THE VOORHIS VOICE
Liberal Voice of the Pomona Valley


September, 2012

www.claremontdems.org




MEETINGS AND SPECIAL EVENTS

Friday, September 1, 12-2PM
Rabi’s Café, 930 Central Avenue, Upland 
Issues Committee Luncheon
No speaker: Bring your issue

Saturday, September 2, 11AM-2PM
Grand Opening of Democratic Campaign HQ
3240 N Garey Ave, Pomona 91767
(SE corner of Garey & Foothill in shopping mall)
Meet & Greet candidates at 1 pm

Friday, September 14, 12-2PM
Monthly Luncheon
LYL Gardens Restaurant, 921 W. Foothill Blvd., Claremont, 909 626-9151
  Cost is $10; meal is served family style. No pork on menu; many vegetarian dishes
Professor Amanda Hollis-Brusky of the Politics Department Pomona College
will speak on "The Paul Ryan Effect"

Professor Hollis-Brusky teaches American Politics, Constitutional Law & Theory, and Legal Institutions.
Her research focuses on the political construction and diffusion of legal and constitutional ideas; the dynamics of constitutional change (and the role “support structures” play in that process); and how networks of elites shape the development and articulation of law and legal policy. 


Friday, Sept. 21, 12-2PM
Rabi’s Café, 930 Central Avenue, Upland 
Issues Committee Luncheon
No speaker: Bring your issue

Monday, Septmber 24, 2012, 7:00PM-9:30PM
Monthly Membership Meeting
Porter Hall, 601 Mayflower Rd., Pilgrim Place Campus, Claremont
Emma Stephens, Professor of Economics, Pitzer College will speak on macro-economic ideas in the coming election

Friday, Sept. 26, 12-2PM
Rabi’s Café, 930 Central Avenue, Upland 
Issues Committee Luncheon
No speaker: Bring your issue


  Democratic Campaign Headquarters Now Open


The Inland Communities Democratic Headquarters PAC hosted the grand opening of its temporary Democratic campaign headquarters for the 2012 election Sunday, September 2nd. Refreshments and entertainment were provided, and attendees were able to enjoy the company of like-minded voters, meet candidates, learn about the ballot propositions, and sign up to volunteer time, energy and expertise.





All photos taken by Tracy Taylor. Additional photos of the event are available here.

This campaign HQ will reach out to voters from Rancho Cucamonga in the east to Azusa in the west.  It will be staffed by volunteers who are Democratic activists.  It will also recruit volunteers who will make phone calls and walk neighborhoods to get out the vote for President Barack Obama, other Democratic candidates and important ballot measures.  Campaigns will be welcome to use it for events such as phone banks.

The HQ is located at 3240 N. Garey Ave., Pomona, in the Foothill Square shopping mall at the SE corner of Garey and Foothill. Obama yard signs, bumper stickers, buttons, shirts, caps and pins are available to individuals for a small donation and to Democratic clubs all over southern California in volume for an even smaller donation per item, enabling them to raise funds while getting the word out.  For additional information, call Rudy Mann at 225-371-2174.


Fall Political Calendar


FYI: DCC Meeting Presentations, 2011-12

We have two meetings a month (L = lunch Friday; M = Monday evening). Below is a summary of last year's presentations.  - Ed
 
2011

    September
        L:    Susan McWilliams, “The Future of the Democratic Party”
        
        M:   Chris Holden and Hilary LaConte, “Our campaigns”

    October
        L:    Robin Haulman, “Consumer Law”

        M:   Joe and Linda Michon, “Fair Trade”
    
November
        L:    Peter Coye, “Wind Energy”

        M:   Ameenah Fuller, “My Campaign”

2012

    January
        L:    Mel Boynton, “Keystone Pipeline”

        M:   Andy Winnick, “Education and Unions in Germany”
    
February
        L:    Joe Tornan, “No Child Left Behind”

        M:   Carol Liu, “My Campaign”
    
March
        L:    Adnan Aswad, “Syria”
        M:   CHS students “Our Generation”
    
April
        L:    Paul Krugman, ”GOP Disaster”
        M:   Judy Chu, “My Campaign”
    
May
        L:    Sue Keith & Geraldine Perri, “Our Community Colleges”
        M:   Bill Cook, “The Middle East”
    
June
        L:    Gar Byrum,  “The November Elections”

        M:    Merrill Ring, Andy Winnick, J. Smith, “Citizens United”


Fossil Discovery in Africa!



Found recently in Kenya, fossil KNM-ER 1470 is 2 million years old. Because of the big mouth and small brain, scientists think 1470 was an ancestor of Glen Beck.


 Today’s Fun with Mitt




Romneyhood and the Mitt-Wits sing:

“How much is that doggie on the roof top?”
“Not born in the USA”
“I stole my fill on Bain Capital hill”
“America the Booty-Full”

Three Words Mitt Never Hears

“Attention K-Mart Shoppers”

Mitt’s One-Liners

Calling Mitt Romney a vulture capitalist insults vultures.  They don't kill the living.

Born on third base Romney thinks he hit a triple.

I bet $10,000 that Mitt has something to hide.

Bain gains; America pains.

The gains from Bain went mainly to the vain.
Mitt: A rising tide lifts all boats; you’ll drown if you don’t own one.



Romney’s Management of Bain Capital

Romney claims to have retired from management of Bain in 2002 while retaining legal ownership, and he disclaims responsibility for the firm’s conduct subsequent to 2002, but what did Bain do while Romney was running it? - Ed

    “In 1993, Bain acquired the Armco Worldwide Grinding System… and merged it with its steel plant in South Carolina to form GST Steel.  The Kansas City plant had a strike in 1997 and Bain closed the plant in 2001 laying off 750 workers when it went into bankruptcy. The South Carolina plant closed in 2003 but subsequently reopened under a different owner. At the time of its bankruptcy it reported $553.9 million in debts against $395.2 million in assets. Bain reported $58.4 million in profits, but the employee pension fund had a liability of $44 million.”
 
    “. . .  In 1994, Bain, together with Goldman Sachs Capital Partners completed a carve-out acquisition of Dade International, the medical diagnostics division of Baxter International in a $440 million acquisition. . . . In 1999, the company reported $1.3 billion of revenue and completed a $1.25 billion leveraged recapitalization that resulted in a payout to shareholders. The dividend, taken together with other previous shareholder dividends resulted in an eightfold return on investment to Bain Capital and Goldman Sachs.  Revenues declined from 1999 through 2002 and . . .  the company entered into bankruptcy in 2002.”

    “Mitt Romney is also facing new scrutiny over revelations he founded the private equity firm Bain Capital with investments from Central American elites linked to death squads in El Salvador. After initially struggling to find investors, Romney traveled to Miami in 1983 to win pledges of $9 million, 40 percent of Bain’s start-up money. Some investors had extensive ties to the death squads responsible for the vast majority of the tens of thousands of deaths in El Salvador during the 1980s.” Romney understood this connection at the time, but welcomed their money nonetheless.
Sources: Wikipedia and Democracy Now


No more Marlboro man in Australia!



Australia recently introduced compulsory packaging for cigarettes of all brands. Here it is. Does it make you want to protest the nanny state? Cigarette companies are protesting it.



Public’s Understanding of Candidates’ Religions

Most voters continue to say it is important for a president to have strong religious beliefs. But voters have limited awareness of the religious faiths of both Mitt Romney and Barack Obama. More voters now believe that Obama is a Muslim than did so two years ago.  A fifth of voters are not comfortable with Romney’s Mormonism.

The vast majority of those who are aware of Romney’s Mormonism say it doesn’t concern them. Fully eight-in-ten voters who know Romney is Mormon say they are either comfortable with his faith (60%) or that it doesn’t matter to them (21%).  

White evangelical Protestants, black Protestants, atheists, and agnostics are the most likely to express discomfort with Romney’s Mormonism. Yet . . .  Republicans and white evangelicals overwhelmingly back Romney despite his Mormonism.

Comfort with Romney’s faith, however, is related to the enthusiasm of Republican support for his candidacy. Among Republican and Republican-leaning voters who say they are comfortable with Romney being Mormon, 44% back him strongly. Among those who are uncomfortable with it, just 21% say they back him strongly.

The new survey on religion and politics finds that nearly four years into his presidency the view that Barack Obama is Muslim persists. Currently, 17% of registered voters say that Obama is Muslim; 49% correctly say he is Christian, while 31% say they do not know Obama’s religion.




The percentage of voters identifying Obama’s religion as Christian has increased since August 2010, from 38% to 49% . . .  Still, fewer say Obama is Christian – and more say he is Muslim – than did so in October 2008. The increase since 2008 is particularly concentrated among conservative Republicans, about a third of whom (34%) describe the president as a Muslim.

Overall, 45% of voters say they are comfortable with Obama’s religion, while 19% are uncomfortable. Among those who say Obama is Christian, 82% are comfortable with Obama’s religious beliefs. Among those who describe him as a Muslim, just 26% are comfortable with his beliefs.
Source: Pew Research Foundation



Franklin D. Roosevelt on the New Bill of Rights

“. . . We cannot be content, no matter how high [our] general standard of living may be, if some fraction of our people—whether it be one-third or one-fifth or one-tenth—is ill-fed, ill-clothed, ill-housed, and insecure. This Republic had its beginning, and grew to its present strength, under the protection of certain inalienable political rights—among them the right of free speech, free press, free worship, trial by jury, freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures. They were our rights to life and liberty. As our nation has grown in size and stature, however—as our industrial economy expanded—these political rights proved inadequate to assure us equality in the pursuit of happiness. We have come to a clear realization of the fact that true individual freedom cannot exist without economic security and independence. Necessitous men are not free men.”

“. . . In our day these economic truths have become accepted as self-evident. We have accepted, so to speak, a second Bill of Rights under which a new basis of security and prosperity can be established for all—regardless of station, race, or creed. Among these are: The right to a useful and remunerative job in the industries or shops or farms or mines of the nation; The right to earn enough to provide adequate food and clothing and recreation; The right of every farmer to raise and sell his products at a return which will give him and his family a decent living; The right of every businessman, large and small, to trade in an atmosphere of freedom from unfair competition and domination by monopolies at home or abroad; The right of every family to a decent home; The right to adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health; The right to adequate protection from the economic fears of old age, sickness, accident, and unemployment; The right to a good education. All of these rights spell security. And after this war is won, we must move forward, in the implementation of these rights, to new goals of human happiness and well-being. America's own rightful place in the world depends in large part upon how fully these and similar rights have been carried into practice for all our citizens. For unless there is security here at home there cannot be lasting peace in the world.”  

Source: FDR, speech, Jan. 11, 1944




The Workers’ for America 2012 Proposal for a Second Bill of Rights

We the People want to strengthen our nation, as a beacon of equality, economic opportunity and freedom for all. We hold these rights to be essential to our vision of America and believe that the principles contained therein should guide our government, business leaders, organizations and individuals in our common goal of a just and fair society.



The Right to Full Employment and a Living Wage



All Americans willing and able to work have the right to safe, gainful employment at a fair and livable wage. We call on the public and private sectors to invest in America’s infrastructure and promote industrial development, maintaining job creation as a top policy priority.



The Right to Full Participation in the Electoral Process



Recent initiatives to disenfranchise citizens seek to reduce the rolls of eligible voters and empower money instead of people. We believe these actions constitute an assault on our nation’s democracy and history of heroic struggle against voting restrictions based upon property ownership, religion, race and gender and call for reinforcing our fundamental right to vote.



The Right to a Voice at Work



All workers have the right of freedom of association in the workplace, including the right to collectively bargain with their employer to improve wages, benefits and working conditions.



The Right to a Quality Education



Education is a fundamental bedrock of our democracy, vital to America’s competitive position in the world and the principal means by which citizens empower themselves to participate in our nation's economic and political systems. Quality, affordable education should be universally available from pre-kindergarten to college level, including an expanded use of apprenticeships and specialty skills training to prepare Americans for the workplace.



The Right to a Secure, Healthy Future



Americans have the right to a baseline level of health care, unemployment insurance and retirement security, all of which have been badly eroded by the disruption of the social compact that served the nation well for decades. We call on government and private industry together to confront the issues of declining access to health care especially for children, weakening of unemployment coverage, and inadequate pension plans that undermine the ability of working men and women to retire in dignity, even as Social Security and Medicare are under strain and threatened with cutbacks.





Magic Door IV

Quality Used Books


1522 W. 2nd Street

NW corner Garey Avenue

Pomona CA 91766

Tuesday – Saturday  1pm - 8pm

Sunday 2pm - 8pm

Telephone 909 472 2991

Dwain and Joann Kaiser, props.





LA Democrats Welcome GOP to Burbank

The Los Angeles County Democratic Party welcomed the California Republican Party Convention to LA on August 10. The California GOP is almost broke.  Just days after acknowledging the near financial collapse of their organization, the "Party of Fiscal Responsibility" is spending fat cat dollars for a weekend schmooze and booze-fest.

In front of the Burbank Marriott Convention Center where the convention is being held, Eric Bauman declared:
 
"As California Republicans gather in LA, they have little to celebrate considering the state of their Party. They are $450,000 in debt, were kicked out of their headquarters for non-payment of rent and have instituted massive staff layoffs heading into November. The California GOP doesn't have a clue how to manage their own finances, so it's no coincidence that voters don't trust them to navigate our economy."
 
Stuck in a rut, with a seriously declining share of the state's voters registering as Republicans and losing virtually every state-wide election since 2006, California Republicans are now under fire from within their own ranks. Recently departed CA GOP Communications Director Jennifer Kerns slammed the CRP and Del Beccaro's leadership, saying "It's a woefully hypocritical place to be if you're the party leaders that can't pay the bill to keep the lights on at the office." One person you won't see at the GOP Convention this weekend is putative Republican Presidential Nominee Mitt Romney.

Asked why not, Bauman sneered, "It's not surprising Romney won't be here this weekend considering the embarrassing financial shape California Republicans are in. Although, if there was one organization in America that needs his extensive experience at firing people, the California Republican Party is it." George W. Bush will not attend the GOP National Convention either because the Republicans are deeply ashamed of his conduct in office, and do not want to remind voters that he still exists.



Gerald Haynes, 1922-2012

We regret to report the death of Gerald Haynes on August 21.  Born in Abilene, KS., Gerald moved with his family to Southern California. He graduated from Chaffey High School in 1940, and was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1942.  Honorably discharged in 1946, Gerald was promptly arrested for refusal to register anew for the draft. He served three months in federal prison for draft evasion. In 1953, he married Edith Halling with whom he returned to Southern California. They had three children. Gerald held a variety of jobs while taking courses at Whittier College. He became a junior high school teacher in 1970, and retired from teaching in 1983. 

Gerald hated war. His lifelong passion was to offer alternatives to military service to young people facing the draft. He regularly advocated for peace by offering materials to visitors to Claremont's Farmers Marker.  Gerald continued to distribute peace flyers to students at local high schools even after he himself needed a walker to get about.  Gerald was a welcome guest on the DCC’s now-defunct TV program, too. Gerald was a long term member of the DCC and also of the Peace with Justice Center of Pomona Valley whose President, Anne Koegel, called Gerald “wonderfully kind,  a valuable long-time member, who will be sorely missed and sincerely mourned.” DCC President Zephyr Tate-Mann, concurred, adding that Gerald was that paradoxical combination, a fighter for peace.

Gerald is survived by son Eric Haynes, his wife Kim, and their son Brett of Upland; by son Roscoe Haynes, his wife Joanne, and their son Matthew, of Albany NY; and daughter Shamsi Haynes of Upland. Memorial services for Gerald Haynes will be held at 11am on Sept. 21 at the First Friends Church, 13205 Philadelphia Street, Whittier, CA 90601; and another at 10am on Sept. 22 at the Claremont Place, 120 W. San Jose Ave, Claremont, CA 91711. Contributions in lieu of flowers may be made to: Crossroads, Inc., P.0. Box 15, Claremont, CA 91711.



Let 'Em Hear From You



    letters@inlandnewspapers.com



                      editor@claremont-courier.com



Is our Moral Principle ‘Dog Eat Dog?’
Letter by Bob Gerecke published in the Claremont Courier

Vice-Presidential nominee Paul Ryan exemplifies the right wing of today’s Republican Party: reward the rich, penalize the poor, let everyone else fend for themselves.  Dog eat dog. Ryan’s views are revealed in the budget he proposed last March.  It would cut $3.3 trillion from low-income programs over the next decade.  The biggest cuts would be in Medicaid, which provides healthcare for the nation’s poor – forcing states to drop coverage for an estimated 14 million to 28 million low-income people, according to the non-partisan Center for Budget and Policy Priorities.

Ryan’s budget would reduce food stamps for poor families by 17 percent ($135 billion) over the decade, leading to a significant increase in hunger – particularly among children.  It would also reduce housing assistance, job training, and grants for college tuition. Ryan would turn Medicare – for which people have paid insurance premiums for many years -- into vouchers whose value won’t keep up with rising health-care costs – thereby shifting those costs to seniors, many of whom won’t be able to afford them.   Poverty, homelessness, illness and premature death among seniors would increase.

By contrast, Ryan would provide a substantial tax cut to the very rich – who are already taking home a huge share of the nation’s total income.  Today’s 400 richest Americans have more wealth than the bottom 150 million of us put together.   Some analysts estimate that the Ryan proposal would probably reduce Romney’s taxes to 1%.   Perhaps that’s why Romney won’t reveal his tax returns.

Although Romney has carefully avoided specifics in his own economic plan, he has said he’s “very supportive” of Ryan’s budget plan.  “It’s a bold and exciting effort, an excellent piece of work, very much needed … very consistent with what I put out earlier.” Romney hasn’t put out much, but what he’s proposed would, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, throw ten million low-income people off the benefits rolls for food stamps or cut benefits by thousands of dollars a year, or some of both.

At the same time, Romney wants to permanently extend the Bush tax cuts to the wealthy, reduce corporate income taxes, and eliminate the estate tax.  These tax reductions would increase the incomes of people earning more than $1 million a year by an average of $295,874 annually, according to the non-partisan Tax Policy Center. Romney and Ryan also want to repeal President Obama’s healthcare law, thereby leaving fifty million Americans without health insurance.

And there’s no way that Romney/Ryan would make it easier for employees to organize and bargain for a better share of the profits or would make it harder for multinational corporations to offshore American jobs.   Romney increased his fortune by sending jobs overseas, which undercuts the pay of every American employee and threatens the success of local businesses.

It’s no wonder that Romney and Ryan see the world from the perspective of the wealthy.  As the son of a corporate president and political leader, Romney began life on third base.  Ryan and his wife have substantial inheritances. In the twentieth century, America created a large middle class that became the engine of our economy and our democracy.  We built safety nets to catch Americans who fell downward, often through no fault of their own.   We designed regulations to protect our pocketbooks, health and lives against the excesses of free-market greed.   We taxed the rich and invested in public goods – public schools, public universities, public transportation, public parks, public health – that made us all better off.   Romney and Ryan would roll that back, closer to the days of the robber barons.

The Preamble to our U.S.  Constitution states that one of its purposes is to “promote the general welfare”.    It doesn’t mention increasing the wealth of the already wealthy.   Helping those in trouble or in need is a moral imperative in all religions.   I don’t recall that helping the rich is.



The First Obama Administration: A Score Sheet
By Ivan Light

Here are six ways Obama and the Democratic Party enabled the Republicans to survive the disaster of the Bush regime, to regroup, and to threaten American democracy anew. Here are five serious achievements of the Obama administration. - Ed

  1. Obama did not investigate the crime and  failures of the Bush/Cheney regime upon first taking office. There was plenty to investigate:  lax regulation that led to the Wall Street crash; lax security that led to 9-11; bogus war in Iraq; torture of POWs.
  2. Obama bailed out bankers rather than reforming the banking system. After the taxpayer bail-out, the banking system was restored as it had been, and it continues now to fail the country anew. 
  3. Obama did not use the GM bail-out to initiate a green auto industry. Obama might have required GM to build fuel-efficient and/or electric cars that run for 200,000 miles.
  4. Obama did not defend the public option on health care. Despite its limitations, Romney’s health care plan was accepted as a sop to Republicans, and the Republicans still rejected it. 
  5. Obama retained world cop foreign policy.  He retained the Bush advisers, and their Cold War concept of the USA as the world’s policeman, armed to the teeth, and ready to fight multiple wars anywhere, anytime. There was a chance to challenge that, but Obama wasted it. 
  6. Obama allowed the GOP to rebrand itself as populist and reformist. The timidity of Obama left his friends in disarray while enabling the GOP to rebrand their discredited politics as populist reform.
On the other hand,

  1. Obama passed the stimulus, and that crucial bill reduced the severity of our depression relative to what Europe has endured without comparable bills. Obama has been a more effective leader in this crisis than any European or Japanese politician of stature.
  2. Obama bailed out GM whereas the Repubs were ready to let it fail. Banks, no; GM, yes.  Now GM is the world’s largest auto maker again at no cost to the taxpayer. 
  3. Obama apprehended Osama bin Laden who had slipped through Bush’s inept fingers. 
  4. Obama exited from the bogus war in Iraq that the Repubs initiated.
  5. Obama finally got universal health care through the US Congress, a feat not equaled by Truman or Clinton.  Four stars!
Conclusion

Obama has been a mediocre President, and he made many serious errors. That said, Obama was undeniably better than McCain would have been, and he remains obviously and immensely better for the country than Romney.

The Voorhis Voice is published by the Democratic Club of Claremont, PO Box 1201, Claremont CA 91711.  The newsletter’s name commemorates the late Jerry Voorhis, a talented and courageous Congress member from Claremont.

Newsletter Editor

Ivan Light: Email him at claremontdemocrats@yahoo.com


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