Lots of Stuff

You know, I never did hear back from Senator Marrero about her wanting to drug-test non-compliant pregnant women.  Not even a form ‘thanks for writing.’

Anyway, today is the day they’re going to vote to strip our right to an abortion away.  It’s just a matter of whether it will include the three exceptions (proposed by the Democrats) or not.  So, you know, one bill is getting passed.

Dean Dad says (not about this topic, but it feels applicable):

People with long memories would be well advised to pay very close attention over the next year or two. It’s easy to please everybody when money is sloshing around. But when the chips are down, and they are, the real priorities become clear. Some of us understand the task at hand as bringing the entire community into the conversation, and preserving the best of our values during a difficult time; others understand the task as bashing the queers. If nothing else, at least we’ll get clarity.

And isn’t that right?  Here we are, Tennessee, and the chips are down.  In fact, we’d better pray that all the chips are down, because another round of chip tossing is going to do us in.  And now we see folks for who they truly are.  When the chips are down, the Republicans think we need to punish women and gays and single people.  When the chips are down, Democrats want to game the system and call it a win.

GoldnI has a post so astute about Bredesen that I just about can’t stand it.  And it reaffirms my belief that this is a man who’s never been to Walmart skidding by on his ability to make decent sound-bites and other people’s prejudices about the South.  I mean, he’s from Tennessee, who would ever question that he doesn’t know what it’s like to shop at Walmart?  But I suspect his Walmart trips are like his Lawrence county family–hypothetical.

Don’t mind me.  I’m just feeling low.  I remember right after Katrina, when we were all watching and it slowly dawned on me that help wasn’t coming.  That there was nobody at the local, state, or federal level with enough leadership skills and the willingness to put his or her own career on the line (because yes, you might have to break laws to save lived; you might have to piss off the wrong people to speak the truth about what’s going on, etc.) to take charge and save people.  Not the messy real people who actually lived in New Orleans, who, yes, maybe should have left or, yes, maybe should have done this or maybe shouldn’t have done that.  You can always find politicians willing to save all kinds of hypothetical people, but real people?  Not so much.

Help wasn’t coming.

You’re on your own.

Bredesen wants to reach that hypothetical family in Lawrence county and so he’s going to turn down real money that would help real people.  So, let me be clear.  If you’re unemployed or under employed, if you can’t afford your home or you can afford your home but since no one on your block could you’re now paying on a $250,000 mortgage for a home worth half that, if you can’t get the healthcare you need and your baby dies and they have to put it in a ziploc baggie in a wooden box that doesn’t even have the lid nailed tight on it…

I’m sorry.

These things are things that are happening to people right now.  We have no money.  We have no jobs.  We have no access to adequate healthcare.

And we are on our own.

And now it’s not that help is not coming.  It’s that help is being turned away at the door.  The legislature would rather save hypothetical babies from abortion.  They’d rather save hypothetical children from the hypothetical single people who might adopt them and turn out to be crappy people.  They’d rather spare the hypothetical man who isn’t the father of his hypothetical child the embarrassment of having to discover on his own that he’s been duped.

But Bredesen is going to turn away money that would help people get jobs, which makes for stable families, which would achieve things for real people right now.

That’s where our politicians’ priorities are.

While we were suffering, they were grandstanding.

And we’d be wise not to forget that.

In the next round of elections, it’s not so much who has a visible (D) or an (R) next to his or her name; it should be who has the invisible (I) for incumbent.  We need to toss all these jackasses out.

19 thoughts on “Lots of Stuff

  1. Come on girl, I know you have been to Lawrence County. One would be a fool to own a 250k house down there. Heck, one would be hard pressed to even FIND a 250k house, out side of that little Santinni development on Springer Lane.

    Percapita income is 15k a year. No one buys a 250k house in a community with those demographics unless they have major self esteem issues or they are stupid.

    I could show you several houses down there that would be great for a small family for 30-40k. Real houses with some acreage.

    That being said, the poor folks you allude to in LawCo need to first can their Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber has willfully ignored several business opportunity’s that would have employed citizens. Then Lawrenceburgians need to start getting serious about letting the Southeast know about their hard working and cheap labor force.

    Or they can let the bank seize their 250k home and move to the Farm. Communal housing, good education, and plenty of work. Or they could go Amish.

    Either way, they don’t need Bredesen. They have done just fine without him. No need to encourage his meddling.

  2. It’s all pretty awful, but I believe they pushed back bringing up those abortion bills to some later date. So today’s not the day. Maybe we could use the extra time to think up a worthwhile candidate for governor this time around.

  3. This, this, oh this.
    I couldn’t believe my ears when I heard the Bredison soundbite on NPR this morning. He’s objecting to taking the stimulus package money because it it will mean that we have to pay more people unemployment. Really. When that unemployment money will most likely go directly back into the local businesses that are having so much trouble, back into keeping people in their homes. Shift the money around. Short TDOT a bit, gods know they have more pork than most.

  4. Too cold to fix potholes lately. Has to be a certain temperature to put down asphalt. Email the commissioner. Seriously, email him. You’ll get an answer of one sort or another. We’re supposed to answer everything within like two weeks.

    And I can’t say I’m really familiar with the allgeged pork mentioned by polerin. We’re no more porked up than anywhere else.

  5. B, I was told yesterday that it was off. It wasn’t like “this is a secret” or anything. Just “oh, it’s been postponed, if you were planning on showing up to listen or give an opinion, don’t bother.”

    W, does TDOT have any light rail plans that could be acted on with some stimulus money?

  6. I’m not entirely sure B. Clarksville Pike is a state road and most places would be ours to fix. In Nashville the rules are a little different because TDOT has given Metro a fair amount of authority to fix things. I think it’s probably TDOT, but if you’re thinking about calling someone, I’d call both. If you’re talking about anywhere else, it’s probably Metro.

    NM, I’m not aware of any light rail plans at all in the Nashville area. They’re doing some long term studies on commuter rail or transit corridors into the various suburb areas in the ring counties, but they aren’t anywhere near shovel ready. There’s also a blue-sky/daydream idea for a rail line from Nashville to Atlanta which takes advantage of an idea Atlanta had to use the Chattanooga airport as an auxillary of Hartsford by running a rail line between the two airports.

    I’ll have to poke around and see what I can find out.

  7. Well then, what about regular train service from Nashville to Memphis? It’s kind of embarrassing to live in a state that doesn’t have half a dozen train plans just waiting for funding. Even St. Louis has gone all light rail in remarkably practical ways.

  8. Nope. I found the project list. The only stuff they’ve got is bridge replacements and rail refurbishment type stuff. There’s a decent amount of funding going to transit, but it’s not showing how it will be spent other than which local transit agencies it’s going to. I imagine it will be mostly bus routes and planning stuff.

  9. Almost forgot. Here’s the link for how TDOT intends to spend the money. It’s from December and they haven’t released the updates yet now that they know how much money we’re getting. Scroll to the bottom and you the funding link will show how much is going to various transportation modes. The very last link is a specific list of projects. Scroll through the highway list and you’ll see some rail and transit stuff.


    It’s so typical of the ‘new’ TDOT that they have a logo and catchy, marketable program name for spending the money. “Ready to Go”

  10. I’m not that much in favor of bridge repairs on RR because most of them are owned by corporations. But I didn’t look too closely at the RR list to try and figure out if the projects were state owned.

  11. At the time I was just talking about the chunk of funding going to railroads, but yeah, the overall majority of the funding we get is going to publicly owned highways.

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