Serial Liar Caught at it Again in Bid For 2nd District Congressional Seat

As according to Tucker at Miscellaney Blue, Eric Estevaz, in running for the second congressional district, has gotten a little too eager for the spot and has already taken on deceiving the public.   Apparently he forgot that with most Republicans, deception is best left until after you’ve been elected, not before.  If that’s not bad enough, Tucker points out that this isn’t the first time Estevez delved into using stretchers to boost his personal resume and qualifications.

We’d suggest that Estevez look into a career in finance brokerage, he might find his proper home there.

Here’s Tucker:

Campaign hijinks: Congressional candidate photoshopped endorsement photo

2nd District congressional candidate Eric Estevez announced the endorsements of fellow House Reps. Bob Elliott (R-Salem) and John Manning (R-Salem) by blasting social media with a picture of the trio standing together in front of the State House.

The photo appears to have been taken during an Estevez campaign rally. The three men are festooned with Estevez for Congress lapel stickers. Estevez campaign signs fill the background and adorn the lectern.

It didn’t happen. Not that way.

Click to Miscellaney Blue for the whole story.  Also previous Miscellaney Blue reports on Estevez.

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We Remain Undettered

from Susanthebruce:
Op-ed published 7/8/2016, Conway Daily Sun and on the blog susanthebruce

The Governor and the Executive Council comprise the executive branch of our state government. The Council has veto power over pardons, contracts with a value greater than $10,000, and nominations. Executive Councilors earn a yearly salary of $12,354 plus an additional $4000 per year for expenses, in Districts 2-5. The District 1 Councilor gets $5800 per year for expenses. It should come as no surprise that NH is the only state that does the executive branch this way. We’re the only state with a ridiculously large House full of unpaid legislators. Neither one of these things actually works all that well anymore, but that does not deter us.

The Executive Council was intended to be a check on the governor’s power. Instead, it’s become a home for some angry men who don’t give a fig about what’s right for the state. Their figs are reserved for what is far right, as in their ideology. The Executive Council has become just another parade ground for ideological posturing by the members of the GOP as they use the position as a springboard to higher office.

Last summer the Executive Council voted against funding Planned Parenthood on the basis of the bogus videos that have since been discredited. Republicans seized on those videos as a way to play politics with women’s health and bodily autonomy, while pretending to have great concern for life. That Planned Parenthood saves lives didn’t factor into their grandstanding.

Planned Parenthood saved my daughter’s life twenty some years ago. Low wage working women in the north country didn’t have many choices when it came to their health care back then. The choices haven’t expanded all that much in the ensuing years, though the ACA has improved access for some. My daughter could afford Planned Parenthood, thanks to their sliding fee scale. An annual pap smear came back showing precancerous cells in her cervix. They were removed. She didn’t get cervical cancer. About 15 years later, she had a baby, because she didn’t get cancer and die, thanks to Planned Parenthood.

It is worth pointing out that Planned Parenthood is not just a provider of birth control. Planned Parenthood also provides STD testing and treatment, breast exams, and cancer screenings.
When Executive Councilors Joe Kenney and David Wheeler start grandstanding about Planned Parenthood, I take it personally. Women’s lives and women’s health are of no concern to these men. Women are just pawns to be used for grandstanding purposes.

Last week the Executive Council voted to restore funding to Planned Parenthood. Republican Chris Sununu was the swing vote this time. He’s supported Planned Parenthood in the past, and after a foray into political expedience last summer, he’s returned to his original stance. His own political party has already begun to excoriate him. There is no room for differences of opinion in today’s Republican Party.

David Wheeler brayed about “Planned Parenthood selling baby parts.” This has been disproven (at the same time the videos were debunked) but in the fact free age we live in, that is unimportant. He knows that the NH media won’t hold him accountable for his lies. Only two states (California and Washington) had fetal tissue donation programs. The program was completely voluntary. The tissue wasn’t sold – it was donated. Some (not all) of the clinics were reimbursed for the cost of shipping and handling. The tissue went on to be used for scientific research.

Joe Kenney put on his sad face to declare that the money for Planned Parenthood should be spent on the opioid crisis. Family planning is not a crisis, he opined, in the way that one might if they had zero chance of ever becoming pregnant. Women’s lives don’t matter in Joeworld, but suddenly, addicts lives matter? Try as I might, I can’t ever remember Joe having any concern for them in the past.
At the Executive Council meeting, Kenney said that there is never an unwanted child. There are orphanages and adoption agencies, he said. Does he even know what an orphanage is? (Spoiler Alert: warehouse for unwanted children.) Fauxlifers love to pretend concern for children, while begrudging every dime spent on their education, and doing nothing about child poverty and homelessness.

The 2015 data from NH Kids Count shows that in Carroll County, 10.5% of families with children under the age of 18 live below the federal poverty level. In Coos County it’s 19.2% of families, and in Grafton it’s 11.8%. Given that NH is the seventh wealthiest state in the nation, those numbers are shocking. Joe Kenney has yet to put on his sad public face to discuss the need to do anything about the increasing percentage of child poverty in his district.

According to the nhgov website, “The Executive Council plays a vital role in improving the state’s infrastructure, especially roads and bridges, via management and oversight of the state’s 10 year Highway Plan.” The website does not list “overseeing women’s reproductive parts” as one of the EC responsibilities. Ponder that next time you drive on East Conway Road.

NH typically has about 500 bridges on the state’s red list for structural impairments. We have 1,2000 bridges that are over 75 years old. New bridges are added to the red list every year. We add more bridges than we take off, though one way to remove a bridge from the red list is just to close it. The wait list for new municipal bridge projects is about 17 years. Our 10 year transportation plan is a farce. But hey, that’s not sexy. Talking about bridges doesn’t get your face on WMUR or get you written up in Breitbart. Doing your damn job doesn’t get your name up in lights.

According to the Executive Council website, Council members are supposed to be advocates for the people. Check out their responsibilities at
https://www.nh.gov/council/about-us/index.htm , then ask questions of your local EC candidates accordingly. You might ask about that “vital” role they play in improving our infrastructure. Ask the incumbent what he’s done in that regard. Be sure to ask which people they intend to advocate for.

Published as an op-ed in the July 8 edition of the Conway Daily Sun newspaper.

via ShutterstockIn a recent speech at the White House’s first-ever United State of Women summit, Vice President Joe Biden passionately addressed what he described as the “cause of his life”: ending violence against women. And during his remarks, he used a phrase he seemed to assume the 5,000 attendees would understand but was completely new…

via What is ‘second rape’ and what can we do about it? — Fusion

Here are the moving images of protests in St. Paul for Philando Castile’s killing — Fusion

Than Tibbetts/FusionThursday evening saw Minnesotans hit the streets to protest the death of Philando Castile, a black man from St. Paul who killed by police in the quiet suburb of Falcon Heights on Wednesday. Castile’s death, footage of which was broadcast across Facebook by his girlfriend Lavish Reynolds, set off a firestorm of controversy in…

via Here are the moving images of protests in St. Paul for Philando Castile’s killing — Fusion

Once Libertarian Stooge, Now Internet Creeper

Republican House Representative of Northwood, Kyle Tasker, otherwise known as “Two Gun Tasker” has found himself on the receiving end of the law rather than the making end.

According to a story in the Union Leader, Tasker was arrested in an internet sting arranged based on reports of him harassing a young girl online.   Police did the typical perv-lure of pretending to be a child, in this case a 14 year old girl, interested in meeting up with him for sex.  Tasker fell for the bait and instead of finding the hoped for target of his perversion he found himself in the hands of the law.

In addition, following his arrest, officials searched Tasker’s house and found a large quantity of illegal drugs including marijuana, mushrooms and the narcotic addiction control drug, Sedoxone and an arsenal of weaponry.  Tasker, true to form, also had a loaded weapon on his person when arrested.

Of course Tasker’s colorful career as part of the Republican libertarian Bill O’Brien Gang of Fools is over.  House Speaker Jasper had immediately called for his resignation and finally Jennifer Horn has come out to condemn him as well.

Tasker gained his nickname “Two  Gun” after he dropped a loaded handgun from his body holster onto the floor of the house during session.  He mentioned later that he not only carries one gun on his person at all times, but two.  Just in case.

Tasker also gained national notoriety for his comments on Twitter during a protracted debate that lasted days on the house floor over a Domestic Violence funding bill that house Republicans were holding up on political grounds.

Since birds of a feather flock together, Tasker also found friendship among many among the libertarian far-crank branch known as Free Keene.  Most have lobbied hard for the legalization of marijuana and Tasker was noted to be joining them once in a committee hearing on the issue, trying his best to make a cutting edge point by using an electronic hookah to imitate smoking pot during the hearing.

Tasker
Free Keeners characterized him as a hero for his supposed act of civil disobedience on behalf of faithful tokers everywhere.  But its worth wondering if the Free Keeners see him as a hero of civil disobedience now, even though Free Keene’s cult leader, Ian Freeman has said often that he believes consent laws should be lifted and sex with minors legal.

Also, just a last interesting note.  Tasker somehow got himself placed on the Committee on Children and Family Law this year where he was serving when he got arrested while attempting to meet a child for sex and  Tasker was serving on the Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee when he dropped the loaded gun on the house floor!

h/t to susanthe bruce who also notes: “In the UL comment section, Rep. Felonious Max Abramson, (R-FreeState) is castigating the police for setting up a sting. Apparently poor young Kyle was POWERLESS in this situation.  The police forced him to try to solicit sex with a child. He had no choice.”

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Vermin Supreme Joins Libertarians

NH.com has posted that Vermin Supreme, the intrepid candidate from Rockport, Mass who promises free toothbrushes, dental floss and a pink pony to everyone has switched over to the Libertarians from his long-time running with the Democrats.

We think he’ll find himself right at home with the Libertarians who themselves seems by their very existence to make a mockery out of the political process.

Yes! Clinton Violated Election Law!

The internet exploded last night with news that Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s husband, former president Bill Clinton entered four polling places in areas around Boston. People on facebook complained that they were cordoned off and kept from voting as the royal procession of Clinton, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh their assorted security entourage were given way into the polling places.

Major news outlets have hounded the Secretary of State’s office with questions about how they interpret Clinton’s behavior or intentions. Unbelievably, as the Boston Globe quotes, Secretary of State Galvin didn’t seem too bothered by it all explaining, “He can go in, but he can’t approach voters,” Galvin said. “We just took the extra precaution of telling them because this is not a usual occurrence. You don’t usually get a president doing this.”

But Brian McNiff, the assistant for the Secretary had a different take earlier in the day, according to Boston.com, “McNiff was asked if Clinton’s presence would, on its own, constitute a solicitation.

“He’s a well known person. And he’s a spouse of a candidate,” McNiff said. “That should answer the question.”

He declined to further elaborate.”

No doubt he was holding the bullhorn to warn voters of his presence at the New Bedford polling station and the law. “I must stay 150′ from you!” voters did not hear him say.

“By golly is it voting day here? Hey don’t mind me!”

 

Former president Bill Clinton appeared in New Bedford, Mass., on Super Tuesday in support of his wife, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

150′? What do you think?

Unfortunately once Secretary Galvin made his judgment clear to the press, the press then backed off and the dismissal was no more apparent than the top-running story on Google this evening posted by CNN Politics wherein Mr. McNiff, clearly stepping back in line told CNN that “…shaking hands alone isn’t prohibited. Explicit campaigning is what’s banned within 150 feet of a polling places.

“Just meeting people doesn’t constitute campaigning,” McNiff told CNN. “We received no information that anything like that happened.”

Celebrity power to influence? No way!

His office said it reached out to the Clinton campaign Tuesday “just to remind them about the 150 foot rule.”

So long after the fact, long after Clinton and his entourage had paraded through polling places barricaded to enable him to  shake hands, kiss babies and little old ladies, coming into the polling places to thank poll workers, Clinton was kindly reminded of election law.  Just in case this beginner in the ways of electioneering might forge, we suppose.

As Galvin admitted, one doesn’t usually have the experience of a presidential candidate having a spouse that ran the country as president for two terms.  No other presidential candidate or figure has ever had a spouse that just by virtue of their presence sends a message of Democratic and presidential power like Bill Clinton, much less the typical controversy and celebrity.  No other individual, certainly not a first lady, acting in such a close relationship to a candidate has gone and “worked” the polls the way Clinton did.

And on Super Tuesday, one could argue that there was no more contested or symbolic state than Massachusetts.  No other state could, if turned to Sanders, signal their possible defeat in all of New England.  No other state in the union has the legacy of Democratic power and strength than Massachusetts, no other state holds the tradition of establishment liberalism, than possibly California.

The Clintons knew they would have the south in the bag, but they knew that Massachusetts, as shown the night of the election as the returns bounced back and forth between Sanders and Clinton would be a bitter fight to the end.  They also knew they had an advantage; a tag team that could make that personal appearance, jump in the ring at the last minute and put the Sanders campaign in a twist with that final deadly move.

What’s most disturbing remains the fact that despite this flagrant violation of standard election law, officials decide to turn a blind eye.  With Trump’s making his presidential pitch sound more and more like a fascist take-over by an infomercial star and now this, one has to wonder does the slide down the slope get faster from here?

The Democratic National Committee has started a petition with Change.org to demand that Clinton’s forfeit their Massachusetts delegates:

We Demand the DNC Rescind Clinton’s Massachusetts Delegates Due to Breaking the Law!

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Clinton’s Goldman-Sachs Speech Released

Just on Counterpunch: leaked parts of one of Hillary Clinton’s speeches in 2013 before investment firm Goldman-Sachs, a brilliant read and while obvious satire, the sad truth is that the writer doesn’t veer too far from the reality of the neo-liberal agenda/mindset.  The mind-set that brought us the bizarre concept that in order to capture voter share Democrats should abandon the New Deal, fair trade, environmental and labor protection and veer off into the land of imperialist capitalism.

Image result for clinton greed images

CLINTON: Thank you. Thank you so much. Thank you very much, Lloyd [Blankfein], and thanks to everyone at Goldman Sachs for welcoming me today. I’m delighted to be back among friends, colleagues, collaborators, supporters, kindred spirits…

Let me jump right in. You know, over the past few months, there have been popular concerns about an economy that still isn’t delivering for the majority of Americans. It’s not “delivering” the way that they feel it should, that they feel entitled to. Most Americans that you speak to, speak a populist rhetoric that claims it is stacked for those at the top, that those of you here have it too good.

Read the rest at Counterpunch

 

February 25, 1941

Lesson here: Even occupation cannot stop the people from speaking out and acting out against injustice.

Today in Labor History

image001

The February Strike begins. It was a general strike in the Nazi-occupied Netherlands by workers against the pogroms and deportation of Jews in Amsterdam. It was the only direct action of its kind during World War II in Europe against the Nazis’ treatment of Jews. The strike is commemorated annually on February 25 at the statue of the De Dokwerker (“The Dock Worker”) in Amsterdam.

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Something to be Thankful For : Struggles, Seeds … and Surprises

A longtime friend, teacher and respected activist, Joe Ramsey, out of Boston sent this article to us to view.  Its published by the magazine Counterpunch and we have the privilege of his permission to republish it here.  When we think about our own efforts at activism which entails a lot of work on persuasion please consider Mr. Ramsey’s thoughts, especially when round the table with folks who possibly may strongly disagree with your points.  Sometimes forcing an agreement at the time, from those who disagree may not always be the best strategy:

Something to be Thankful For: Struggles, Seeds…and Surprises

In a world that often feels like its spiraling towards chaos, here’s something I’m thankful for. Something that gives me–dare I say it–hope.

A former student from two years back stops by during my office hours, unannounced. He’s now a junior, thinking of a senior honors thesis, maybe grad school. I’m not surprised by this part; he was one of the sharpest students in that seminar (“Literature and Society” it was called).  A *very* smart reader, and a good writer, too.

I *am* surprised to see him in my office though.  He often seemed frustrated in our class, annoyed at others for not being as up to speed as he was–like they were holding him back.  (And like maybe I, too, as teacher, was complicit in this.)  At times, he came off to me as conservative and skeptical and maybe even narrowly out for himself, as if he were approaching our course more as a demanding customer, rather than as part of a community.  Like he just wanted his “A” so he could move on.

When the topic of economic inequality came up one day in class, he was that white guy who argued passionately against the idea of raising the minimum wage to fifteen $/hour, because as a trained and devoted EMT *he* hardly made that much…and should fast food workers really get the same pay that a medical professional earns? Wouldn’t giving these lowly service-workers a raise negate all the effort that *he* had put in to bettering himself?

Needless to say, we had us some struggles.

Seeing him at my door, my first thought was that maybe he was hard up for a letter of recommendation.  Some application deadline forcing him my way. I had, after all, given him his “A.”

But now here we are sitting in my office, and he’s leading us into a discussion about critical theory, literature, and marxism, about Jameson and Lukacs, Taylorism and totality. (He’s skeptical; totality seems too seamless and pessimistic). It’s clear that he has been reading whatever he can get his hands on.  And now we’re talking about capitalism and the limited semi-autonomy of the public sphere and cultural works within neoliberalism, and suddenly he turns to me and says:

“Man, that discussion we had in class about the minimum wage, and the way you pushed me to rethink my position…that really had an impact on me…That was really important.”*

And then we go on discussing, about how it’s possible for people to become psychologically invested in positions and identities that actually are not in their own best economic interest–not to mention being ethically problematic–and how this relates to race and to gender and nationalism as well as class…and how maybe it might just be possible for literature, for culture, for classrooms, for people to resist individualism and the cold cash nexus, to carve out spaces for human connection and solidarity.  How maybe the possibility of a fundamentally different kind of world can be glimpsed through the cracks in this one…if we learn how to look for it.

We shook hands goodbye, but I wanted to hug him.seed sprouting sepia

*

And this is why I’m thankful:  Because principled struggles with people plant seeds and sometimes these seeds find soil to sprout, even when you don’t expect it.

Because sometimes our assumptions about other people’s social views can prove to be one-sided, or even flat out wrong.*

Because situations change, and surprises happen.

And it hits me: this is why I don’t give up on people who say backwards shit.

And this is why we must defend the humanities.

And this is why we must support and defend public education.

And this is why we shouldn’t reduce people to the flat floor of their weakness: they might just vault from their greatest strength.

***

Not just in classrooms, but in our broader social movement, it seems a crucial point to bear in mind.

Our impatient and cynical times encourage us to give up on those who express confused, antisocial, or backward views.  The Twitter-verse entices us to score points at the expense of the problematic and the privileged. Indeed, with so much work to be done, nothing that anyone says seems quite good enough.

And certainly, as events in Minneapolis and elsewhere make clear, there are genuine enemies of the struggle out there, people who cannot be reasoned with, who have declared war on the movement for social justice, who must simply be defeated.  Forces against whom the people must be defended.

Yet it remains crucial to resist the urge to lump those who express bad ideas in with the ‘Enemy’ camp. The temptation to give up on everyday people is a suicidal urge for any moment that seeks truly radical and emancipatory change.  Instead, it behooves us to be patient with those who still might be reached, including even those who argue most vociferously against us.

We must continue to struggle, to be sure–there is no facile optimism here–but patiently and humbly, having faith in the basic decency of people.

If we can work to unite with strengths to overcome weaknesses, rather than focusing on weaknesses to undercut strengths, we all might discover something surprising to be thankful for.

* Note: In a follow-up email, my student clarified the situation further: “I was all for raising the minimum wage,” he tells me, “I think there was just some general anxiety about a) losing my privilege and b) the move away from the emphasis placed on the individual, one in which I felt that my individual accomplishments and “value” might be compromised.” As he added, “I think there’s a weird sort of internal conflict in more typical liberals who still hold individualism as an ideal in society, which is really difficult to reconcile with the desire for significant social change.” Well said. 

Joseph G. Ramsey is an activist and writer living in Boston. He is a contributing editor at Red Wedge, a co-editor at Cultural Logic: an electronic journal of Marxist theory and practice, and a contributing board member at Socialism and Democracy.

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