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Welcome to I’m With the Band!

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Welcome to I’m with the Band! My little piece of the Internet about the issues affecting us in the U.S., along with my ramblings, my travels, issues affecting our lives in general. I’m a writer, but it’s my second career. I’m a former college professor of finance and business in general. I write about those topics, but I also write about politics, education, and other issues affecting all of us. Mostly, I write about whatever is affecting me at the moment. So this is a blog and a journal. Join in and let’s talk!

What’s Wrong With People….and Me?

At the end of this long day, I find myself disgruntled with people. That happens more and more these days. People don’t live up to my expectations, but why should they? They are MY expectations and nothing they should have to live up to. The older I get, the more disappointed I get in people. Let’s take politics. How did we come to this place in our country in July of 2019? We have an incompetent, possibly criminal President and a Senate who is so determined to be re-elected so that they may continue to line their pockets with the money of lobbyists that they will do nothing to help remove him from office. Then, we have the opposition party, the Democrats, split into two factions which probably will mean they can’t defeat the incumbent President in November 2020. The Democrats should know that such a progressive agenda will never fly in the Land of Trump. There aren’t that many years of my life left. I don’t relish spending four more of them under the Man who would be Dictator.

Joe Biden: Call Off the Dogs!

I am ashamed of the Democratic Party. I’ve been ashamed of the Republican Party for a long time. Before I go any further, let me just say that I am one of the #metoo movement, I started my career in a male-dominated profession way back in the dark ages – in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The career I chose I was told by men that women didn’t enter. But I did.

Women didn’t involve themselves in the profession of finance. I broke the rules. I didn’t care. I knew the career I wanted and I was determined to have it. I almost fractured my skull for the next 30 years on the glass ceiling. I was sexually harassed more times than I can count. Many men were affectionate toward me. I learned the difference between harassment and just plain affection.

I’m not trying to say that Biden is right. I have mixed feelings about that. I do think it’s curious that these women who are coming out of the woodwork and accusing him of improper behavior didn’t do this long ago instead of a few days or weeks before he was going to announce his candidacy for President in 2020. Don’t you? Why now?

I also want to pose a question to you, my readers. When I was faced with inappropriate behavior by men in the workplace, I had enough sense to turn around and tell them to get the hell out of my face. Who just sits there and takes it? I say if you can’t stand the heat, get out of the damn kitchen. If you can’t cope with your workplace, you shouldn’t be there. Open your mouth and speak. Yell. Scream. Tell them to get the hell away from you. Sheesh.

To the members of the Democratic Party. I am ashamed that you would turn on one of your own. I am ashamed that some of you would call others of us hypocrites because we aren’t ready to crucify Joe Biden. I am ashamed that you can’t be strong, take care of yourself, and tell men who behave inappropriately to get away from you. Instead, you want all of us to ruin a good man’s life. Why? It is as much about promoting your own agenda as it is about Biden’s conduct. You are in favor of other Democratic candidates and you are afraid Biden will enter the race and eat their lunch. At least be honest about what you’re doing.

The Democrats will never defeat Donald Trump if they keep on fighting amongst themselves. The most important issue is beating Trump, not destroying your own to promote your own agenda.

The Two Factions of the Democratic Party

As the primary season for the 2020 Presidential election has rolled off to such an early start, I’ve done a lot of reading and thinking about what seems to be two factions of the Democratic Party and where I fit in to the current state of the Party. The media says that we have broken apart into the progressive left and the moderate centrist wings of the party. I bought that at first. Until I talked to some of both my progressive and moderate friends and examined my own beliefs. I don’t see those factions as clearly as others tend to see them.

Take myself as an example. I’m a baby boomer and we’re less likely to be progressives (they say) than millennials. For example, I don’t label myself as a Democratic Socialist as the Bernie Sanders people, and some of the other progressives do. I don’t believe in the idea of guaranteed incomes, for example, which one of the candidates does. I’m a capitalistic and strongly believe that everyone should work for their money. Even if you are ill or disabled, the power of the internet gives you the power to work from home unless you are very ill. I also don’t believe in late-term abortion. But mostly, I don’t believe in the label “Democratic Socialist.”

I went to school for a long time and ended up teaching business. I define the word “socialist” very strictly. There is but one definition of socialism. It is an economic system where the government owns the means of production as opposed to companies owning the means of production. To call yourself a socialist because you believe in programs to help the elderly and the disadvantaged is misusing the term. Even if you throw in your desire for free college and Medicare for all, you are still not a “Democratic Socialist” unless you believe in the government owning the means of production. You are simply a liberal Democrat. The liberal Democrats who are labeling themselves are contributing to a party split.

The Democrats have a lot of candidates to choose from this primary season. Some of the moderate candidates may have a more restrictive agenda than some of the progressive candidates. For example, if I were running for President, I probably could not endorse free college tuition. There isn’t enough money in the federal budget at this time. I could support parts of the Green New Deal, but probably not all of it. However, I could support Medicare for all. I suspect that many of the candidates think like I do.

Right now, I see two issues emerging that may determine the outcome of the primary. The first is who can beat Donald Trump. If we don’t nominate a candidate who can do that, then all the rest is lost. Second, health care is once again emerging as an important issue. Of course, Trump’s big, beautiful wall (barf) is always an issue.

I plead with you not to make an artificial split in our party. Our number one goal should be to stick together and defeat Donald Trump. If our party is split, we won’t be able to do that.

Just my two cents. What’s yours?

Beto is Rallying

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Beto O’Rourke, Democratic candidate for President in 2020, who almost defeated Ted Cruz in the very red state of Texas, is holding three campaign rallies in Texas today. He’s already kicked off his campaign, but this feels Ike another kick-off. After this, I hope to see Beto developing his policy positions, giving a speech, and perhaps rallying somewhere other than his home state.

Who’s Qualified for the First Democratic Debate?

The first Democratic Primary Debates will be in June in Miami. The DNC established clear rules for which candidates for the 2020 Presidential race would qualify for the a place on the stage and who would not. There are two methods of qualifying. One is to be above the 1% mark in polling in any number of national polls. Second, The second is to have a significant number of grassroots contributors.

Here’s the stage so far:

  • Joe Biden – We already knew this, but I heard a rumor today that Joe has had an accusation of sexual harassment leveled against him. We’ll see what happens.
  • Bernie Sanders – We knew this too due to his significant fundraising abilities.
  • Kamala Harris – She has quite a following and polls very well.
  • Beto O’Rourke – I remain confused about Beto. I loved him in Texas. I know he’s unconventional, but I’d love to hear him make a policy speech. He beat Bernie in fundraising. Get off the tables in diners, Beto, and make a speech already. You’ll win voters.
  • Elizabeth Warren – I like her policy knowledge, but she’s a hard-core progressive. She knows her stuff. Would people like her enough so that she could beat Trump?
  • Cory Booker – Could he command enough of the African-American vote? I like him a lot and he knows the landscape. Is he tough enough to beat Trump?
  • Amy Klobachar – She meets the polling requirements. I like her, but she’s no progressive. More of a realist in today’s political climate.
  • Pete Buttigieg – He’s gaining a lot of followers. His politics are probably the future of the Democratic Party. Could he possibly hang in there with Donald?
  • Julian Castro – I’ve always liked this guy, but like Beto, he needs to make a big policy speech. He’ll do well in later primary states as the only Latino in the field. He’s polling now at the bottom of the field.
  • Kirsten Gillibrand – She’s impressive when she speaks, but I’ve found it hard to get excited about her. Again, my dealbreaker is can she hold her own with Trump?
  • Jay Inslee – The climate change guy. If he can roll climate change into a real platform, there might be someone to look at here.
  • John Hickenlooper – Denver mayor. Moderate (I think). If anyone knows much about him, please share.
  • Andrew Yang…..about whom I know nothing. I might do a post on him. Anyone know anything? Comments?

My wish for someone who could make a difference? Former Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe.

Adam Shiff for President!

Adam Shiff, Chairman of the Intelligence Committee, was called on by Republicans to resign since he supported the Mueller investigation into the possibility that Trump had colluded with Russia during his campaign and has tried to obstruct justice. Shiff had a very eloquent response.

Shiff’s response