10/30/09 02:49 - 62ºF - ID#50154
South Buffalo Fall Photos / Healthcare
Now is the crucial point to make your voices heard. Over the next week big decisions will be made. The Senate needs to feel the heat.
You know why people always break their campaign promises? Because after the election the voters are out of the picture, and the politicians are in fundraising mode. So they listen to the lobbyists and they don't hear a peep out of us till next election.
We can't sit back and hope the politicians hear us screaming through the TV. We have to make phone calls and send emails to lobby and make sure people in Washington Listen to us.
To Contact Congress call this number and ask for someone, 1-800-828-0498 it's toll free, call somebody new every day.
Or you can write to them, type something up and send a copy to everyone. You can look at the letters I quoted in my last post for ideas.
Here are the Senators that may need a bit of persuading.
Joe Lieberman, Connecticut
Bill Nelson, Nebraska
Evan Bayh, Indiana
Blanche Lincoln, Arkansas
Kent Conrad, North Dakota
Mary Landrieu, Louisiana
Susan Collins, Maine
Olympia Snowe, Maine
I know none of them are in our state, but just shoot them an email anyway, that's how lobbying works. You find out who's making the decisions and you target them. If you know anyone in these states reach out and ask them to call.
Now the fun pictures
Tuscarora rd. Cute South buffalo Street that runs paralel to Caz Park.
Love the brick roads.
This is a little triangle park, off Tuscarora
Caz Park Casino
Caz Park Soccer Game
Location: Buffalo, NY
10/27/09 01:57 - 61ºF - ID#50130
Of course I favor Medicare for All, but we didn't go down that road, so you gotta fight within the realm of the possible, so I've been fighting for the Public Option. Go here if you're not sure what the public option is
Go here to read the news about yesterday's Public Option announcement from Harry Reid
Or just Listen to Harry for yourself.
I really loved that press conference, it kinda seems like Harry's got his groove back. He's straight up, and ready to get something accomplished.
The Senate bill includes a provision that was just invented as a compromise between 2 senate bills, one had a Public Option and the other didn't. The new provision is for a National Public Option but individual states can opt-out if they don't think it is good for their state.
I think the Opt-out Public Option is kind of, brilliantly democratic.
If the people of your state don't like the Public Option, you have the freedom to chose another way, nobody is forcing you to accept the new way. But most of the American people want to be able to choose a public option. Medicare is a public option for people over 65, and it works fine, why can't I buy some of that? A few stubborn senators shouldn't prevent the rest of America from having that choice.
The point of a Public Option is to give us a choice. A non-profit choice.
The main complaint against the Public Option (socialism, marxism, fascism, communism, BOO!)..... well ok, the main rational complaint against the Public Option is that it will hurt a particular state or community, senators complain that it will hurt hospitals in their state, or that their constituents are afraid of it, or some other version of I'm responsible for my state above all else.
This provision throws the state based argument out the window. Now your state can opt-out if it wants to, but at least pass Healthcare reform and give the rest of us a choice. Arkansas, North Dakota, Louisiana, and Indiana, you can do what you want, but give the rest of us what we want. And if your constituents don't want the Public Option why don't we give them the chance to say no instead of taking your word for it.
I think this is a responsible compromise, it's all about democracy, let the people in the states decide.
But we have to bring down the costs somehow, cause we're probably wasting $850 billion per year on Healthcare in America.
This video pretty much summs up why I think the Public Option is so important
I've been lobbying about this for a while, and so have the Quakers. I've been on the phone (1 800-828-0498) and writing letters.
here's my latest letter, I sent this to Harry Reid and Obama over the weekend:
I'm a small businessman in Buffalo NY, the healthcare issue is very important to me. We need healthcare reform that works. I don't see too many downfalls to the opt-out compromise, But I don't like the trigger idea, I'm worried that it is an empty promise. We need a public option to guarantee competition and bring prices down ASAP. I strongly oppose mandating that individuals or businesses buy insurance without a guarantee that we will be protected from fraud and abuse. The way I see it, no public option, no guarantee. You can convince the Maine Republicans to support the opt-out provision.
I'm also speaking as a registered Democrat, and my father in law spent weeks in Pennsylvania volunteering for the Obama campaign.
Here's the one from last week, this went out to my representatives and the important people in the Congress,
I'm urging you to pass healthcare reform that works. I'm a Small Business owner in Buffalo NY and I've been paying close attention to the healthcare debate.
I support a Public Option. We need a strong non-profit health insurance option in order to reduce healthcare costs.
We need successful Healthcare Reform. This is not about ideology or political philosophy, it's about what works.
We pay more for Healthcare than every other country in the world and we get less for it, that is the key problem. Healthcare Reform must address the inflated cost of healthcare, or it will be a failure, it will be a missed opportunity, and the Democrats will take the blame.
I've seen all the proposals, I'm looking for a bill that will improve the lives of ordinary people and business owners who are struggling to keep up with rising healthcare costs.
I think the Baucus Bill is ambitious, but does too little to reduce costs. It requires everyone to buy insurance, but we have no guarantee that the product we're being forced to buy is safe, effective, or fairly priced.
The way I see it, no Public Option means no guarantee. America's health will still be at the disposal of for profit insurence companies that have no incentive to reduce the prices they charge.
Insurance companies need competition, and Americans need a guarantee that Healthcare Reform is going to work.
Include a strong Public Option.
one more funny video, this is fair and balanced fox
I love the part where they say, "Obama's Healthcare Plan, Scarier than Cancer?"
Location: Buffalo, NY
10/24/09 07:39 - 49ºF - ID#50097
Summer fun picture stories
Buffalo Small Boat Harbor, took this picture on a bikeride with molly.
This is the Beach at the end of Tifft Street, right next to the Small Boat Harbor on route 5. We like having a beach so close to our house, we go swim and canoe. It's so nice on those 90 degree summer days, you just go down and dunk yourself in the water.
the Fam at the same beach,
Molly on the boardwalk. There's a boardwalk and a pier at the beach too.
Labor day in Cazenovia Park, this was so fun, I love parties in caz park and I love Labor. It was a big homey barbecue nothing fancy, but just having the community get together and party after a parade, it's one of those wholesome things.
The labor day parade, Mickey Kearns in front, I marched with them and handed out fliers, helped tie balloons, fun stuff.
My favorite South Buffalo party, the Irish Feis and Expo. they have like 5-6 rockin Irish bands, like Jackdaw, Seven Nations, Emish... they also have Irish dancing troops, 2 stages, local businesses, food, drinks. The party starts around 2 and usually goes till 10:30. Bring your own beer or they have good stuff on tap like Guinness Harp, Spaten.. There's also a whole section for local businesses to set up tables. Very grassroots community oriented.
the women from Emish, I actually went to Fredonia with them, and they majored in Music :)
Irish Fest crowd shot.
Blue Heron Music Festival, near Jamestown NY
Main stage, it was muddy the first day
Tent Setup, this is where we slept at the festival. Dry and cozy :)
Muddy ruts, cars and... cows.
Parking lot was a bit of chaos. I got splattered pushing somebody out. but I did not get stuck thank you very much.
lots of sun, no rain that weekend. This is the last day.
That's all for now :)
Location: Buffalo, NY
10/20/09 10:57 - 53ºF - ID#50066
Summer Garden Photos
Here's some of the summer in photos.
Our house with sunflowers in front.
Our front garden when we just started.
Our back Vegetable Grden when it just started.
The first plants
Mid Season, lookin pretty good
Tomatoes on the left fence, cucumbers in the middle, I think I'm switching them next year and making a bunch of changes, I grew a little bit of everything this year to experiment, now I know what works.
some daily harvest, pretty nice
One of our absolute favorite ways to eat fresh garden veggies!! mmmm
Mozzarella, tomatoes, basil, and olive oil, classic italian dish, the taste is purely the ingredients,salt and pepper is optional.
cherry tomatoes, I'm growing these next year. Most of the other tomatoes got molested by squirrels. The cherry tomatoes are delicious.
I did not grow this tomato, it came from Molly's parents in the country, but it is huge!! almost 2 pounds.
Yes the sunflowers were 8-9 feet tall
Molly on the steps
Location: Buffalo, NY
10/05/09 06:31 - ID#49936
Bible too Liberal?
Conservatizing the Bible
It seems like the "Conservative Bible Project" is really just some dudes with a website. Maybe it's just a fringe project, but something about it just strikes me as wrong.
I guess it bothers me that many of today's conservatives act like they own Christianity. But Conservatives conveniently ignore core principles of the bible and Jesus' teachings. Jesus preached non-violence, and he helped the poor, and told people to love thy neighbor as thyself. Jesus rejected greed, violence, the glorification of power, wealth.....
Some bible quotes to back me up:::::
"Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions. [Luke 12.15.]
Truly, I say unto you, it will be hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. [Matthew 19:23]
You cannot serve both God and Money. [Matthew 6:24.]
If you would be perfect, go, sell what you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. [Matthew 19:21]
"But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. [Matthew 6:15]
Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. [Matthew 5:9]
I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despite-fully use you, and persecute you; [Matthew 5:44]
I guess that's the point right... the Bible has a liberal bias. "Blessed are the peacemakers"?!?!? That's some hippie commie pinko subversive stuff. (maybe they don't think that belongs in their religion)
I think the big idea behind the bible was to establish a guidebook that helps humanity live to the best of our potential. Martin Luther King described it as the "Blessed Community". That's what they mean by "Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven" the idea is that Heaven is in perfect harmony, achieving that on earth would create a Blessed Community.
I know this is a bit of a touchy subject, and the same people who defend low taxes and limitless wealth may also be the first to organize a bakesale for a friend in need.
But what we tend to see from the conservative movement, is indifference to the poor, an increasing list of enemies to hate, glorification of wealth.... And for people in need, of say, healthcare, we hear, 'you're lazy, you made bad choices, you didn't earn my mercy, I deserve more than you do.'..... I don't know if that's fair, I'm trying to generalize without exaggerating.
Here's some excerpts from the Conservative Bible Project
"Express Free Market Parables; explaining the numerous economic parables with their full free-market meaning"
"Socialistic terminology permeates English translations of the Bible, without justification. This improperly encourages the "social justice" movement among Christians. "
It just rubs me the wrong way. I'm no expert on the bible or religion. But I just wanted to talk about this for a sec.
Location: Buffalo, NY