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Archive for January 15, 2012

Martin Luther King Day 2012 Iowa Events


Des Moines

The Fort Des Moines Museum and Education Center, 75 E. Army Post Road, will host several free events beginning at 11 a.m. Monday in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

For information call Michael Kates at 282-8060 or email


The Young Women’s Christian Association has described the event on their website as an opportunity to “celebrate how through service we can all work toward a common goal of community cooperation and leadership development. Free. Click here for more info

Iowa City

Unity March

Date: Monday, January 16, 2012
Time: 3:30 pm – 4:00 pm
Location: Old Capitol Museum, East Entrance (facing Clinton St.)

See list of activities throughout MLK day and through Jan. 27  Click here for more info

Cedar Rapids

Mount Mercy University will proudly host the 2012 Martin Luther King, Jr. Day opening ceremony on Monday, January 16 at 8:30 a.m. in Hennessey Recreation Center on Mount Mercy’s campus. Community members are welcome to attend as the Cedar Rapids and surrounding areas kick off a community-wide day of service.  Click here for more info 

Fayette – Upper Iowa University

Upper Iowa University will host a Martin Luther King Day celebration on Monday, Jan. 16. Dr. Dwight C. Watson, dean of the College of Education at the University of Northern Iowa, will be guest speaker at the 3:30 p.m. event in the Student Center ballroom on the Fayette campus, with a reception to follow in the Student Center atrium. The public is invited to attend. click here for more info

Grand View University – Des Moines

Martin Luther King Jr. day is Monday, January 16, 2012.  A keynote speaker will be in the Viking Theatre 12:30 p.m. to celebrate the legacy of Dr. King.  To help us reflect on this holiday, Dr. Linda Lane will be delivering her message to the Grand View community.  Click here for more info

Council Bluffs

HISTORY LECTURE: “Civil Rights in the 1960s: Photographs and Lecture by Mr. Rudy Smith” will be presented Monday at the Iowa Western Community College Arts Center Auditorium at 3 and 6 p.m. It will be free and is open to the public.

Events honor King through films, speeches and music – Omaha World Herald – click here for more info

Sioux City

MLK Past Present & Future – Sioux City Chapter NAACP Presents Martin Luther King, Jr.Program Past Present and Future Free and open to the public. Monday, January 16, 2012, 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM. Sanford Community Center 1700 Geneva Street, Sioux City, IA.


Join us for Patti Miller’s talk at the Fairfield Library Monday night, Jan. 16th, about her time spent in Mississippi’s Freedom Summer and also volunteering for Martin Luther King.

West Branch

A Public Reading from the Works of Martin Luther King Jr. and Potluck will be held Monday, January 16, 2012, from 4 p.m. to 7 pm. at the Town Hall. All are welcome.
For further information, please contact Clara Oleson at, 319 643-5548.


Romney Lies? Who’da Thunk It?

How do you know he’s lying? His lips are moving!

Paul Krugman in his blog  says what many people have been waiting for someone to say:

“I mean, is there anything at all in Romney’s stump speech that’s true? It’s all based on attacking Obama for apologizing for America, which he didn’t, on making deep cuts in defense, which he also didn’t, and on being a radical redistributionist who wants equality of outcomes, which he isn’t. When the issue turns to jobs, Romney makes false assertions both about Obama’s record and about his own. I can’t find a single true assertion anywhere.”

Couldn’t agree with him more.Sometimes I have wanted to scream at some reporter “Are you just going to let him lie and not say a thing? What is your job? Secretary?

The human costs of Republican administrations

Seems like every Republican administration moves the clock for equality backwards in this country. Well, at least since Nixon who signed the Title IX provisions that have given young women many opportunities that never would have happened left to their own devices.

I simply can’t understand why taking citizenship rights from groups of people is not only tolerated, but voted for. Why can’t gays have the same rights as others? Why can’t all citizens vote?

We fall further behind every year

In a poll released the other day, Americans overwhelmingly stated they believescience is the key to the future.
Yet at election time, from school boards to the state house and the US congress, they continue to vote in candidates who cut the hell out of education and try to force schools to equate science with religion.

As our youth is less and less educated in science, America’s once formidable lead in this area has drastically shrunk. The telling point may not come for another 25 years, but we all know this will cost us dearly.

Sears going ….. going …..?

Thursday Sears was put in the position of essentially paying up front for vendor shipments. The ability for vendors to make ‘loans’ was cut off.

Maybe I am wrong but it looks like that vaunted staple of America free enterprise – competition – is about to take another shot in the chops. Slowly we will be forced to shop in stores like Walmart and Target. It is sad.

She sold the WHAT? And she wants to BUY IT BACK???

Governor Jan Brewer may have hit a new high (low?) in fiscal mismanagement in Arizona. First they sold the state capitol to pick some quick cash ($81 million) and now, little over a year later she wants to buy it back. And it will cost a cool $105 million. That is a $24 million mark-up in a year. Take some more money out of education.
You need to read this

And now to endear himself with Latinos

Mitt Romney got an endorsement from Kansas Secretary of State Kris Koback. Koback is the author of model anti-immigrant legislation fro ALEC after which Arizona’s repugnant SB1070 and Alabama’s new anti-immigrant laws are modeled. Despite trying, Romney was unable to get the endorsement of Maricopa County, Arizona’s notorious Joe Arpaio. Arpaio went for Rick Perry.

Winter is finally cold and LIHEAP is won’t be helping much

I heard Jerry McKim speaking about LIHEAP on IPR yesterday. Real winter cold is just settling in. LIHEAP money has been slashed by congress and on down the line awards for those who apply will be cut. McKim said there will be something for all that apply, but with less money, higher costs for fuel and now real winter temps it probably won’t help the way it was intended. (See here for previous story)

Since no one can have their heat cut until April 1, most people will be okay. The problem comes next year when anyone who has an outstanding debt to whoever sells them heat will not be allowed to be hooked up again.  Reminder that much of the so-called debt reduction is on the backs of those it will hurt most.

Gas going higher?

Let’s face it, if one thing could kill any recovery and at the same time kill an Obama run for re-election, it would be a huge spike in the price of gas. And the rumors are already floating about a major run up in price this spring. I have believed that much of the pricing of oil has been manipulated for many years. No one has yet had the political will to take on the oil companies assertions on their prices. This could really blindside Americans and make voters quite angry.

Sunday Funday – Primarily Primaries

Whooeee – it is primary season. For some political junkies it gets no better than this. Just like March Madness, only the winner may be able to blow up the world next year at this time.
So how did we get to this state of affairs? And why does Iowa spell primary C-A-U-C-U-S?
For some of you this may be a review from 6th grade civics. For those who have been in school since Reagan, well Good Luck.

1) What year were the Primaries first held as a method of choosing delegates?
a) 1908
b) 1916
c) 1932
d) 1912

2) Which Party held the first primaries and who won them?
a) Republican – Taft won
b) Democrats – Bryan won
c) Republicans – Roosevelt won
d) Democrats – Wilson won.

3) One of the major problems with primaries in the first 50 years or so was
a) most were non-binding and delegates could vote as they wished at convention.
b) all primaries were open to all voters
c) They were often held in cold weather months
d) Counting was done by party pros, thus making results questionable.

4) New Hampshire has a reputation for upsets. What sitting president was upset by a challenger from his own party?
a) Lyndon Johnson was surprised by Gene McCarthy
b) Ronald Reagan surprised incumbent Gerry Ford.
c) Next-door neighbor Ted Kennedy beat Jimmy Carter
d) Estes Kefauver beat a surprised Harry Truman.

5) While primaries have been around for quite awhile, when did they take on major significance?
a) with the emergence of Dwight Eisenhower as the leading Republican candidate in 1952.
b) After the 1968 Chicago Democratic convention.
c) With the emergence of Franklin Roosevelt in 1932
d) In 1980, with Ronald Reagan’s surprise march to the nomination.

6) In 1968, RFK was killed after the California primary. Did he win or lose that contest?
a) won
b) lost

7) Here is a number that you all saw a couple weeks ago prior to the Iowa Caucuses. How many precincts does Iowa have?
a) 1,774
b) 1,528
c) 2,110
d) 99

8) Iowa’s caucuses moved to the first in the nation in what year?
a) 1980
b) 1992
c) 1976
d) 1972

9) When is Super Tuesday this year and how many states will participate via primary or caucus?
a) Feb. 28 – 11 states
b) March 13th – 15 states
c) March 6th – 10 states
d) Feb. 21 – 13 states

10) In 1960, the Wisconsin Democratic primary was a real test of whether Jack Kennedy’s religion would be an issue. His opponent in that primary was Hubert Humphrey, a well known Senator from neighboring Minnesota. How did Kennedy do?
a) Lost by a landslide.
b) won by a solid margin
c) lost narrowly
d) won but very narrowly

Not too easy I hope.
In case you are wondering, No, I have never run in a primary.
But you want answers, so here goes:

1) d – 1912
2) c – it was the Republicans and Roosevelt was won nearly everything except a couple for Bob LaFollette
3) a – the reason Roosevelt was not nominated in 1912 was that none of the primaries were binding.
4) d – Estes Kefauver defeated Harry Truman which persuaded Truman that it was time to go back to Independence.
5) a – After the 1968 Chicago convention in an attempt to open up the party.
6) a – RFK had just given a victory speech when he was shot.
7) a – 1,774 precincts in Iowa
8) d – 1972
9) c – March 6th – 10 states
10) b – won 56.5% to 43.5% – pretty much ending Humphrey’s hopes. JFK won all the primaries he entered (8) plus a couple others by write-in.