Movement to recall Snyder grows WITH VIDEO …in his words


Friday April 1, 2011

By CHARLES CRUMM

Of The Oakland Press

Chris Kopacz hopes his logo will become the symbol of opposition to Gov. Rick Snyder‘s budget proposals.

Chris Kopacz is a self-employed graphics designer and he’s using his dissatisfaction with Gov. Rick Snyder’s budget-balancing plans to distribute a logo he created that he hopes will become the symbol of opposition.

The logo shows an outline of the state on a blue background and the words “Stand Up & Fight.”

The eventual goal, he says, will be a movement to recall Snyder from the office he’s held for just three months.

                      “I support that and I’m behind that,” says Kopacz, 32, of Waterford Township. “Right now, all we can do is generate interest for it.

“There’s no recall option until the governor has been in office six months,” he said. “On July 1, they can actually start the recall effort in earnest.

“We are definitely going to exercise that option,” Kopacz said.

Since he introduced his budget proposals to the Legislature in mid February, Snyder, the former Gateway CEO and self-described “one tough nerd,” has become a polarizing figure in Michigan politics and government.

The budget proposals include taxing pensions but giving generous tax cuts to businesses while cutting funding to education and placing limits on public worker benefits.

A poll on the website http://www.recallrick.com sums up the sore points of Snyder’s budget proposals.

It asks people to pick the number reason to recall the governor: Cuts to education budgets, attacks on unions, cuts to local governments or the recently signed emergency manager legislation.

Proposed cuts to education is listed at the top by 36 percent followed by the emergency manager bill at 32 percent.

At http://www.theoaklandpress.com, the website of The Oakland Press, a simple question asks if people approve of Snyder’s job so far. More than 90 percent said they don’t with more than 2,200 voting.

Across the social website Facebook, there are numerous pages dedicated to tossing Snyder from office at the first opportunity. The Facebook pages include Recall Governor Rick Snyder, Michigan Rally Information, and Recall Rick.

“If we look at Snyder’s budget proposal, it is fundamentally flawed,” says Kopacz, “$1.9 billion in tax credits while cutting $1.8 by clamping down on teacher salaries and wages, unemployment, pensions.

“The reason I’m concerned about this is because what they seem to be doing is essentially widening the gap between the rich and poor and eliminating the concept of the middle class.”

Snyder on Thursday issued a joint statement with Lt. Gov. Brian Calley, Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville and House Speaker Jase Bolger highlighting the accomplishments of his administration and the Republican-controlled Legislature in three months.

Listed among them was the controversial legislation signed that extends access to federal unemployment benefits for those who exhaust their state benefits. But the legislation also shortened the time of state benefits from 26 weeks to 20.

“We’re putting Michigan on the path to prosperity through cooperation and relentless positive action,” Snyder said.

Democrats were quick to issue other assessments of the first three months.

The Michigan Democratic Party posted a two-minute video on YouTube slamming Snyder and Republicans for closing state police posts and lowering state unemployment benefit weeks.

“This video tells the real story of the governor’s first three months on the job,” Brewer said. “Snyder and the Republicans have cut unemployment benefits and eliminated jobs. His budget also cuts public education and public safety, unfairly raises taxes on seniors, middle-class families, and low-wage workers – all so he can pay for a record giveaway to big corporations, insurance companies, big banks, and wealthy CEOs. That’s not ‘reinventing’ Michigan. That’s ruining Michigan.”

But for all criticism and talk of a recall, a recent and more scientific poll notes that while Snyder’s negatives are up, his numbers remain more positive than negative.

A poll by Lansing-based Marketing Resource Group off 600 likely voters between March 14 and March 19 notes that 42 percent approve of the job Snyder is doing as governor while 38 percent disapprove.

As for his plan to balance the state budget, 44 percent approve while 41 percent disapprove.

Poll respondents were 26 percent Republican, 26 percent Democrat and 43 percent independent. The poll had a margin of error of plus or minus 4.1 percent.

But as MRG President Tom Shields notes, “The honeymoon is over for Gov. Snyder.”

Shields notes that Snyder has better number than Republican Gov. John Engler did after his first three months in office in 1991.

“Gov. Engler’s plans to cut government spending were met with the same kind of resistance as Gov. Snyder’s plans are currently drawing,” says Shields.

Kopacz hopes his logo becomes the symbol of resistance. It’s posted on the website as a free download at http://www.standupmi.com.

Contact Charles Crumm at 248-745-4649 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 248-745-4649 end_of_the_skype_highlighting, charlie.crumm@oakpress.com or follow him on Twitter @crummc and on Facebook. More information is at oaklandmichiganpolitics.blogspot.com.

We need a budget that works for all of us …


You may have seen in the news recently how GE¹—like many other multinational corporations—is getting away with paying zero taxes, even though it raked in $26 billion in record profits.

Unbelievable, right? Well it’s only going to get worse—if we don’t stop it.

http://afl.salsalabs.com/dia/track.jsp?v=2&c=yHzrr33xgU1Ywr6ssSyVENJtMUMH5SJ%2B&url=http%3A%2F%2Faction.afscme.org%2Fc%2F51%2Fp%2Fdia%2Faction%2Fpublic%2F%3Faction_KEY%3D1882%26amp%3Btag%3DAdvE_201104_BackToFuture_blast-32792%26amp%3Btrack%3DAdvE_201104_BackToFuture_blast-32792%26amp%3Butm_source%3Dblast-32792%26amp%3Butm_medium%3Demail%26amp%3Butm_campaign%3D BackToFuture

This week, House leadership released a budget that is an extreme version of old policies to hand more tax breaks to millionaires and corporations—while putting all the sacrifice on the backs of working people. This back to the future budget would radically undermine the economic security of America’s middle class.

According to the Economic Policy Institute, “House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s fiscal year 2012 budget resolution would undermine the modern social safety net, reversing the gains America has made in health and economic opportunity. This resolution would deny millions of middle-and low-income households access to the American Dream.”

Please click here to tell your representative NO to going back to the future. It’s time to move forward with a budget that works for everyone.

http://afl.salsalabs.com/dia/track.jsp?v=2&c=yHzrr33xgU1Ywr6ssSyVENJtMUMH5SJ%2B&url=http%3A%2F%2Faction.afscme.org%2Fc%2F51%2Fp%2Fdia%2Faction%2Fpublic%2F%3Faction_KEY%3D1882%26amp%3Btag%3DAdvE_201104_BackToFuture_blast-32792%26amp%3Btrack%3DAdvE_201104_BackToFuture_blast-32792%26amp%3Butm_source%3Dblast-32792%26amp%3Butm_medium%3Demail%26amp%3Butm_campaign%3D BackToFuture

Many vital public services and programs are targeted for near destruction by Ryan:

The budget would end the guaranteed benefits of Medicare that seniors and the disabled depend on. Medicare would be replaced with a voucher that would be paid to insurance companies. The plan is designed to shift more costs onto seniors while giving insurance companies more control.

The budget would slash support for seniors and the disabled in nursing homes by cutting Medicaid by nearly $800 billion over ten years.

This budget even lays out a plan for making future cuts to Social Security.

These leaders in Congress are so committed to protecting tax breaks for their corporate donors, that they are about to shut down the federal government rather than compromise. Instead, they are demanding a budget that would destroy public services, jobs, K-12 schools, public safety and more.

Enough. Please take a moment to send a message to your member of Congress now. Click here. http://afl.salsalabs.com/dia/track.jsp?v=2&c=zFp8q5VhdL9DKRZe1iPYHtJtMUMH5SJ%2B&url=http%3A%2F%2Faction.afscme.org%2Fc%2F51%2Fp%2Fdia%2Faction%2Fpublic%2F%3Faction_KEY%3D1882%26amp%3Btag%3DAdvE_201104_BackToFuture_blast-32792%26amp%3Btrack%3DAdvE_201104_BackToFuture_blast-32792%26amp%3Butm_source%3Dblast-32792%26amp%3Butm_medium%3Demail%26amp%3Butm_campaign%3D BackToFuture

Thanks for all you do, 

Chuck Loveless

Legislative Director

AFSCME

Budget: Shutdown Averted


Late Friday night, just minutes from an impending government shutdown, congressional negotiators and President Barack Obama reached a deal to fund the government for the rest of the fiscal year, cutting $38.5 billion under current funding levels. House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and other Republicans hailed the deal as an important step to reining in the deficit, while Obama lauded it as a bipartisan achievement, comparing it to the compromise he helped broker late last year on extending the Bush tax cuts for two years. “A few months ago, I was able to sign a tax cut for American families because both parties worked through their differences and found common ground,” he said in a statement. “Now the same cooperation will make possible the biggest annual spending cut in history, and it’s my sincere hope that we can continue to come together as we face the many difficult challenges that lie ahead, from creating jobs and growing our economy to educating our children and reducing our deficit.” To keep the government running, lawmakers passed a short-term spending measure and are preparing to vote on a final agreement later this week.

CUTS DWARFED BY BUSH TAX CUTS: While the details of the deal are still emerging — the agreement would cut $13 billion from programs at the Departments of Labor, Education and Health and Human Services, $1 billion more in an across-the-board cut from domestic agencies and $8 billion in cuts to the State Department and foreign aid — the New York Times reports that negotiations came down to the wire, as Republicans sought to move the goal posts on negotiation and press for greater cuts. On Thursday night, for instance, Obama believed that he “had made a breakthrough in the negotiations, when he told Mr. Boehner that he would sign on to spending cuts of roughly $38 billion — $5 billion more than he had offered two days earlier.” But the following morning, Boehner reneged, saying that he would demand “north of the amount we’d offered the night before.” The demand led to a heated exchange between Obama and Boehner in which the President said, “I’m the president of the United States, you’re the speaker of the House. We’re the two most responsible leaders right now. We had a conversation last night, and what I’m hearing now doesn’t reflect that.” The final agreement of $38.5 billion in spending cuts, however, ia still dwarfed by the lost revenue from extending the Bush tax cuts, which the Republicans loudly championed. That policy deprives the government of roughly $150 billion in revenue over a similar period of time. As Alex Seitz-Wald points out, “So while they very nearly shut down the government to extract painful spending cuts, Republicans had already wiped out those spending cuts many times over with the revenue lost from extending the Bush tax cuts.”

RIDERS REMAIN: Despite securing a significant concession on spending, House Republicans were forced to drop over 40 riders or policy demands — including Rep. Mike Pence’s (R-IN) amendment to defund Planned Parenthood and another provision that would have blocked standards to protect public health from carbon dioxide, mercury, and other toxic pollutants — from the short-term budget bill. Instead, they secured a guarantee that the issue would receive an up or down vote on the Senate floor and kept provision that would prohibit the District of Columbia from using its own funds to pay for abortion services. The rider would not save any additional federal dollars, however, since it only prohibits the District from spending its own locally-raised tax dollars on the procedure, reviving a 13-year ban President Obama overturned in 2009. Washington D.C.’s Congressional delegate, Eleanor Holmes Norton (D), condemned the provision and warned that Republicans may still advance an unresolved measure that would ban on the city from running needle exchange programs and would actually increase spending (a study from Yale University found that needle exchange can reduce government spending by millions of dollars by preventing disease transmission.) “The District is still on the auction block during the final negotiations over the budget bill because Republicans want a ban on the use of D.C. local funds for needle-exchange programs in the package, which would guarantee the spread of HIV/AIDS among our citizens,” Norton said. Another rider secured by Republicans would also reinstate a school voucher program in D.C. and make small changes in the Affordable Care Act.

THE NEXT FIGHT: Over the weekend, Republicans reiterated that the short-term funding negotiations were only a dress rehearsal for the looming fight over an increase in the debt ceiling. Boehner insisted on Saturday that there is “not a chance” Republicans will deliver a “clean bill” to raise the debt ceiling and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) predicted that “the White House and the president will actually capitulate” and agree to “spending caps, entitlement reforms, budget process reforms ” in the debt limit increase. It is widely understood, however, that failing to raise the debt ceiling on schedule could have immediate and dire consequences for government services and the global economy. As the Center for American Progress’ David Min has pointed out, it would force an immediate cut of approximately 40 percent to all activities of the federal government — a severe blow to our already struggling economy. It could also erode confidence in U.S. Treasury bonds, causing interest rates to spike and the possible destabilization of global financial markets. If investor confidence is eroded and Treasury rates go up, the higher costs of debt maintenance would counteract (and potentially could even be larger than) any spending cuts at issue. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) has acknowledged as much, as has Boehner, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), and conservative columnist George Will . This has not prevented many GOP lawmakers from threatening to vote down an increase in the debt limit if their partisan demands are not met. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has said there can be no increase without entitlement cuts and Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) demanded an implicit 44 percent cut in all government programs in exchange for an increase.

Save money and energy with these Earth-friendly tips


Eco-friendly Tips for Your Computer

Keeping your PC Green

 These days, many of us are looking for ways to conserve energy, both to help the environment and to save some cash: buying energy-efficient light bulbs and appliances, adjusting the thermostat, and trying to “reduce, reuse and recycle” where we can.

But we may be overlooking one thing that can be a huge energy drain, increasing our monthly utility bills and needlessly filling up landfills—our computers.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Western Sustainability and Pollution Prevention Network (WSPPN), Americans:

•Generate more than five billion pounds of computer waste. (EPA)

•Dump 82 percent of computers in landfills instead of recycling them; in 2007 alone, more than 40 million computers were dumped. (EPA)

•On average, discard their PC after only 30 months of use. (WSPPN)

Here are some easy steps you can take to keep your PC green and energy-efficient: you can help protect the environment and save yourself some money at the same time.

Turn off your monitor

A monitor uses a lot of energy, more than you may realize—it accounts for roughly a third of the electrical usage of your entire computer.

Configure your monitor’s sleep feature to automatically power down when you’re away from the computer (look for “Power Options” in the Control Panel). This sleep mode still uses some energy, so at the end of the day or if you’ll be away from your computer for awhile, turn off the monitor.

NOTE: You also may want to consider lowering the brightness of your monitor; the brighter your display, the more energy it uses. And there may be an added bonus: some people have reported that a dimmer display reduces eye strain.

Turn off your screensaver

Screensavers were originally designed to protect older monochromatic monitors, a type of monitor that’s rarely seen anymore. Newer monitors, such as those that use LCD or LED technology, don’t need screensavers at all.

Animated screensavers can be fun but they consume as much energy as a monitor in use, not to mention wasting CPU and memory power and unnecessarily heating up your PC, which in turn requires more fan power to keep it cool: it’s a domino effect that all adds up to a needless drain of energy.

Turn off the screensaver. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), turning off the screensaver can save you from $25 to $75 a year on energy costs. This may not seem like a lot, but think of it a different way: it’s like getting a $50 check for your birthday every year just by turning off something you don’t need—your screensaver.

Use energy-saving modes

Many people leave their computers powered on around-the-clock—often, this is to avoid a lengthy boot-up process, but sometimes we want to leave our PCs on so we can access them remotely or so that automated maintenance processes can run.

TIP: If you find yourself frustrated with how long it takes your computer to boot up, it may be time to clean it out: your PC’s startup process can easily become clogged with a lot of programs you don’t really need. Read more about how you can speed up your PC’s start-up time.

One way to combine energy conservation with the convenience of an “always-on” PC is to enable standby or hibernate mode (also one of the “Power Options” in Windows). With these energy-saving modes, you can set your PC to ‘sleep’ after it’s been idle a certain amount of time, and the computer will only ‘wake up’ when you return or when it’s running maintenance tasks.

So what’s the difference between standby and hibernate?

•Standby: With standby mode, your PC uses very little power; some is still used, but the power to items such as your monitor and hard drive is cut. When you come back to your PC, you’ll be up and running quickly, but your computer will be using more energy than the hibernate mode.

•Hibernate: With hibernate mode, your PC is not using any power at all. Of the two, this mode definitely saves the most energy, but the time it takes for everything to power up will be a bit longer.

TIP: An always-on PC not only uses energy; it can also take a big hit on performance. This is because a PC that’s always powered on saves data into memory—and when your PC is low on memory, everything suffers.

To avoid this memory overload, restart your computer every few days and defragment the memory about once a month. Defragmentation reclaims valuable memory and improves PC efficiency, stability, and speed: performance goes up, energy usage goes down. Read more about how memory defragmentation improves performance. Keep your PC tuned

For any of your appliances, proper maintenance reduces waste, and the same holds true for computers. Much like a car, a properly tuned computer can run more efficiently: a lean PC uses less electricity and performs much better.

Over time, PCs get bloated and inefficient: settings become outdated as you add and remove programs, clutter is left behind from web surfing, resource-hogging startup commands are needlessly running. This PC detritus that builds up through daily use acts like “friction” on your computer—and the end result is that everything your computer does requires more effort, takes more time, generates more heat, and wastes more power.

TIP: The common problems that can overtax your computer’s resources and waste energy can be easily resolved with a good PC tune-up software program. Read more about how PC tune-ups can reverse performance problems.

And an added benefit: by keeping your current PC in good running condition, you’ll also be able to hold on to it longer, saving you the costly expense of a new computer.

Recycle your old PC

Eventually the day will come when you’re ready to say goodbye to your old computer. When that happens, rather than throwing your PC away and adding to the world’s growing waste problem, why not recycle it? Research by the EPA found that in 2007 only 15% of discarded computers were recycled. And many of the computers that ended up in landfills could have benefited our community by being donated to charities, schools, or other non-profit groups.

If you’re not sure where you can recycle or donate your computer, the non-profit organization TechSoup provides links to recycling and refurbishing resources that accept computer donations: www.techsoup.org/recycle/donate

NOTE: Before you give your computer away, it’s critical that you securely delete all your personal information. Just deleting files, or even formatting the drive, isn’t enough—someone using easily available software can still recover the files. (Read more about why deleting files doesn’t permanently erase them.) To securely delete your information, use data wiping software, which uses overwrite technologies that prevent data from being recovered. Buy green

If you’re in the market for a new PC, do some research before you buy: many computer manufacturers, including Dell, HP, Acer, and others, now offer “green” models that use less energy, have more reusable/rechargeable components, or use recycled material.

And your best bet may be to choose a laptop over a desktop. In order to optimize battery usage, most laptops have energy-efficient features built-in: a laptop can use up to 50% less electricity than a desktop machine.

TIP: If you only use your computer at home, you could consider setting up your laptop like a desktop, with a “full size” monitor, mouse, and keyboard attached.

 

UpToSpeed™ is iolo’s ongoing article series written by PC experts for everyday computer users. Each article is packed with easy tips and practical advice on the latest issues affecting computers to help you get the most out of your PC.

Monday mashup & some News


my rant …I find it amusing to see how easy folks seem to throw out labels to describe President Obama’s actions in a time when the jig is up so to speak. The Republican Tea Party plans to reinvent America on the backs of the Middle and Lower Classes, yet our professional left keeps telling the public he might as well be a republican. While i totally disagree I don’t have the same platform as this seemingly wishy washy group. I hope everyone who is in for the 2012 listens to the President lay out the Budget he wants, expect it to hurt some and then goes forth to let everyone know what is fact fiction and what the word compromise does or can do for America 

The facts about what actually got us into a downward spiral toward a complete economic crash need reiteration constantly. I have to say that is offensive by itself but when our President has to go through this nonsense almost on a daily basis without support by our own political party It makes me wonder what kind of BS is going on behind closed doors. The Democratic Party should meet, come up with a strategy instead of subscribing to everyone for themselves attitude or at least try. I personally did not see any kind of solidarity and that is why “We the People” lost the House of Representatives. The Democratic Party, upon the beginning Session of Congress of President Obama seemed to have been completely distracted by the November midterms, got barely a thing done and or ran from him when he needed support. The filibusters, reduction in JOB bills, amendments no one in good faith could vote on has made this voter lose confidence in whatever fight we can be sure this Democratic Party is going to engage in or is willing to put up in good conscious for Americans against those who are not paying their fair share.

If you need a reminder, shorter version is that Wall Street’s creative accounting procedures finally came to an ugly head. To get the full story you definitely need to watch the video”: House of cards” by David Faber on Cnbc. It is, was, and continues to be a cruel reminder and or a rude awakening at how greed affects the mind and actions of some who feel above the law. It is a truthful documentation of the nasty journey our economy took and explained in detail who engaged in such awful behavior and how it (they) brought all of us down with them. If we have to subscribe to labels, call me a Marxist who believes in Socialism at this time. We need someone who cares, who is socially responsible and who believes the gap between the haves and have none needs to shrink. I might be a part of a small percentage of folks so school me; what could be wrong with caring for ALL of the people in our country and not just the top 2%.

The fact is our top 2% has money to throw around and yes some of these folks do create jobs but most who call themselves CEO’s continue to outsource jobs. The rich and the Republican Tea Party have been wheeling and dealing with the countries money since the house of bush walked into a surplus left by Clinton. Then they proceeded to wage 2Wars gave out 2Tax breaks and the only thing that trickled down to main street was pain,bankruptcy and more pain … gotta admit it’s time for a change but it can only happen if our President has support from our Democratic members of Congress to help and this voter is beginning to wonder.

Obama is neither a socialist nor a Marxist okay and contrary to the noise coming from the professional left, this President is not a Republican either but then we have the professional left to help folks lean further right with all this rhetoric … sigh

Other News …

**President Obama will let Americans know what his take on the Budget should be

**Stocks …higher with corporate deals continuing to take place

**

**More earthquakes in Japan, the latest today was 6.6

**The french finally capture Gbagbo

**A french woman defies burqa ban

**Powerful yakuza boss released from prison

**Libyan rebels protest over African Union peace misison

**Is the PaulRyam Budget plan a great target for President Obama?

**Palin supports Trump on Birther issue

**Americans are cutting back on driving

**Long Island serial killer taunts ..says he is not done

**Britney & Rhianna team up for S/M remix

*Tornadoes come thru more storms coming thru Midwest

**

CSPAN

 Congress takes up spending agreement, 2012 budget this week

President to address Deficit on Wednesday

http://c-span.org/Events/Congress-takes-up-spending-agreement-2012-budget-this-week/10737420806/

Aspen Institute Looks at the State of Race in America

All day conference

http://c-span.org/Events/Aspen-Institute-Looks-at-the-State-of-Race-in-America/10737420805/

Wartime Contracting Commission on NGOs and PRTs

http://c-span.org/Events/Wartime-Contracting-Commission-on-NGOs-and-PRTs/10737420804/

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Commissioner Robert McDowell (R) discuss proposed deal between AT&T and T-Mobile, Congressional efforts on the FCC’s net neutrality regulations, the Commission’s efforts on broadband expansion and demands for broadcast spectrum not only for wireless devices but also for emergency communications. http://c-span.org/Events/FCC-Commissioner-Robert-McDowell-R/10737420797/    

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen told reporters in Brussels that any cease-fire in Libya must be credible and verifiable. He was responding to questions about the African Union’s recent negotiations in Libya. He also said that Gadhafi’s regime has announced cease-fires before but they have never been implemented. http://c-span.org/Events/NATO-News-Conference-on-Libya/10737420820/