What’s the Deal With Joe Manchin?

Senator Joe Manchin … he refuses to ditch the ignominious filibuster, doesn’t think minimum wage should be $15 an hour, and in general is acting more like a republican than a democrat. Jeff is nicer than I am at this point, and has written a thoughtful post about the senator. Thanks, Jeff!

On The Fence Voters

One Senator from West Virginia is getting lots of attention these days. Over the last week, we saw the sausage-making legislative process rear its ugly head in the Senate. But finally, on Saturday, the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Act was passed by a 50-49 strictly partisan vote. That’s right, not one Republican voted for the bill.

But the fact the bill was partisan is no shock. We knew going in that Republicans were not going to vote for it, no matter what the Democrats proposed – unless, of course, they lowered it so much that a couple of GOP members may have voted for it. Never mind. President Biden wanted the massive bill, and he got it.

Indeed, some watering down of the bill occurred. And we owe much of that to Joe Manchin from the state mentioned above, West Virginia. He negotiated to lower the income threshold for people…

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CPAC: The Mysticism Makeover

Earlier today, I shared Keith’s post regarding the future of the Republican Party, aka GOP. Keith was once a Republican, but left the party some years ago to become an Independent. Another friend, Jerry (aka Grumpy of Grumpy’s Grumblings) was also a Republican, and he left the party during the reign of the former guy to become a Democrat. Grumpy has written a very enlightening post about his vision of the Republican Party today vs what it once was, that Jeff has re-blogged. Thanks to both you guys, Jeff & Jerry, for this post and for allowing me to share it!

On The Fence Voters

Our friend Jerry at Grumpy’s Grumblings has another excellent post out today. Here is an excerpt, with a link at the end to continue reading. Thanks Jerry!

There was a time—not too long ago, I’m now ashamed to admit—when I frequently chanted this cheeky, “conservative” mantra: “If you’re a Republican before age 18, you have no heart. If you’re a Democrat past age 18, you have no brain.” I switched from Democrat to Republican shortly before my 20th birthday, so I suppose my brain was a bit late to develop. I switched back to Democrat at age 66, so I suppose I have no loyalties. I don’t; that is, not to a political party.

Anyway, back to the above adage. The point was, of course, that Democrats, being less mature in their reasoning, lead with their heart, their emotions. Democrats, Republicans often allege, fail to outgrow their empathetic side and…

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Trump & Teddy Roosevelt-A Phony Populist vs. a Real One

Our friend Jeff from On the Fence Voters has a new venue … he’s a contributing writer for Politically Speaking, a publication at Medium.com. Today, he has written his first piece, and it is both thoughtful and thought-provoking … I hope you’ll take a look and follow him on Medium! Thanks, Jeff, for all your hard work! We’ll speak soon!

On The Fence Voters

Hello everyone. Recently I became a contributing writer for Politically Speaking, a publication at Medium.com. I wanted to share my first post with you and will do so in the future as well. I apologize in advance for using the former guy’s name-as well as writing anything about him. My pledge is to minimize the crazy man as much as possible. But this post really goes to the overall concept of populism, and how it can be used in a good way-and a despicable and dangerous way as well. Anyway, here is an excerpt. I’d greatly appreciate it if you click the link at the end and finish reading over at Medium. Thank you everybody!

Imagine a scenario where an ex-president broke away from his political party to form a new and exciting one based on reforming democracy as we know it. Things like standing up to corporations, providing health…

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Don’t Mess With Texas?

I’ve put off writing about the current situation in Texas, and Ted Cruz’ ignoble trip to Cancun to avoid the cold that his constituents were dying in, but Jeff has done a terrific job of covering the highlights. Thanks, Jeff!

On The Fence Voters

Former Mayor of San Antonio and Barack Obama’s Secretary of HUD Julian Castro put it best on Chris Hayes’ show on MSNBC the other day: “We need to stop electing people who don’t believe in government, to political positions in the government.”

I wonder how the people of Texas are feeling about their elected GOP leaders these days. Millions are freezing their asses off, being told to boil water, standing in line for groceries and propane, and seeing their neighbors dying after being forced into unsafe acts to stay warm. Is this what they signed up for?

One would think that this might be the final straw. After decades of corporate hack GOP leadership and deregulation on steroids, the state now resembles a failed third-world dictatorship. What more will it take for Texas citizens to throw these idiots out of office and try something different?

They had a chance in…

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Some Advice to GOP on Unity

“Normalcy. It’s a beautiful thing.” Oh yes it is! Our friend Jeff over at On the Fence Voters has some advice for Republicans who are doing their damnedest to throw a wrench into anything good that President Biden is doing to help bring this nation together once again. Thanks, Jeff … wise words … now if only the congressional republicans would heed them!

On The Fence Voters

Even though they haven’t asked for it, it’s time to offer some thoughtful advice to the Republican Party about unity and what it means when President Biden invokes the word.

You see, unity does not mean that when you become president, you must make sure not to upset the other side by introducing legislation they disagree with. But when the American people strongly support legislation, across party lines, mind you, it’s easy to conclude that you’re trying to unify the country.

Yes, it’s hard for the GOP to understand the concept. They know it but would instead try to use the issue to score cheap political points with people who either have short memories or do not pay attention to real news. It’s been a constant for years now. They play to the ignorance of their base — in this case, that Biden is the one not unifying the country.

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The Fox News Stain on America

Fox News is, as I see it, the pimple on the patootie of network television, though I’m sure many would argue that point. Last night, they showed us just how little we or anybody matter to them, and Jeff has that story for us! An aside, an election tech company, Smartmatic, is suing Fox in a defamation suit for $2.7 billion! I hope they win their suit! Frankly, I hope Fox goes down in flames. Thanks, Jeff, for this excellent post … and I share your feelings … about 20 seconds is as long as I can view Fox!

On The Fence Voters

I watched MSNBC Wednesday night when they began to cover the arrival of murdered Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick’s remains to lie in state in the Capitol rotunda. A short memorial service followed, with many of his fellow officers present and several Congress members, President Biden, and his wife, Jill.

Curious, I switched over to CNN to see if they were covering the ceremony, which they were indeed doing. Then I got even more ambitious and decided to see what was happening over at Fox News. I occasionally do that for no other reason than to see what topics they’re talking about when a major news event occurs. Most of the time, I can only last about one minute before I begin to get sick to my stomach.

As I expected, there was no coverage whatsoever of the solemn ceremony. In fact, none other than the quack Dr. Scott Atlas…

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The GOP’s Downward Spiral Continues

The United States today is barely recognizable. Anti-mask protests, conspiracy theories that even a 5-year-old child could debunk, and fully one-half of the government putting on a dog and pony show rather than concerning themselves with steering this de-railed train. Take a look at some of the madness in the eyes of our friend Jeff. We are surely the laughingstock of the world, and frankly I wish I could simply sail away to almost anyplace else on earth. Thanks, Jeff … excellent summation of the craziness!

On The Fence Voters

Their dangerous embrace of conspiracy theories, crackpots, and anti-democracy are killing Americans

When you think they can’t get crazier, the radical right Republican Party manages to exceed our lowest of the low expectations. In recent years, especially during the last four of the Trump era, the party drifted further into la-la land; its embrace of Trumpism-laced conspiracy theories leading to the deadly insurrection of January 6, 2021.

In present-day America, we have a two-party system. While many of us would like to see a viable third-party emerge, it’s not going to happen anytime soon. So we’re stuck with what we have. But to have at least a semblance of good governance and sustainable institutions, both of our political parties must be, at the very least, grounded in the belief that government is a worthwhile entity. That it can and will work to make sure it serves all the people…

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The Filibuster, Explained

Many … perhaps most … do not quite understand what is meant by ‘filibuster’. Our friend Jeff’s post will clarify what, exactly, the filibuster is, its origins, and how it has most often been used. Thanks, Jeff!

On The Fence Voters

There’s been much debate in recent years about the efficacy of the filibuster. The Republican Party has used the arcane process to block specific meaningful legislation that would have been beneficial to millions of Americans. To be clear, Democrats have also used the filibuster; blocking judges or presidential appointees, for example.

But it’s time to take a look at what the filibuster is, what are its origins, and what important legislation it has stopped from becoming law. A couple of things stand out. For one, there is nothing in the U.S. Constitution that mentions anything about the filibuster. It’s simply a Senate rule that’s been in place for nearly 200 years. Secondly, the process was born out of pure unadulterated racism — a mechanism that allowed the despicable practice of slavery to continue being used, mostly by wealthy white land owners in the South.

To take a deeper dive into…

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Bye Bye Unity

If you don’t have something to growl or curse about today, our friend Jeff over at On the Fence Voters has something to help you find your grumbly growl! Fellow democrats are shooting themselves … AND US … in the foot. Intentionally. Because they sold their brains for a box of Cracker Jacks! Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. Thanks Jeff — great post!

On The Fence Voters

Unity, huh? I have to admit; I thought President Biden might get at least a few weeks of relative respect from the media as well as Republican politicians. Boy, was I wrong.

I also was hoping the far-left might cut the new president some slack too. You know, maybe see what’s actually in the proposed $1.9 trillion Covid relief bill before criticizing it profusely? Wrong, again.

I wrote several months ago in this space that I thought Biden was the best man to try and unify the country. I still feel that way. But I also acknowledged that I knew it wasn’t going to be easy. Frankly, I expected the Republicans to come at him with fierce resistance to everything he tries to do. And, true to form, a myriad of catcalls and complaints already are infecting the airwaves and internet. Here are just a few:

“How are all these…

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The 46th!

Jeff speaks for me, and millions of others, when he recounts his feelings of today’s events. Finally … we can go to bed at night knowing the nation is in good hands, and wake in the morning without immediately grabbing our phone to see the latest ‘breaking news’. Thank you, Jeff, for sharing your thoughts and feelings … they echo my own. And now, you and I have a project to talk about, yes?

On The Fence Voters

We did it, folks. He’s gone for good. On November 3, 2020, over 81 million of us told the 45th President of the United States to get the hell out of our house. Today, we welcome the 46th President of the United States, Joseph R. Biden Jr.

On the drive home today from my walk with our beloved four-legged buddies, I heard the beautiful voice of Lady Gaga singing our National Anthem emanating from my car radio. I couldn’t hold back anymore. The tears started to flow like a spring waterfall in Oregon. It’s as if a massive weight, an albatross if you will, began to leave my body all at once.

The gravity of the moment will live with me for the rest of my life. I felt similar emotions when the election was formerly called for Biden. But this was different. So much has happened since…

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