Thursday, April 28, 2011
Thursday, April 7, 2011
Thursday, March 31, 2011
Monday, March 28, 2011
Friday, March 25, 2011
More than 200 demonstrators crowded into the offices of the Maine Department of Labor on Friday morning to protest Gov. Paul LePage’s planned removal of a labor-themed mural from the building’s lobby.
The small lobby that houses the actual mural, however, was no match for the crowd, which instead was forced to line the hallways to listen to speakers express their thoughts — ranging from dismay to outrage — at the Republican governor’s order.
Does the Governor even care how stupid and petty he looks? He must a little, because he is proposing to move the mural to Portland City Hall. Does that even make sense? Hmm...a mural honoring MAINE'S labor history, with scenes from Lewiston, Auburn, Bath, etc., will be removed from the DEPARTMENT OF LABOR and placed in Portland City Hall. Is there a single scene on the mural that even depicts Portland? Regardless, it's obviously a work of art dedicated to the state as a whole, not to one ultra-liberal city.
I guarantee you that the fat coward will not have the guts to actually go through with this.
Thursday, March 24, 2011
Dana Connors, president of the Maine State Chamber of Commerce, said he has not received any complaints about the mural from businesses.
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
A student-led rally is being organized to support teachers during Gov. Paul LePage's visit Thursday to the University of Maine at Farmington.
A group of education majors has been scrambling to spread the word after learning a little more than a week ago about the governor's visit, according to Grady Burns, one of the 12 students behind the rally.
"It's kind of sending a chilling effect through education majors," Burns, 20, said of the governor's proposals and others like it across the country. "It's kind of a frightening time to be an education major."
Indeed it is a frightening time to be an education major or a public educator. But, more broadly, it is a frightening time to be a member of the middle class. As the right wing ascendant Tea Party gibberish caucus declares full scale war on the middle class, it will take instances both large and small of people willing to speak out and say: "actually, no, the problem with this country is NOT that the middle class have it too damn good."
It's sad to see how budgetary chicken littles have frightened people into accepting the necessity of their own debasement. I'm glad to see UMF students not buying it.
In addition, maybe Chompy the Beaver can gnaw on LePage's head.
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Gov. Paul LePage's proposed $6.1 billion budget calls for most public employees and teachers to contribute an additional 2 percent into their pensions. The administration has described the proposal as a "shared sacrifice" plan designed to plug the state's budget gap.
But LePage's decision not to contribute more to his own pension benefit has prompted critics to claim the governor has exempted himself from his budget mantra while missing an opportunity to lead by example.
By now it's clear what philosophy governs this fucking asshole's politics. The working class in Maine just have it TOO DAMN GOOD and need to SACRIFICE dammit for the good of...the good of...uh...wealthy business owners, I guess...and members of the Chamber of Commerce. As for LePage? Well, of course he shouldn't have his pension contribution upped. He was a powerful executive at Marden's and created quadrillions of minimum wage jobs. If anything, he should get a big fat bonus check from the state of Maine for keeping so many people off the dole.
Meanwhile, despite his spittle-flecked ranting about sacrifice and deficits, taxes for the rich (i.e. state revenue) will go down down down under LePage's plan....and that will create jobs instead of nicer yachts in Kennebunkport because...um...a wizard did it.
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
Tuesday, March 1, 2011
“Forcing a worker to join an organization as a condition of employment runs counter to the rights described in our Declaration of Independence,” LePage said in his Saturday radio address. “For many in Maine there is no freedom of choice when it comes to union membership. I think that needs to change and I look forward to a fair but honest debate on the matter.”
First of all, this guy is a freaking idiot. No one is forced to join a union. They can be required to pay dues, but federal law prohibits "forcing a worker to join an organization as a condition of employment." So ignore his pablum about the Deceleration of Independence.
Second, is this guy serious? We are talking about a state where 5.5 percent of the workforce is employed by the state government, and he is going to try to strip them of their collective bargaining rights? If this really, truly happens, then election day 2014 (hurry!) will be an even bigger bloodbath than I'm already anticipating.
How sad is it that we have a governor who has bought into the bullshit notion that the real problem with this country is that the middle class just have it too damn good? Really, this fat-faced crony of Chamber flunkies is running up and down the state trying to convince people that all we need to do to fix our problems is get rid of everything that makes life in this state suck less than it surely could: environmental protection, social assistance and public healthcare programs, good paying public sector jobs backed by strong unions...what's next? Is LePage going to sell all our lobstering waters to New Hampshire?
I'll just say this: if LePage picks a fight on collective bargaining he will get his ample ass HANDED to him. Even the Republicans in the state house aren't that dumb.
Thursday, February 24, 2011
Now, I've made my fair share of cracks about the women of Maine not exactly being the women of Malibu...but Paul LePage seems to think lifting the restrictions on a harmful chemical won't be a big deal, even if it causes an explosion in female facial hair:
"The only thing that I've heard is if you take a plastic bottle and put it in the microwave and you heat it up, it gives off a chemical similar to estrogen. So the worst case is some women may have little beards."
Let's forget for a second the stupidity of this sentence (one scientist called the comments a "callous disregard" for facts and a "shocking ingorance"), does LePage think this is actually funny? Does he can laugh away restrictions on a dangerous chemical to line the pockets of rich industrialists? Maybe he thinks a few more bearded women will goose the finances of the state's waxing industry.
Let's remember the facts: BPA, according to the FDA, may adversely effect "brain, behavior, and prostate gland in fetuses, infants, and young children." Also, in large quantities it can lead to catastrophic incidences of hormone imbalance, like the lady above.
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Instead, I propose that the official state desert be nothing other than the humble blueberry pie. Delicious, undeniably Maine, and made from a wild product of Maine's natural abundance.
Tuesday, February 15, 2011
Friday, February 11, 2011
Tuesday, February 8, 2011
Friday, January 28, 2011
Thursday, January 27, 2011
Many of those in attendance made the point that LePage's "pro-business" stance is actually a direct threat to Maine's #1 drawing point: its pristine natural environment and the tourism that it brings:
It will be interesting to see what kind of reaction LePage's proposals get outside of the Chamber crowd. Most Mainers, especially those in the populous and popular coastal areas, understand that one of the few things separating Maine from the Appalachian poverty of western New York, rural Pennsylvania, Kentucky, West Virginia, etc. is the commerce driven by environmental tourism. You know, that whole Vacationland thing? And it's not just a money issue either. Mainers are proud of their states beauty, and rightfully so. Sorry, but we don't want Slurm industrial byproducts dumped into Casco Bay. I very much hope that the very predictable backlash will give Governor LePage pause.
“Please don’t gut what we’ve got,” said Diane Allmayer-Beck of Belfast. “We have the most beautiful state in the union. Don’t ruin it.”...
“The unofficial slogan of Maine is if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” said Marina Delune, a Belfast city councilor. “As a native Mainer, I would urge you to be very careful about gutting any regulations that are protecting our state. … Our livelihood depends on the beauty of our state.”
Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
This has been another edition of simple answers to stupid quetsions.
Gov. Paul LePage has proposed zoning 10 million acres of northern Maine for development, repealing laws that require manufacturers to take back recyclable goods for disposal and reversing a ban on the use of a chemical linked to cancer in children's products.
LePage's proposals are based on a series of "red tape workshops" the administration is holding with chambers of commerce to identify government rules that may dampen the state's business climate.
Thursday, January 20, 2011
Representatives of an array of resource-oriented businesses and activities are meeting today with Gov. Paul LePage and his senior staff at a Roundtable on Maine People and the Environment.
LePage said liberals who have wanted to “close the woods off” and advocate the preservation of wild lands have attended public hearings and gotten restrictive measures passed. Now, the governor said, it’s time to have business people show up and be heard. He encouraged association members to attend upcoming public hearings before the Legislature...
Gov. Paul LePage is no racist. At least not in any classical sense of the word.
Instead, his conduct suggests a lack of awareness or concern with the larger world outside the small circle of mostly older white men he has surrounded himself with. He appears to see little value in understanding perspectives different than his own.
I would say this viewpoint meshes more or less with my own. LePage is a man of limited cultural experience, limited political viewpoints, a limited worldview, and incredibly narrow and provincial idea of how society should work. For LePage, a black advocacy group represents the "other": a somehow threatening and misguided "other." The experience of all Mainers should be as his experience, and anyone whose experience varies must be doing it wrong.
I can think of no other explanation for why a rational human being would not only tell a civil rights organization to kiss his butt, but who would then make up lies that sound like the projections of right-wing fantasyland: where all minorities are out to shake down whites for free stuff, and all blacks are receiving preferential treatment that is worthy of resentment.
Just go to freerepublic.com and read what they have to say about Obama's accomplishments. He only got into Columbia and Harvard because of affirmative action, etc. A white person with his credentials would have gone nowhere, etc. He's had everything handed to him, blah blah blah. We heard the exact same canard about Sonya Sotomayor. In both cases, as with LePage's embarrassing conduct toward the NAACP, we see the smug self satisfaction of indivduals incapable of understanding the varieties of cultural and racial experience in this country, who see any way but their own as somehow unworthy of credit or praise, and who see any intimation that racial inequality might exist in this country as playing the "race card" (whatever the hell that even means).
Of course, Maine is 99.9999999 percent white, so LePage's provincialism may find an eagerly assenting audience. But he sure as hell makes Maine look bad to the rest of the nation.
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Afterward, LePage identified several state agencies that had been the focal point of frustration, including the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Environmental Protection and the Department of Labor.
LePage has vowed to change not only the regulatory environment, but what he says is an "adversarial" attitude some agencies have toward businesses.
Ok, so let's see here: destroy environmental protections. Check. Dismantle the social safety net. Check. Abolish protections for working people. Right-O.
When LePage decries "special interests," how does he keep from bursting out laughing? This is a guy who appointed a developer to head the Department of Environmental Protection!
Now, I don't want to come off as some NIMBY anti-development luddite here. I think development is good. But the notion that if "business leader" and "developers" support something then it is, ipso facto, a good thing is pure nonsense. Maine is one of America's great natural treasures: will it still be after four years of LePage's wrecking ball?
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
Saturday, January 15, 2011
“They invited me to go to the state prison to meet black prisoners and I told them I would go, but that I would meet all prisoners, and that wasn’t acceptable to them. So tough luck.”