Sunday, March 25, 2007

The Democratic Presidential Candidates Discuss Universal Healthcare

CNN's take.

The Post's take.

It disturbs me to see the discussion center about Universal Healthcare center around taxes.

Yes, we might have to raise taxes to enact Universal Healthcare. But every major industrialized nation but us has UHC. And they pay much, much less for healthcare than we do and have better results. In Europe and Asia, they pay about a fourth to a third of what we pay for healthcare and get better results. So while we might end up paying higher taxes, we won't have to pay health insurance premiums anymore.

Our Sad State of Affairs

Right now the United States Government is torturing people, spying on its citizens, and detaining people indefinitely without pressing charges or allowing representation by an attorney. Right now the President of the United States is contending that Congress has no oversite powers over the Executive branch. Recently, evidence has been revealed that indicating that the president's top aides, and maybe the president himself, plotted to press phony criminal charges against the opposition party.

Does this sound like an advanced, modern democracy to you?

Kudos to the House Democrats

The bill they passed forces Bush to either accept time limits for his debacle in Iraq or cut off funding.

Smart Move Democrats!

Watergate 2.0

The right-wing has successfully succeeded in diverting the media from the real issue raised by the firing of 8 U.S. Attorneys. Much of the discussion has centered around Bush's right to fire these U.S. Attorneys or on the ensuing cover-up (which is newsworthy in and of itself). It is clear that Bush had the right to fire them. Its also clear and newsworthy that the Attorney General and other high ranking Justice Department officials have been caught lying to Congress about this matter.

But the real issue concerns the reasons these U.S. Attorney's were fired in the first place: because they either refused to file trumped up charges against Democratic Congressional or, in the case of Carole Lam, were about to investigate the relationship between Duke Cunningham's bribers and the Vice President of the United States.

We can't lose sight of these facts, they are the real key to this scandal.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Are We Going to Get a State-Wide Smoking Ban?

The issue goes to the full Senate.

Governor O'Malley Makes a Gutsy Call

A good one too.

Thats the kind of decisive and wise leadership Maryland needs.

The Dots are Connecting

Fired San Diego U.S. attorney Carol Lam notified the Justice Department that she intended to execute search warrants on a high-ranking CIA official as part of a corruption probe the day before a Justice Department official sent an e-mail that said Lam needed to be fired, U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein said Sunday.

The whole article is here.

Read Up On the Subprime Scandal

Its very bad news for the economy and the average American.

Get ready for the right-wing noise machine to blame it on too much regulation, when just the opposite is true.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Sen. Clinton Shows Some Leadership

The mortgage market is going to be the savings and loan crisis of the 2000s. Its time that our political leaders take note, and action.

I'm glad to see Sen. Clinton is on top of this issue.

Bush is at 31% Approval in Newsweek Poll

What's the deal with those 31%?

An Ominous Development

Terrorists using chlorine gas bombs in Iraq.

Of course the use of chlorine gas was outlawed by the Geneva Conventions. Too bad the Bush Administration has abandoned the Geneva Conventions.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

The Showdown

It has become clear that the Bush Administration pressured U.S. Attorneys to file bogus charges against Democratic Candidates in an attempt to influence last year's Congressional Elections. The Bush Administration then purged those U.S. Attorney's who would not go along with this illegal endeavor or who were pursuing investigations or prosecutions of leading Republicans. (58% of Americans believe that the firings were politically motivated). If that was not bad enough, its clear that our Attorney General lied to Congress about this matter. Its also quite clear that the Administration has been lying to Congress and the American People about this matter.

The Democrats are demanding answers. The answers will clearly embarrass Bush and maybe even implicate him in a crime.

Will the Whitehouse comply with the document requests? Will they disobey a subpoena?

If so what then?

As I have been saying for a while, we are in Watergate territory here.

We are going to start seeing more and more of this.

Anti-War Demonstrations.

If its a Good Idea

You can bet the Whitehouse will oppose it.

Isn't it ironic. The Whitehouse claims to be protecting the Constitution.

Another Bush Administration Lie Exposed

Valarie Plame was a covert operative.

And the Bush Administration was willing to sacrifice a national security assert in order to retaliate against a whistleblower.

They risked our national security in an attempt to cover up their lies that got us into the debacle in Iraq.

What other President has screwed up as bad as this one?

Friday, March 16, 2007

The Return of Senator Macaca?

Good news for Democrats.

Please Feel Free to Send

Me any announcements that you would like to have posted on fineline. I won't post any announcements for fund raisers or for any organizations that I have a beef with (the NRA or GOP need not apply).

Just send your announcement to

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

This Would Not Have Happened With A Republican Congress

An Open Government bill passes the House.

Watergate PArt Deux

Well it looks like the President is digging his heels in. He claims he stands behind Gonzalez.

Meanwhile the Dragnet tightens.

Exhibit 1. Former Republican Senator implicates Rove.

Turn to Josh Marshall for the latest. His blog broke this story wide open.

Maryland's Deficit

I know one way to help solve it.

In 2003 Bush Fired a Prosecutor Who Began an Investigation of Jack Abramoff


Another Failure of Right-Wing Economics

Leaving financial markets to self-regulate does not work.

Exhibit 20,000.

It Only Took Three Years

And a Democratic Congress to enact the 9/11 Commission's recommendations.

Western Howard County Democratic Club

The West HoCo Dem. Club meeting is Tuesday, March 20th p.m. at the Howard County Conservancy, 10520 Old Frederick Rd., Woodstock, Md. 21163.

The guest speaker is John Wills, two term Secretary of State in the Glendenning administration. He will talk about working for Democratic principals in an area that is predominately Republican.

For more information call Clyde or Romayne at 301.854.6507 or email at

Monday, March 12, 2007

The Columbia Democratic Club

As previously announced, the March Columbia Democratic Club membership meeting will be held this coming Wednesday, March 14, at Jeffers Hill Neighborhood Center, 6030 Tamar Drive in Columbia. A half-hour informal social gathering with refreshments will begin at 7:00 PM., followed by a brief membership business meeting, which will include reports on the CDC PAC and 2007 budget, the CDC legislative agenda, the May CDC elections, and other CDC activities. The social gathering is intended to provide an opportunity for members and guests to greet each other, and to provide announcements of interest.

Beginning at 8:00 p.m., the CDC March Program will include guest speakers Wylene Burch, Rhonda Jones, and Herman Charity. A little background on each speaker is provided below. Since the CDC February meeting was cancelled due to inclement weather, the important theme for the February program, which was in recognition of Dr. Martin Luther King and the Civil Rights Movement in Howard County, carries over to this month. Please come and learn about the Howard County Civil Rights Movement. I am sure the presentations will be of interest and provide greater awareness of what many had to endure during those trying times, which in some respects regrettably continue.

Wylene Burch, founder and curator of the Howard County Center of African-American Culture. The Center, which is located on Vantage Point Road in Columbia, is an educational resource that promotes greater awareness of African American history in Howard County. The collection consists of artifacts, murals, recordings of spirituals-jazz-rap, a library of over 2,000 books on the Black experience, an African American stamp collection, and memorabilia depicting images of African Americans over the last 200 years.
Rhonda Jones is a representative of the Howard County Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) For nearly 60 years, this branch has been in the forefront of civil rights activities.
Herman Charity was first black Howard County Police Officer retiring in 1998 after 30 years of service at the rank of Lieutenant. Was executive assistant to former Howard County Administrator Jim Robey.

Tell them fineline sent you.

Has Anyone Else Noticed?

That the two Republicans who are the front runners for the Presidential nomination are not far right wingers? All the wingers trail?

What does that tell us?

Maybe the electorate isn't as conservative as it once was?

Another Actor Who Wants to Play President?

Fred Thompson is considering running for President.

I remember the last time the American People made the mistake of hiring an Actor to play President. That didn't work out too well.

Is this a sequel or a remake?

Andrea Mitchell: Most Americans Are In Favor of Pardoning Scooter Libby

Reality: Only 18% of Americans favor pardoning Scooter Libby.

There goes the Mainsteam Media with their obvious liberal bias again.

Giuliani Widens Lead over McCain

According to one poll at least.

Are the Republicans going to nominate a candidate who had to abort his last campaign (For N.Y. Senate) under a cloud of scandal? Remember who ended up winning that race?

Just one of the skeletons in the Mayor's closet: Bernie Kerik.


This could get very interesting. Sen. Schumer wants Karl Rove to testify about his role in the firings.

It looks like Rove was involved. I think getting him under oath to testify is a good idea.

This might just be the scandal that brings Bush down.


Thursday, March 08, 2007

Sad News

There is a very sad story in the Sun.

As the article shows and as lots of people will tell you, Dr. Leffler was a very good man. Usually, these sad stories in the newspapers are about strangers. This one wasn't. Dr. Leffler was my son's Dr. Thats true of a lot of children in HoCo (and many adults in HoCo are his former patients).

We moved from pediatrician to pediatrician before we could find a Dr. who was truly able and willing to care for my severely autistic son. Dr. Leffler's practice was the one practice were we felt that our son was truly welcome. My son frequently presented Dr. Leffler, his partners and his staff with difficult challenges. Yet Dr. Leffler always went the extra mile for my son. The last time I spoke with Dr. Leffler, he made it clear that my son was welcome to stay on as his patient into adulthood for a long as we wished. That comment was very comforting to me. I (and my family) have always been very grateful for Dr. Leffler's patience and understanding.

I am sorry I never told him that.

Right Now

Most Polls have Senator Clinton winning the Democratic Nomination and Rudy G. winning the Republican nomination. Although I think Rudy would have the best chance of winning among the Republicans, I think he would have a rough time against the Senator. First, I think Rudy G's nomination would help the Republicans among independents, but his liberal social stances and his past personal life will hurt turnout among Christian Conservatives. Moreover, in New York, Senator Clinton is way more popular than Rudy G. this is import for a number of reasons. First, its shows that when voters get to really know both candidates, they will choose the Senator. Second, it means Rudy G. will lose one of his advantages, being a favorite sun in the second biggest state. and Third, New York is a very blue state.

But the bottom line is that its still pretty early and each front runner still faces major challenges ahead, just to get their respective nominations.

And did I mention that Sen. Chuck Hagel is going to throw his hat in the ring?


Or the HoCo police might taser you.

Bi-Partisan Outrage

Both Democrats and some Republicans are outraged by the effort to pressure Federal prosecutors to bring trumped up charges against Democratic Candidates.

You know a scandal has legs when both parties are outraged.

So far the outrage is directed at Attorney General Gonzalez. But there are some indications that the Whitehouse was involved.

They Must Have Been Reading Fineline

The House Dems have a plan to get us out of Iraq.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

If Bush was Involved...

In the firings of U.S. Attorneys who refused to prosecute Democrats for purely political purposes on trumped up charges, then we are in Watergate Territory.

For those of you who are too young to remember, Nixon resigned because Congress (both Democrats and Republicans) were going to impeach him for a) obstructing an investigation into a burglary of the Democratic National HQ, and b) using federal law enforcement to harass his (perceived) personal and political enemies (like Joe Namath).

If he's involved, its clearly an impeachable matter. So check out this paragrpah from the Posts report:
In remarks after the hearings, McKay said that officials in the White House counsel's office, including then-counsel Harriet E. Miers, asked him to explain why he had "mishandled" the governor's race during an interview for a federal judgeship in September 2006. McKay was informed after his dismissal that he also was not a finalist for the federal bench
(emphasis supplied). If the "Bestest Whitehouse Counsel Ever" was involved, there is a good chance that the "Bestest President Ever" was too.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Ann Coulter is a Sleezy, Nasty, Vile Scumbag! And Rush Limbaugh is Jealous !

There's a (disappointingly small) backlash against Eva Coulter, but relative silence on Rush's latest bigoted remark.

Rush is an evil and pitiful excuse for a human being. Media matters has Exhibit No. 200,000:
On the March 2 broadcast of his nationally syndicated radio show, host Rush Limbaugh stated that "since [Sen. Barack] Obama [D-IL] has -- on his mother's side -- forebears of his mother had slaves, could we not say that if Obama wins the Democratic nomination and then wins the presidency, he will own [Rev.] Al Sharpton?
Where is the outrage?

The HRC has declared war on septic Annie.

Let the Betting Begin

How many days until the Pardon?

And why is Scooter the only one who got prosecuted?

Is this the end of the story?

Here's what the Democratic Front runners had to say.

Another Major Republican Scandal

It seems those (Republican) U.S. Attorneys who got fired, got fired because they wouldn't prosecute Democrats on trumped up charges.

This is worse than Watergate. Only then we had a real press core.

Josh Marshall has been all over this story and doing a great job.

And the House Democrats deserve credit too, for holding these hearings. Then again, they are only doing their job under the Constitution. Its been a while since Congress actually conducted some oversight

I'm Losing Confidence in the House Democratic Leadership

What have they done, since the first 100 hours? They are just playing into the Republican narrative of them: cowardly and without ideas. They have to confront Bush on Iraq: both for the Nation's sake and for the future of the Democratic Party.

Its clear the American people want out of Iraq. Is the Democratic Leadership listening?

How come only the "crazy" liberals get it?

Don't Miss The CDC's Program on the Civil Rights Movement in Howard County

The February Columbia Democratic Club meeting program on the Civil Rights Movement in Howard County, which was not held due to inclement weather, will be carried over to the CDC Wednesday, March 14 meeting. The March 14 meeting will begin at 7:00 p.m., and will commence with a member/guest social and short business meeting, followed by the program, which will end by 9:00 p.m. More details to be announced soon. Please mark your calendars and plan to join us at Jeffers Hill Neighborhood Center, for this interesting and insightful program to learn more about the civil rights movement in Howard County.

It might be even more romantic than it would have been on Valentines Day.

Its guaranteed to be warmer.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Ehrlich Administration Corruption Revealed

I was going to write about this. But then Hayduke beat me to it. Arrrh!

Unlike Hayduke, I am of the opinion that this is a smoking gun. This is the way its usually done. The Democrats do it too sometimes. In recent times, the Republicans haven't even tried to hide it. And the Republicans have been smart enough to make sure a lot of the loot ends up in their party's coffers.

So What?

Why is this important enough to get on the front page of the Sun? Why does it matter?

Why not an in depth article on Sen. Obama's plans for Iraq, or healthcare, or global warming, or campaign finance reform or whether he might be the real father of Anna Nicole Smith's little girl?

What does the fact that one of his ancestors owned slaves tell us about Sen. Obama? The same thing is true for countless Americans, both black and white.

The Time Is Now for Universal Healthcare

Americans want Universal healthcare and Americans are willing to pay higher taxes for it.

Americans spend three to four times per citizen as much as Europeans do for health care and yet are far less healthy. Our medical procedures have worse outcomes and Many Americans go without healthcare. Meanwhile, American businesses (and American taxpayers) are left with huge healthcare bills. That hurts their global competitiveness. The huge number of Americans without regular healthcare poses a public safety threat: think about how it might play out in a fast moving epidemic. Doctors make less money because of the present situation.

No one really gains from this sorry state of affairs but the insurance and pharmaceutical industrys.

Even though Universal Healthcare has broad public support among the American people and is hurting us economically and shortening our lives, it does not seem to be a priority in Washington. There is little or no chance that we will get Universal Healthcare soon.

We are all prisoners of these narrow special interests.

Its like Iraq. The American people want out of Iraq too. But the powers that be in Washington are not listening to the American People.

Whose county is it?