December 17, 2004

Tough Choices?

In a recent article on MSNBC, Which way ahead for Democrats?, several key issues were raised.

1. The War in Iraq, should Democrats call for the withdrawl of U.S. Troops?

2. The Bush Supreme Court Nominees, should Democrats filibuster?

3. Social Security, what should Democrats do?

My responses:

1. We should call for the Internationalization of Iraq following elections, including equal business contracts for troop involvement.

2. We should filibuster the hell out of them. President's come and go, but the Supreme Court is for life.

3. We should point out the real costs of privatized Social Security at every point. We should call for realistic accounting practices for the U.S. Government now, while we are not in control. Let America see the real budget shortfalls, let them see the real costs of Social Security.

December 14, 2004

The Party of "No" or "Know"

To my way of thinking, the Democratic party has sat back long enough and responded No. The time has come for Democrats to lead, in the way that only they can. We must leave behind the politics of confrontation, we must leave behind the politics of the antagonist, even when our numbers have reached their nadir. America has long been the land of hard-work, ingenuity, and common sense solutions. This is the well from which we must draw. Who better represents these American values than Democrats?

We must become the party of Know. We must show a better way by leading.

Can politics be avoided if both sides don't show up to play? Can we avoid the pettiness of politics by simply rising above? Can we talk directly to the American people? Is it possible to ridicule the policies of the Republican leadership while remaining cordial with our neighbors who are Republicans?

Many Americans want Statesmen to reappear in America, is there any way that the Democratic Party can become the party of Statesmen and not the party of special interests and polls? The party of America?

December 10, 2004

Republican Mouthpiece Disses Private Social Security

Joe Scarborough , a former Republican Congressman and now MSNBC host, has written a wonderful blog entry on the privitization of Social Security. It is something every young person should have to read.

December 08, 2004

County Issues

Feel free to post any local (county, city) issues that might help inform others.

State-wide Issues

This is an open post to discuss any state-wide issues that might come up.

December 06, 2004


Greetings to any and all new CountryCrat readers.

I did not realize that you had to log-in to post comments. You are welcome to post anonymously with your name and/or email in the message. Or, you can go through the several minute set-up that is required.

Hope to hear from you soon.

December 05, 2004

Letter to the Editor - Fight for Life

An Open Letter to Republicans:

For the last four years we have had a Republican Senate, House, and President. The party of "Life" has controlled our country for four years. I challenge you now to live up to that motto. Since 1993 the Infant Mortality rate in the United States had steadily declined, throughout the Clinton years. Since Republicans have gained control, that number has begun to rise again. That number represents living infants versus dead infants and it is rising. The United States ranks 40th in the world in Infant Mortality. That means 39 other countries do a better job of keeping infants alive than we do - that is a crime against innocents. So, I challenge you to truly be the party of Life and not just the "pro-Birth" party that many believe you to be.

Pro-Life vs. Pro-Birth

The other day, someone at the DNC Blog posted an interesting point about who is truly pro-life and who is pro-birth. This relates back to the child health post I made earlier. Republicans should be categorized by Democrats as pro-birth, their only concern is about abortion. Democrats are truly the party of pro-life because we care about the entire life of a child.

Who wants to improve healthcare for children? Democrats.

Who wants to improve pre-K programs for children? Democrats.

Who wants to focus on abortion and discard the lives once they are born? Republicans.

Who wants tax cuts for the rich while our infant mortality rate drifts higher? Republicans.

Who wants welfare for corporations while children go hungry and malnourished in our own country? Republicans.

We are clearly the party of life, while Republicans can only claim to be the party of birth.

December 03, 2004

NC Goes Blue - 2006

Governor - Democratic Party

Lt. Governor - Democratic Party

Attorney General, Secretary of State, Treasurer, - Democratic Party

State Senate - 29 Dem vs 21 Rep (from 27 to 23)

State House - 63 Dem vs 57 Rep (from 58 to 62)

County Commisions - 57 Dem to 43 Rep

I predict and would love to see, the U.S. House seats go from 6 Dem and 7 Rep to 7 Dem and 6 Rep with the removal of Virginia Foxx and Dems retaining every other seat. Ultimately, it would be nice to remove Elizabeth Dole in 2006 as well, but that is not as likely.

That would put NC in a good position to go Blue in 2008.

Learned Behavior

I just finished raking up a big pile of pine needles (Southern leaves). After I had a nice big stack I called my son over and told him his leaf pile was ready. He is three and this is his first Fall to remember. So, he jumped on top of the "leaves" and just kind of sat there. I went on with my other business and next I knew he was jumping in the leaves, tossing them in the air, and his bike is now covered in a leaf igloo.

Playing in leaves is NOT a learned behavior, it is something kids just know.

November 26, 2004

Death Penalty

How do CountryCrats feel about the death penalty? I think many people have reservations about the Death Penalty, even if they support it. My personal opinion is that only the ultimate crimes would ever deserve the ultimate penalty. I believe the issue is a state's issue, however, I think there should be a Federal moratorium for one year so that all cases can be reviewed. Why? Because about 120 prisoners on death row have been released. That means 120 innocent or not guilty individuals were once destined to be killed.

Texas appears to be the worst of the worst with public defenders that SLEPT through the trials. As a father, I can't imagine explaining to my children why I would support killing someone who MIGHT be innocent.

What are your opinions?

November 24, 2004

Children's Health

This is an issue that I think Democrats need to push to the forefront. Republicans do nothing to improve the circumstances of children. Children are innocent, they are born into a family with no choice. They are not lazy or corrupt or criminals, they are little babies just like ours. They deserve our support and the support of our nation. Yet, here are the simple facts:

Infant Mortality - U.S. ranks 40th in the world, behind such super powers as France, Spain, Germany, Portugal, Hong Kong, Luxenbourg, Sweden, and the Czech Republic.

Uninsured Infants - There are between 8 and 9 million uninsured infants in this country.

Immunizations - Somewhere around 80% of our children are immunized against preventable diseases, with that percentage being as low as 55% in some areas.

Children in Poverty - Rose from 15.8 percent in 2001 to 16.3 percent in 2002. This increase followed a period of decline from a recent peak of 22.0 percent in 1993, it declined during the Clinton years and now increases under Bush.

Children are not a priority in the United States right now, wealth is. We need to change that.

November 23, 2004


Republicans say Democrats are weak on Law & Order Issues. We need to respond with a strong plan that represents our beliefs. I believe one aspect of Law & Order that is often ignored is prison. Prisons have three purposes - deterrent, punishment, and reform. What plan do Democrats offer to deter others, to punish crime, and to reduce recidivism?

I believe there are several avenues that should be approached.

1. Deterrent and Punishment. Today's prisons offer little in the way of a deterrent. We must make the entry into prison life uncomfortable and hard if we wish it to become a deterrent. At the same time, I feel very strongly that no human deserves to be raped or tortured in prison. One major tactic for accomplishing this would be the transformation of all prisons into working prisons. This should include the transformation of all rural prisons into working farms. In Great Britian, agricultural prison farms have been converted into horticultural farms. The main idea being that prisoners with skills in horticulture are more apt to find work than prisoners skilled in milking cows. Farming is hard work that can't be described as cruel and unusual punishment. Prisoners should get up at 4am, eat breakfast and head out to work. Work until dusk, then back into the prisons for cleanup and dinner.

2. Reform. All prisoners must perform physical labor for the first one-half of their minimum sentence. The next one to two years of the inmates sentence should be focused on gaining a high-school diploma. In state prisons, 79% of inmates are dropouts, while in federal prisons 59% of inmates have no diploma. Whether this is causative or not is up for argument, but learning to read, add, and do basic class work couldn't hurt when an inmate is released.

3. Reform. The remainder of the sentence could then be served in a community release program working to learn a trade. This could include day-release programs, halfway houses, or house-confinements for the prisoner. We must put inmates back into society with the tools to succeed. It is cheaper to train them than it is to imprison them.