Thursday, May 31, 2007

Dr. James Holsinger for anti-gay U.S. Surgeon General.

President Bush's choice for surgeon general likely will face questions about his stands on AIDS, sex education and abortion during the confirmation process.

Dr. James Holsinger clearly has some pretty definite views on right and wrong; he's got it straight all right. Dr. Holsinger has made his negative views on homosexuality known for nearly two decades.

  • In the early 1990s, Holsinger resigned from the denomination's Committee to Study Homosexuality because he believed the committee "would follow liberal lines," according to Time magazine. At the time, he warned that acceptance of homosexuality would drive away millions of churchgoers.
  • As a member of the Judicial Council, he voted with the majority in 2005 that a Virginia pastor could deny church membership to an openly gay man.

Aside from him clearly being "anti-gay," Holsinger’s record is mired with incompetence, zealous conservatism, and, of course, sizable campaign contributions to Republicans.

As Chief Medical Director of the Department of Veterans Affairs under Bush’s father, Dr. Holsinger was neglecting our vets long before Walter Reed made it fashionable.

  • A government investigation found “several cases in which incompetence and neglect led to the deaths of patients.” Dr. Holsinger was forced to admit blame for the deaths of six patients in less than a year at a single Chicago hospital alone.
  • But the problems weren’t limited to Chicago. In Wyoming, a patient scheduled for surgery for a treatable cancer died after he was ignored for 45 days following the resignation of the staff urologist over a contract dispute. Thirty VA hospitals were found to have “high numbers of patient complications and other indicators of substandard care.”
  • A decade later, Dr. Holsinger was appointed Kentucky’s Cabinet Secretary for Health and Family Services. By the end of his tenure, a Kentucky newspaper found that the state was at the bottom of the nation for almost every health measure. Kentuckians die at a rate of 18 percent above the national average, the newspaper reported.

Placing people in positions who are fair, honest, and have a compassion for their work and bettering our culture doesn't seem to be a priority for either the Bush or Fletcher Administrations.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Honesty and integrity isn't part of the Fletcher Administration.

Beshear Pledges To Air Finances Answers challenge from Fletcher
By John Stamper, Herald-Leader

FRANKFORT -- Answering a challenge from Republican Gov. Ernie Fletcher, Democratic candidate for governor Steve Beshear said yesterday he will release his financial information, including tax returns, sources of income and a list of business partners.

Fletcher had challenged Beshear to release the information Wednesday as he deflected questions from reporters about his refusal to release the names of donors to a legal defense fund set up to pay bills stemming from an investigation of state hiring practices.

If Beshear agrees to release his personal financial information, as Fletcher has, "then he can talk to me about a legal defense fund and so can you," Fletcher told Mark Hebert of Louisville's WHAS-TV. "Then he's got some ground to stand on."

Told of the challenge, Beshear promptly pledged to release his financial information within the next three weeks.

"The people of this state deserve to know that a governor has no conflict of interest from his own financial interests," Beshear said yesterday. "So I'm going to release a detailed list of all my assets and liabilities, everybody I owe, what I own and where my income comes from so that nobody can have any questions about whether I have any conflicts or not."

Beshear said it was "ridiculous" for a governor with so many ethical problems to challenge his integrity.

After being told of Beshear's response, Fletcher's campaign manager, Marty Ryall, said Fletcher has no intention of releasing the names of donors to his defense fund until after Attorney General Greg Stumbo leaves office in December.


Fletcher's decision to withhold the names of donors was criticized heavily during the GOP primary for governor by opponent Anne Northup and Lt. Gov. Steve Pence.

Pence implied that Fletcher might be steering state contracts or handing out plum appointments to individuals who donate.

In an interview on Louisville radio yesterday, Pence said he will not support Fletcher during the fall election unless he releases the names of donors.

Governor Fletcher can dish it out, but can't take it.....he is unwilling to submit to his own statements and challenges. What difference does it make? Even if the governor did something illegal, he can just give himself a pardon (literally).

Governor Fletcher doesn't stand his ground on anything.

  • Fletcher promised to change the good ol' boy culture of state government but became part of it instead.
  • He punished those who disagreed with him.
  • He took the Fifth Amendment because he had things to hide.
  • He pardoned his whole administration because he was afraid of how high up the investigation into hiring abuses would reach.
  • He cut a deal to end the investigation to keep anything else from coming out.
  • Fletcher became the very thing he had vowed to change.

Not to worry however. The general election isn't far......afterwards, Kentucky will have a new chief executive leading the government.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Governor Fletcher and Attorney General Candidate Stan Lee.

by John Aravosis (DC)

"Now they're telling us that when the states banned gay marriage they also banned providing health insurance, inheritance, hospital visitation and more to gay couples. Funny, but I don't recall hearing any of that when the religious right was pushing these things."

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

CBS News - 60 Minutes: Gay or Straight?

60 Minutes, an investigative television newsmagazine has run on CBS News since 1968. It is considered by many to be the preeminent investigative television program in the United States.

here to view a 60 Minutes Special Report; Gay or Straight?

What makes you gay or straight? Is it personal choice or genes or the way you were raised? While science doesn't have definitive answers, there's been some fascinating and oftentimes controversial research that is beginning to provide some clues.

60 Minutes provides a "Gay or Straight Test," as well as some fascinating videos made exclusively available to Yahoo! News.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Comments on Rev. Jerry Falwell's Death.

It has to be a difficult time for Rev. Jerry Falwell's family right now. They are going to have to deal with an intense storm of media coverage, with bloviating from the left and the right, and much of it will not be pretty or complimentary. To have to grieve so publicly is not something to wish on anyone, particularly when the departed is a political lightning rod.

He was a towering icon of the religious right movement, and he has left quite a legacy -- one I cannot agree with in any form or fashion, nevertheless one cannot ignore his success at mobilizing a large portion of the electorate in ways that many organizations on the left have yet to do.

It's sad to hear, as of last week (in an interview with CNN), he stood by his 2001 comments that gays, lesbians, pro-choice advocates and feminists were to blame for 9/11.

Falwell was a controversial figure for his theological, political and social beliefs. After the September 11, 2001 attacks, Falwell said on the 700 Club, "I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way, all of them who have tried to secularize America. I point the finger in their face and say 'you helped this happen.'" Fellow evangelist Pat Robertson concurred with his sentiment.

After heavy criticism, Falwell apologized. As for homosexuality, Falwell remarked, "AIDS is the wrath of a just God against homosexuals." Falwell's ghostwriter, Mel White, said Falwell remarked about gay protesters, "Thank God for these gay demonstrators. If I didn't have them, I'd have to invent them. They give me all the publicity I need."

During the Civil Rights Movement, Falwell was a supporter of racial segregation. He said this about Martin Luther King: "I do question the sincerity and non-violent intentions of some civil rights leaders such as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Mr. James Farmer, and others, who are known to have left-wing associations."

Falwell has also said, "Labor unions should study and read the Bible instead of asking for more money. When people get right with God, they are better workers."

In February 1999, an article in Falwell's National Liberty Journal suggested that a Teletubbies character, Tinky Winky, could be a hidden homosexual symbol, because the character was purple (which the article claimed was a color symbolic of homosexuality), had an inverted triangle on his head, and carried a handbag.

"The death of a family member or friend is always a sad occasion and we express our condolences to all those who were close to the Rev. Jerry Falwell. Unfortunately, we will always remember him as a founder and leader of America's anti-gay industry, someone who exacerbated the nation's appalling response to the onslaught of the AIDS epidemic, someone who demonized and vilified us for political gain and someone who used religion to divide rather than unite our nation." -- Matt Forman, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

"We extend to Reverend Falwell the simple dignity and deference that our own families seek as part of the American family. Reverend Falwell may have attempted to make himself our adversary with his own personal attacks and political campaigns, but we remember that he remained our neighbor. As we understand that each American should be treated equally under the law, we recognize that each neighbor should receive our respect. Our thoughts and our prayers are with his widow Macel, the Falwell family and the membership of Thomas Road Baptist Church."-- Jo Wyrick, Executive Director, National Stonewall Democrats