Tag Archives: Congress


and meeting the goal.  People want a job without politics. There is no job without politics. Husband and wife, parents and children. Hirer and consultant. Yes, my husband and I have had the same job in different circumstances.

We’ve a guest dog for a couple of weeks while the dog’s mom is way out of town. Our dogs have gone through many things, from our dog peeing on our guest L’s bed at the outset and me throwing it in the wash, to them play-fighting to bed switching, playing keep-away with our only toy and now sleeping four inches apart. It’s like Congress actually talking to one another and getting things done. For my part I like congress not passing anything except the budget minus “pork” and use this as a tribute.

That is dog politics. I never wanted to be involved in politics and years ago thought of myself as a legislative policy person. I was wrong. Since I was born I was a politician, not of the traditional sense. I argued for a milk formula, a clean diaper and didn’t want to go down for a nap. That’s politics.

Oh, my parents would walk me around the living room while I cried, then put on Jackie Gleason’s Music, Martinis and Memories record and if that didn’t work, they’d drive me around the block and I’d be sound asleep. That’s baby politics.

My husband calls it sneakiness, but that only comes into play when I find the best way to a place we need to go to avoid traffic. I live here. He’s off for months so I have to get to know a new place. Word to the wise, be nice to everyone, until they cross you or humiliate you. Then, think about it. Think about the best way to fix their error for your family.

Then act. Kindly. Write a bad review of Fazio Automotive because he kicked you out of the shop for no reason after spending thousands of dollars there over the years. He wants to kick women out so he can have his motorcycle buddies hang out there. He actually bragged to fellow mechanic shops about kicking me out. That’s politics. Luckily I’m smart enough to shut him down, through zoning and Federal Civil Rights laws.

I didn’t write laws for 34 million people to sit still and let people treat me badly. I’ve also spent my life on volunteer work that has helped people and animals. My husband and I are problem-solvers and innovators and that makes us clash from time to time. He is more technical, me more social change.

We are agents of change. You hire us to fake change. Make it real for your bottom line. It will be worth your while. Dee




I called Congressman Jeff Denham’s office and was put on hold several times. Then I was referred to the DC office, a paid call, and placed on hold several more times. I said I was looking to help allow pets on trains.

In the end Evan told me it was unethical to speak to anyone outside their district in Modesto, CA. Hey, I’m writing a blog and they’ve already spoken to the Huffington Post and heaven knows how many lobbyists from outside the district. It’s August, they’re manning the office and would rather be on vacation than at work and don’t want to do any, I get it.

I am a former legislative analyst, bill writer and lobbyist and this is plain BS. Oh, Sen. Cohen’s office just had an answering machine, no-one on watch. Years ago when I was a lobbyist and everyone was on vacation, all our members and staff, I’d try to leave at 4:58 to catch the 5:03 train home every Friday. Of course the boss called at 4:55 as I was putting on my sneakers and asked to speak to everyone. She was on vacation the entire summer but harangued us because she could. I was a lobbyist doing paperwork while the legislature was out of session.

Anyway. I didn’t like the parameters of the Rail Act that provided a lot of money for Boston to D.C. and nothing for the rest of the country. Two years ago we spent $250 for someone to stay here with our dog and paid for a roomette on Amtrak through Chicago to Texas. It was supposed to be 24 hours, ended up 36 and we had to have family pick us up at an alternate destination. There were buses involved.

But if we had the cabin with en-suite bath we’d love to have our dog with us, outside of her crate. She’s only about 32 lbs. and won’t fit under an airplane seat. See, her grandma in Texas likes her there for Thanksgiving. We cook for days now. Last year it was 4.5 days, and our Zoe cleans crumbs we leave behind, accidentally of course, during our routines. It’s become a dance.

She makes cakes, potato rolls, brisket, iced tea for 50 and many other dishes. I’m known for spicy almonds and cashews, brussels sprout and cauliflower gratin, spinach balls and mincemeat tarts. Of course we do more than that.

It would be nice to be able to take a train, with a cabin with en suite bath with our dog in the cabin, getting out for a few moments at each stop, and getting there on time with no backward movement for a couple of hours and buses. I think Congress errs when it eliminates Chicago from its funding perspective and tries to help dog owners but makes them crated and baggage.

Does Congress ever wonder why so many airline passengers fake assistant dog status? It’s $149.99 and includes a doctor’s note for an Emotional Assistance Dog. I could probably fake that on Amtrak but will not do so.

If you allowed pets even just into rooms and roomettes Amtrak may get a following from paid travelers instead of feeding from the public trough. Dee

ps I know that on the southern routes passenger trains are required to go to sidings while freight trains pass. You have not only dismissed dogs, you’ve dismissed people. American citizens trying to visit relatives for the holiday.


This is what I like:

“I want to talk about this recipe Friday, my wife would LOVE it!” Signed J., an author.

I love that his wife would enjoy that recipe. I only want to add to pantries and recipe collections. Also politics and rantings about legislative nonsense. That is me and all anyone will get from a happily married woman way away from family.

A few years ago I received a 3/5 card box I made made 40 years ago and kept for mother’s memory. It included a lot of eggplant that I love, especially for Moussaka which it inspired and my husband hates.

There are so many things to love in life, like our dog Zoe wanting to be lifted to the bed because she has no hips. Taking care of them is not a chore, it is a duty, my duty. My duty, my pleasure, my job. I love them so much. Cheers, Dee

Our Great Nation

three months at a time. Note the debt limit vote. It is only to force other issues that certain elected officials deem more worthy to defend than the country and their own voters.

It is time to end brinksmanship and politics and remember that you, Congress, are representatives of the people of the United States of America.

Politics is particularly ugly these days, which is why I got out of it over two decades ago. I was a policy wonk and hate this stuff.

Congress is hurting federal workers and the American people so they can deny us health care. I had a scare this past week, thinking I may lose my limbs and internal organs and die.

Luckily my husband has health insurance. For now. All I could think of was what would happen to my husband (and dog, of course) if I died. That is what people think about as they wait four days for test results.

Does Congress really want to end health care? You’re on a platinum plan for life so you don’t know that in a layoff we mere mortals have to go on COBRA that costs over 1K per month and if one has no income we’re not making anything because there’s no job so let it go.

Do you know the show Undercover Boss? I ask Congress-people to go to another’s district and pose as a worker and see how you feel at the end of the day. Both parties, please. Let’s do this after the Mexican standoff.

I believe in our country and its foundations, and also think things have gone awry. We pay to live in a nice place but today we’re on the news with a missing person and police are everywhere. How did we go so wrong? Dee

De-Fund Congress

They have better healthcare than us, for life. They don’t care that much if the federal government is out of work because they’re still being paid.

I know a way out of this. We, the American People, will cut off their pay, return it to us for the length of the shutdown and sue them for damages. It will be the biggest lawsuit the Supreme Court has ever seen.

As a part of the settlement we will make them have the same health care we do.

Sounds like a plan to me. Dee


Yes, they swing. Witness Mitt Romney during the 2012 presidential campaign:

“There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what…These are people who pay no income tax.”

That is patently untrue. Now said party is trying to hold the entire citizenry of the United States of America hostage by shutting down the government to keep affordable health care from senior citizens, the poor and middle class. As I recall, Newt Gingrich tried that and it failed miserably. But you go ahead and don’t learn from your mistakes.

This moment I’m calling it Romney’s Revenge because he started this version of healthcare in MA then went against it as his party decided to kill it by calling it Obamacare and saying our President was not a US citizen. They were lame attempts that failed in the end.

A party that tries to tell us how to live our lives and that we’re not worthy of being citizens in this great nation, then licks its wounds after political losses and blames voters for it, is on the wrong path.

To Republicans, you cannot want to win and not include independents like me, and exclude everyone you don’t like from the tent for being Latino, gay, or all your touchpoints. The tea partiers don’t bring anything to the table and ostracize potential voters.

Why do I tell you this? I am a moderate. I would prefer the political pendulum swing from 60-40 for whatever party is in power. Personally, I believe the fewer laws passed in Congress each session the better, like the budget and one or two major issues per year. And limit the pork barrel budget.

I see more money going into campaigns and much longer campaign lengths that may start the day a servant of the people is elected. You’re elected to represent us, not you.

Right now I see an avaricious Congress only looking into posturing for next year and the Presidential election and ignoring the people they have been elected to represent. That goes for both parties but mostly for the desperate one which is grasping at straws. Trouble is, it’s a hurricane and straws can only go so far.

I am concerned that the Republican Party’s cow-towing to the extreme right wing troublesome not only for the party but for the country. When the platform is all about exclusion, who is going to vote for your candidates? You do the math.

When there is a close electoral win in Senate or House, there was a need to talk across the aisle. Gifted legislators such as LBJ, Tip O’Neill, and Sam Rayburn knew that. Now everything seems fragmented and I’d love to be a fly in those hallways to see if you even say a brief “good morning” to your political opponent.

Perhaps many of us would like to know if you ever talk with each other as that would be telling. In the meantime, could you possibly spend a few moments thinking about the welfare of your constituents and of the American people instead of yourself and your re-election campaign? Thanks, Dee

GOP Response to SCOTUS

“The landmark ruling frees up many parts of the country that have a history of discriminating against minorities from federal supervision.”

This Supreme Court ruling is allowing the GOP to harass, coerce, threaten citizens who are people of color not to vote. I have seen it at the polls.

The GOP sent me this via email. This sentence struck a chord and I must raise the question: my grandfather escaped Hitler before his home town became a Nazi stronghold. My mother emigrated from Canada to marry Dad.

Both were drawn to America for its freedoms. Now all our phone calls, GPS information, emails et al are filtered by the NSA.

Sometimes I help spay and neuter feral cats. Now it looks as if individual privacy and voter registration are my callings. I do not care for whom citizens vote, only that they are allowed to do so. Hello, NSA, how are y’all doing today? Dee


No, I’m not really talking about the Pope. That is a delicate situation and while I am not perturbed at his pension (La Stampa, yesterday) I do believe the new Pope should send him outside Vatican City for his retirement, especially as no Pope has “retired” for over 600 years. From what I read, the new Pope will be conservative as he was probably appointed by John Paul II or Benedict XVI. I also believe that many of these Cardinals have covered up for corrupt priests over the years. Or perhaps that’s a cover for an even larger scandal to come.

Life lessons have taught me that persons who commit grievous crimes are oft sent to lofty positions where they will not pose a danger or scandal. They get to the highest positions, while those of us who obey laws and do our work are rewarded by layoffs and no raises, no cost of living increases.

That brings me (the Vulcan taught me logic) to Congress, who gave over a good portion of their job to the Executive Branch yesterday. I believe this is not in the interest of getting things done, but getting things undone.

What bothers me is that we have a representative democracy and our representatives are relinquishing it in order to jockey for position for President in 2016, What are they letting go of? US!!! Yes, the people who may have voted for them and the whole of the districts or states they represent.

We have rights as citizens and few people register or vote. Let me tell you this. The sequestration that requires immediate budget cuts affects everyone, including every staff member in Congress, except the Senators and Representatives that represent us in Washington. These so-called “representatives” also have executive health insurance for life and a pension plan we all wish for. Should they not suffer as well?

Where my husband and I grew up, the cream rose to the top, not the scum. We have three branches of government, if you look up your history books. Sometimes one borrows from the other for good purposes.

I fear this is for bad purposes and that the needs of all Americans are being thwarted by a non-existent fight (for us, the people) for President in 2016. Your representative isn’t listening to you, is not representing your views, just ceding to the executive branch to play the blame game later on.

Get in touch with your Senators and Representative. Ask about how a new law will affect you. What will happen to your retirement funds? Health care. A dead squirrel down the road from your house. Gay marriage. Equality in the workplace. Whatever rings your bell. Just do it. Ask if they’re working for you or just abdicating responsibility to another branch of government.

What goes around, comes around, and the Supremes (Court, that is) will end up deciding it and we don’t want that to happen. So VOTE! Register to vote. Keep up on the politics of Washington, your state and town. Get involved, whether it’s the PTA or local library. OK, you can think about it over the weekend. Dee

Health Care

Today, the New York Times reports regarding the health of Gabrielle Giffords, the Congresswoman that was was shot in the head two months ago that:
‘Dr. Francisco agreed that Ms. Giffords was showing a lot of personality.
“I feel I’ve gotten to know her very well,” he said.
He also said she had a good attention span, adding, “We can engage her for a long period of time.”’

I am very pleased that Ms. Giffords is making what looks like a spectacular recovery from a gunshot wound she never merited or expected. Also, Houston will take good care of her during the healing process, of that I’m sure.

The problem is that it seems doctors actually spend time with her, get to know her and engage her for long periods of time. Doctors? During the years spent at my mother’s side in hospitals her doctor spent 3-4 minutes. We spent the nights writing questions for the next day just trying to hope to be there whenever the doctor had time to visit. We flew in from around the country to spell each other, always hoping to see the doctor. She’s dead now.

This is the difference between the Congressional and Presidential Health Care Package and what they want all of us peons to have. If you’ve millions in the bank you can use your own medical savings account. The rest of us who are employed have to count on our employer. I turned fifty and called AARP and they laughed when I asked about health insurance, and I’m healthy. They asked if they could rope in my husband and I said “no way.” At that time we took COBRA because my husband’s new employer failed to get us the insurance they promised. Let’s hope the new laws help those in need, employed or out of work, and children.

I believe if members of Congress had to deal with the health care morass we deal with every day when we are laid off and change employers or when employers downgrade the level of health care we pay for now, they would better understand what Americans endure. Hoping for a better future for all, Dee

Health Care

I read yesterday that in a knee-jerk reaction to “Obama-Care” the House Republicans voted to can it in favor of a solution to be named later.

So, let me see if I get this right. Years of negotiation and compromise has yielded a plan that has not gone into effect for the most part (I haven’t read the whole thing) that will be flawed – read negotiation and compromise – for……. NOTHING!

And the Republicans and tea-partiers hope to go to the polls with this on their resume. Sounds like a plan, people. Now let’s just elect Sarah Palin president and Newt Gingrich as VP and we’re on a roll. Perhaps Sen. Boehner will give up his spot to Rush Limbaugh.

In my estimation, our healthcare crisis is on par with the economy in importance to the American family. To nullify a new healthcare law with no substitute or even ideas for how to go about it isn’t just folly. It is an insult to the American people, to voters everywhere who expect more of our elected representatives.

I’ve been involved in partisan politics. I know that to an elected representative, 70% of the vote represents a landslide (witness President Nixon) but you still have to live with the other 30%. If your election was 52/48 or 51/21/28 your constituents are divided and still counting on you to represent them. A certain portion voted for you, and you won, but you were elected to represent all of them. Act like it! Not getting back into the battle except in print, Dee