Monday, November 10, 2008


Also considered in Senator Ben Nelson of Florida. A Republican as much as Senator Lieberman is. Majority Leader Senator Weak Kneed Harry Reid needs some starch. Give him some at 202-224-3542(DC #) and or 775-686-5750(Reno #) and or 775-882-7343(Carson City #) and or 702-388-5020 (Las Vegas #). Calling local offices works too. It makes an impression on his staff that should not be undervalued. This Chair is too important to give to a War Hawk like Senator Nelson or Boxer.

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Saturday, November 08, 2008


"New Hampshire’s State Senate is now unlike any in the country and unlike any before it. After Tuesday’s election, women now make up the majority of the New Hampshire State Senate. In an election year that saw Hillary Clinton, Sarah Palin, and Nancy Pelosi grab headlines and airtime across the country, New Hampshire didn’t just vote blue, it voted for women.

In addition to voting in a new state senate with a female majority, New Hampshire voted for the only female candidate in the primary, Hillary Clinton, and voted for the first New Hampshire woman, Jeanne Shaheen, to go to the US Senate.

Previously ten women held senate seats out of twenty-four in Concord, but now they hold thirteen. New Hampshire also made news in Washington where there are now seventeen women for the first time in the United States Senate because of Jeanne Shaheen’s win. To show the contrast, both United States Senate and House of Representatives are 17% female.

It looks like those millions of cracks in the glass ceiling are spreading." Original Source.

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Wednesday, November 05, 2008


What a day! I went to the local Obama office and volunteered. I'm so happy I did. Not only did we get people to the polls but I met some wonderful people. The most outstanding was Mary, who ran the office. Without Mary the office would not have been open and the dozen or so volunteers who showed up would of found a closed door.

When I entered the office I found Mary working feverishly. She immediatley put me to work on the phones. Not long after that another volunteer showed up. "I just can't sit at home today" she said. Minutes later she joined me in making calls. A man from Maryland came in and said, "What can I do to help"? He was given a canvas package and sent out. Two young female voters showed up and they were sent to canvas too. A bit after them two more people showed up and were sent out to canvas. Another lady came in and brought a whole rack of sandwiches from Quiznos. Yum! After the man from Hagerstown came back from canvasing he gave a lady a ride to the polls who came in to the office. The young Private who I was to give a ride to never showed. I sure hope he got to vote!

And talk about lines! There was a hour and half wait at one of the polls in our little town. Usually there is at most a 5 minute wait. At my own poll station over 500 voted. I know that because when my wife showed up after work to vote she was number 500. The election judge told me he had been doing this for 30 plus years and had never seen such a turnout. I heard that Florida had a 85% turnout. It's like we live in a Democracy or something.

After picking up Lil Joe, he and I went and leafleted at the Town Hall poll station.
With night falling and Lil Joe losing patience I had to call it quits. I was feeling good and confident. However I know how dirty the Racketeers are. Would they steal and block enough votes to "win" again? I wasn't sure.

Even in our Little Town, Republicans used a dirty tactic that was never used before. We are allowed to work the polls at 10" or more. And both sides do. However no one ever posted signs at the polling station. I voted at the local Ambulance Squad. And I found the poll station covered in McCain signs. I asked the Judge about it and he said as long as it was beyond 10'. Later when I was working at the Obama office, we had people coming in all worked up over the signs. One Gentleman who was 87 years old was justa fuming. He had been voting all his life here and never had he seen them post signs like that. The McCain signs btw were all new. Obviously they had a bunch left at their campaign office. We didn't have any. All had been taken by Obama supporters. Well we answered the call. Mary went and got her 3 signs from her home. Others brought theirs in. I went and asked a neighbor if I could have hers. We went and posted our signs too! Some people said, "Let's not lower ourselves to their standard". However some people were showing up at the polls and upon seeing the signs thought, "Is this where the MCain people vote". This info was reported by poll workers. Yes, some people need alot of help!

After meeting up with my wife at the polling station we went to one of our favorite places to eat. I didn't want to go home. Ya see we don't have tv or the 'net at home and I was justa itching to hear any news.

My good friend Roundearther came through. He 1st called me a bit after 8pm. The news was good, with Obama leading in Florida and some other battleground states. He gave me another call later. McCain was catching up in some areas. After yapping for a while I told him I had to go, but call me when The Result was in.

I slept out in the living room with the phone by my head. At midnight Roundearther called me. OBAMA had won. He put the phone up near the speaker and I got to hear President-Elect Obama's Acceptance Speech! And what a speech it was! A Gentleman he is through and through. Such Graciousness. It brought me to tears. What a long way we have come! And we are to have an Adult leading us!

No, though the Nightmare has ended, we are just rising up. The Damage the Bush Regime has inflicted on us all will take years to repair. Yet I have confidence that we can Overcome. Just look at what We did on Election Day!

YES WE DID! Can we regain Our lost Reputation? YES WE CAN! Can We free the Ship of State from the rocks? YES WE CAN! Can we forge a more Progressive Society one with the most even Playing Field we ever imagined? YES WE CAN!

Lastly I want to thank all who put forward any effort into the Obama/Biden campaign. Thanks to all of you, we Won. Thank you to all the Sen. Hillary Clinton supporters who came and helped. Thank you to all who just dropped by the Obama office across the country and brought cookies, donuts, casseroles,sandwiches and words of encouragement. Thank you to all who voted. Yes, even the McCain voters. I have no doubt that many of you voted your heart and were not driven by Racism or other Vileness. Thank you for particpating in this Great Experiment.

But most of all I'd like to thank Mary. Mary who ran the local Obama office. Mary who has had 3 surgeries this year due to cancer. Mary whose own daughter has cancer. Mary who was in the hospital just a few weeks ago with Pneumonia. Mary, who could of stayed home and instead chose to put forth a Supreme effort. Mary who has a Heart of Gold.
Mary, thank you so much.


The Line at Church of the Apostles

President - Elect Obama's Acceptance Speech in 3 Parts

Peace. It's possible. Don't let anybody tell you any different.

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Tuesday, November 04, 2008


Early this morning my wife tried to vote. The wait in the long line would of made her late for work. And we live in a small South Central Pennsylvanian town! She will return after she finishes work. I found 6 people before me when I showed up. The couple before me were turned away. They checked the "UPDATE VOTER REGISTRATION" box at the PENNDOT site. Unfortunately they were not registered to vote before that. The Election Judge called around and he had to turn them away. They were offered a registration form to vote in the next election and they took advantage of that. Most, like these two are on a 1st name basis with the election workers. Sad to see people turned away. I don't know who they were going to vote for. Boy oh Boy did I want to ask though! It seemed improper to do so.

I was the 82nd voter and more people were driving up as I left. Speaking of driving, I'm to report to the local Obama office at 10:30. I'm to drive a 20yr old Private in the U.S. Army to his polling station in another neigboring town. I'm blogging from the libray now. I'll try to be back on around 3pm. The library is getting repeated calls from people who don't know where to vote. So, the phone calls to Dems that I will be making today to get out the vote may serve to inform some people on where to vote. If you are thinking of pitching in to day, GIT GOING! Just by making a few calls you can make a bigger difference than maybe you think.

For an inspiring story from an early voter you can go here - "I Voted Early in Cleveland Ohio...and here's my story".

And here's a repost from the Primary -
"The Best Get Out And Vote Message I Ever Read"

By Dante Zappala

On April 26th, 2004, a day before the local primary elections, Sgt. Sherwood Baker was killed in Iraq. He was a member of the Pennsylvania Army National Guard. He was my brother.

Sherwood’s death brought the war home to his entire extended network of family and friends. None of us thought this powerful strong man could fall. We were wrong. The day after my brother died, amidst the disbelief and the sorrow, my mother went to our local polling station and cast her vote. Some may have told her it was futile or seen it as meaningless. After all, it was merely a primary. Sherwood, however, would have expected nothing less. He knew the definition of citizenship.

I’ve got hundreds of pictures of my brother. I can stare at them for hours. Maybe it’s mental torture, maybe it’s just part of the process, but I’m looking at the inflection of every smile, the direction of the creases on his face. I’m looking at every pixel for a hint about how this came to pass.

I’ve found a lot. We shared happiness on his 30th birthday three years ago. We shared pride and lots of tears when we were at Fort Dix before he shipped off.

His face is stern and unwavering in those pictures from Dix. Sherwood wasn’t bitter about being deployed.

He had reservations; people in their right minds don’t want to go to war, especially when they have a family. But he had made an oath before God to serve and he took that seriously. He was truthful and, above all, hopeful—a patriot in the truest sense.

The day Sherwood shipped off to Iraq, I knew that for our family, life was forever changed. In all I’ve done since that day, I’ve tried to maintain his sense of truth and hope. And since his death, I’ve started listening. I’ve learned that the way we talk to each other is as important as what we talk about. I believe the war has, in fact, affected almost every American family, only many have no idea how.

We all go to bed with the full support of our troops in mind and their safety in our prayers. But debates rage around dinner tables and in living rooms across the country. The righteousness of our opinions has created so much anger between us. We’re red in the face proving each other wrong. I’ve traveled the country, I’ve been in dialogue with all sorts of folks—activists, military families, politicians, people on the street. I feel a kinship, even with my supposed enemies, because we have all made the same choice to participate in this democracy.

We have watched together as some of our most spirited citizens, living otherwise humble lives in America, have been called to war. We’ve watched together as their lives are stolen away.

It is not my intention to tell you who to vote for.

We have all been victims of the usual fear mongering, spin and half truths that accompany the campaign season. I understand the propensity to want to shut it down. Television ads are either mindless or infuriating. Candidates are eager to push buttons, so we build walls. ‘They deserve each other,’ we might tell ourselves. ‘Why should I vote anyway?’

Letting apathy take hold, however, will only spell defeat. We will not be defeated by one party or the other, but by an ideology of hopelessness. But of even more importance, staying on the sidelines betrays the nobility of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice.

Believe what you will about the war in Iraq -- about the pretext, the current situation and the solutions. However, understand that every Soldier and every Marine who has died in Iraq did so under the banner of our democracy. ‘Support our troops’ means get out and vote. While we may indulge in our cynicism as we debate particular points of withdrawal strategies, fine men and women who love their country are being disenfranchised by death.

And we have the luxury of walking to the polls and casting a vote. Be it a vote of conscience, a vote of passion or a vote of frustration, by God, we can vote.

Do your duty as citizens. Go to the polls. Pull the lever with an open heart. And carry with you the promises of the young men and women who can no longer do it themselves.

Dante Zappala, brother of Sgt Sherwood Baker, KIA 4/26/04, is a member of Military Families Speak Out

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Monday, November 03, 2008


If you have never read Studs Terkel, you're missing out on the wit and wisdom of an American Icon. His Great Depression book "Hard Times" is my favorite.

Here is an article on Studs Terkel by Lee Cohen - Remembering Studs Terkel.

Here is a recent interview by Edward Lifson with Studs Terkel - "Studs for Obama".

One of Studs Terkels best quotes - "When the Armada sank, you read that King Philip wept. Were there no other tears? And that's what I believe oral history is about. It's about those who shed those other tears, who on rare occasions of triumph laugh that other laugh."

Other Studs Terkel quotes can be found here.
Books by Studs Terkel -
"Giants of Jazz" (1957)
"Division Street: America" (1967)
"Hard Times" (1970)
"Working: People Talk About What They Do All Day and How They Feel About What They Do" (1974)
"Talking to Myself: A Memoir of My Times" (1977)
"American Dreams: Lost and Found" (1983)
"The Good War" (1984)
"Chicago" (1986)
"The Great Divide: Second Thoughts on the American Dream" (1988)
"Race: What Blacks and Whites Think and Feel About the American Obsession" (1992)
"Coming of Age: The Story of Our Century by Those Who've Lived it" (1955)
"My American Century" (1997)
"The Spectator: Talk About Movies and Plays With Those Who Make Them" (1999)
"Will the Circle Be Unbroken: Reflections on Death, Rebirth and Hunger for a Faith" (2001)
"Hope Dies Last: Keeping the Faith in Difficult Times" (2003)
"And They All Sang: Adventures of an Eclectic Disc Jockey" (2005)
"Touch and Go" (2007)
And his last -
"P.S.: Further Thoughts from a Lifetime of Listening" (2008 ) Available at Amazon.

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