Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Pride Month Protest

     We all know that this month is Pride Month. And with celebrating and embracing all that we are, in supporting our friends and our family, in fighting against ignorance and hatred, we must remember that we cannot simply show up for a Pride Parade once a year and then try to assimilate into the heterosexual culture. We have to be smart. Not only in who we vote for, but also in where we shop. Target, for example, we can all enjoy that place, can’t we? Decent clothes, music, D.V.D.s, books, magazines and even video games, all in one place. Better selection then K-Mart without the corporate evils of Walmart, right?
     Well, almost. Actually, they contributed money, $150,000, to MN Forward (Minnesota Forward is a political action group that is funded by local corporations. Its mission statement says that, "MN Forward is an effort by Minnesota job providers to elect a governor and state legislators who understand the importance of creating private-sector jobs and economic opportunity in our state."). MN Forward then used the money to run television ads* for Minnesota gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer, who, along with being well known for his anti - gay beliefs, has also himself contributed $250 to a Christian rock band that has been known to speak harshly of gays (The band’s name is: Junkyard Prophet). He said on his campaign website, “As a legislator, I have consistently supported the constitutional marriage amendment that protects traditional marriage.”

     Target is quoted as saying, “Our support of causes and candidates is based strictly on issues that affect our retail and business objectives.”
     Still, Target is not alone. There's also Best Buy, which is a good place for C.D.s, D.V.D.s and all your electronic or entertainment needs, right? Only if you like to entertain the idea that they spent $100,000 supporting Tom Emmer and MN Forward. So, what Target and Best Buy are telling you, the LGBTQIAP community is that, “We like you and all, but, uh, our profit margin is more important then you.”
     Is that the place you want to spend your money? My high school Economics teacher (or maybe it was my Accounting teacher, I’m unsure) once said, “You vote with your money.”
     Of course, you might be asking, “But Alexander, where do I go to get the stuff I normally buy at those stores (Target and Best Buy)?”
     I am still up to my eyeballs in researching these companies and corporations, but if you are going to ‘vote with your money,’ I would say places like K-Mart, Radioshack, FYE and Hot Topic would be good places to go. Are they the easiest and the cheapest choices to make? Maybe not. Are they principled? Yes. Would shopping at these locations instead of Target or Best Buy show respect for yourself, your friends, your families and your peers? Absolutely! So! Do the entire LGBTQIAP community, and yourself, a favor, and if you are going to shop, shop responsibly this Pride month, and every day, month and year that follows.

     And as kind of an after thought. Don’t shop in silence. Feel free to talk to your friends, family, neighbors and co - workers. If we are going to protests these people for the homophobic and close minded decisions they have made, we must do it on a grand scale.

* MN Forward actually donated 97% of its $1.9 million in contributions toward supporting Emmer.

With Great Hope,

Alexander Fisher

Friday, June 10, 2011

CNN/WMUR/Union Leader hosted Debate Voter's Guide

The second debate of the season is fast approaching on June 13th, 2011. Following FOX’s first debate, this CNN/WMUR/Union Leader hosted debate is doing well to be exclusive. Being sure to cater only to the big names: Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Herman Cain, Rick Santorum, Tim Pawlenty, Mitt Romney and Michele Bachmann are up to the plate on this next debate and even Sarah Palin, who has made no move toward a campaign or an announcement, was invited! Sarah Palin’s invitation proves that this is all just a horse race, that the mainstream media is doing this for profits and for ratings. They want only the “finest”, only the “best” of candidates, the ones who poll well, to participate in their debate.

Doesn’t that seem counterintuitive to their ‘Inform the Voter’ ideology? Or is that just some faux ideal they spew to impress their television audience into sticking around past the first commercial break? Whatever it is, in protest of it, I’ve decided to make a debate specific Voter’s Guide dedicated to three decent candidates who were purposefully neglected due to their small name status and their inability to run well in this Great American Horse Race.

What: CNN/WMUR GOP Primary Debate

When: Monday, June 13th, 2011

8 – 10 P.M. ET

            Where: New Hampshire


Newt Gingrich

Ron Paul

Herman Cain

Rick Santorum

Tim Pawlenty

Mitt Romney

Michele Bachmann

People who rejected invitations:

                                                            Donald Trump

                                                            Mike Huckabee

                                                            Sarah Palin

                                                            Jon Huntsman

                                                            Rudy Guiliani

Candidates who deserve to be invited:

                                                            Fred Karger

                                                            Buddy Roemer

                                                            Gary Johnson

Fred Karger

Where he stands on the issues:

-Keep jobs in America

-Believes in the private sector

-Public-private partnership in urban high schools

-Surge out of both Iraq and Afghanistan

About Fred Karger:

-He has never held elected or public office

-He won the Saint Anselm College Republicans Presidential Straw Poll, the mainstream media, however, gave the victory to supposed frontrunner Mitt Romney

Quotes from Fred Karger:

-“I am a fiscal conservative; I come from a finance background.”

-“We need to compete and we need to keep kids in school.”

-“The Public Charter School phenomenon is a huge boost to education.”

-“I see The National Teachers’ Unions as one of the huge problems [in education]. Teachers unions concentrate on job preservation and it’s slowing down progress.”

-“We just don’t go nation – build like President Obama is doing in Afghanistan.”

-“Israel is our greatest ally in the Middle East and must be defended at all cost.”

-“I want a path to citizenship for immigrants already living in the country.”

-“We must end our dependence on foreign oil.”

-“We need to explore alternative energy, wind and solar power.”

-“Lower the legal voting age in the United States to either 16 or 17 years old.”

-“I will work hard to end Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and eliminate the Federal Defense of Marriage Act.”

-“Roe v. Wade is the law of the land.”

- “I’m a firm believer in a woman’s right to choose.”

-“I believe in the Republican philosophy of less government, keep government out of our lives. That is a very personal, private choice between a woman, her doctor, her family and her faith.”

-“We should move to legalize and tax marijuana.” – “I think that the current [marijuana] laws are onerous and tying up our prison system.”

Buddy Roemer

Where he stands on the issues:

-Control federal spending

-Strive for energy independence by the end of the decade

-Bring our Armed Forces home from “oil” duty (quotes his)

-Make the tax code simpler and eliminate corporate and Wall Street Welfare

-Change the healthcare law to eliminate money favors to insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies

-Make sure Wall Street’s gambles don’t impact main street taxpayers

About Buddy Roemer:

-Governor Roemer served four terms in the United States Congress from 1981 – 1988 as a Conservative Democrat

-Was Louisiana Governor from 1988 – 1992 as both a Democrat and Republican.

-During his tenure in the Governor’s office, unemployment in the state dropped by approximately half, the state budget was balanced all years despite inheriting a huge deficit, teacher pay was linked to performance, education accountability standards were enacted, government unions were challenged, and sweeping campaign finance reform legislation was passed

-In Congress, Roemer frequently supported Reagan policy initiatives and fought with the Democratic Congressional leadership

-Vetoed a pro-life bill - said that the bill, which would have banned abortion in cases of incest, was incompatible with the United States Supreme Court decision Roe v. Wade.

-Legalized fifteen floating casinos throughout Louisiana and video poker at bars and truck stops throughout the state.

Quotes from Buddy Roemer:

-“I will accept no contribution greater than one hundred dollars.”

-“I want a President who is free to lead.”

Gary Johnson

Where he stands on the issues:

-Bring the troops home

-No criminal or terrorist suspect captured by the U.S. should be subject to physical or psychological torture

-The PATRIOT Act should be allowed to expire

-Habeus Corpus should be respected entirely

-It’s time to end excessive spending, bloated stimulus programs, unnecessary farm subsidies, and earmarks

-Get the Federal Reserve out of the business of printing money and buying debt through quantitative easing

-Cut spending, cut taxes; reduce federal involvement in the economy

-End the Department of Education

-Simplify Legal Immigration

-Enforce a ‘One Strike, You’re out’ rule for immigrants who circumvent the streamlined work visa process

-Impose and enforce sanctions on employers for noncompliance with immigration laws.

About Gary Johnson:

-Two terms as New Mexico’s governor and is best known for his common – sense, up – front and honest approach to public service.

Quotes from Gary Johnson:

-“I’m committed to the cause of less government, greater liberty and lasting peace and prosperity for all Americans.”

-“I don’t believe in raising taxes. Lowering taxes and balancing the federal budget will stimulate a new era of prosperity.”

-“I do not favor the legalization and lawful distribution of harder drugs [than marijuana], but I believe their use should be dealt with as a health issue – not a criminal justice issue.”

-“An Internet free of regulation and taxation has produced innovation and enhancements to quality of life almost unparalleled in human history.”


Monday, June 6, 2011

May 2011 Voter's Guide

     I’m a little late this month, but I think it’s a good thing, because May has been a busy month for the Presidential field. I’ve had time to learn and research and study. Now I have a new format that takes a little more reading, but a lot less link following, which I hope, is reader friendly. As always, feedback, thoughts and opinions are welcome, and you’re welcome to forward this a million times.
- Alexander Fisher
Friday, May 27, 2011
GOP Field Widens:
Herman Cain – Self proclaimed “Black Horse Candidate”, claims to offer “Common Sense Solutions”
Newt Gingrich – Former Speaker of the House during the Clinton Administration – Favorable among social conservatives due to his five failed marriages
Gary Johnson – Relatively unknown former governor of New Mexico who admitted to smoking marijuana in first GOP debate
Fred Karger – Unknown candidate who not only worked on nine presidential campaigns but served as a senior consultant to the campaigns of Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and Gerald Ford
Ron Paul – Supposed Libertarian making his third attempt at running for President. He has failed to either win the presidency as a Libertarian (1988) or to win the Republican nomination for president (2008)
Tim Pawlenty – Believes that the American people need to be told the truth, believes he is the one to do it
Buddy Roemer – Former governor of Louisiana who has been interviewed by C – SPAN but didn’t meet the requirements to be in the first GOP debate. He went from being a democrat to being a republican in 1991
Mitt Romney – A potential front runner who is most known for the universal healthcare plan he enacted as governor of Massachusetts . This is his second attempt to get the Republican nomination for President of the United States

Donald Trump – Enjoys seeing himself on T.V. too much to be limited to press conferences
Mike Huckabee – Probably gets paid WAY too much by FOX… Just saying…
Mitch Daniels – I’m not going to lie…. I have no idea, Governors have won the seat before, and so I guess it comes down to his supporters wanting it more than him

Exploratory Phase:
Rick Santorum – Former senator of Pennsylvania . He has about as much attention as Pawlenty, probably hopes to be able to garner as much support as the last Senator to run for President…

Possible Announcers:
Sarah Palin – Because in Alaska , it’s not enough to quit, you have to quit with the expectation of getting a promotion
Jon Hunstman – Thinks he can win a Republican nomination by saying he think America can be like China
Michele Bachmann – Amy Kremer, Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann got together one night, got rip roaring drunk, burnt their bras and decided two of them were going to run for President. Amy Kremer was the only one who was busy
Rick Perry – The Mitch Daniels of possible announcers
With all the ‘Tea Party Favorites’ going out for the GOP nomination, it’ll be interesting to see what role the Tea Party will play in the 2012 campaign and election cycles and seasons.

Of the one hundred thirty – eight candidates for president filed with the FEC, sixty – five are Republican candidates, sixteen are Democratic candidates, twenty – five are independent and twenty – eight are either ‘other’, ‘none’ or ‘unknown.’ There’s one Libertarian candidate, one Green Party candidate, one Citizen’s Party candidate and one American Independent Party candidate.
      Needless to say, I’d believe that the American people have their choices. Still of the sixty – five Republicans, I predict that people will pay attention to thirteen, and probably less. Of the sixteen Democrats, only President Obama will get any real attention. As for the other fifty – seven candidates? Some will get zero percent of the votes, and others will get percentages so small that your high school math teacher will get a headache. Is it because their lazy? Or even because they didn’t try to reach the American people? Let’s be honest here, the reason the other fifty – seven don’t get the vote is because we don’t hear talking heads, pundits, talk show hosts and anchors throwing their names around. Their faces don’t make it on the cover of TIME magazine and they can’t afford campaign ads. The Democrats and Republicans who can afford campaign ads not only get money from donors, but may receive tax payer dollars from tax payers who oppose them.
      But, in all fairness to the tax payers, your money doesn’t go to third party candidates because they don’t garner enough votes. Which means, of course, that while the (R)s and the (D)s mudsling with your money, whether you donate or not, the third party candidates are left fund less, with little or no way to get your attention, to get the vote it takes, to get the money it cost to get your attention. But don’t let radical conspiracy theorists lead you to believe our democratic republic is tainted with and controlled by a two party system, because that would just be irrational.
      So, I have to ask, how many of you watched the first GOP debate? How many of you know the issues or candidates? How many of you just don’t care? There are eighteen months until the general election. Eighteen months where conservatives will suffer infighting while trying to simultaneously join together to defeat President Obama. Eighteen months where third parties will fight for ballot access and attention. Eighteen months where Glenn Beck and John Boehner will cry for their country, while Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert will laugh. Eighteen months where President Obama will balance campaigning with being a president. And what will you do for the next eighteen months?
      Assure yourself that there’s nothing you can do? Simply vote in the primary and general elections with no fight? You may end up not voting at all, which would be kind of funny, but, the choice is ultimately yours.
- Alexander Fisher
(P.S. Sorry if the hyperlinks don't work.)

"Why Don't You Cut Your Hair?!"

     Some people say that one day I will have to cut my hair. That it is in fact, “Part of growing up.” What is this growing up process? What does it entail for me? Becoming an indentured servant to the system by accumulating mass debt for a college education? A college education that will what? Lead me to plug and chug sound bites into AP format for some billion dollar media PR for the military – industrial complex? I have to cut my hair and wear designer names so I can what? Become a walking billboard for the consumer – capitalist culture that only gives a shit about me if I’m throwing money I don’t have into it?

            But of course you have to cut your hair, go to college, get a job, buy a house and have a family! Your hair is a sign of independence and self – respect, and in the war to turn you into a robot, those will always be the first to go. Then they push you off to college, where they promise you that you will become your own person – bigger, better, smarter and more independent. But what kind of independence is this? Where you owe them a hundred thousand dollars and are completely DEPENDENT on their crumbling and failing job market and economy. An independence where every dollar you get they gave you, and you inevitably feed it back into their system for whatever hormones and preservatives and shit – chemicals they have the good graces to allow you to digest.

            Now you’ve graduated college and they encourage you to get a job. Again they sell you ideals of freedom and independence. But what actually happens? Regardless of your profession, you are making a product for them, feeding their system, brain washing or pacifying their robots, other robots, like you, pacified, like you. You may argue, “But I’m making good money, I can afford the things I’ve always wanted.”

            And I ask, you spent your entire youth hungry for a bigger flat screen, a flatter IPhone, louder surround sound, over priced coffee and shit news that reads as if written by Orwell’s Wilson himself? Somehow I doubt it, but when in doubt and debt, buy more and more stuff. Drown your emptiness in alcohol and keep yourself blinded to reality behind cigarette smoke. Go for it.

            Next! Your house - a two story cage on a half acre of land. Isn’t the system so nice to give you a half acre?! You and your neighbor almost have enough room to piss off your back porches without hitting each other. And that’s if you’re lucky enough to live in suburbia, instead of being stuck in some apartment. After all, isn’t it part of the “American Dream” to own a house, as opposed to renting an apartment? I know it is for my dad. And by time he dies, his life insurance might pay off his mortgage and, if the Will stays the same, I will own a small piece of land the government can take from me at any moment. How fortunate am I? Every day I wonder how long it will be till private, money – hungry, contractors come to try to buy my dad’s three acres from him so they can build suburbia up around his house. The forest, nature, Mother Earth or my father be damned. There needs to be more room for more people, so they can accumulate more debt and buy and make more stuff and be stuck, slaves to the system.

            At this point, do I have to even elaborate on why the system wants us all to have kids? They need us to have kids. Our kids will make the future robots, the future indentured servants, the future slaves.

            So, pardon me if I’m a little resilient to your ideas of me cutting my hair and your requests of my need to ‘Eventually grow up.’ I’m a little turned off by the idea of becoming another mindless, heartless, soulless robot in your system.

Always Standing in Defiance

- Alexander Fisher