Sunday, August 30, 2009

YouTube Video: Vigil for Health Care and Remembrance of Senator Kennedy 8/28/2009

YouTube Video: Vigil for Health Care and Remembrance of Senator Kennedy 8/28/2009
On Friday August 28th citizens in Miami Dade joined together for a vigil honoring Senator Kennedy and the Americans who have passed without health insurance that he sought to protect.

Miami Vigil Highlight Ted Kennedy's Legacy (CBS4 8/29/2009):

Our Obama Re-Ignition was chronicled last Thursday in the first 2 minutes of "News And Views: Health Care Reform" (CBS4 8/22/2009):

Vigil planned in Miami for late Sen. Ted Kennedy (Miami Herald 8/28/2009)

Friday, August 28, 2009

Prayer Vigil for Health Care and Remembrance of Senator Kennedy, 7PM, Friday, August 28, JFK Torch of Friendship, Biscayne Blvd & NE 3 St, Miami

Prayer Vigil for Health Care and Remembrance of Senator Kennedy
Health Care is an issue of compassion.

This is an evening to remember the thousands of citizens that have passed away due to lack of Health Insurance and the thousands that are in peril due to under coverage or no coverage now.

7-9 PM
7:45 Lighting of the candles
8:00 Leaders of Clergy Speaking

Some candles will be provided but please bring one if you can.

“Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in health is the most shocking and inhuman.”
— The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Time: 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM, Friday, August 28

Torch of Friendship (Miami, FL)
Biscayne Blvd & NE 3rd St
Miami, FL 33132


Please dress in black.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Subscribe to this: Health News Florida

We are asking how to help pass good health care legislation. One way is to be better informed. Subscribe to this and you're going in the right direction:

Health News Florida

Meanwhile, your blogger has been on vacation for a week or so but hopes occasionally to post from remote locations at the end of the world. Back soon after Labor Day.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Pledge to donate on 9/9/09 to end gerrymandering

How to fix the Florida legislature? How to fix our gerrymandered congressional districts?

Change the Florida constitution to ban gerrymandering! That’s the aim of Fair Districts Florida, and this wonderful organization has gathered almost 1.5 million petitions to get the issue on the ballot.

Next step is to raise our personal support of this ambitious drive by donating to help.

I have pledged to donate. Have you?

Please go to and add your name to the pledge rollcall. I did it this morning and was #88 to sign up. A short while ago the numbers was approaching 150. Please add your pledge.

Then on Sept. 9 we will all pledge together and raise the money needed to process our mountain of petitions.

Thank you for listening and pledging. Now, please go do it.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Joe Garcia for Congress? A dream of the past, but Mel Martinez may have made it possible again

We're hearing a Republican rumor that Gov. Charlie Crist may appoint US Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart to the US Senate seat being vacated by Mel Martinez before his time is up. Lincoln Diaz-Balart, not known as senatorial material among reasonable people, would be a caretaker rather than someone to bother Crist's own ambition to become senator, according to this rumor.

UPDATE: Diaz-Balart took himself out of consideration late Monday. Here's a link to the Miami Herald story on it. Since this is in flux, I'll let the rest of this post stand for at least a while. Who knows what will bubble up next? END UPDATE.

Then Lincoln's brother Mario Diaz-Balart, currently representing District 25 in the US House, would move to Lincoln's more strongly Republican District 21 and save his own hide from defeat by a Democrat in the 2010 election. Lincoln would cease seeking federal office, and the bothersome Marco Rubio, former speaker of the Florida House who's contending for the US Senate nomination against Charlie Crist, would run for the US House instead. So goes this convoluted reddish rumor.

Where's Joe Garcia in this? He won't stand for it. Gonna stick his strong Democratic candidacy into these machinations somewhere if the Republicans continue along these lines. This corner speculates that Garcia, with impeccable Cuban American credentials from his years as executive director of the Cuban American National Foundation, would run again in District 25, where he ran strongly against Mario Diaz-Balart in 2008, losing only 52-48. The district's Democratic Party numbers have constantly grown since then and Mario faces the end in 2010 -- especially if Joe Garcia is the Democratic candidate.

In the past few months it appeared that Garcia was bowing out of any run for federal office as he was nominated by President Obama to be director of the office of minority economic impact in the Department of Energy. He still needs US Senate confirmation for that post but has been approved at the committee level. Interestingly, Sen. Mel Martinez gave an introductory speech for Garcia at the hearing of the Energy Committee, praising Garcia's past work on refugee resettlement and on the Florida Public Service Commission.

One question that arises is why the great state of Florida should have a mere caretaker senator like Lincoln Diaz-Balart for the next year and a half of crucial legislation on health care, energy and environment, immigration, financial reform and other burning issues left from the George Bush era of maladministration. Which is why none of this may arise -- but anyway, then why is the Republican rumor machine running with this?

For the uninitiated, these two congressional districts cover the western reaches of Miami-Dade County and over the Everglades to part of Collier County and a bit of Broward, too. It's a part of our world that deserves better representation than it has had from the Diaz-Balart brothers. For instance, let's get real about saving the Everglades.

Follow the link for the Miami Herald's take on some of this -- especially Florida's loss of punch if a caretaker is in the Senate. The Herald and most everyone else neglect the fact that the 17th amendment to the US Constitution says there should be an election to fill a Senate vacancy, and an appointment is given second place. If only our elections weren't so cumbersome and expensive.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Reality check on health care myths

In case you haven't received this from elsewhere, here's the link to the White House pack of videos that try to combat the lies and misrepresentations gushing from the Rovian right.

UPDATE: That was barely posted when another email rolled in from the White House with two more impressively detailed links to information on health care.

First, Florida! How we in Florida can benefit from getting it right:

The next link describes how we already have the hated Rationing. Let's get rid of it!

I've neglected to post video of a rally last Friday at the Miami office of US Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (FL-25), so here it is. You'll note that we did some yelling but only out on the street to say we wanted the public option.

Monday, August 10, 2009

US health care v. Canadian. A father's passing tells the story

My friend Kenny posts on the passing of his father, in distant Canada. It's a story to be taken to heart.

My sympathy, Kenny.

Wondering which lying brands to boycott? An answer

Wishes come true, sometimes. Today while driving I idly wondered how to put pressure on the backers of the lying liars on Fox News. Hmm, how to organize a boycott of the advertisers …

An hour later I’m home and browsing my email and here’s one from (The “Aggressive Progressives,” they call themselves. This is close to but NOT the Democratic Party, which uses the .org suffix). They have an email form that sends a blast to all the advertisers and tells them I’m not buying their stuff while they advertise on Fox News.

Bingo, I’m signed up. Here’s the list of advertisers as of Aug. 9, i.e. yesterday.

Some of these may be kinda hard to separate from my daily life, like AARP, Apple, Brita Filter, Nexium, US Postal Service (!). But I’m gonna start NOW.

Current Advertisers (8/9/09)
AARP Insurance
Accu Chek Aviva
ADT Security
Ally Bank (
Brita Filter
Broadbive Security
Conservatives for Patients Rights
Ditech (
Golden Corral
Healthy Choice
HSBC Life Insurance
Mens Warehouse
Radio Shack
Rapid Wash
Red Lobster
Sargento Cheese
Super8 motels (
Superior Gold Group
United Healthcare Insurance
United States Postal Service
Wallstreet Journal

Check it out. There’s already a fairly long list of advertisers who have given up on Fox News. In fact, this campaign has been going on for quite a while. Gulp. uh, when do we win?

We have to take the view that all this is commercial. The lies, the network that blasts them out, the advertisers who pay too much to have their message associated with the lies – all commercial ventures. We have to take our commercial steps, too, in addition to our voting, community organizing, sign-making, demonstrating, thinking.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Test run: Widget to find Democratic town halls

At the top of the right column is a new element: a widget to let readers find town halls or other events being held by Democratic officials. Why? Maybe the event needs extra friendly attendees to keep the unfriendlies from appearing to be the majority.

This was invented, I gather, by the brilliant people at Fire Dog Lake. I heard about it via an email.

My suspicious mind can imagine ways to misuse this widget, so let's consider this a test run.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Rachel Maddow identifies bosses of the mobs

The other day my opposition research tuned the car radio to the Limbaugh show. He blared on and on about how the raucus invasions of town halls were all the product of the grass roots. Ha! There even was a guy who called in and said he was a grassroots organizer of one event. Ha! Last night opposition research subjected me to a long diatribe from Sean Hannity on the radio and he yelled the same thing while promising to turn up the volume at his series of patriotic concerts taking place around the country. Ha!

Thanks, Rachel Maddow, for doing much more opposition research and identifying the Republican functionaries and donors who are behind it all. This is a longish report but full of telling detail and sharp analysis right to the end. Enjoy:

We can't criticize the Republicans too much for being in opposition to what the Democrats propose. We're doing the same thing from the good guys' side, and the White House is calling the shots. But we're not disrupting meetings or running members of Congress out of the hall. And we're not disguising who we are behind a screen of patriotic-sounding names. But then we're not the Swift-boaters of dubious fame.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Miami Herald birthers deserve a thrashing

Have I calmed down enough to write about this? Browsing the Miami Herald web site today, I’m afraid I let my blood pressure get outa control.

Today’s Question (It's on the upper left of the page):

Do you have questions about President Obama's citizenship?

The Vote buttons below the Q started to waver as my brain raced through questions that I would have thought impossible before seeing this purported Question.

  • Have birthers taken control of Florida’s supposed flagship newspaper even though the state voted strongly in favor of the Democratic nominee less than a year ago?
  • How could this have happened? Why would they think this was a good idea?
  • Haven’t they seen that even Lou Dobbs is taking a drubbing for his coy jitterbug around this issue?
  • Do they think coy is a good way to deal with anything at all in this world above the level of a grade-school flirt?

Please join with me and email the Herald in protest. The major word in my short message was despicable.