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Archive for Saturday, March 16, 2013

Letter: Central power

March 16, 2013

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To the editor:

An elected governor who wishes to gather all of the political power of the state unto himself backs up his executive powers with control of the legislative and judicial (including appeals process) by whatever means needed, including intimidation of members of his own party. The outstanding historical example of this was the late Huey P. Long known as the “Kingfish” in the state of Louisiana and noted by the president as one of the two most dangerous men in America in the 1930s.

There is surely little doubt now that Sam Brownback has made rapid progress toward gathering all the political power of the state of Kansas unto himself and, like Huey P. Long, has picked a fight with the federal courts. Kansans will now pay millions in legal fees to refight a battle lost long ago in 1865 at the close of our Civil War.

It should shame all Kansans that see it happening and do nothing and say nothing.

Comments

tange 1 year, 1 month ago

In response to the mindset which poses the challenge: "Name a democratically controlled institution that has turned a profit" (—and more broadly )...

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Gotland 1 year, 1 month ago

Liberals complaining about centralized power? LOL that is rich.

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Brock Masters 1 year, 1 month ago

One of the core principles of the conservative platform is not to raise taxes but that is exactly what Brownback and this legislature is doing.

The Senate voted not to let the sales tax temporary higher rate to expire which is a tax increase and they are preparing to remove itemized deductions which will increase taxes.

They will defend their actions saying but we are going to do away with state income tax? Really? If it does happen and that is a big if it won't happen until 2017. So taxes will be increased for years before they are brought back to current levels?

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Les Blevins 1 year, 1 month ago

Joe do you see that intelligent and fair minded fury in anything the Journal World is writing? I don't.

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Joe Hyde 1 year, 1 month ago

Mr. Hickam, there are many Journal-World readers who agree with your evaluation of Governor Brownback. Just speaking for myself here, there've been many times in recent months when I was in despair over what, to me, seemed like a near-complete absence of comprehension on the public's part about the threat to democracy posed by Governor Brownback and "conservative" (radical) Republicans, due to their autocratic governing method that is so cold-bloodedly calculated to benefit the wealthy disproportionately.

But on your letter's last point, I respectfully disagree. Not because you're wrong, but because you may be unaware of the groundswell of public disapproval, anger, even open hostility toward conservative Republicans over the damage they are doing, and planning to do, to middle and lower income Kansans.

A useful barometer by which you may confirm this widespread disapproval of conservative Republican policies is to read some of the newspaper editorials being published across the state. (See Kansas Representative Paul Davis' Facebook page, for convenient access to these statewide editorials.)

Newspaper editors and publishers in Kansas are, in most cases, Republicans, true enough. And above all else they are intelligent, fair-minded thinkers. It therefore may surprise you to learn that they are voicing dismay and anger not just at the aims but also the reckless, ruthless lawmaking tactics employed by conservative Republican legislators and Gov. Brownback.

Newspaper editors and publishers do not rise to their positions without a solid grasp of national and world history. Thus when editors and publishers across Kansas lock and load then start laying concentrated fire on the ignorant bills and power excesses of this radical legislative majority led by a so-called Republican governor, the words written in their editorials are not the empty whinings of flaccid intellectuals. Our state's media people are furious; their editorials are a battlefield bugle call. It's the U.S. cavalry charging over the hill to help wipe out this dangerous rabble of goose-stepping, ALEC-trained shock troops.

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tomatogrower 1 year, 1 month ago

Now that I have responded to IKU57's attempt to distract us from the subject of the letter, could any of you conservatives tell me how Brownback can be considered a conservative? He has expanded the state government's power over local governments. He is getting rid of the tried and true checks and balances system of 3 government entities, the legislature, the executive, and the courts, which the founding fathers really did create to keep 1 person or a small group of people from getting to powerful. He is making sure to support regressive taxes, so your employer will have more money, but expect you to pay more for the roads that the huge trucks that transport their goods tear up. I mean, you should be grateful just to have a job, and they give you a Christmas turkey every year. Brownback works for these people, you know. The more power you give to him, the more you give to them.

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tomatogrower 1 year, 1 month ago

In a leaked memo, it was revealed that Walmart sales in February were “a total disaster.” (Again, they don't care. They can sell at their stores around the world. I personally hope they fail. They turned the US into a consumer crazy nut house, and forced businesses to make inferior products, so they could undersell everyone and put them out of business. Most teenagers buy more clothes and shoes in a year than I ever owned in all my teen years. And if a teen doesn't have a smart phone? Horrors. I also know there are increasing numbers of people who stopped shopping WalMart, because you can buy a bottle of shampoo, yes, for 20 cents more at a store down the street, but you have to drive a long way to get to WalMart. Gas isn't cheap, you know)

Student loan default rates are at an all-time high ... because graduates can’t find good jobs. (See above) One in six Americans is now on food stamps. (No one working a full time job or working 2 or 3 jobs should ever have to be on food stamps. Our tax dollars are subsidizing the work force for many greedy corporations. They can pay their workers less, and keep more money for the CEO and investors, because they know that the US government won't let these people starve. Start blaming the real people. The president doesn't have the power to do what you think he can, especially since he has a Republican congress that shoots down everything he tries to promote. Remember, it is Congress that enacts laws. The president can only propose them.)

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tomatogrower 1 year, 1 month ago

My responses are in parenthesis. Quit putting the blame on one man, especially since his opponents want him to fail at any cost.

53% of American workers make less than $30,000 per year. (unions weakened by Republican propaganda and laws, Obama supports workers uniting and demanding a share of the profits)

Unemployment among 20-29 year olds is 13%. (The recession started in 2008, the causes going on long before that. Corporations prefer a high unemployment rate, so they can pay their workers less, and treat them poorly.)

The percentage of the American work force (not counting the military) who are employed has been declining every year since 2006. (Obama became president in 2009, it's not easy to turn a trend like this around, especially since some are profiting from this. The business model now is employees are a pain, and the fewer you have to deal with the better. Blame the corporations.)

In the past 12 years, over 56,000 U.S. manufacturing facilities have closed their doors. (Again, greedy, pseudo patriots who wear a flag pin, then move their facilities out of the country for cheaper labor. Obama has proposed several measure to punish those leaving the country, and reward those returning. Blocked by Republicans every time.)

Major retail chains are expected to close hundreds of stores in 2013: Best Buy, over 200; Sears, over 100; JC Penney, 300 to 350; GameStop, up to 600; RadioShack, as many as 550 stores. The list goes on and on. Where will all those displaced workers find new jobs? (These retail giants really don't care. If they aren't making a big enough profit, the corporations are going to shut them down. And we aren't talking about them not making a profit at all, they have to make big profit and grow by double digits every year, or they are considered a failure. Also, they could care less about the American consumer and worker, because they have a whole bunch of people in China now, who have money to spend. The US? Too bad, so sad. Blame the right people.)

Most Americans cannot afford the payments on a new car. (I agree with you on this one. In 1980, I was able to buy a new car for about $3,000. It didn't have air conditioning or a radio, but it had a new engine and was under warranty, so for a newly divorced mother, it was perfect. In 1990, I found another stripped down brand new car. Now try and find a new car with no radio, no air conditioning, no bluetooth, no automatic this and that. Just a car to get you from here to there reliably. Why would they build one of those old models, if they can't make a bigger profit? Remember profits are everything.)

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bisky1 1 year, 1 month ago

Population, 2012 estimate, 2,885,905 Ya ever heard of Barney Frank or Chris Dodd Merrill? What crap.

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IKU57 1 year, 1 month ago

And yet, the same people that hate Brownback, love Obama. Kansas is flyover country. It is an insignificant patch of dirt in the middle of the country.

But, what has Obama done to the rest of the country?

You only have to look around you to see how frightening the economic scenario really is:

  1. 53% of American workers make less than $30,000 per year.
  2. Unemployment among 20-29 year olds is 13%.
  3. The percentage of the American work force (not counting the military) who are employed has been declining every year since 2006.
  4. In the past 12 years, over 56,000 U.S. manufacturing facilities have closed their doors.
  5. Major retail chains are expected to close hundreds of stores in 2013: Best Buy, over 200; Sears, over 100; JC Penney, 300 to 350; GameStop, up to 600; RadioShack, as many as 550 stores. The list goes on and on. Where will all those displaced workers find new jobs?
  6. Most Americans cannot afford the payments on a new car.
  7. In a leaked memo, it was revealed that Walmart sales in February were “a total disaster.”
  8. Student loan default rates are at an all-time high ... because graduates can’t find good jobs.
  9. One in six Americans is now on food stamps.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/peterferrara/2012/09/02/obamas-accelerating-downward-spiral-for-america/

http://articles.cnn.com/2011-08-29/opinion/frum.obama.mistakes_1_president-obama-first-stimulus-barack-obama?_s=PM:OPINION

Obama and Brownback are not the reasons for decline. What could it be? These two people are supposedly, representative of the whole? I guess a look in the mirror is the answer?

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 1 month ago

Two choices as I see it.

  1. Get rid of Sam Brownback and his team of phony republicans

  2. Two or 3 million people in Kansas leave the state.

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 1 month ago

Old school republicans need to stop voting party line. Stop voting GOP unfortunately. Sam Brownback works for ALEC not the GOP or Kansas.

Everything Brownback and his out of state administration is doing is straight out of the ALEC Doctrine.

Consumers continue to shop Wal-Mart who is part of this movement including shutting down public schools. Why do consumers support this retail giant?

Consumers can go online to discover Koch products and stop buying those?

What do consumers have to lose? Quite a bit if they continue their current shopping habits.

  1. respectable wages

  2. Neighborhood public schools

  3. democracy

  4. two party system ( we need 3 cuz the GOP has to go)

  5. fair taxation( going down the tubes quickly)

  6. Women's Rights are taking very large hits

  7. What's left of transparency

For more info.

United States of ALEC – Bill Moyers http://www.democracynow.org/2012/9/27/the_united_states_of_alec_bill

ALEC – The Voice of Corporate Special Interests in State Legislatures http://www.pfaw.org/rww-in-focus/alec-the-voice-of-corporate-special-interests-state-legislatures

ALEX EXPOSED – The Koch Connection http://www.thenation.com/article/161973/alec-exposed-koch-connection

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Richard Heckler 1 year, 1 month ago

Some Sam Brownback in the beltway history?

Republican economics have made buying homes a huge risk as a long term investment

They have established this risk under Reagan/Bush and Bush/Cheney home loan frauds.

It is these two administrations that brought the USA frauds that effectively took down home values substantially. How can owing more on a home than it is worth be fun?

Meet Republican Economics

  1. Mergers
  2. Hostile Takeovers
  3. Leveraged Buyouts
  4. Free Trade Agreements
  5. Reagan/Bush Savings and Loan home loan scandal which killed the economy and cost the USA millions of jobs.
  6. Bush/Cheney Home Loan scandal killed the economy and cost the USA millions of jobs

All of above ultimately translated into millions upon millions upon millions of USA job losses. Big time layoffs were the end result. These jobs go abroad with tax codes that prevent taxation on profits made abroad from USA big name corporations.

There was a time when becoming employed by corporate America came with long term employment, fine wages and dependable retirement benefits. Those days are gone.

After a 4 year degree one now needs a Vocational-Technical Institute certificate to become a highly skilled technician in some field.This will make any college grad more marketable and perhaps open doors to self employment. Or if one has the dollars becoming a career student is as respectable as any other full time job.

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