Archives for category: Jon Tester

Senator Al Franken, introduced an amendment to the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline bill that would require the steel used in building the pipeline be made in the USA. The amendment was defeated by a vote of 53-46.

So much for the Republicans claiming that this is a jobs creating bill. I guess they would much rather the pipes be built in India, a country known for good quality control of their products.

It makes me wonder how many of those senators or their backers have investments in Indian steel making facilities.Jack 2012 cropped

 

 

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 The primary contractor for the Keystone XL Pipeline (if it is approved) will be the Australian firm of Worley Parsons. I understand that the actual pipes will be manufactured in India. I haven’t been able to confirm that for sure. Products manufactured in India are not known for good quality.

The proponents of this project tell us that it will create 40,000 to 50,000 new jobs. I didn’t realize that they were referring to jobs overseas. Dumb Me!! I thought that they were talking about US jobs. How about insisting that all of the materials for this project be built in the good old US of A?

So the figure of 2M to 2.5M temporary US jobs over a two year period is more realistic. What a boon this will be to our economy.Jack 2012 cropped

 

 

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A senior officer of the company developing the Keystone XL Pipeline acknowledged that less than 50 permanent jobs would be created once the pipeline is completed. Man, that means that there would be only 50 personnel monitoring the safety of this 1,000 mile project. That seems like very little protection from inevitable spills that will take place.Jack 2012 cropped

 

 

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In the Canadian Province of Alberta, the source of the tar sands oil that is expected to flow through the Keystone XL Pipeline, 90 pipeline spill incidents have been reported over the last four months. I think that we are crazy to allow this project to happen.Jack 2012 cropped

 

 

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Attending the political rally for Amanda Curtis the other day, brought home to me the huge contrast between the two candidates for US Senate.

  • The Curtis campaign is financed by a grassroots organization. Whereas, the Daines campaign is hugely funded by big East Coast money from the likes of the billionaire Koch Brothers, Karl Rove and his big bucks buddies from the beltway, and multimillionaire Daines’ own campaign stash.
  • Amanda Curtis is offering to debate Steve Daines at anytime. His campaign, on the other hand, is making all kinds of excuses not to debate.
  • The Curtis campaign is a down home person to person approach to garnering votes from the Montana electorate. Whereas, The Daines campaign relys on slick costly brochures (some paid for by you and I as taxpayers), and huge pricey road signs.

A good example of  how slick and well funded the Daines campaign is, took place at the gathering for Amanda at the MSU campus in Bozeman last Tuesday. The Daines backers hired a videographer to record the whole affair. Not only did he record the event but he made it a point to keep his camera in her face as she talked individually to her supporters. Actually, I think these antics were designed to frustrate Amanda but the maneuver didn’t work. He was just being obnoxious, reflecting the demeanor of her opponents campaign.Amanda Curtis

 

  Photo by Hallie Rugheimer

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Yesterday I had the opportunity to shake hands and speak a few words with US Senate candidate Amanda Curtis. It was at a rally on the campus of Montana State University.

Meeting a candidate, who has benefited from Pell Grants to get a higher education, who still owes about 20 Grand on her student loans, who is paying a mortgage on her modest home, was quite a refreshing experience.

Her talk was short and to the point.

I think that, unlike her opponent multimillionaire Steve Daines, she is not in the pockets of such organizations as the Koch Brother’s Americans for Prosperity (the brothers prosperity), the US Chamber of Commerce, or Karl Rove and his big bucks buddies from the beltway.

Her grassroots campaign brings a breath of fresh air back into Montana politics.Amanda Curtis

 

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This past weekend The Montana Democratic Party chose Amanda Curtis to run for the US Senate against multi-millionaire Steve Daines.

She is a young, intelligent, vigorous high school teacher. Her legislative background will serve her well during the campaign and as she becomes a member of that austere body in Washington. Having dealt with teenage school kids in recent years will also help her as she navigates the hallowed halls of Congress.

Here is a woman who is dealing with the reality of paying off school loans and a mortgage. A woman who credits her union background that provided her with health insurance and her government for helping pay for her higher education through Pell Grants.

Like the vast majority of us, she knows what it is like to live in the real world.

I think that she will make a great Senator representing the people of Montana and not the kingmakers of the Beltway.Jack 2012 cropped

 

 

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Commissioner Adam Silver of the NBA really brought the hammer down  on LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling. It really presents a very strong message to owners of sports franchises, business leaders, politicians and educators, that bigotry in any form cannot be tolerated.

Our nation has  come a long way since President Johnson’s civil rights legislation. Obviously, we still have a long way to go. Isn’t it time that we accelerate our progress?Jack 2012 cropped

 

 

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It seems that Ol’ Rush Limbaugh, a confirmed prescription drug addict, is having a hard time holding onto sponsors. I think that folks are getting tired of listening to his vitriolic meanderings regarding anything Obama.

President Obama has been able to get things done, including extricating our nation from two very costly wars, healthcare reform, stimulus programs that have helped the country get back on track after the disastrous financial debacle of the previous administration and a small degree of reform of our financial institutions.

All of this in spite of relentless stonewalling by the GOP.Jack 2012 cropped

 

 

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It seems that every time I turn around my right to freedom of speech is further diminished.

The Supreme Court, today, put another nail into that coffin. The extreme right wing of that august body can’t get over equating money with  the freedom of expression. I don’t think it is difficult to realize that my voice is trampled upon every time the Court rules in favor of the ‘Fat Cats’ being allowed to spend, God knows how much, on political campaigns.

Can justices be impeached?Jack 2012 cropped

 

 

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