Monday, May 30, 2011

Kasich and Republicans Trying to Eliminate Fairness

* Ohio Gov. John Kasich and the Republican elected officials in the General Assembly are working very hard to bring in favoritism, cronyism, and good old-fashioned corruption into the state government.  Kasich and the GOP sheeple are trying to pretty much do away with civil service fairness in public jobs.  According to the SpringfieldNewsSun, the budget bill contains some of the following stipulations:

....The changes would:
• Allow the director of DAS, who is appointed by the governor, to write rules on when an agency could hire workers without using competitive exams.
• Allow agencies to hire anyone who scores in the top 25 percentile on an exam, rather than be required to hire off an eligibility list of 10 applicants.
• Remove exams and seniority as criteria for internal promotions in state government; instead base promotions on merit and conduct in office.....

Although the Republicans claim that their changes are intended to "modernize" civil service, do not believe it for a single second that these actions are going to improve anything.  The Republicans are turning the Ohio government into their well-oiled, crony-run, cash machine.  They'll be doing away with certain aspects of state services and awarding them to their contributors who just happen to own companies that would provide services.  Will the state of Ohio provide state workers to plow our highways?  Is it possible that Kasich will allow a company like Kokosing (huuuuuuge GOP contributors) to do the snow plowing instead?  We'll see what happens.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

How Low Can It Go?

*   Public Policy Polling gives us an indication that Gov. John Kasich is not regarded very highly by Ohio voters.  As a matter of fact, his approval rating is going lower.


-John Kasich, already unpopular in Ohio when PPP polled the state in March, has seen his numbers continue to head even further in the wrong direction and is now tied with Florida Governor Rick Scott as the least popular Governor in the country out of 38 that we have polled on. Just 33% of voters in the state now approve of Kasich to 56% who disapprove. In March it was a 35/54 spread. Kasich's numbers are basically identical to where they were then with independents, and he's actually ticked up a little bit with Democrats. What's really plunging him is that Republicans aren't even all that enthused about him anymore- he's gone from a +53 (71/18) spread with them in March to now +30 (58/28) with them in May. That 23 point decline within his own party is largely responsible for his overall drop.

Ohio voters are having some serious, serious buyer's remorse about voting for Kasich. They now say if they could do it over again they'd vote for Ted Strickland by a 25 point margin over Kasich, 59/34. Our final poll before the election last fall, which hit the results on the head, found Kasich winning independents by 18 points. Now they say they would vote for Strickland by 16. And while only 9% of Republicans crossed party lines to support Strickland last year, now 26% say they would if they had the chance to do it over again.

-Kasich and his first term Republican brethren across the Midwest may be the best thing that's ever happened to Barack Obama's reelection chances.....

Those people that supported Kasich probably get a queasy feeling in their stomachs every single time the governor opens his mouth and talks about what he plans to do next.  So far, despite his bragging and running all over Ohio in state-owned aircraft, we have yet to see any job creation.  Those jobs created at the Toledo Chrysler plant had nothing to do with Kasich.  The jobs are developing because President Barack Obama pushed for and got loans to American automakers.  As the story at the Plain Dealer notes-----

President Barack Obama returns to Ohio late next week, with plans to visit a Chrysler plant in Toledo. The White House has released few details but says the visit will be on Friday, June 3.....

.....Democrats say that Chrysler's repayment of government bridge loans, as well as General Motors' payments, and their continuing operation and gradual expansion, show that Obama made the right decision.....

Ohio Republicans and Kasich were against the Obama auto bailout.

>>>>  Republicans in the U.S. Senate voted to end Medicare this evening, according to TalkingPointsMemo.  Fortunately, it did not pass.  Those of us getting close to retirement must remember this----

A vote for a Republican is one vote closer to end Medicare.

Absolutely Ridiculous!

Here is something that will make you shake your head and wonder how much more will Gov. John Kasich do to destroy the state and the citizens of Ohio.  Dispatch:

John Kasich used to be a banker. Now, Ohio's Republican governor is studying a possible tax cut for the state's financial institutions.

Banks, savings and loans and most other Ohio financial institutions still pay a corporate franchise tax, a 13-mill tax based on net worth. Kasich, a former executive at Lehman Brothers, suggested yesterday that altering the tax could reduce costs for banks and generate more loans.

"I mean, taxing people on the basis of net worth instead of net income is something that's not all that appealing to me," Kasich told about 300 bank executives at the Ohio Bankers' Day Conference at the Crowne Plaza Columbus North.....

Isn't this exactly what Ohioans don't want to see-------helping out bankers?  Kasich's mindset is one that obviously favors bankers over average people.  His support for SB 5 demonstrates that he continues to side with businesses over the rights of firefighters, police officers, teachers, nurses, and public employees.  Kasich and the Republicans even want to defund the office of Ohio Consumers' Council, which protects citizens from unscrupulous businesses and the unfair utility rate hikes.  Even though the Republicans cut tax rates under former Gov. Bob Taft for corporations, we've seen no actual improvement in job creation since the Taft tax cuts.  When corporations and CEO's get tax cuts, we've seen them reward themselves with bonuses instead of investing in adding jobs.

In 2005, PolicyMatters warned Taft that tax breaks were not the way to proceed:

 ...It creates new fiscal problems instead of solving them. The income-tax cut will
reduce state revenues by nearly $1 billion during the FY 2006-2007 biennium, and by $2
billion a year when it is fully implemented in 2010. This makes it difficult to pay for crucial services and investments, and increases the chances of another state budget shortfall in the future. It also is likely to lead to higher local taxes, as local governments attempt to
make up for lesser state support.

It takes revenue out of the state. One-seventh of the tax cut will leave Ohio, lost to
federal taxes because taxpayers who itemize will have lower state income tax to write off
on their U.S. returns. This amounts to $280 million a year when the cuts are fully
implemented. This will hurt Ohio s economy.....

....It favors the wealthy. According to a study conducted by the Institute on Taxation and
Economic Policy (ITEP), if you make more than $274,000, then you are part of that 1% of
Ohioans who on average will get more than $8,000 apiece from it. This small group will
receive almost a quarter of the benefit from the income-tax rate cut. On the other hand,
the 60% who make less than $43,000 a year will get just 14% of the total income tax
break. Ohioans who make less than $16,000 a year a fifth of all taxpayers on average
will see a reduction of just $19 a year.....

Taft did not do anything to grow jobs in Ohio and it looks like Kasich is following in his footsteps.  Taft's tax policy helped create the mess we are experiencing today.  Kasich just wants to make the hole deeper.


*  Looks like the Republican weasels that supported SB 5 are dropping out as fast as they can.  Apparently, they cannot handle the payback they are receiving from Ohio's hardworking men and women who oppose SB 5:  Karen Gillmor (see Facebook)  and Jimmy Stewart (see Garfield Reporter).  Which Republican weasel will be next?  Opponents of
SB 5 need to keep up the pressure on those Republicans who oppose workers' rights.

<-------  Ohio Republican weasel

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Republicans Going After Women, Infants, and Children

John Boehner and the Republicans, want to balance the budget on the backs of the same targets they've gone after previously--- poor people, women, infants, and children.  Although, John Boehner cries at the mention of children, he apparently doesn't care about poor, hungry children.

Huffington Post:

...In a bill released Monday, Republicans proposed cutting $832 million – or 12 percent – from this year's budget for the federal nutrition program that provides food for low-income mothers and children. The 2012 budget proposal for food and farm programs also includes a decrease of almost $457 million, or 31 percent, from an international food assistance program that provides emergency aid and agricultural development dollars to poor countries.
The legislation would provide $71 billion for food stamps, $2 billion less than the Obama administration projected would be necessary for next year.....

....Hunger advocates have warned against stripping those programs of those reserves. Two analysts from the liberal research and advocacy group Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, Zoe Neuberger and Robert Greenstein, said Monday that the cuts could mean turning away as many as 475,000 people from the Women, Infants and Children program if food prices continue to rise.
Almost 9 million low-income mothers and children participate in the WIC program....

It might be time for Boehner to wise up and notice that cuts to WIC and food programs for the poor will reduce the health and well-being of many people.  

>>>>  Here are some statistics to make you wonder if we don't have too many lobbyists in Ohio....


Legislative Executive Retirement
Registered Agents 1332 988 122
Registered Employers 1370 1279 63
Total Engagements 3363 2988 133

With statistics like that, you know someone is making out on these deals.  Following the story in the Dispatch that indicates that Kasich's buddies are very popular, you wonder how much influence these lobbyists have with various parts of the state government.  How many lobbyists are providing written legislation that favors their clients?  I have a feeling that when Kasich's term is over, we will find the state government has been privatized, cut, and re-organized to such a degree that citizens won't recognize it. 

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Numbers in the News

* A new Quinnipiac poll on Ohio has some noteworthy statistics.


...Overall, Kasich’s approval ratings have risen slightly, though 49 percent of voters still disapprove of his work in office, versus 38 percent now approve of it. That compares to a 46 percent disapproval-30 percent approval in March.

But 53 percent said they disapproved of his handling of the state budget and Kasich’s proposals are unfair.

Fifty-four percent also said they believed Senate Bill 5 should be repealed, versus 36 percent who said the new law should go into effect....

Wouldn't you like to know who those people are that approve of Kasich's job?

An interesting comment by State Sen. Shannon Jones, SB 5 bill's author, as reported at

State Sen. Shannon Jones, who sponsored Senate Bill 5, challenged today’s Quinnipiac University Poll that found a majority of Ohioans (54 percent) say the collective bargaining law should be repealed, while 36 percent support it.

“Public opinion on statewide ballot issues is notoriously unpredictable,” said Jones, a Republican who represents all of Warren County and part of Hamilton County....

It might be a good idea for Shannon Jones to stop talking to lobbyists and Republican campaign contributors  and start talking to regular working people.  She needs to get out of her bubble.

>>>> John Kasich is a big supporter of charter schools and has been especially happy to receive all those campaign contributions from their owners.  Now, a new investigative report shows that some charter schools are being investigated by federal authorities.


An exclusive 5 On Your Side investigation has uncovered a money trail of Ohio tax dollars leading overseas that  paid for illegal immigration fees and expenses associated with charter schools across the state.

Our investigation also reveals that the U.S. Department of Labor is investigating one charter school located in Cleveland for its use of so-called "H1-B visas" issued by the U.S. government for "highly trained" employees to work in the United States.

An extensive review of financial audits uncovered that in one case, the cash was finding its way to Istanbul, Turkey, where nearly $600,000 is winding up paying for monthly rent for a charter school back in Dayton......


***** has information on the quality of education found at White Hat charter schools in the state:

Since 2008, Akron-based White Hat Management, has collected around $230 million to run charter schools in Ohio. The company has grown into a national chain and reports that it has about 20,000 students across the country.....

.....Government data suggest that schools with for-profit managers have somewhat worse academic results than charters without management companies, and a number of boards have clashed with managers over a lack of transparency in how they are using public funds.

Only 2 percent of White Hat's students have made the progress expected under federal education law. The company declined comment about the performance of its schools.....

$230 million to White Hat Management and yet their schools are not producing quality education?  OMG!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

I Know the Real Bully

* Gov. John Kasich still wants you to take care of your elderly, sick parents in your home so that he can save enough money to give his rich buddies tax cuts.  Kasich cried and complained when Ohio's nursing home lobby ran an ad that accused him of trying to pull the plug on Grandma and Grandpa.  Then he cried more crocodile tears until the ad was removed from TV stations in the state.  Kasich accused the nursing home lobby of being bullies!!!! OMG!

Some people don't have options like the ones Mrs. Kasich had with her mother. They had enough money to keep the grandmother in her home with nursing care around the clock. Most people who have parents in nursing homes in Ohio do not have the money, nursing training, the physical strength, or money to care for loved ones at home.

Here are some ideas to consider---
1. How many people does it take to move an immobile patient from a bed to a wheel chair?

2. What happens to the other patients while one patient is being moved/fed/bathed/changed/picked up off the floor?

3. What aide to patient ratio does Kasich think is appropriate?  1 to 36? 1 to 50? 1 to 100?

4. What services should nursing homes provide to indigent patients who need skilled nursing care?  Does Kasich want to set up "death panels" to decide which patients get into care facilities and which do not?

5. Would Gov. Kasich like to spend the day following a nurse's aide in a nursing home's dementia unit?  (I'm sure it could be arranged that either the governor or one of his over paid staff could shadow a nursing home employee.) How many adult diapers would have to be changed in an 8 hr. shift?  How many times per day are urine soaked clothing/beds changed? How many meals are served/fed to residents during a shift?  If the nurse's aide ratio is low in these type of units, residents can have falls, a higher number of infections, and other complications that will result in a larger amount of hospitalizations.

6. Does Gov. Kasich really want to take away care for the poor and elderly? 

I realize that tough decisions must be made to balance the state's budget.  Unfortunately, Gov. Kasich is bullying old sick people and school children by trying to balance the budget by cutting their funding (while he gives millions of dollars to a gaming expert). 

If you have a loved one in a nursing home or care facility in Ohio, you must do the following:

1) Read the article at about Kasich's planned cuts at nursing homes.

2) Call your relatives and ask them which months of the year are they willing to take care of your mother/father/grandparent in their homes because of Kasich's cuts?  Will they be able to stay home and provide 24/7 care, food, and medical care for that loved one?

3) Call  members of the Ohio Senate, the Ohio House, and the governor's office and let them hear your complaints about the planned cuts to nursing homes.

4) Contact the Ohio Academy of Nursing Homes and ask them how you can stop these cuts that endanger the life of your loved one:

Telephone: 614.461.1922
Toll Free: 800.999.6264
Fax: 614.461.0434

Thursday, May 12, 2011

More Jobs Stopped by Kasich

 *  While Gov. John Kasich has been messing around with the casino owners on trying to renegotiate the tax plan that was addressed in the state referendum, more casinos are stopping the construction of their multi-million dollar complexes. How many construction jobs went down the tubes this time? 


The company developing voter-approved casinos in Cincinnati and Cleveland is putting construction at both sites on ice as a fight over the sites' level of taxation rages on, the Cincinnati Business Courier reports.....

.....The company said in its statement that the provision has "created an environment of uncertainty concerning the projected economic vitality of our planned developments." Gov. John Kasich, who pushed for the amendment, has insisted the state got a raw deal when the four-casino plan was approved with a 33 percent tax rate.

 Thanks for holding up the jobs and the economic development, Gov. Kasich.  How many more jobs are you planning to kill like you did with the rail project?

* Just as GM announces plans for expansion, Gov. John Kasich has to run to try to get the credit for the additional hiring that will take place.  Unfortunately for Kasich, he opposed President Obama's auto loan program that has American car companies reaping the rewards. Don't be fooled by Kasich's sudden interest in the auto industry, he was against President Obama's economic stimulus too.

>>>>> Here is some good news from Bizjournals:  Someone just got "dissed."

....The FOP board said it voted this weekend to retract its endorsement of Sen. Shannon Jones, who sponsored Senate Bill 5. The group said it felt betrayed by Jones, who allegedly told them she wasn't a proponent of collective bargaining “but believed that police and fire were different.”

Shannon Jones never quite gave us the full explanation of which group/individual/lobbyist helped her write SB 5.

******  Are you ready for another dumb idea from the Ohio Republicans? They are pushing legislation to allow guns in bars.  (See the Middletown Journal) Can you imagine a more toxic environment--- guns & alcohol?  It might be just another reason to stay home and have something to drink.

*****  Has anyone seen any job creation legislation penned by Republican Rep. Steve Stivers yet?  Is he still meeting with and/or  catering to the wishes of the banking lobbyists and the Koch Brothers?  Stivers, who voted against consumer protection laws as a state senator, is doing his best to protect all those big business contributors.  He is even part of a group of Republicans that receive special written legislation handed out by ALEC (the group assembled by the Koch Brothers to protect their corporation and others).  Check out BecauseICan.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Money & Influence

Remember how the Republicans and John Kasich made light of the rail plan during the campaign last fall?  Kasich, the Republicans, and the other backward thinking GOP governors who turned down the rail money may not admit it in public, but they really messed up.

Washington Post:

The Obama administration on Monday announced the reallocation of $2 billion in its signature transportation program to create a national high-speed rail network, including $795 million for upgrades that would permit speeds of 160 mph in parts of the Northeast Corridor.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood made the money available to other states this year when Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) opted not to accept funds that had been allocated to build high-speed rail between Tampa and Orlando.....

...Scott and two other Republican governors elected last year — John Kasich of Ohio and Scott Walker of Wisconsin — rejected high-speed rail money, saying they feared their states would be saddled with any cost overruns....

While those other states will create thousand of jobs, and see massive economic development, Kasich and his caveman political party are still trying to turn the clock back to the 1850's.  Will we ever see new jobs in Ohio? 

Here is some additional information to support the fact that the Kasich administration is stuck in the past:


The Ohio Department of Transportation has erased talk of an "integrated network" of roads, rails and other modes of travel in the Kasich administration's first rewrite of policies that guide state-funding decisions....

.....ODOT also has rescinded a Strickland pledge to share $50 million annually with Ohio's public-transit agencies.

The policy revision proposed for the state's Transportation Review Advisory Council retains an old pledge to consider all modes of transportation for state funding, but it doesn't mention passenger rail specifically, as the Strickland administration's last update did....

Why would the Kasich administration put more emphasis on building roads?  Is it their way to reward their campaign contributors?  In a recent article in the Dispatch, it was announced that Kokosing Construction Company got a contract for road construction. What ties does the Kokosing Co. have with Republicans and Kasich?  I'm so glad you asked.

According to Influenceexplorer, Kokosing (owners, employees + families, + PACs) is a major contributor to the Republicans (1989-2010: $721,539 to Republicans).  Kokosing (owners, employees + families, + PACs) also helped finance the Kasich-Taylor campaign to the tune of $38,615.

 It seems the only people who will benefit from the Kasich administration will be his campaign contributors and his rich friends.

Will Republicans Do Anything for Money?

Holy Smokes!  The Dispatch allowed Tom Needles, a registered lobbyist for White Hat Management, to write an editorial for the newspaper in support of charter schools.  White Hat Management's owners, and employees are major contributors to the Ohio GOP.  The good people over at Plunderbund have all the dirty details, but here is just a peak:

...Tom Needles is a registered lobbyist for White Hat Management.

He has personally contributed thousands of dollars to the campaigns of Kasich, Amstutz and other Republicans.

.....And here’s the clincher: according to multiple source, Tom Needles actually helped write the charter school-related language in the budget.....

Looks like all the contracts, jobs, legislation writing, and other benefits are going to FOK (friends of Kasich) and Republican contributors.

Here is another piece of information to show exactly how Kasich and the Republicans are rewarding White Hat---------

 Sunlight Foundation's Influence Explorer, has this little tidbit:

1999-2010, White Hat Management (Includes contributions from the organization’s employees, their family members, and its political action committee) gave
in political donations to Republicans......(from Influence Explorer)....


Jon Husted (R-OH)........$75,990
William Batchelder (R-OH)....$73,000
Josh Mandel (R-OH)...$66,141
John Kasich & Mary Taylor (R-OH)...$46,185
Mark Wagoner (R-OH)....$40,200
Keith Faber (R-OH)....$37,700
Tom Niehaus (R-OH)....$37,700
Shannon Jones (R-OH)...$35,000
Matthew Dolan (R-OH)....$30,000
Ron Amstutz (R-OH)...$27,500

If White Hat Management is making so much money off of the charter school business in Ohio, they must NOT be providing (1) quality education for students, (2) proper educational material for classrooms, and  (3) a living wage for teachers.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Gas Prices

*  A caller into the 30 second answering machine at the New Philadelphia Times-Reporter provided this idea:

...I just read where Gov. Kasich wants to pay teachers on merit instead of a pay schedule. I think we should base his pay on the approval rating for the job he’s doing. The last I saw, he had a 30 percent approval rating, which would be an F grade....

If we based Gov. John Kasich's salary on what voters thought of his work (30% approval rate), we could pay him just 30% of the governor's $144,000 salary.

*  How about those gas prices???  It seems that the people crying and complaining the loudest are the ones driving those SUVs.  I'm still driving my Honda Civic Hybrid with mpgs that those SUV drivers would envy.....45 mpg/highway and 35-42 mpg/city. 

*  According to an article in the Columbus Dispatch, Kasich and his Republican members of the Ohio General Assembly will be working on cuts to nursing homes.  Since citizens in Ohio already know that we cannot trust anything that Kasich says, I'm suggesting that we call/email the offices of Ohio Senators and Representatives.  If you have a parent, loved one, or friend in a nursing home, you know that they are receiving care that they need.  We cannot allow Kasich and the GOPers to cut their coverage and services.  Those of us with loved ones who are suffer from dementia, confusion, and are no longer able to walk, cannot imagine that Kasich and his bunch are considering denying them the skilled nursing care that they require. 

Contacts: the Ohio House or the Ohio Senate (1-800-282-0253 (466-8842 in Columbus).
You can also contact the Governor's office at (614) 466-3555.

Friday, May 06, 2011

Being Friends with Oil & Gas

Republican Rep. Steve Stivers (OH-15) might complain publicly about high gasoline prices, but privately he is happy to accept the hefty contributions of the oil and gas industries. Stivers not only took $115,000 from the oil and gas industry, he also was a co-sponsor of a bill to remove regulations for drilling in our offshore waterways (H.R. 1230).  If you like dirty, filthy beaches, filled with dead, oil-soaked animal life, you can thank Stivers.

Steve Stivers continues to take money from oil & gas and his buddies in the banking industries, while he works to overturn regulations that protect the consumer and our environment.

The Huffington Post:

The chief sponsors of a bill to expand oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico and open the coastal waters of Virginia for exploration have received more than $8.8 million combined in campaign donations from the oil and gas industry, a review of campaign finance records shows.
On Thursday, the House of Representatives passed the Restarting American Offshore Leasing Now Act by a 266 to 149 margin. The measure would force the federal government to conduct three lease auctions in those areas by June 2012. It is considered the first step in a GOP-led process to loosen restrictions on offshore drilling. Authored by House Natural Resources Chairman Doc Hastings (R-Wash.), it faces a much closer vote in the Senate as well as the stated opposition of the Obama administration....

....A review of data compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics shows that the 67 co-sponsors of the act received a combined total of at least $8,887,000 in campaign contributions from the oil and gas industry during the course of their careers. For at least ten of those members, the oil and has industry was their biggest career contributor.....

Open Secrets (Center for Responsive Politics) has this information on Steve Stivers and his ties to big oil and gas:

2010 (Open Secrets) Stivers received from Oil & Gas Industry: $65,800
2008 (Open Secrets) Stivers received from Oil & Gas Industry: $50,000

Big oil and gas have given Stivers $115,000 in campaign contributions.  When you fill your tank up with gasoline, remember that those oil companies are making billions of dollars in profits to reward people like Stivers and others who are anti-regulations. 

Trying to Hide Something?

Ohio Gov. John Kasich seems to dislike dealing with the public, the media, and things related to Ohio Constitution.  Now comes word that he tried to hide information from the public.

Toledo Blade:

The Ohio House of Representatives has taken a big step toward ensuring that government will continue to notify citizens of public matters in timely and accessible fashion.

State Rep. Randy Gardner (R., Bowling Green), led a bipartisan House effort to resist proposed changes in the way that public notices, on issues from tax delinquencies to local elections, are published. Gov. John Kasich's administration tried to substitute government Web sites for local newspapers as the places where such notices first, fully appear. That plan would have carried too much risk of citizens missing important notices.....

...Another administration proposal would allow government agencies to sell commercial advertising on their official Web sites. That prospect would create conflicts of interest among governments who deal with potential advertisers with business before them....

If you don't have a computer, or if you don't check certain government websites every single day, you'd be out of luck. Think about how many people would miss out on vital information about a new road being built nearby, a factory farm proposal, invitations for contractors to bid on projects, an increase in fees, etc., etc.  Why is the Kasich administration trying so hard to hide stuff from the public????  What doesn't he want us to know?

Thursday, May 05, 2011

What does this money get them?

Brave New Foundation has a question: 

With $42 billion and 7 homes, why are the Kochs buying our democracy?


The website,, has some additional details.

In case you are interested, OpenSecrets reports that Republican Rep. Steve Stivers (OH-15) received $7500 from Koch Industries in 2008, and $10,000 from them for the 2010 campaign.  I wonder what that kind of money gets contributors?

Republicans Stopping Jobs and Regulations

>>>  Rally today, May 5th, at the Ohio Statehouse, 5-7pm:!/PortiaABoulger
Portia A. Boulger
Come to Ohio Statehouse today-5PM-7PM. Rally to fight against Kasich's budget that will devastate Ohio communities.
Why are Republicans blocking Elizabeth Warren to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau? Huffington Post has the story.

  • Are Republicans against a woman leading an agency?
  • Are the Republicans afraid of an extremely intelligent woman going after sleazy bankers?
  • Are Republicans, like Steve Stivers, trying to protect their banker friends who contribute big money to their campaigns?
  • Do the Republicans want the banks and financial institutions to continue to ripoff people?
  • Why do the Republicans continue to play these games?  Where are the jobs, Boehner?

> Ohio Gov. John Kasich has been tagged as being "anti-business" by the casino operators who are against the latest strategy by Kasich and the GOP. Kasich (once again meddling) and the Republicans in the General Assembly are trying to change the tax blueprint that was approved by voters on the Ohio Constitution amendment to allow casino gambling.

The Examiner:

...In a statement from Eric Schippers, Senior Vice President of Public Affairs for Penn National Gaming, the failure by the House Finance committee to remove the CAT casino amendment yesterday may set up more battles going forward.

"We are deeply disappointed to learn that the punitive CAT tax language has been reinstated in the Budget Bill by the House," Schippers said. " This unique and discriminatory tax hike on the casinos – which we believe is patently unconstitutional – will likely have severe consequences on our more than $1 billion planned investment in Ohio and the 34,000 jobs we were hoping to create."

....Relying on voter-approved language in the Ohio Constitution, Schippers said it establishes the requirement that to pay the CAT tax on gross casino revenue, defined as the total amount wagered minus winnings returned to patrons.

This standard, he said, is recognized by the Internal Revenue Service and used by every other gaming jurisdiction in the United States.....

I sincerely hope that the casino owners take their case to the Ohio Supreme Court.

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Will Kasich and SB 5 endanger federal money?

Gov. John Kasich has been getting every single one of his desires fulfilled by the Republicans in the Ohio General Assembly.  He says jump, they jump.  He says cut the pay, security, and rights of Ohio's teachers, firefighters, police officers, and public workers, and the GOPers respond with record speed and pass SB 5.  On top of Kasich mouthing off at the President, Kasich might only be agitating those people that make decisions about federal funds.

In an article that appeared in the Columbus Government section in the Examiner, some members of the Kasich administration have voiced their opinion that SB 5 won't stop the flow of federal money for transportation in Ohio.

The Examiner:

...Responding for ODOT, communications chief Melissa Myers said, "It is the opinion of the Ohio Department of Transportation that Senate Bill 5 will have no effect on the ability of Ohio’s transit systems to procure and utilize federal funding through ODOT."

A professor at Youngstown State, John Russo, disagrees with ODOT's opinion, as stated in the Examiner article:

...Professor Russo said the endangerment of federal transit funds could be a case of the unintended consequences of the enactment of SB 5, which Gov. Kasich signed on March 31st. The effective date of the bill - 90 days after its signing - has been suspended pending the collection of enough valid signatures of registered voters to place it on the ballot this fall....

Have you noticed that everything that Kasich and the Republicans touch only makes things worse?  Where are the jobs????

Thanking us while stabbing us in the back...

Ohio Gov. John Kasich has discredited, disrespected, and disregarded the accomplishments, dedication, and contributions of Ohio's public school teachers.  Now, Kasich has issued a proclamation (see honoring teachers during "Teacher Appreciation Week."  There are a few things that all teachers, current and retired, should note about Kasich's proclamation:

1.) It wasn't his idea.  According to the National PTA---

....Since 1984, National PTA® has designated the first full week in May as PTA Teacher Appreciation WeekSM, a special time to honor the men and women who lend their passion and skills to educating our children. PTA events at the national, state, and local levels celebrate the outstanding contributions teachers make. 

PTA Teacher Appreciation Week 2011 is May 1–7....

2.) Is there a public school teacher in Ohio that believes that Kasich really "appreciates" teachers?

3.) While Kasich says he appreciates teachers, he is systematically stripping them of their rights, and seniority.  Teachers and all public workers need to keep the following in mind when reading/listening to Republicans: As Rachel Maddow said, 

"Watch what Republicans do, not what they say."

Monday, May 02, 2011

Kasich vs. Obama

Cocky, right winger, Gov. John Kasich bristled last week when he heard that U.S. President Barack Obama criticized his attacks on working people.  Kasich should learn something from President Obama.  While Kasich's braggadocious behavior gets him attention, he has yet to create a job.  Kasich continues to disrespect the work and legacy of firefighters, police officers, teachers, and public workers.  Ohioans can see that Kasich has revealed himself as nothing but a small-minded, arrogant, bully.

President Obama has been attacked for years by right wing, racist birthers.  His detractors have said that he acts like a professor, and that he is too slow to act.  In the actions we've seen transpire over the last few days, Americans have witnessed that President Obama's slow but purposeful plan to get bin Laden was successful.  The war might not be over, but this important accomplishment should be noted by all.  President Obama's well-planned action with the Navy Seals shows that this mission was successful because (1) it wasn't leaked to anyone, (2) the President let the special forces use their skills to do their job and complete the mission, (3) well-planned, precise plans take time.

Thank you President Obama for your strength, determination, and courage.  Those Navy Seals, special forces, and our military forces deserve our thanks and prayers for their work, courage, and dedication.

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Thank you, President Obama!

President Obama announced tonight that Osama bin Laden was killed in a special operation.  The President said that this special operation came about due to a tip that the administration received in August.  After much planning over the last few months, American special forces worked on getting bin Laden.

The SunTimes:

President Obama on late Sunday night announced the death of Osama Bin Laden, the mastermind of the 9-11 attacks that triggered the U.S. global war on terror. Obama declared, "Justice has been done."

"The images of 9-11 are seared into our national memory, Obama said, announcing that Bin Laden was dead from the White House......

Thank you, President Obama.

Bankers Direct Big Money to Steve Stivers

Republican Rep. Steve Stivers (OH-15th) has become very popular with the banking PACs.  Stivers serves on the Financial Services Committee in the U.S. House and was a former bank lobbyist.  The banking industry is trying so hard to overturn the banking regulations that were passed in the last Congress to prevent another Wall Street meltdown.  With the contributions from the bank pacs, Stivers is rolling in the dough.  Here are a few of the PACs that have been generously contributing to the Stivers campaign:


...American Bankers Association PAC (BANKPAC)  2/28/2011....$1,000
American Bankers Association PAC (BANKPAC)  3/29/2011....$1,000...

...Bank of America Corporation Federal PAC  1/12/2011....$1,000
Bank of American Corporation Federal PAC  3/22/2011....$2,000...

...CITIGROUP INC. Political Action Committee-Federal....2/22/2011....$1,000...

As I said, this list represents just of few of the banks that are sending contributions to Stivers.  For additional information, check the FEC page for committees that have contributed to the Stivers campaign--->

In case you're interested, the list also contains PACs for health insurance companies, insurance companies, Walmart, investment firms, financial companies, etc.