on TV. As she said last night, so far Republicans have done nothing except make annoucements and we cannot take their press release material as real accomplishments.

Worried that your parents or grandparents might be kicked out of the nursing home by the Kasich cuts? Keep your eyes focused on any news pertaining to Medicaid and nursing home reforms in th coming weeks. More later....

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

You Need to Know

*  Ohioans can say goodbye to 16,000+ jobs and millions of dollars of untold business development and growth, thanks to John Kasich.


The Obama administration plans to quickly reallocate money designated for high-speed rail if states granted the funds reject them, according to U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood.
LaHood made the announcement Monday night to hundreds of politicians, businesspeople, urban planners and rail enthusiasts gathered in New York City to assess the state of high-speed rail in the United States. The three-day conference was presented by the U.S. High Speed Rail Association (USHSR).....

....Ohio Governor-elect John Kasich, also a Republican, has called a planned $400 million high-speed rail line to connect Columbus, Cincinnati and Cleveland a “dead train.”

....There are "a lot of states that would like to have access to that money," LaHood said, and reallocation will be done quickly.....

 Kasich's narrow-mindedness has just closed the door on real vitalization and job creation.  Perhaps if Kasich had a view of how the world moves and works, he would have had his eyes open to the realm of possibilities that passenger rail would have provided to Ohioans.  Has he ever traveled on the amazing passenger rail systems in Europe or has he only been transported by limo? 

As the saying goes, "Opportunity seldom knocks twice."  How will Kasich replace those 16,000 jobs?  Anyone? (If Kasich follows through on his planned cuts, those 16,000 lost jobs could be added to the possible 10,000 state employees that lose work.)

> > > Gov.-elect John Kasich has made an announcement:
Toledo Blade:
Gov.-elect John Kasich has named a farmer and state representative to be Ohio's next agriculture director.

State Rep. James Zehringer will replace Robert J. Boggs, who has served as head of the Ohio Department of Agriculture under outgoing Gov. Ted Strickland..... 

......The 58-year-old Zehringer is owner and operator of Meiring Poultry and Fish Farm. He was appointed to the Ohio House in February 2007 and was re-elected without opposition this fall to a district representing Mercer, Preble and parts of Darke County....

In case you were wondering, Project Vote Smart has this about James "Jim" Zehringer's background: 

Diploma, Fort Recovery High School 

Professional Experience:
Owner/Operator, Meiring Poultry and Fish Farm 

Political Experience:
Representative, Ohio State House of Representatives, 2007-present
Appointed, Ohio State House of Representatives, 2007
Mercer County Commissioner, 2003-2007 

Zehringer would replace Gov. Ted Strickland's Director, Ohio Department of Agriculture, Robert J. Boggs.  Here is part of the bio for Robert J. Boggs, from the Ohio Dept. of Agriculture:

 ....Boggs is currently vice president of the Midwest board of directors of the Food Export Association of the Midwest USA. He is also past president of the Midwest Association of State Departments of Agriculture and serves on the Board of Directors for the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture.

Raised on a small dairy farm in Ashtabula County, Boggs received his bachelor's degree in government from American University in Washington, D.C., and a master's in public administration from Kent State University. He served as a state representative and state senator for 24 years and as a county commissioner for 10 year.... 

 As you can see, their backgrounds are entirely different.
!!!!!!!!! There is one more thing about James "Jim" Zehringer that you might find interesting!!!!!!!!!
From March 9, 2010 Talking Points Memo:

...Master of ceremonies and former state Rep. Jim Buchy, president of Buchy Food Service, opened his remarks at the Darke County Lincoln Day Dinner Saturday with a comparison between Obama and the 16th president.

According to audio recorded by someone at the dinner and obtained by TPMDC, the joke concludes with: "Lincoln was a skinny lawyer. Obama is a skinny lawyer. Lincoln was a Republican. Obama is a skinny lawyer. Lincoln was highly respected. Obama is a skinny lawyer. Lincoln was born in the United States. Obama is a skinny lawyer."

That was followed up with a more subtle crack from State Rep. James Zehringer, who said he read over Portman's Wikipedia entry, which starts by identifying him as an American lawyer. "Rob Portman is an American lawyer. That's the first sentence [on his Wikipedia page]. That's something our president can't say," Zehringer said....

(Audio is also available at the TPM link.)

Any questions??????

Fear of Everything

What is going on in Arizona with Islamophobia?  Are too many people in that state watching Fox News?

Posted at RawStory:

Church in Arizona protested because it looks like a mosque

....The Light of the World multidenominational church is being built just off of Interstate 10 and features a dome-like structure.
"Since the distinctive dome shape went up, church leaders said they have received phone calls from concerned neighbors who've mistaken the building for an Islamic mosque," KPHO reported.
"I heard many people, they came over and they say, 'Is this a Muslim temple?' No, it's not," church member Juan Calixto told KPNX....


I guess the fearmongers want us to panic at the sight of domed structures! Like......

Picture # 1 from PBS

St. Peter's Basilica

St. Peter's Basilica, Vatican City

Corbis Images 

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

* Picture # 2 from visitrenotahoe

Nevada State Capitol Building
Carson City, Nevada

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

* Picture # 3 from PBS
United States Capitol  
U.S. Capitol Building
Washington, DC

  Corbis Images

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Would the dome worriers in Phoenix panic at the sight of a domed house
(see below) and an entire town of domed homes????????

The Dome House and the variations of the structure might be too much for "dome-a-phobic" people to bear:


Other pictures of Dome Houses can be seen at International Dome House, PinkTentacle, Monolithic.com, American Ingenuity, Treehugger, etc., etc.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Teachers As Targets?

Could this happen here?  TPMMuckraker:

The New Jersey teacher stung by James O'Keefe's latest "investigation" is speaking out. 

"I think it's so unfair that I should be in the middle of this,'' 38-year-old Passaic special education teacher Alissa Ploshnick told New Jersey's Star-Ledger in an interview. "I'm not the monster I've been made out to be.''

Ploshnick is one of several New Jersey teachers who "star" in a video, produced by O'Keefe's Project Veritas, titled "Teacher's Unions Gone Wild." ....

So now James O'Keefe is after teachers?  I wonder how much he edited of this.  Please read the entire article and check out the comments for some possible outcomes.

Is Kasich a Little Thin-Skinned?

After spending many, many years in public education, I can honestly say that I am not thinned-skinned.  As a school teacher, some of my students called me names, wished I died and went to hell, told me to do things that were physically impossible, and other similar things.  My response to the names, insults, profanity, etc., was that I dealt with it at the time, and moved on. 

Unfortunately, our Governor-elect John Kasich has continued to let the campaign words, commercials, and accusations fester, and he doesn't seem able or willing to  forget.  Things that were said about Kasich were based on his voting record in the state legislature and in the U.S. House of Representatives, as well as his public speeches.


Republican John Kasich, who narrowly defeated embattled Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland on Nov. 2, is still angry about the negative campaign the governor and his supporters employed trying to secure a second term.

In nearly every interview and speech following his victory, Kasich has raised the issue, complaining that he had to beat back an unprecedented effort to destroy his good name. 

During one event with reporters, he even called on teacher unions that backed Strickland to place full-page newspaper ads in Ohio papers apologizing to him......

Even though Kasich continues to wait for those full page apologies from teachers (for what, I don't know), he is still waiting.  He may call for a fiscal emergency, freeze wages, layoff teachers, or do whatever wants to run schools like a business, but I don't think he'll get an apology from teachers unions.  When Kasich cuts aid to education and sticks his fingers in the workings of teaching, he'll will damage students and their future, as well as his reputation.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Get Ready for A Bumpy Ride, Folks

I've been under the weather with first a terrible stomach virus.  I'm sure my illness was not brought on by the changing political climate in Ohio.

***  It appears that John Kasich, the governor elect, is already making policy decisions even though he has no power.


Ohio Gov.-elect John Kasich is putting the lottery commission's plans for slot machines at racetracks on hold.

A spokesman said Kasich has mixed emotions about the issue and wants to study the proposal....

Those of us who knew of the Kasich personality before this most recent campaign would like to warn Ohioans - - - get ready for a bumpy ride.

*  The New Philadelphia Times-Reporter has an opinion piece that provides some hints of what Kasich has planned:

...We’ve been hearing a great deal in recent days from state lawmakers about what they plan to do in 2011, and we’re none too pleased by what they’re saying so far.

For instance, the Columbus Dispatch quotes state Sen. Tom Niehaus, R-New Richmond – likely to be the next Senate president – as saying that Ohio school superintendents would be correct if they assume the state will cut  school funding by 15 percent to 20 percent in the 2011-2012 budget. Gov.-elect John Kasich doesn’t have to submit his proposed budget to the General Assembly until March 15, so school officials will be left hanging until then, with no idea of how big a hit they will sustain.....

Education has always been a target of conservatives.  They got theirs -- too bad about you.

Even when Kasich was in Congress, he proposed budget cuts that were harmful, unfair, and inappropriate to children, struggling families, college students and the working poor.  Fifty-one percent of Ohioans voted against Kasich, but he won't acknowledge that in any form.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Kasich is Still Waiting For Teachers to Apologize

Ohio's governor-elect is showing his true self.  John Kasich said he still wants teachers to apologize for what they said about him during the campaign.
 (found at Crooks and Liars. Teachers comment start at 1:19)

John Kasich might not want to hold his breath waiting for teachers to apologize.  He also might not want to anger Ohio teachers any further because he has already attacked them numerous times.  Is Kasich trying to pull a Chris Christie and alienate every teacher in the state?

Even though Kasich won with 49% of the vote, 51% of the vote was against him


*  I cannot listen to any additional information about the book "written" by former President George W. Bush.  Also in the TMI ("too much information") category is the interview that Oprah conducted with the Jackson family.  It is just too, too, too much.

* The slash and burn plans being leaked about the coming Kasich administration will leave some people complaining.  Now there is word that Kasich wants to turn away the $400 million grant for Ohio schools that was allotted through the federal program, the Race to the Top.  This is just an inkling of how Kasich plans to punish school children so that he can give tax cuts.  When Kasich was in Congress, his budget proposals were like a reverse a Robin Hood - - - take money and programs from the poor and elderly to provide tax cut money for the rich.  In Congress, Kasich's draconian plans were halted by President Clinton and Republicans.  Who will stop Kasich from making drastic cuts to much needed social plans in Ohio?  If school children, college students, the elderly and disabled, and the middle class are threatened, which person will stand up and oppose these harsh plans outlined by Kasich?

****  The Republicans in Congress are still pushing the Bush tax cuts.  Even though keeping those tax cuts grows the deficit, the Republican just won't listen to common sense. They keep saying that the tax cuts will increase jobs, but that didn't happen under Bush and it has yet to happen. 

Here is some legitimate information on how tax cuts for the wealthy DON'T WORK.  If you are looking for some statistical evidence, check out the article from 2003.

United for a Fair Economy:

...1. Cutting the top tax rate does not lead to economic growth....
...Overall, there seems to be no close relationship between the top tax rate and the GDP growth rate, and statistical analysis backs this up: the correlation coefficient between the two variables is 0.03, meaning that there is essentially no connection...

...2. Cutting the top tax rate does not lead to income growth... 

...3. Cutting the top tax rate does not lead to wage growth....

...4. Cutting the top tax rate does not lead to job creation....

...Overall, data from the past 50 years strongly refutes any arguments that cutting taxes for the richest Americans will improve the economic standing of the lower and middle classes or the nation as a whole. To be sure, the economic indicators examined in this report are dependent on a variety of factors, not just tax policy. However, what this study does show is that any attempt to stimulate economic growth by cutting taxes for the rich will do nothing -- it hasn't worked over the past 50 years, so why would it work in the future? To put it simply and bluntly, Bush's top-bracket tax cut is an ineffective attempt at stimulus that will not cause any growth -- unless, of course, if you're talking about the size of the deficit. 

Let me repeat this important statement ~
...this study does show is that any attempt to stimulate economic growth by cutting taxes for the rich will do nothing -- it hasn't worked over the past 50 years, so why would it work in the future...

Looking back on this article we can see that the author was correct in saying that the deficit would grow.  Bush took a surplus left by Clinton and turned it into a deficit.

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Kasich's Plans

I have a theory about people who attack public school teachers: Many of those who devalue and disrespect the work of public school teachers do not have the ability, backbone, chutzpah, strength to teach. 

In the most recent election in Ohio, Republican John Kasich, swore to "break the back of the teachers unions" in the schools.  That kind of message lets me know that Kasich has no idea about what it takes to be able to teach in a public school. He probably is unaware of the educational background of the public school teachers. Most teachers are probably more highly educated than Kasich.  Teachers continue to train, work on graduate degrees, special certification, and licenses, during the school year and summers. (Note:  Kasich cannot claim that his cushy $50,000/year at Ohio State as a lecturer for an hour or two per month was teaching experience.)

What does Mr. Kasich hope to gain by attacking teachers' unions?  A majority of the teachers in the state are female.  Does Kasich think that he can push around these teachers because they are more females represented? 

In today's Columbus Dispatch, Joe Hallett's commentary shows that the Dispatch and Mr. Hallett are gleeful about the Governor-elect Kasich.  Hallett adds fuel to the fire by stating:

...Kasich has the guts to do what he believes must be done. It is well past time that a governor take on Ohio's bloated education bureaucracy and its reform-stifling teachers unions. Kasich will do so.

It is well past time that a governor demand that local governments, including school districts, start consolidating and sharing the costs of services. Kasich will do so...

Wow.  What are the "reform-stifling teachers unions" that Hallett mentions?  What evidence does he have that teachers are stopping reforms?

I'm sure that Hallett must have some knowledge about Kasich's plans.  I just don't know if parents will gladly give up their local school districts, school identities, lack of local control and input, and jump on the bandwagon to consolidate districts.  Exactly which people will make the decision to have one district to combine with another district?  Would the parents in Bexley support uniting with the Whitehall school district? 

It is possible that Kasich will do what Gov. Schwarzenegger did in California - declare a fiscal emergency and lower all state employees pay rates to the minimum wage, dismiss teachers, cut the length of the school year, require unpaid teacher furloughs, etc.?  State workers have already been required to take unpaid days off for quite some time now.  This has decreased the pays of the state employees.

Even though a majority of Ohio voters voted against him, we are stuck with Kasich for the next four years.

Friday, November 05, 2010

The Picture

It doesn't take a lot to size up the faces of the incoming Republicans in Ohio.  The Other Paper said it best with their story and headline:

I See White People

....When voters cast their ballots Tuesday, and the anticipated landslide scenario unfolded, turns out it was a particularly good day to be a conservative white guy in Ohio politics.

As has been reported, the state of Ohio is only getting more diverse. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the majority will become the minority in fewer than 40 years. Despite this, a notably less diverse group of leaders swept the statewide ticket. They took Central Ohio’s senate and congressional races, as well as leadership positions in both of the state’s legislative bodies.....

Kasich has promised cuts to fund his tax cuts.  Where will those cuts occur?  In the article, Sam Gresham, known for his work at the Columbus Urban League and now with Common Cause, has a guess as to where Kasich will make cuts:..... “there are really only a few areas they can cut, whether it is education funding, or welfare programs for the poor,” he said.....

 Minorities, the poor, women, and students will lose in this new Kasich administration.

Kasich has been talking about lobbyists.  We know that Kasich has lobbyists currently as part of his team. Will he welcome lobbyists to shape Ohio policy? Since Kasich appears to dislike windmills on the lake, will he abandon wind energy?

In the SpringfieldSunNews, Kasich said---
“If you think you’re going to stop us, you’re crazy. You will not stop
us. We will beat you,” Kasich said. “We will listen to you. If you think 
we’re doing something that really doesn’t make sense, tell us. 

“If you think that I’m going in the wrong direction, stop me. I don’t want
to drive over a cliff. I just want to be a good governor.” 

Wait.  There is more bus talk.

“If you’re not on the bus, we’ll run over you with the bus,” he said. 
“And I’m not kidding.” 

There you have it.  Kasich is already being Kasich.  I give him a few months before people get really get sick of him. 

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Kasich and Collective Bargaining

Even though John Kasich said that he'd like to look at the collective bargaining law in Ohio, we need to remember a few things. 

1. is not yet governor.
2. Ohio's Public Employees' Collective Bargaining Law is one of the strongest in the country.
3. was elected governor - - - not king.

(I bet, even as I type this, labor lawyers are already preparing for an attack by Kasich.)

*  According to an article posted at Raw Story, Rep. Darrell Issa, has written several hundred letters to the White House:

The House Republican set to lead an important committee that will have jurisdiction over many government operations said Wednesday that he expects the White House to respond to "several hundred" letters.
As chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, Darrell Issa (R-CA) will wield subpoena power, but in an interview with MSNBC, he wouldn't say exactly how he would use it.
"I don't have any subpoenas to the White House," Issa said. "I have several hundred letters, most of which have not been responded to that I'll ask the White House to dust off and answer our questions. Some of them are obsolete but most of them are still important."

President George W. Bush ignored inquiries. President Obama should do the same.  Hopefully, Issa's letters were ignored.  Besides Darrell Issa has some very, very shady connections --

Debbie Schlussel:

...Issa has made a career of being a shill, cheerleader, and personal representative in Congress for Hezbollah, Arafat, Syria, and the global Islamic terror machine.  He has a track record of anti-Semitic statements–dismissing critics (like myself) because they are “Jews”–and of using his Congressional office to try to intimidate others, mostly conservatives and many political enemies.  And then there’s his long criminal record.  During his life–he stole at least three cars, stole his multi-million dollar business, stole patents, fired an employee at gunpoint, committed arson and insurance fraud, at a plant (and then the detective investigating it mysteriously “died”), lied about his military record, was caught carrying a concealed weapon and ammunition including tear gas (believed to be for the purpose of committing armed robbery), and even stealing one of his fellow soldier’s cars....

The National Jewish Democratic Council also has this tidbit about Issa:

After rereading a San Diego Union-Tribune blog post and lifting my jaw from my desk, I still can't believe Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) told a Union-Tribune editorial board member that he would cut homeland-security funding for cameras and other security measures for JEWISH ORGANIZATIONS.
When responding to a member of the Union-Tribune's editorial board about the overspending in the GOP Congress, Issa offered only two criticisms of current spending:
  1. crop subsidies for well-off farmers
  2. homeland-security funding for cameras and other security measures for Jewish organizations...
...Does Issa really blame the trillions in growth of our national debt under Bush and the GOP Congress on Jewish groups seeking to avoid more deadly attacks like the one in Seattle?...

Darrell Issa, the anti-Semite, is soon going to be chair of a committee in Congress now that the Republicans have won control of the House.

*  Do you think that Mike DeWine will halt the ongoing fight to get back Ohio's public pension fund money from Lehman Brothers?

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

We Need to Make a Few Things Clear

John Kasich won the election because he got more votes than the other candidates for Ohio governor.  Here are the results as posted at the Ohio Secretary of State's Election website:

Candidate.......Number of Votes

Kasich, John (R).... 1,849,842

Strickland, Ted (D) 1,752,790

Matesz, Ken (L) .........89,499

Spisak, Dennis (G).... 56,797

Sargent, David (WI)...... 864

As you can see, more people voted AGAINST Kasich than for him.
Kasich received 1,849,842 and 1,899,950 voted against him. Before Kasich starts tearing apart the state government, he might want to look at those numbers again.  The truth is, Kasich won't take the time to look at those statistics, but you should keep them handy in case he claims a mandate.

I did see Kasich's victory speech last night.  The thing that struck me the most was that there were only white people on the stage.  At one point, there were only white men standing with him.

Keep an eye on Mike DeWine.  He intends to join that Republican fight against the health reform law.  Even though our state does not have money to spare, Mike DeWine will gladly waste millions of dollars fighting against something that benefits the common good. (Mike DeWine also had more people who voted against him than for him.)

O'Connor and Lanzinger won for the State Supreme Court. I guess they can thank all those doctors from the Ohio State Medical Association PAC that put all those leaflets in their waiting rooms. 

I've lived through worse...

Even though most of my candidates lost, I can honestly say, I'll survive.  I've lived through other Republican wins, and coped.  No matter what happens, I'll always maintain my support of President Obama, the Democratic Party, and the ideals of the Party.

I'll continue to watch for movements and people who want to deny equality for all.

People will need to be observant about what kinds of legislation is sponsored, which members support it, and the backroom push by lobbyists.

Yes, I've lived through worse.....
Nixon, both Bushes, Governors Bob Taft, George Voinovich, and Jim Rhodes.  I won't surrender to those who stand in the way of equality and fairness.  I still support the rights of human beings over the rights of corporations.

Even though I'll have to suffer through the pomposity of Kasich, Boehner, Stivers, and others (too numerous to name), I'm satisfied that the Democrats have retained control of the U.S. Senate and the White House.

Win or lose, I'll always be a Buckeye and a Democrat.

Monday, November 01, 2010

Kasich: Not A Nice Guy (I'm being polite.)

Both Democratic Gov. Ted Strickland and Republican John Kasich met with some people associated with the state school board association, school administrators, and those in charge of the business side of running schools.  The group met with the candidates separately.  The meeting with Gov. Ted Strickland was good.  However, the meeting with John Kasich was strained (and that is putting it nicely).
I saw this over at Buckeye State Blog and I thought it is worth sharing the post from The Pullins Report.

Here is the title of the post from The Pullins Report (this is from an email he received):

John Kasich Is Simply a Nasty, Nasty Little Man

....John Kasich refused to meet with a large group of people from the Ohio School Boards Association (OSBA), Buckeye Association of School Administrators (BASA), and the Ohio Association of School Business Officials (OASBO).  He finally agreed to meet with the executive directors, officers and lobbyists of the organizations.  He also refused to come to the OSBA office to meet.  We had to go to his campaign headquarters in downtown Columbus .  The room was hot and crowded.  The first gentleman from OASBO introduced himself, his school district and said that he was also from OASBO.  John asked what OASBO was, so he was told the full name.  John told him it was a dumb or stupid name and they should think about changing it. 

Rick Lewis , OSBA's executive director, started with a brief intro which John interrupted telling him that we didn't have time for that and that we just needed to get on with it.  He did tell us up front that he supported vouchers.  While one of the treasurers was explaining some of the difficulties we have with vouchers, John was checking email messages on his phone.  He ordered the fan to be turned off because he couldn't hear, ordered one of his campaign staff to bring him water and on a couple of occasions ordered the people in the adjoining room to leave the door open.  He was rude.

Mr. Kasich mentioned stastics from the Brookings Institute report that came out in February.  The report lists Ohio as 47th in classroom expenditures.  We have the unpublished study that was commissioned by them that resulted in that statistic.  We have a group looking at the research to see how that was determined since US Census Data lists us as 26th or 27th.  He also kept talking about Youngstown that spends $13,000 to educate a child and only $7,000 goes into classroom instruction.  He was unable to tell us what was included in classroom instruction. ie - Did it include library services, reading specialists, speech & hearing?  He wants to get rid of textbooks and do more online.  He wants to cut administrators.....

There is plenty more on this meeting with Kasich where he talks about the state income tax, cutting police in Genoa Township, Kasich's rudeness, and how negotiated agreements might be able to be eliminated (according to Kasich).  PLEASE   READ the entire article at.....


You might want to send a link to teachers, state workers, and anyone you know who has yet to make up his/her mind about how to cast their vote for Ohio governor.


On MSNBC's Rachel Maddow Show, the host, Rachel Maddow, listed some of the accomplishments of President Obama and the Democrats:

The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act
Tobacco Regulation (tobacco industry to be regulated by FDA)
Hate Crime Bill
Children's Health Insurance
College Loan Reform (no more subsidies to banks)
Expansion of Americorps
Cash for Clunkers (it save the American auto industry)
The American Recovery Act (the largest tax cut - ever)
Health Reform Law (in the end, 95% of Americans would have health insurance)
Financial Reform Bill
Expansion of Veterans Access (help for veterans and their families)
The Creation of a Consumer Protection Agency

As Rachel Maddow said, President Obama and the Democrats have worked on policy instead of politics in an effort to make things better for all Americans.

 Rep. Mary Jo Kilroy (OH-15th) was helpful in getting these bills passed. HOWEVER, Republican candidate, Steve Stivers, a former bank lobbyist, dislikes most of this legislation, and claims he would have voted against most of this.


WBNS-TV (10tv.com) is reporting some interesting news from the Franklin County Board of Elections:

167,653  Absentee Ballots were requested
134,115  Absentee Ballots have been returned
6,728  people voted at the Franklin County Board of Elections

That is very impressive.

> If you are a regular reader here, you know that I have mentioned that the Republican candidate for Ohio's 15th district, Steve Stivers, is a former bank lobbyist.

TARP Chief Elizabeth Warren had a few observations about bank lobbyists that she shared when she appeared on Bill Maher's program.  Here is what Elizabeth Warren had to say.  MandelmanMatters:

“It’s Bank Lobbyists vs. American Families.”
“The reason that we’re not changing things in Washington is that the banks have lobbyists in Washington in numbers I’ve never seen.  They’re coming not just once a month or once a week, or even once a day.  These guys are coming in two, three, four times a day.  They’ve got their position papers, and they just keep slamming in the same direction over and over and over.  And people that want to advocate for American families, that want some changes, or want to level the playing field just don’t have that kind of lobbying power.  And so what we’re really watching here is a David and Goliath story of monumental proportions.”

Voters in Ohio's 15th district have to decide if they want Mary Jo Kilroy, who has voted to help families, or Stivers, a former bank lobbyist, who has demonstrated his loyalty to bankers?  That might be a hard decision for some people, but not for me.

I'll be voting for Rep. Mary Jo Kilroy.  Kilroy has demonstrated that she cares about the people who work, live, and go to school in her district.

Republican Steve Stivers voted against a  mortgage lending bill (Am Sub SB 185) on May 24, 2006.   Project Vote Smart has the official synopsis of this bill:

Expands the application of the Consumer Sales Practices Act to include certain consumer transactions in connection with a residential mortgage. Generally prohibits the appraisal of real estate for a mortgage loan without state certification or licensure. Prohibits any person from corrupting or improperly influencing the independent judgment of a real estate appraiser with respect to the value of the dwelling offered as security for a mortgage loan. Requires that a national criminal background check be conducted on all applicants for a real estate appraiser certificate or license, a mortgage broker certificate of registration, or a loan officer license.

Stivers voted against this bill because it protected people - - - not bankers.
You can see why sending Stivers to Congress will not fix things.  The last thing we need in Washington, DC is another lobbyist.

With Stivers getting support and campaign contributions from Tea Party Republicans, Sarah Palin and Mitt Romney, you can see that his views are too extreme. (Personally, I don't want to support anyone that has been endorsed by Palin and Romney, who have both demonstrated animal cruelty.  Sarah Palin has promoted the aerial hunting and shooting of animals in Alaska.  Romney tied his dog's cage to the roof of his car when the family moved.  People who treat animals this way will not get my respect.)